Back in 2014, Andrew Cunningham thought he and some colleagues had a hit with a smartphone app to create short bursts of reversible video.
These days, if Cunningham wants to use his old app, it might be easier to pull up Instagram. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing app has an almost identical feature called Boomerang, which people use to create videos of streams running backward or friends doing backflips in reverse.
Cunningham has long suspected that Instagram copied Boomerang from his startup, which after all was based in Australia, home of the original boomerang hunting tool. His app, called RWND, didn’t last long after Boomerang came on the scene in 2015, a year after RWND.
“You wake up one day and the magic that you’ve got has been baked into another product,” said Cunningham, who’s based in Melbourne.
It was all ancient history in the fast-moving world of tech startups until last