For those of you that don't know, Slash evolved from TabTab, an iOS app that helped people auto split subscriptions through recurring payments.
I came up with the name TabTab on a whim with my friends Santiago Hernandez and Tomas Cortes last spring. We were participating in a month-long hackathon run by Neo, a community focused VC fund, and thought that the name “Tab” (as in a “Tab” at a restaurant) would be great for a bill-splitting app. “Tab”, however, was the name of an existing bill-splitting app, so we went with the next best thing: “TabTab.”
For the longest time, I was a huge fan. Over time, however, I realized that the name lacked two important qualities:
If you hear it, you should be able to write it down.
If you read it, you should be able to say it out loud.
Family friends over Christmas break greeted me with “how is tapatapa going??”, people I would go on socially distanced walks with would politely ask if the name of my business was “taptap as in tap your friend on the shoulder,” every single customer service rep I ever talked to would ask me to triple repeat our domain name, and most cold emails I got used some variation of “Tabtab”, “tab tab”, or “tap tab” (with the occasional correct “TabTab”) to refer to our company by name.
This had two consequences.
The first is it made both Kevin and I feel very self conscious. For example, I tended to avoid talking about TabTab with friends out of fear they would butcher our name (very silly, I know, but true).
The second is it probably made it harder for our users to tell their friends about the site, which in turn inhibited growth.
A substantial product shift seemed like the perfect time for a name change; one that’s short, related to what we are building, easy to pronounce, and easy to spell… and “Slash” is all that.