Author Topic: Startup Culture's Final Form?  (Read 2406 times)

Pæs

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Startup Culture's Final Form?
« on: June 19, 2014, 07:36:22 am »
1) What is Yo?

Yo is a mobile messaging app available for iOS and Android devices. You establish a username. Then a friend who also uses Yo can select your username inside his app and you will receive a push notification reading: "Yo" and featuring audio of a voice stating "Yo."

2) That's it?

Yes.

3) Is this a joke?

No. Yo is very real, I have downloaded it myself and Yo-ed with Vox.com senior UX developer Yuri Victor. According to the Financial Times the company recently raised $1 million in venture capital.

4) A million dollars?

Yep.

5) What are some non-app uses of Yo?

Yo is a popular informal English-language greeting. It's also the title of a Chris Brown song:

6) Who is behind Yo?

Yo is the brainchild of Or Arbel, a former iOS developer at the image-sharing company Mobli. Arbel had left Mobli to work on a not-yet-released product called Stox. Arbel's former boss at Mobli, Moshe Hogeg, asked Arbel to "to make an app with one big button that could call his assistant without having to pick up the phone or compose a text message." Arbel initially refused, pleading a lack of time, but then hit upon the idea of switching the conceit up slightly to the brief greeting that is now the app's namesake. The $1 million investment comes from Hogeg's angel investment fund.

7) Are people using Yo?

According to Tim Bradshaw, as of the end of June 17 "50,000 users have now signed up to Yo and sent a total of 4m messages — 2m of which were in the last month." Bradshaw's article has spurred considerable additional interest in the app so the numbers are surely much higher than that today.

8) Has the world gone entirely mad?

Perhaps. People have been looking for a new tech bubble for years long before there was any evidence of one, and now we have some real evidence — see Judd Legum for the case. Totally ridiculous novelty companies attracting seven figure investments. The smartphone product category in general was badly overestimated during the first couple of years of Apple's iPhone, and a range of smartphone app categories (gaming, messaging, etc.) have also badly outperformed the conventional wisdom. When that happens, the conventional wisdom tends to recalibrate. And now you have people investing a million bucks in an app that just sends "yo" to people.

In a non-novelty context, the idea is that people may want to sign up for ultra-simple notifications. If you add the user WORLDCUP on Yo, it will notify you every time a team scores a goal. Then you can make sure to look up and catch the replay. Arbel says he's hoping to commercialize Yo by turning it into a platform for companies to alert people to when they're running sales. Here's the Yo API for developers:

Some example use cases:

— A blog can Yo the readers whenever a new post is published. Imagine getting a Yo From PRODUCTHUNT.
— An online store can Yo its customers whenever a new product is offered. Imagine getting a Yo From JENNASHOPIFY.
— A football club can Yo the fans whenever the team scores a touchdown. Imagine getting a Yo From THE49ERS.
— An ice-cream truck can Yo the kids when it's around the corner.... Imagine getting a Yo From THEICECREAMTRUCK.

Keep in mind each service can only Yo its subscribers once per day and they can unsubscribe at anytime

9) That's the plan?

Apparently. You should probably think of this as a general illustration of the principle that investing in early-stage startups is not really a rational act. Hogeg has the money to spare (apparently), has a relationship with Arbel, probably enjoys this media attention, and stands at least a sliver of a chance of somehow making this investment pay off. So why not?

Mesozoic Mister Nigel

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2014, 04:57:28 pm »
 :lulz: :lulz: :lulz:
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”


Junkenstein

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2014, 05:08:23 pm »
Oh fuck, this actually appears to be a real thing!

It's probably not even the stupidest thing you could throw cash at either which just makes it even funnier.
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Raz Tech

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2014, 05:17:21 pm »
As an aside, some of the reviews for this app are hilarious.

Cramulus

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2014, 06:11:28 pm »
In the Beginning
there was Chaos,
the vast immeasurable abyss,
Outrageous as a sea,
dark, wasteful, wild.

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2014, 10:05:06 pm »
Did no one learn anything from the dotcom bust? ... people?... learn?... okay forget I said anything  :lulz:
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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2014, 10:18:18 pm »
Did no one learn anything from the dotcom bust? ... people?... learn?... okay forget I said anything  :lulz:

The dotcom bubble only burst because it relied on fiat currency. With the power of bitcoin its a straight shot from here to the singularity.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2014, 10:28:35 pm by xXRon_Paul_42016Xxx(weed) »

Pæs

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2014, 10:30:48 pm »
Maybe this thing is still young enough that I can take over the contextual notification space with a HODOR app.

Junkenstein

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2014, 08:49:19 am »
That would be awesome.

In fact, getting a "HODOR" when a new game of thrones is about to air would also be quite amusing. There's certainly potential here for some things. If you can flip the app for a quick few million, why the fuck not?

http://money.msn.com/business-news/article.aspx?feed=OBR&date=20140612&id=17694864

Especially as 140 letters seems to be losing it's appeal.

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Cain

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2014, 02:56:59 pm »
I would only buy a Hodor app with dogecoins.  Because, y'know, internet.

Junkenstein

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2014, 03:12:59 pm »
You would.

The world is built on people buying tat exactly like this. I'm predicting success as soon as you can send/customise your own word.
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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2014, 03:40:25 pm »
It's the penultimate evolution of Twitter. The ultimate evolution being the ability to send a single character.
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Junkenstein

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2014, 03:41:18 pm »
!
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Cramulus

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2014, 03:41:55 pm »
Alright I signed up for Yo

This is the dumbest app ever, and it's hysterical

I was blasting my girlfriend with Yo's until she took away my phone

It has that "oh my god this is so dumb I immediately have to sign up and tell 10 friends" kind of feeling that I had when somebody told me about Myspace in 2003. They were like "IT'S A SITE WHERE WE CAN BE FRIENDS. NOT LIKE THE REAL WORLD, LIKE INTERNET FRIENDS. AND WHEN I POST PICTURES OF MY FACE YOU CAN COMMENT ON THEM"

at the time, we laughed, because that sounded stupid as fuck. It would never work!



Okay so my Yo name is "CRAMULUS". I expect all of you assholes to download Yo and Yo me immediately.

Junkenstein

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Re: Startup Culture's Final Form?
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2014, 03:48:14 pm »
The only thing stopping me from getting this right now is how badly I abused the "Mr. T in your pocket". Junkenwife nearly beat me to death with my own shins because of how much and often I pitied fools.
Nine naked Men just walking down the road will cause a heap of trouble for all concerned.