Obayoo (pronounced oh-bio) is a private social network for microblogging and file sharing within your company. It's available for free on a SaaS basis and accessed through your company email address.Launched earlier this month,
Obayoo appends a Twitter-like interface with the kind of features that Twitter itself has yet to implement, such as threaded replies, groups and file sharing (including images). Along with enterprise microblogging tools like Yammer and Socialcast, Obayoo also has the ability to draw in numerous RSS feeds, including selected Twitter accounts and searches.
Private MicrobloggingObayoo's first and foremost strategy seems to be emphasizing privacy and security. That's a good thing, considering how some senior managers and HR departments wet themselves at the thought of letting employees loose on Twitter, the app that best explains microblogging to the masses.
It's not all hysteria however, and as we pointed out in our review of Yammer, there are real security concerns. Just like Yammer, signing up with Obayoo is facilitated only through company email accounts, though once you're in your network you can invite contractors and clients with non-company email addresses. It also implements SSL and the ability for users to set a fixed IP range from the admin panel.
In user interface, Obayoo compares well with its competitors by offering a very clean and readable stream of posts. Rather than asking a question, such as "What are you working on?", it simply entreats you to share something with your colleagues.
...And MoreWe noted last year that Socialcast prefers to compare itself to FriendFeed rather than Twitter, since it more closely resembles the broader capabilities of the former. The same comparison might hold when considering Obayoo.
On top of the basic microblogging capabilities, Obayoo adds the sort of features that have been assumed, though not necessarily proven, to be useful in the enterprise: file and image sharing, metrics on links and other material shared, full user profiles and an org chart. Interestingly, it also draws in some of the power of a tool like Rypple, allowing you to ask a question and receive answers outside of the microblogging stream.
The VerdictObayoo, despite the nonsensical name, might be a sensible alternative to some of the current enterprise microblogging platforms. Since it's currently free with no ostensible limit, it may be more attractive than Socialcast or other services that charge for more than a tiny user base. It's also much more fully-featured than Yammer or some of the more simplistic services.