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Tonto: Short-Form Audio Platform Harnesses Music, News, Funny Soundbites to Conquer New Frontier in Social Networking

Between texting, social media, online news and entertainment websites, emails and never-ending correspondence that spans our personal and professional lives, we all do plenty of reading, by the hour, the day and the week.

 So—how about we do a little less reading, and a lot more listening?

 That’s the vision driving Tonto, a short form audio platform and app where users can listen and post comments on what they’re hearing. In the process, a two-way dialogue is created where users can let clip creators know what they think of what they’ve just heard. In return, creators can build on what they’ve posted to Tonto by interacting with their audience. 

Tonto sets the stage for:

  • Connecting with people by voice.
  • Recording or uploading your own audio content.
  • Sharing audio with friends and followers.
  • Discovering audio of interest to you, including new sounds, funny ideas, crazy thoughts, strange points of view and more.

Tonto features short form audio—from funny soundbites generated by friends and strangers and new, uncut music clips; to news reports from the field generated by established media outlets, and random audio missives that allow users to express themselves while building a bold new means of communication whose focus lies outside of the written word.

Tonto CEO and Founder Manna Justin acknowledges the global impact of platforms like TikTok and Twitter, and the manner in which they have swept the social media market. But he also pointed out there is nothing comparable to these two popular platforms that relies solely on audio—until now, that is.

“TikTok is the biggest social platform because it allows users to post short form video,” said Manna, who has launched multiple tech startups focusing on education, fuel delivery, golf and marketing. “Tonto will do the same for audio.

“The general public as well as content creators can publish anything, from ex tempore content on the fly to highly-produced content, all for the whole world to listen to.”

Manna pointed out that audio messaging is widely used on platforms like Whatsapp. But this audio stays within a small group and is never broadcast to a wider audience, where it could inspire others and spark conversation while generating feedback—all critical components of Tonto. 

“We have built THE defining audio social platform in the world,” Manna said. “And we intend to be THE market leader in this space.” 

 Operated by a team of young entrepreneurs on three continents, the roots of Tonto can be traced to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“During my long recovery, I was listening to a lot of comedy and music from various platforms,” Manna said. “That’s when the idea of Tonto came about.”

He said his launch of Tonto was “personal.”

“I consume audio more than other forms of media,” he said, “music from Spotify; random music from Soundcloud; books from Audible; and even just listening to videos and not watching them on YouTube.” 

Manna is partial to audio as entertainment because he is a multitasker and enjoys listening because it frees him to complete tasks, fun and otherwise. Online video, on the other hand, demands the complete attention of users and leaves no breathing room for multitaskers to work their everyday brand of magic.  

Speaking of Tonto, Manna said, “I think millions of people around the world can be entertained this way.”

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