Skip to main content

Rando is a messaging app that generates the messages randomly

Rando is a messaging app that generates the messages randomly


Words are very unnecessary

Share this story

You want to reach out to your crush, but what do you say? Do you start with "u up?", or go for something less thirsty? Who knows?! Messaging apps may be the most popular pieces of software in the world, but good luck getting them to do much work on your behalf. It's 2016 and we're still gawking at our phones like animals, tapping out words and hoping they resonate with the person on the other end. No wonder we're single! Well not anymore, gang. Because Rando is here, and it says whatever the hell it wants to.

Rando is the latest app from Contrast, makers of popular nerd utilities Launch Center Pro and Perfect Weather. "It's totally outside my typical productivity app wheelhouse, but it's a concept I've been toying with for over a year now," developer David Barnard told us in an email." Open up Rando and it gives you three options: photo, GIF, and quote. Photos come from your camera roll, GIFs are powered by Giphy, and the quotes comes from ... somewhere? Anyway, for GIFs and quotes Rando will present you with a set of emotions and attempt to find content that fits. Tap "LOL," for example, and you may see a GIF of Johnny Depp's Captain Jack Sparrow get his dreadlocks stuck inside a jar!


The most disturbing feature of Rando, which should probably be illegal, is its ability to send content "blindly" — that is, without you seeing what it is. In other words, Rando will send your crush a random photo from your camera roll — easily the worst idea we have ever heard of, and we covered Clinkle. Barnard says the blind sending is a gimmick — "but it's also interesting on a deeper level," he says. "Building and testing it has forced me to think a lot about what I share and why as well as what embarrassing photos might be lurking deep in my camera roll." As someone who knows exactly what's lurking on my camera roll, I can assure you I will never use this feature in 10,000 years.

Rando has other flaws. Messages all get an unwanted signature: "Found this via Rando." And the app tries to send everything blindly by default, requiring you to tap on a blurry square for every message just to see what Rando found. But the app still feels charming anyway: it's for those people you find yourself wanting to say something to, even when you don't have anything in particular to say.

Rando is now available on iOS.