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New app gives 'Snapchat generation' something new to read

By Marilyn Malara
New app gives 'Snapchat generation' something new to read
Screenshots from the new Hooked app released this week. Photo by Hooked 0_0/iTunes

WASHINGTON, Sept. 19 (UPI) -- Developers of new app Hooked aimed to redefine "light reading" into something more smartphone-savvy, and say they created it just for the "Snapchat generation."

Married couple Parag Chordia and Prerna Gupta launched their developing company's first app, Hooked, this week on iTunes. Their startup, Telepathic, has also reported raising a total of $1.9 million from investors in light of the new application.

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Hooked is Chordia and Gupta's way of maintaining a wide interest in reading, especially that of fiction, among youths in a hyper-digital age. The app features short pieces of fiction primarily written through dialogue in a text message format. Instead of turning pages, users tap the screen in order to move forward in the story.

"Epistolary literature is nothing new," Gupta told CNN Money. "Bram Stoker's Dracula is one of my favorite books and the story is told entirely through letters."

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Instead of downloading an e-book, Chordia explains the app's format completely passes on attempting to maintain the "feel" of a real book. In his words, readers aren't combating "this block of text that doesn't have that natural feel on your phone that a casual game does." And instead of long-form works, Hooked offers brief stories perfect for a generation on the move.

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Still, the app is meant to keep its readers glued to the story, so the co-founders are recruiting young authors to contribute stories in the fresh format to be featured as exclusive content.

"Every line has to either advance the story or advance the relationships," Chordia said. "Every message is a cliffhanger."

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