Aayush Baral FS
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The Messy Minds of Creative People
Creativity is something that cannot be tracked, measured or simplified. How creative minds work has been a serious question. In this article, the writer talks about creativity as a messy process which does not start with a definite plan and its execution.He explains the factors of the creative minds that empowers the creative process and its execution. These traits seems to differ from process to process but the path taken by the creative model is the same. Everything starts with Generation and then Selection. Creativity is associated with different traits which are supposed to be irrational human behavior but the ability to switch back and forth and work accordingly is important
The Idea of Startups
People always complain about how it is hard to come up with ideas for startups. Every company that was started with a certain plan or an idea has pivoted from their original idea. Treating an idea as a question rather than a blueprint is extremely helpful as it makes the execution open ended where changes can be made accordingly. People working in schools and colleges comes up with better ideas as they get an opportunity to work on new ideas. Big companies are uptight and the workload and pressure never allows people to think about venture ideas or work on the things they enjoy. Free mind helps to generate ideas, ask questions and to think if certain thing is possible. Creative minds never cease to think about ideas or solve the problems by generating questions and the author suggests to keep working on the ideas and collaborating with friends. Another way of approaching ideas is thinking about what big companies want and try to solve their problems which in turn will help to boost the startup’s capital and then they can pivot to a different idea.
Design For Action
Designing has not been the same in the years. Although designing is the core part of the enterprises, there has been various shifts in the design process over the years. The designers have been trying to make the holistic experience better but there has been various problems which have been discussed in this article.
New Challenge: Bringing a new product is a completely different approach which requires proper coordination in different aspects. For example, the new product may require a different kind of marketing strategy or a different business model than the others. So, a new product or an idea needs a new creative design or a plan that addresses the problems in a unique experience and provide a great user experience. Sometimes the new design might not follow up with generation of revenue but the artifacts and the execution should be parallel to each other in a business enterprise.
Designing the Intervention: Often the fear of failure kills the idea. Rapid prototyping will be a great way to increase connection with the users sooner which will help to get feedback from them and will help in improving the product and generating new strategies. Often the new prototype don’t get approval from the management so there should be a proper strategy of going to the decision maker and talking about the problems and the measures to be taken to solve the problem rather than letting the idea go through a bureaucratic process.
In this article , Tim Brown mainly talks about design thinking and innovation and how it is misunderstood and the various processes involved in it. From the example of Thomas Edison, one of the greatest mind, he asserts that innovation is powered through understanding, direct observation and questioning of people’s behavior and their likes. In the past when designers were only the part of making the products look better, these days designer has been an integral part of product development and distribution. Designing is no longer a thing happening abruptly but has been a gradual hit and trials of ideas and changes and has been expanded from products to services and strategies. This has led to various changes in the service industry. The improved quality and experience of Kaiser Permanente can be a good example for this. Just by developing a new system to make changes in the nurse’s schedule the experience of overall health care has been made better. Brown also thinks that prototypes should not be a way of using a lot of resources but should be a product for generating questions and feedback and should be a method that will help to improve the drawbacks in the design and product. The major breakthrough has been possible by understanding the consumers and their response to change. By identifying the problems faced by the consumers and trying to address that problem has helped many enterprises to succeed. Design Thinking is an act of identifying certain aspects of human behavior and try to generate strategies that can fit to their changes and daily life.
What is Strategy?
This reading mainly focuses on the definition of strategy, the misconceptions, the forces behind strategy and the problems. Strategy has been confused with operational effectiveness now and then. The era of 80’s and 90’s, the Japanese company were extremely devoted towards operational effectiveness which helped Japan to develop and be ahead of technological advancement. But because of lack of new strategies and concepts, it created different companies with same product and management competing against each other.
But the businesses and corporate sector is shifting towards strategic positioning and concepts to move forward. The market has been so big and diverse that it requires certain traits for a company to survive. Companies may try to generate more profit through cost effectiveness but there are certain aspects that needs to be traded for making something more efficient. The example of SouthWest Airlines and Continental shows the reality of the market where focusing on multiple ideas and trying to get outcome needs complete makeover and may result in failing. SouthWest on on hand has been extremely popular because of the low fares, no baggage line and frequent flight timings. When Continental tried to introduce such services it couldn’t incorporate it with baggage line, travel agents, commissions and its diverse fleet of airplanes which consequently caused heavy loss.
Same strategies doesn’t work out for every companies and it can result in huge loss while playing the imitation game. Ikea which focuses on middle class young people with less income with their self pickup and improvised decorated rooms with products can fall from the cliff if it tries to provide high end services to the customers. The release of Honda Civic in United States is a great example where Honda compromised with its qualities to generate profit and target certain group of audiences. Similar is the case with SouthWest where they have to forget business class people in order to provide better services to the economic class.
The strategic positioning is one of the key components in a strategic planning. A certain product or service can be useful for a certain group of people and place. A high end winter clothing brand won’t be popular in tropical regions. And strategy has different components attached to it. The cost benefit analysis is important and most of the strategies that worked is because the cost increment in providing one service has reduced the cost for other services.
Strategies has been most of the time left behind by different companies because of the lack of management and policies. There has always been a fear of walking through the path undiscovered which compels the companies to experiment. Also the major problem with bigger companies is the whole company is driven by growth because of which they focus on building an empire, adding more outlets and offices rather than coming up with better strategy of idea.
The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy
In this article, the author talks about the five forces that determine the success and failure of the companies and their level of impact in the market. The five forces are:
1.Threat of Entrants: Threat of Entrants has always been something the frontrunners of the sector are worried about. With advancement of technology, strategic building and venture capitalists, there are companies and startups that pose threat to the incumbents. For example: Apple posed a major threat to IBM and Kodak and Nikon had to pivot into digital photography business because of the new technology. In most of the cases the entrants doesn’t pose threat to the companies mainly because of lack of trust among the customers, lack of capital and huge pressure from the incumbents. The incumbents try to remove the new competitors from the market by reducing cost and maintaining quality.
2. The Power of Suppliers: A supplier group can be powerful because of different reasons. Mainly if the company is more concentrated than the market itself. Microsoft is the leading software provider for PCs because of the same reason. If there involves switching cost, the suppliers are more powerful as the companies have to spend extra capital in switching suppliers. If the suppliers are providing endors distinctive products for example, oracle is powerful as it is the leading database system and softwares provider. Suppliers can be powerful if there is no substitute for the products.
3. The Power of Buyers: If the buyers are the high volume purchaser of the product from the vendor, the power shifts from suppliers to the buyers. There is huge chance a buyer can substitute the product without having switching costs which makes the buyer more powerful.
4.Threat of substitutes: Substitutes are the products or services that are similar to the service provided by the e a incumbent but uses different means or technology. For example:Netflix is the substitute for DVD companies and theaters. Substitutes can be a threat to incumbent if they are providing similar kind of experience at lower cost and are more user friendly, the buyer’s switching cost is less or negligible and there is a competition between two old vendors which allows a new one to rise.
5.Rivalry among competitors: The intensity of rivalry depends on the size of competitors, existing barrier, industry growth and the lack of proper vision among the firms. Some companies are driven by a goal and egoistic leadership that causes clash between the companies. If the fixed costs are high and marginal costs are low between competitor, this causes high competition in cutting costs and maintaining quality among firms.
The strategist should consider all of these forces while developing strategies and it is not necessary all of these forces are eliminated by the strategy. The key goal is to have a proper balance between these forces. For example cutting all the competitors and monopoly can invite bigger competitors.
SWOT Analysis I
Strategy always starts with a goal and is different for different enterprises. The strategic choices to made can be derived by looking at the internal and external factors of the enterprise. Most of the strategic planners use SWOT analysis where SWOT:Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
Strengths are the positive aspects of your enterprise that help it to perform well, weaknesses are the traits hindering your growth and success, Opportunities are the trends, ideas or forces that the enterprise can rely on to be successful and Threats are the possible forces that the enterprise need to work on to prevent a failure. The major part of strategic building and SWOT analysis is to consider the external forces and analyze them. By understanding the external market forces one can learn about the substitutes, opportunities or threats from a startup company. The basis of strategy is asking questions and trying to solve these queries by generating new ideas. Doing an analysis of potential audiences and focusing on the firm’s response towards each group of audience will help to make decisions and receive the information on what can be the best market to optimize profit.
Another external factor that strategists should account for is price sensitivity or elasticity of demand. Elasticity of demand is the percentage change in the quantity demanded over percentage change in the price. It is the measure of responsiveness of customers towards the change in price of the product. The larger the elasticity of demand is, the more sensitive the customers are towards the price of the product. In order to increase revenue, when the elasticity of demand is more than 1, the companies should decrease the price of the product, when it is unity they should make no changes and when it is less than 1 they can increase the price of the product. The elasticity of demand is different for different products, services, users and time frame. And with lot of substitutes, the elasticity of demand is supposed to be higher. Because of the advancement in technology there has been new threats and opportunities for the companies. There is always a threat of another company coming up with better product or services or your company making strides using the technology.
SWOT Analysis II
After testing the external threats and opportunities, the strategists need to take account of the strengths and weaknesses of the enterprise in order to succeed in a particular goal. The company’s strengths and weaknesses should be evaluated and it should be a comparative study. The company’s core competency is an important part of the analysis. Core competencies are the company’s expertise or skills in key areas. Core competencies can be determined by how well the company is providing products or services in reference to its competitors. Also expertise needs to be something that the customers love. One of the best way of evaluating core competencies is benchmarking. Benchmarking is an important aspect which helps to determine the current state of an enterprise with respect to its competitors. Rating should be obtaining by getting views from managers, consultants, defectors from rival companies and people who know the industry well.
One of the key component to be considered before strategy making is the financial condition of the company. The amount of cash flow, access to outside capital and changes or hurdles in a certain project should be considered before making any decisions. These data can be obtained while evaluating the company’s strengths and weaknesses. Strength and weaknesses can be identified by using the office resources, knowledgeable team, brainstorming company’s key competencies, recording and clarifying the ideas with the help of consultant and summarizing the strengths and weaknesses. The findings should be compiled and needed to be considered before any kind of strategic planning.
In this article the authors describe Experience Prototyping as a prototyping that enables the team members, clients to gain the first handed experience of existing or future conditions through active engagement with prototypes. Prototypes are the representation of a product or an idea that is made before the final product is created. Prototypes provide a first hand user experience to the creators that helps to understand the working mechanism and helps to get an insight on the flaws and the ways the product or service can be improved.
Experience Prototyping emphasize on the basics or details of the representation that is needed to provide a similar experience as of final product. It is extremely important as multiple fields are needed to answer certain questions or solve certain problems and with experience prototyping the information or the idea becomes more clear through the personal experience. There are three different kinds of activities within development of experience prototyping:
1.Understanding Existing User Experience: It is mostly applied to demonstrate the context and identify the issues through direct experience of a system. The questions to ask in this stage are :What are the contextual, physical, temporal, sensory, social and cognitive factors we must consider as we embark on the design? And what are the factors that the design should not change and focus on?
2.Exploring and evaluating design ideas: The main purpose is to facilitate the exploration of possible solutions and direct the team towards development of user experience, This helps to evaluate the ideas within the company with clients, colleagues and users. It is basically questioning the experience of the user and thinking about the ways of solving the problems felt by the users,
3.Communicating ideas: The basic role is make sure the client or a user understands the value of the idea by experiencing it. It is kind of persuading the user or trying to figure out the idea is compelling enough to be transformed into a viable product.
There are various disadvantages of experience prototyping where fully immersion of the ideas into personal experience tends to shift the focus towards those ideas and problems rather than thinking about the user experience. Also this can create a frustration to clients when they get attached to the prototype and the product launched will be completely different from the experience they had.
The Design of Everyday Things
With the advancement in technology, designs have become more and more complex and the products are being launched with different features that are not needed. This has created a bad user experience where a lot of choices and more influence of design has not been able to serve the audience as they have wanted. Norman asserts that a good product should be able to serve its users with a better experience and assist them which has given birth to Human Centered Design.
Human Centered Design is targeted on the needs of the users which is supported by the design and aesthetic of the product. It is based on the discoverability(which allows user to navigate through the works of the product) and understanding(letting users know how the product should be used in a simpler way). Human Centered Design also accounts for better connection of the user with the product or a service through design, interaction and effective UX. HCD emphasizes on the development of multiple prototypes to provide an insight on user’s demands and expectations and solve problems.
Discoverability consists of five concepts which are: Affordances: Affordances is the connection between the product or services and the ability of the user to determine the use of the product. It includes the basic operation of the product to interaction with different problems .
Signifiers: Signifiers are basically the concepts that tell the users where the action should take place. It is the way the product interacts with the user and help them to identify the mechanism through various notes, arrows and other methods.
Mappings: Mappings is generally providing a better way of understanding the steps or methods used during the interaction with the product. Product designers take account of the habits, biological, cultural, social and psychological interactions of the users in designing the mapping and making the mechanism easily controlled by the users.
Feedback:Feedback is the way of letting the users know that the product is working as per their request. Feedback should be immediate and should not be annoying and clear. Too much feedback should be avoided.
Understanding of the design requires:
Conceptual models: It is highly simplified explanation of how something works. Conceptual models can be multiple depending on the user and their experience with the product. Conceptual model in the manuals can be made complex but there should be models that explain the working of various functions in a product. System images can be extremely helpful in explaining the features of the product. It is coherent and helps the user to identify the various mechanisms through manuals, booklets, online information.
Although technology has been trying to simplify the human life by decreasing the human effort, it has created a havoc because of the introduction of unwanted features and designs which degrade the human interactive experience with the machines. Sometimes the design outplays the functions of the product making it hard to discover and understand. Therefore, creating a product is a process where experts from different fields should collaborate in order to explain the needs of users in a certain area and try to incorporate design, engineering, marketing, user experience in the creation of product.
The reading mainly describes the nine components of business model canvas and how one can implement it while developing strategies, brainstorming ideas or making changes in the long run. The nine components of business model canvas are as follows:
Customer are the integral part of an enterprise. Different companies have their own approach towards the customers and their own pool of customers they are serving. Business models can be focused on mass market, niche market, segmented, diversified and multi-sided platform. The approaches can be different as per the main philosophy of the enterprise, their size, their product and services and their partnerships.
It is the product or services that are designed for the customers. Value Proposition is depended on customer segments, market competition, innovation, performance and customization. Some companies make products for a specific purpose or a service or just to help customers to get certain works done. Value proposition is based on what people want and how the product and services can change their experience or help to solve their problems.
Channels are the way the enterprise connects with its customer segments and provide their products and services. There is constant need of reaching out to the buyer or the seller especially in service industry where direct communication channel is used. Channels also help the customer to evaluate the value proposition of an enterprise and provide feedback to the vendor and help them improve their services.
Customer Relationship is the way of communicating with different segments. It has a huge influence on the overall customer experience and shape the future transaction possibilities. Some companies provide personal assistance, some with automated services and these days because of the increase in ecommerce sites, the companies are allowing the customer to create a value of the company and their services through reviews and suggestions.
It is the cash a company generates through its products and services.Revenue streams are depended on value proposition as well as additional recurring value payments. Revenue can be generated through advertisement, licensing, lending, subscription. A company may have different sources of revenues which may or may not be intertwined with each other.
The important assets needed to make a business model work are key resources. The assets can be physical, intellectual, financial or human resources. Some companies are solely based on physical assets like Walmart whereas some companies are with human resources like consulting firms.
The things a company need to do in order to make the business model work are the Key Activities. The major activities can be production, delivering services, solving problems or connecting with other elements of financial market. Credit card companies should make sure they have good connection with merchants and users. Similarly, data licensing companies should have connection with banks and other financial institutions. Social Networking sites key activity will be delivering a smooth experience and making sure there is no glitch in network systems.
It includes the suppliers, competitors, allies, venture capitalists and stakeholders. Partnerships are mainly motivated by acquisition, optimization and creating a new market in some cases. There are some cases where competitors work together on the model that er. requires innovation but have different services or products to deliver. In tech startups the companies are mainly partnered with crowdfunding resource or venture capitalists.
Cost Structure: It describes the costs incurred while operating under a particular business model. The costs are related to the value proposition, customer segments, resources and partnerships. The cost can be fixed, variable and depends on the philosophy of a business venture. Some companies are cost driven whereas some are based on providing better services and values to the customers. And the customer segments of these companies are different.
One of the problems faced by people warm summer days is the low visibility of their smartphone and laptops because of the sunlight. This compels people to change their visual setting of their smart devices now and then but still it can’t make any difference. My idea is to produce sunglasses that are tuned to the the optical characteristics of the smart devices. These sunglasses will be polarized and will be compatible to most of the smart devices.
As ride sharing has been extremely popular, I thought this application will be really useful. It allows people near the same location and certain vicinity to have a meal together. It generally allows people with similar interests or people checked in in a same place to share a meal together and split the bill.
This application allows people to share their contact details, social network information, resumes through one swipe. It will be extremely handy for people meeting in conferences and public event to share their information for connection as well as job and partnership opportunities.
Because of the increasing social networking sites and blogging being popular, people are extremely interested in sharing their work, contacts, personal information, resume to the people they have met in conferences, parties or in public vehicles. This application will provide one swipe solution for sending all of their contact information to the person.
This application is targeted for people of different age groups and diverse audience. For the younger users this application can be used to send information like facebook profile, phone number, linkedin profile, blog url, twitter information to the desired people they encounter with. This application will basically work on internet connection(offline services will be considered later) and people need to register first. Once they have registered themselves they can create a profile with a non-repetitive profile name and can add their information they want to share. All they need to do is to search the username of the other person and they can actually decide what information they want to share. While searching, the other application users will be shown which will help to find the user easily.
Everyone won't be able to send information to everyone. If some people don't want to get noticed they can turn the private mode on, so the users cannot be seen and won't receive any information from the other user. I haven't really thought of this visibility thing properly but I want to add something that will ask for more information before sending the information to a strange user.
SWOT ANALYSIS OF INFOSHARE
-Helps you send your information in least possible steps possible.
-Helps you to locate Infoshare users at 1 mile radius thus finding a person is easier.
-You can choose what information you want and need to share.
-Designed for people who want to share their professional information in conferences.
-Provides you the option of hiding yourself or having a private account.
-The information you shared can be directly linked to the social networking sites like Linkedin, Twitter, Blogger and the second person can add you immediately through add or follow option in the UI.
-Is designed for a specific group of people
-Has to deal with privacy issues and need to address the problem faced by users who get information without their will.
-It can be used in places with internet connection.
-People want to share their information or what they are doing because of the popularity of social networking sites.
-Increase in number of bloggers and finding a person’s blog has always been a long process.
-There are no any bigger threats after BUMP leaving the market.
-As the application is only for information sharing, the experience is smoother.
-People using several email accounts for different social networking sites and uses which can be addressed by this application.
-There are still huge number of people using business cards.
-Digital business cards will be a big threat.
-There is a huge possibility of Google launching something similar to BUMP but better.
Mitigating the weaknesses and threat
-There can be an option of adding digital business cards while creating a profile which allows people to send their business cards as well.
-Google's Bump was based on an offline mode where people needed to bump their phone to send their contacts and photos whereas this application focuses on the sending of any kind of personal information on the web to respected parties.
-To make easier for people to search the search radius will be decreased to few meters which allow people who are having conversation to easily find the person they are looking for.
-Using it offline or via Bluetooth can be something to think about.
- After conversation with various people, people want a general way to give their phone numbers as well. So, it can be integrated to sending personal information like phone numbers and Facebook profile information.
Rough UI prototype:
The market of applications sending your information has been stagnant over the past 3 years. There has been applications like BUMP, Snapdat, Jumpscan and others which had dominated most of the information sharing industry.
BUMP: BUMP was dominant in this industry having 125 million users until it was shut down by Google. BUMP mainly focussed on sharing of pictures and contacts with less consideration towards sharing of social information over the internet. It had no features of embedding blog URLs and twitter handles. BUMP had a lot on their plate with the team focusing on starting payment methods like PayPal, Bump for computers and others. Also BUMP’s primary focus was sharing of pictures and other files on a mobile device by bumping two phones together which is inconvenient and is a sluggy process. Also you have to go through different steps which can be inconvenient and wasn’t smooth. BUMP was removed from the app store on January 31, 2014.
Snapdat: Snapdat is a mobile application that helped users to send vcards over the internet. It has been one of the best alternatives for business cards allowing users to select from 50 designs and helping to send their information over the internet. It has been mainly focussing on professional sharing of information and social networking allowing users to make a profile and sending messages. It is moreover a business card and you can’t embed URLs or links on your profile. You don’t have alternative contact information you can share with your friends or people you personally connect with. You have a different Snapdat user name.
Jumpscan: Jumpscan allows user to create a profile and send that profile as a QR code to people. Anyone who scans the QR code is directed to the personal page of the user and you can find the information you need. Again Jumpscan shares all of your information and it directs you to the user’s profile which is kind of similar to social networking sites. The process is longer as you go through the profile and then to the respective information on the web.
There are features on different cell phone models where you are share you information only within the same cell phone model and is mainly focussed on sharing your pictures and files. Apple has AirDrop and Windows has its own software where one phone needs to be on top of the other to send pictures and files.
How is Infoshare different from these applications?
Most of the applications have a longer process of sending the information where you cannot directly search the people and send only the information you want to share. These applications sends every information that is in your profile. Most of them don’t have the features of adding the contacts right away. For example, if a Facebook link pops up the applications direct it to the webpage whereas Infoshare keeps record of information that is received and allows you to save it on the application page itself. In these applications mentioned, you cannot share the information without Bumping the phone or searching a different username or sending a code. Infoshare provides a better method to search people based on the location of the users. Infoshare also provides the feature of merging different links which can be opened in different browsers or can be bookmarked through the application if it is not opened in the browser. Infoshare also keep track of the people you met by saving the location of the place where the information was shared.
Twitter is an online social networking website that helps users to share 140 character messages called tweets. Twitter was launched in July 2006 as a private enterprise by Jack Dorsey, Evan Williams, Biz Stone and Noah Glass. Twitter went public on November 6, 2013 with an IPO of $26 issued by Goldman Sachs. Talking about the history of Twitter, Jack Dorsey was the developer of Blogger, the first blogging site launched. Blogger was later acquired by Google and Jack Dorsey got shares in Google and held a big position in Google’s product development. Later Jack sold all his shares and co-founded a podcast startup called ODEO. Podcast was a new idea but ODEO didn’t turn out to be a good idea because of the lack of management in the company. Jack’s home launched startup got a big blow when Apple introduced iTunes where podcasts were just a small part of their whole product design. ODEO had to pivot from their main idea and with brainstorming Jack came up with the idea of Twitter. It started slow with being very less common among the users but Twitter’s low profile couldn’t survive the wind of expansion in Silicon valley.Soon twitter started generating users and revenue through Silicon Valley parties and conferences. As of March 2011 there were 190 million tweets generated daily. With more than 500 million users now, Twitter has been an expanding social community. From celebrities to politicians, Twitter has been used for various purposed. Publicity and idea and though sharing has been common in tweets these days. With the increment in the social networking users, Twitter can actually start a modern day revolution or a war. But as of 2014, Twitter’s revenue collection has been decreasing even though their users have been increasing daily.
So how does Twitter make profit?
85% of Twitter’s revenue come from native marketing.There are 3 ways of advertising people or a company in Twitter. Either by promoting tweet, promoting a whole account of promoting a trend. It also has a bidding system where the advertisers compete with each other for a particular space.
Data licensing is twitter’s other major source of revenue. This microblogging sites sells 500 million tweets worth of public data each day. These type of public data is used by companies to analyse the user behavior and trend and make changes in their business model to generate higher revenue. It can also be used to analyse stock levels by generating the information on popularity of certain product or changes in the business enterprise.
Why is Twitter failing to generate revenue?
The major problem in Twitter is the management system. Twitter had a lot of changes in the managing committee and had disputes among the co-founders now and then.There has been changes in governing body which has halted different strategies and product changes every now and then. Also Twitter has been stagnant for 6-7 years where their major focus was providing a smooth user experience. The world shifted from text messaging to MMS, voice messages, video messages and compression. Although people believe that Twitter might be more successful in generating revenue in 2015, the last quarter of 2014 showed a loss of 500 million dollars for Twitter. Twitter saw an increase in stock prices last year but the current stock price is just above 26 dollars. This shows that Twitter is in serious trouble. Their new video tweets and voice tweets feature has not been able to attract more users. The main reason is that there has been different specialized application in the market that provide better user interface than Twitter.
AirBnb is a trusted community marketplace to list, discover and book unique accommodation around the world online. It is a private company founded in 2008 and operated by AirBnb Inc. It has a market valuation of 20 billion and has generated more than 500 million in the last quarter.
AirBnb started with small bed and breakfast site which provided short term staying opportunities especially for people in conferences and meetings. To fund it, the co-founders created special edition breakfast cereals and generated 30000 dollar and it was able to caught attention of venture capitalist Paul Graham. This helped to expand the bed and breakfast into a much larger AirBnb which is now operated in 190 countries in the globe and has more than 10 million users.
AirBnb has certainly helped to spread the sharing business around the world. Where there were sites like StumbleUpon and Couchsurfing but they are not been able to expand themselves in such a big scale. Also AirBnb targets different audiences and has been successful in generating revenue through the booking charges. The users are can review the places and can report if there has been some problems. Airbnb hold the charges for the owner until the things are fixed and the damages or problems can be reported through photographs. Airbnb has been extremely successful in adapting to different laws across the globe. For example, the places where VAT is prevalent, there will be changes in the rent charge and also in United States, the guests has to pay taxes under certain circumstances.
Overall the users have loved the experience so far and there has been good reviews about it over the internet. It has helped people to cooperate and network through place sharing and has provided people to earn money by hosting and one doesn’t have to start a hotel for that. Especially old and retired people have been hosting their houses in the suburbs and country and the people have been able to get a great experience through it. Airbnb has revolutionize the hospitality industry and has been able to generate revenue and expand it all around the globe.
One of the major problem for this company is the security of the customers and users. Although background check is done for the hosts, still there has been issues that need to be addressed. Also insurance has been another issue that needs to be addresses. Although Airbnb has no immediate threat from any other companies right now, if these issues are not considered then there might be problems for this expanding business.