In the past few days and weeks there has been a lot of buzz around social messaging applications. Most recently, Facebook purchased the messaging company whatsapp for a staggering $16 Billion – the biggest venture-backed exit to date . In a very short time span before that, a handful of players announced big moves such as the Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten, who agreed to buy Viber for $900 million, or the Japanese messaging application LINE who is expected to file for a $10 billion IPO and even the rejection of Google’s reported $3 Billion acquisition offer by Snapchat. Bigger players such as Facebook and Twitter also jumped on the messaging bandwagon and introduced significantly improved versions of their instant messaging products with the hope of gaining traction in this emerging space. At the same time, the mobile analytics company Flurry released a report indicating that the fastest growing app category on smartphones were social messaging applications, which usage grew by an astonishing 204% in 2013 alone. A closer look at all this activity begs the questions: why are messaging applications so popular? Are they worth all of the buzz and money flooding into them? How do they make money? Who is winning in that space? To answer these questions, we decided to take a closer look at the messaging space, including its competitors, market dynamics, business models and the potential future.
After attending the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Detecon issued a report of the major trends and developments to its clients. The report highlighted the major developments in wearable technology, connected home, connected car and robotics. Only one month after CES, each of these categories has seen significant developments and public events.
The world of business is increasingly complex to navigate for both management and businesses themselves. The Internet and social media have increasingly disrupted the interactions between consumers and corporations. While most corporations have leveraged the Internet to improve their processes, they have yet to truly harness the revolution the Internet has provided to the consumer – corporation relationship.
If one were to complete an analysis of how corporations are currently leveraging technology, one could state that it is still in a state of infancy compared to how technology can truly be leveraged. The level of technology integration within corporate processes can be broken down into four phases, described in more detail below:
- Phase 1: Technology Merely Replaces Manual Processes
- Phase 2: Processes Are Revised To Leverage Technology
- Phase 3: Individual Customization
- Phase 4: Responsive Individualis
Innovation and the Internet. Currently, these are the buzzwords that are driving economic growth and recovery. Innovation and the Internet seems to be today’s panacea to cure all that ails every organization, whether it is reviving a stagnant culture or reinvigorating an old product line. The unfortunate reality is that the success that innovation and the Internet have achieved is in some respects due to a number of convergent factors, including:
As innovation continues to move to the forefront of corporate agendas, corporations are attempting to develop processes and structures to capture the value and competitive advantages from innovation. While a number of corporations believe that innovation can be captured with existing organizational processes and structures, sadly the existing organizational approaches are a severe impediment to developing innovative products and services
Innovation Goes Far Beyond Ideation
Find the right idea and you are golden. The innovation journey often overemphasizes the importance of the ideation phase. Repeatedly, companies believe that the road to growth and prosperity is in discovering “the great idea”, yet they often neglect the execution side of innovation. However, the real challenges emerge when attempting to bring this very innovation to market.
The success rate of product launches tends to decline when companies increasingly rely on innovation to meet their growth targets.[i] At first glance, this appears to be an oxymoron; yet studies have shown that 46% of budgets allocated to new & innovative products end up in failure.[ii] The reason is, most likely, that many businesses see the execution of innovation only as the “afterthought” and not necessarily as a crucial key element of the entire innovation process. In fact, 84% of resources spent on innovation projects are commonly absorbed before commercializing a product.[ii]
Detecon is pleased to have just completed a collaborative effort with TechSoup Global to assess the market for mobile health solutions in the social sector. Over the past years, the non-profit sector has been increasingly looking to mobile technologies to address social issues especially in emerging markets. With an array of initiatives launching siloed mobile solutions, there arose the question of launching a “Mobile Solutions Portal” to serve as a central destination site that aggregates both solutions and information on mobile. With this is mind, Detecon and TechSoup designed an initial assessment that aims to serve as a qualitative guide for those in the non-profit sector looking to leverage mobile solutions to better meet their missions. Continue reading
Successfully launching a new business venture is no walk in the park. A recent study conducted by Harvard professor Shikar Gosh suggests that three out of four venture backed startups fail because they do not yield an exit that is sufficient to pay back VC’s initial investments. While established corporations invest millions of dollars into market research before launching a product, startups launch products with limited time and funding. Many ventures still succeed in developing a high quality product, yet a significant proportion of them are not able to deliver quality goods that actually meet customers’ demands.
Steve Jobs had once predicted that “the biggest innovations of the twenty-first century will be at the intersection of biology and technology.”
So far, 2013 has seen 25% more deals in digital health than 2012 according to Rockhealth startup accelerator and specialized health tech events and funds are multiplying. Just have a look at the recent crowd funding success story of Scanadu, the first “Medical Tricoder”, which managed to raise more than $1.6 million for a $100K initial funding target.
So, is this the beginning of a revolution at the intersection of biology and technology?