How an Autocorrect Nightmare Inspired This Texting App

By Tess Townsend, Staff Reporter,

It started with a mistake in a text to an ex-boyfriend. Now there are tens of thousands of users, and plans to pre-install the app on phones in Latin America.

Inc.’s 11th annual 30 Under 30 list features the young founders taking on some of the world’s biggest challenges. Here, meet On Second Thought.

Maci Peterson’s ex-boyfriend kept calling, but she never seemed to be in the right place to answer the phone. Shesent him a text. “Hey, sorry, I keep missing your calls,” she wrote.Except, the text didn’t come out saying “calls.” It said something that rhymes with calls, something that starts with a “b,” something you probably wouldn’t want to say to your ex.”Like everyone else, I started slamming my fingers against the phone,” she says. She sent another text: “calls*.” Then she got to thinking — what if there were a way to take that text back? She asked her friends — would they use an app that allowed them to do that? They said yeah.

The idea became the germ for On Second Thought, an app that lets you set a delay ofup to a minute on each text, allowing you to swipe the text back and interrupt sending it in case you have second thoughts about what you’re about to say. Users can also set a curfew that will hold texts until the next morning. (Pretty useful if you tend to text while drunk.) 

Since launching in 2014, On Second Thought has run mostly on funding from friends, family, and competitions, and is in the process of concluding a seed round. The app is currently available on Android and has 67,000 users spread throughout 200 countries.

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