We released our closed beta!

Yup, you read the headline correctly! We’re slowly opening access to our beta version. Although we’ve been working in our cave for two years with no public release on the shelf, more people follow the Berty project every day. It’s incredible. We thank you for that from the bottom of our hearts. Sincerely.

If you’re here, you understand the project’s philosophy and the technological challenges it implies. It’s truly astounding to feel as supported as we are. We have the best community!

Done is better than perfect

Today, Berty’s development has reached the stage where a release is necessary. Sharing with you is about getting as much feedback as possible so we can move in the right direction. For this, we’ll need all of you.

Our philosophy has always been “done is better than perfect.” If you tinker with the best product out there forever in your secret workshop, it’s useless!

If you’re the team member that makes things happen, you become indispensable. If you and your organization are the ones (the only ones) that can get things done, close the sale, ship the product and make a difference, you’re the linchpins—the ones we can’t live without. Author: Seth Godin

So, it’s now time to face the outside world! Let’s be honest: It’s still a development version with lots of things to improve, change, remove, keep. We’ll proceed in two stages:

  1. Have the application tested by a small circle of friends and contributors
  2. Invite each person who tells us they want in

Why a closed rather than a public beta?

We know you can’t wait to try Berty, and believe us, neither can we! But we have some important reasons for waiting a little longer.

First, an initial, closed beta lets us establish that Berty’s handling is decisively intuitive before inviting other testers. Our first preview is available to a restricted circle, including our closest friends. This allows us to get a realtime first impression of the application’s use. (It’s easier to organize face-to-face test sessions with friends in our office.)

We want to tackle any problems that come up in this initial stage (plus some recurring bugs) before we open testing to everyone to get more concise feedback and discover less common bugs.

Second, you probably know that we are a small team (a tiny one even!). We think a two-stage opening is an excellent way to pace ourselves and keep focus.

Finally, we also know that many people need Berty (activists, journalists, lawyers, internet citizens…). We have you in mind. We’re uncompromising on protecting your anonymity, data, and privacy. We know what’s at stake.

We’re doing what we can to make this the most secure messenging application ever designed - and we don’t take this assignment lightly. This takes time. That’s why we’ll need you: Your feedback, your ideas, your app review. We need you on board.

To this end, we’re working hard to release it openly, asap. We know that some of you have been following us for over two years and are really looking forward to this moment.

Your mission, should you accept

For the curious (especially for those who would like to take part in Berty’s progress), we will announce Yolo’s public opening through a blog post very soon. We’ll give you all the instructions to get Berty’s beta therein.

So, if you accept it, your mission will be to share anything and everything of your experience using Yolo to help us build a better application!