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Humin Hopes to Make the Phone Part of Smartphones Live Up to the Name

The upcoming Humin app is a phone dialer that adds social context.

“We have super smart devices, but they are still really dumb phones,” says Humin CEO Ankur Jain.

He’s got a point. Making a call using a modern phone works pretty much the same as it has since the rotary phone with the curly cord went out of style.

Jain’s app Humin, which has been long in the works and first debuted at the D:Dive Into Mobile conference last April, is just about ready to go.

Humin is a phone dialer that has social context. After a user connects email, calendar, phone contacts, Facebook and LinkedIn, Humin cross-references the data to create a new address book.

Then, whenever you want to make a call or send a text, perhaps you will think to use Humin. And whenever you add a new contact via Humin, the app will remember the context in which you met.

And then, whenever someone’s name is on the tip of your tongue, or you’re looking for a contact at a company, you can query Humin for things like “met at DLD” or “works at Google.”

Humin also has some nifty interface tweaks — for instance, to make a call to a contact, you press and hold on an image of their face and swipe right. Or, swipe left to text.

However, it’s not the first startup to noodle on this concept. Other previous efforts at smart address book apps include Addappt and Brewster.

Jain says Humin will be available to the public on both iPhone and Android by the end of March, and beta testers will be invited to test the product before then. He plans to unveil the latest version of the app at the DLD conference in Munich this week.

There’s no point in spending too many more words on a mobile app that isn’t even out yet, but it’s worth adding that Jain does promise that Humin will keep users’ data secure. That’s because most everything the app does will be processed locally on the phone owner’s device, without accessing Humin’s servers, Jain said.

“No matter how hard we try, no company is unhackable,” Jain said. “But your phone is now powerful enough to do all the contextual analysis itself.”

This article originally appeared on

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