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Stamped relaunches with new features, celebrity investors

The micro-reviews service, which awards stamps of approval instead of stars, adds more social features, along with investors Ryan Seacrest, Ellen DeGeneres, and Justin Bieber.


Stamped, the micro-reviews service started by former Googlers, announced tonight a service revamp and a celebrity-heavy lineup of new investors.

Launched last November, Stamped lets users share reviews of things they like with their friends, including movies, music, and restaurants. Instead of ratings based on one to five stars, Stamped gives users 100 "stamps" of approval to dole out to their favorite venues or products. The company's co-founders believe the limit encourages users to make more careful decisions on what wins their stamp.

In the face of criticism that Stamped was too similar to too many other reviews services, Stamped's co-founders say they decided to rebuild the service from the ground up.

To fund that effort, Stamped rounded up some big-name investors, including Ryan Seacrest, Ellen DeGeneres, Justin Bieber, The New York Times, Columbia Records, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, and Crunchfund. Previous investors Bain Capital Ventures and Google Ventures also contributed, bring Stamped's total funds raised to day to $3 million.

"All these investors not only provided the capital necessary to hire awesome people," the company's co-founders said in a company blog post, "but also held a genuine belief in the long-term vision of our platform, and in some cases a desire to use it themselves to connect with their audience."

Stamped, which now operates as a broadcast platform like Twitter, says it redesigned every screen on the app and introduced more than 30 new features.

The overhaul includes a new guide feature that allows users to review their friends' recommendations. New integrations with Spotify, Rdio, iTunes, Netflix, OpenTable, Fandango, and Amazon allow users to listen to music, view trailers, buy books, and even view restaurant menus.

Other enhancements:

  • A redesigned feed includes more social activity, showing users what their friends are doing. New content includes likes, to-dos, and trending stamps
  • Universal activity is redesigned to make it easier for users to find new people to follow and join conversations friends are having about their stamps
  • The app contextualizes stamps, allowing users to see overall trends in their stamps and to see who has stamped the same things

Stamped has also introduced a Web companion to its mobile app, offering users a desktop way to see stamp collections when they aren't on the go.

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