Halifax company to create digital obituaries for lost loved ones
Posted on July 29, 2021 | By Simon R. Smith | 0 Comments
A Halifax startup wants to help millennials and future generations memorialize their loved ones with its new platform launching in beta next month.
Co-founded by president, Harrison Smith, and local entrepreneur, Paul LeBlanc, Dear Life offers its users an online platform designed to capture images, videos and stories of their loved one and create a sort of interactive obituary which can be viewed and shared online.
“What we do is we capture what was important to your loved one and we guide you through the process of documenting [their] life story,” Smith said, adding that family members and friends can collaborate to create a cinematic memorial, called a “lifestream.”
The idea for Dear Life came to LeBlanc after he lost his father in 2013, Smith said, and he felt that the available services weren’t sufficient to capture his life story.
“He really felt that nothing truly reflected the beauty of his father’s life,” he said. “His father has all these photos and videos, written stories, precious memories inside the heads of friends and family but these were all scattered and they weren’t in a singular location.”
Smith said he thinks the platform will be especially appealing to younger generations as they take on the duties of celebrating a loved one’s life.
“They’re gonna look for, ‘What’s pretty, what’s awesome, what’s beautiful, what leverages technology that I’m familiar with,’” he said. He insisted that Dear Life’s platform will be an easy-to-use, inexpensive alternative to other services that are currently available, like custom video editing or self-managed Facebook pages.
The platform will operate based on a freemium model, Smith said, whereby anyone can use the basic features to make a lifestream, but those who pay a monthly subscription fee of $5.99 will have access to “experience enhancers,” like custom designs and music.
Dear Life is set to launch the beta version of its platform on August 16, giving access to people who have signed up for early access, of which there are now about 400, Smith said.
“We’re gonna be looking for early feedback,” he said. “So, we’ll go to the first few people on the list and say, ‘Hey, do you want to tour the product?’ And then we’ll let them have it and get their feedback.”
Once Dear Life receives feedback from its beta testers, Smith said, the platform will be put through an iterative process to get it ready for its public launch, which he expects to be in February.
It’s crazy that, in modern times, we still don’t have a technology for capturing life stories for future generations,” Smith said. “So, that’s what we’re trying to bring into the world.”
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