Khyaal: “The idea behind the Khyaal app is to engage, educate and empower seniors”

Headquartered in Mumbai, Khyaal is a senior-focused platform. The company was founded in 2020 by Hemanshu Jain and Pritish Nelleri. The platform aims to help seniors securely pay to participate in free online games, expert sessions, live yoga, music events and digital workshops. The platform already has more than 250,000 downloads on the Google Play Store. CEO Hemanshu Jain has over 16 years of product, sales, marketing, operations and manufacturing experience. This is his second foray into the field, his first company Diabeto addressing the chronic health condition of diabetes. Pritish Nelleri (COO) has 15 years of experience in Branding, Marcom, Content Marketing and Digital. In an interaction with Times of India Tech, the duo talk about the app that was among the top apps in the Google Play Store in 2022.
How did you come up with your app? What was the idea behind it?
Khyaal was founded in 2020 amid the pandemic, when loneliness and social isolation among seniors reached unprecedented levels. To address the issue of loneliness we have created a community for seniors across India to interact with each other and engage them in our interactive games and sessions. Khyaal started with a single chat group, and to accommodate more seniors and provide a seamless experience, we developed the Khyaal app. The idea behind the app was to engage, educate and empower seniors and we do that through community, content and commerce.
Talk about your journey with Google Play and how has it helped you grow?
Google Play has played a key role in our growth trajectory by helping us reach seniors across India and introduce them to the unique Khyaal experience. Today we have reached more than 2,50,000 seniors across India. We have more than 1,00,000 active users who enjoy spending their time on Khyaal app. It’s been a phenomenal journey for us so far.
What does it mean to be one of Google Play’s top apps for 2022?
It’s a great feeling to be ranked among Google Play’s top apps for 2022. The recognition is a testament to the tireless efforts of our amazing team committed to making a difference and the love seniors across the country have shown us on this journey. It also serves as a source of encouragement for everyone at Khyaal and a recognition of the contributions we have made to improving the lives of seniors.
Our goal has always been to create a super app for seniors in India that will help them with all the helpful services they are looking for – and most importantly, a community where they can interact and belong. We will continue our journey.
What do you think worked/connected with the audience?
The strong bond we share with our older parishioners is the result of the effective two-way bridge we have built over time. This intangible bridge is built on the foundation of patience, trust and learning. We started by creating engagement for our seniors through games, expert sessions, workshops and live yoga with the intention of reducing loneliness through interactions and activities. As seniors went through a rough patch due to the pandemic, they looked for meaningful ways to interact with the world, have fun, learn, and grow. Our seniors immediately incorporated these sessions as part of their daily routine and we added more events based on the requests we received from our community.
To what extent is the content personalized to suit people from different parts of India? And how do you overcome the language barrier?
Our content is based on “inclusiveness”, an integral value that defines the very construct of Khyaal as a unit. When creating and distributing content, we are aware of the complexities of our rich nation and the people who make it up. We consider everyone’s beliefs and want our content to appeal to a wide audience. Through our content, we strive to instill positivity and enable seamless learning. We try to create tolerance and are constantly working to break down barriers that exclude certain groups from participating and consuming content. We are currently delivering content with an effective mix of Hindi and English, which allows us to reach a wider population. To accommodate more seniors across the country, we will soon be introducing localized regional content in multiple languages. Khyaal is a perfect example where learning, fun and growth take precedence over the limitations of language. Right now, our universal language of love and patience is helping us to overcome the language barrier.
Any tips for budding app developers out there?
Collaborate with your users and develop together. Interact and seek feedback to keep improving.

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