Austen Eliot

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Great article and really interesting topic. I would be curious to see if “video dating” does end up picking up after the pandemic and changes the way these apps deliver features and services.

On May 2, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Uber- COVID-19 speed bumps puts Uber’s suspension to the test! :

I agree with your comments on the strategic intelligence of Uber expanding into more than just ride share, however, it will be interesting to see how long they can go relying on Uber Eats to be the dominant source of their revenue. Especially since food delivery services is a very competitive market.

On May 2, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Strava: Striving in the time of Corona? :

I am surprised to hear that Strava is doing well during this pandemic with shelter-in-place orders. I am wondering if this will make them consider using their network to expand into workouts to do at home and not just utilizing GPS and location features, similar to what you mentioned in your closing.

On April 21, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on BetterUp: Personalized Career Coaching For All :

What a unique use of AI! I love that there are benefits to both employers and employees. It is interesting to see that people are more engaged with personalized coaching, but I am left wondering how to test if this is just as effective as in person coaching especially for training that involved interpersonal lessons and demonstrations.

On April 21, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Duolingo – Learning the language of AI :

The unique use of chat bots is a great way to use AI to create value for your users. I think this is a tool that really differentiates Duolingo from other free educational tools that are available.

I thought this was a really interesting perspective because when I thought about value creation and value capture I was only thinking of the user side and not the artist. It makes sense to me that the artists could also have alot to gain by getting a deeper understanding of who their target fans are should Spotify start to collaborate with artists.

On March 24, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Rec Room – An Open Virtual Reality World :

I am surprised that Rec Room chose to develop its product on multiple platforms, and not too surprised to hear about the bugs. I am not sure I agree with you about the multi-homing across platforms. As someone that sinks time in gaming, I would say that I would probably prefer to spend mine time in one application and not have to jump around day to day. If some of my friends were on a different platform I would probably do my best to convince them to change based on whichever app had the best features and eventually highest network effects.

On March 24, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Etsy: Amazon Marketplace for Crafts? :

I agree with your closing comments about social media and Instagram. I know apps like Pinterest are losing share to Instagram and I wonder if the same thing will happen to Etsy.

On March 24, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Zocdoc: The Yelp for Medicine? :

I would be interested in knowing more about the network effects of ZocDoc, if any. I am wondering like Yelp is slowing being replaced by Google Reviews if ZocDoc might also be replaced by Google as they build out health services. It might be interesting to google a doctors name eventually and the first hit is a google review and the second hit is a ZocDoc link.

On February 11, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Omada Health: A winning digital solution in chronic disease management :

This was a really informative post about a great example of a winner. I am glad you highlighted their success with outcomes, since relevant data is usually the biggest challenge in determining whether a digital health solution is a winner. I am very curious to see who wins in the Livongo/Omada battle. It may be more interesting if Omada also chooses to partner with a tech company like Apple or Google to increase their access to patients and expand their data set.

Thank you for the informative post. I am left wondering if Mercari is scalable outside of Japan. It does not seem hard to beat out the incumbent when its Yahoo (who easily could be considered a loser in another post) and they failed to consistently succeed outside of Japan. Scaling outside Japan and taking on companies like Amazon or Alibaba will be more difficult.

On February 11, 2020, Austen Eliot commented on Coursera – Revolutionizing Education For Anyone, Anywhere :

Great post! I am wondering what the risk from competition looks like in this space. Thinking about what HBS is doing with the HBX platform, I am wondering if more schools (like the aforementioned Stanford and Princeton) will end up trying to make their own independent online course platforms. This may impact the paid B2B portion of Coursera’s revenue, especially since the certificate or degree you get at the end might be considered more prestigious.