Reggie Watts shares how James Corden personally paid some staff during COVID-19

The comedian/musician is on CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast to talk about WattsApp by Reggie Watts, data privacy and his love/hate relationship with technology.

Patrick Holland Managing Editor
Patrick Holland has been a phone reviewer for CNET since 2016. He is a former theater director who occasionally makes short films. Patrick has an eye for photography and a passion for everything mobile. He is a colorful raconteur who will guide you through the ever-changing, fast-paced world of phones, especially the iPhone and iOS. He used to co-host CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast and interviewed guests like Jeff Goldblum, Alfre Woodard, Stephen Merchant, Sam Jay, Edgar Wright and Roy Wood Jr.
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  • Patrick's play The Cowboy is included in the Best American Short Plays 2011-12 anthology. He co-wrote and starred in the short film Baden Krunk that won the Best Wisconsin Short Film award at the Milwaukee Short Film Festival.
Patrick Holland
3 min read
WattsApp by Reggie Watts

The comedian, musician, artist and actor Reggie Watts now has an app. And it has the best name: WattsApp by Reggie Watts.

WattsApp by Reggie Watts

Trying to describe Reggie Watts is a bit like trying to explain the majesty of the Aurora Borealis. But I'll try. Draw a triangle and label the points as comedian, musician and bandleader. Then place a point outside that triangle and label it actor. Finally, sketch a circle through the triangle and name it beatboxer. Somewhere between all those points or outside them is Watts. 

You might know him from his 2016 Netflix special Reggie Watts: Spatial, his time on the podcast Comedy Bang! Bang! or from the The Late Late Show with James Corden. Now he has his own app that has one of the most amazing names: WattsApp by Reggie Watts.

Watts was a guest on CNET's I'm So Obsessed podcast. He explained that one of the motivations behind releasing an app was to protect the data privacy of his fans from companies like Google , Facebook and TikTok.

"I wanted to have a place that people who enjoy what I do can go to and they're not being tracked and there's no advertising," Watts said. "I just wanted it to be like a cool space for people to go to. It's like my own multimedia channel. I'm certainly not the first to do this. But my thing is to offer as much transparency and clarity when it comes to being an artist. An artist's responsibility is to be in control over the tools they use and the experiences that they provide."

The content on WattsApp by Reggie Watts is as varied as Watts. One of the first times I used it, I watched a sit down video interview with musician Jack White filmed indoors entirely by drones . There are also live performances by Watts and a shop where he sells off his old tech. Watts is a passionate early adopter when it comes to new gadgets and products.

"I'm always interested in, 'there's this new technology with this headphone. So, let me try these headphones. They're supposed to do this and they're designed this way.' [My interest] runs pretty much along the lines of computer technology, music technology effects, cameras, video cameras , routers, any pretty much anything interconnected," Watts said. "And so, I buy a lot of stuff. And then it piles up. When the app came along, I was like, 'oh man, it'd be so cool to have a store that way I could just get rid of all my old electronics.' And that's really where it came from."

During our conversation, Watts opens up about his love/hate relationship with technology, his obsession with optimization, growing up in Montana and his relationship with James Corden.

I should note that this interview was recorded at the beginning of July.

Listen to my entire conversation with Watts on Spotify or Apple Podcasts. WattsApp by Reggie Watts is currently available to download from the App store for free and will be available soon on Android. You can subscribe to I'm So Obsessed on your favorite podcast app. In each episode, I catch up with an artist, actor or creator to learn about work, career and current obsessions.