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And, people forget that Justin.tv worked this space pretty hard before transitioning to video game broadcasting.

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As a non-iPhone user that has seen neither meerkat or periscope, what's the new thing here? Justin.tv/twitch and ustream have been doing live streaming for a long time now.

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The concept of a livestream isn't new at all, but there are a thousand subtle things that are slightly different (http://austenallred.com/_site/the-subtle-things/). The way they're tied into Twitter and riding an already-existing social graph, the widespread adoption of mobile, the availability of bandwidth and the acceptance of ephemerality are all completely different than Justin.tv or the many other attempts in this space.

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Not to mention timing. Even if these were /exactly/ the same product as justin.tv, releasing a few years later into a world with slightly shifted cultural values could make the difference.

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Interesting. Makes me wonder if there's value in shipping multiple pivots of the same concept when keeping multiple paradigms in a single app could be confusing. Sort of like a/b testing at the app store level, or purposefully unbundling yourself.

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Perhaps, but only a deep analysis of the metrics will tell if you're shifting the paradigm or just picking low hanging fruit.

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+1 for the buzzword-density of your post, but I also find that to be an insightful idea -- only problem is that many times one is blind to the alternate 'pivots' that you might was to ship versions of.

Plus, the development of any given 'pivot' is not necessarily trivial, and could be beyond the skills/resources of a company/person to do so.

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It seems you and everyone else seem to forget about the early live streaming app Qik. http://mashable.com/2011/01/06/skype-acquires-qik-rumor/

it was an incredibly popular live streaming app that died after the skype purchase. Sadly we all seem to have short memories. It offered everything you state. Again nothing new is new.

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I specifically reference Qik in the blog post I linked to.

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apologies - I shouldn't have to click on your blog-spam to get the full breadth of your comment's intentions.

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Yeah, why bother trying to understand a viewpoint when you can just immediately disagree with it?

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yeah because it makes so much sense to send people to some blog spam rather than making points on a conversational thread.

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I'm not sure what you expect. According to what you've written, the options are:

1. Write thousands of words of text in an HN comment

2. Be accused of failing to mention one of the dozen livestreaming apps?

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your blog post is incredibly verbose and could have easily been summarized as the thousands of other of commenters have done in this thread.

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I would say the new thing about Meerkat/Periscope vs Justin.tv is that Justin.tv seemed to be marketed as kind of a lifestyle (that appealed mostly to assholes[1]), where as Periscope or Meerkat seems like something you can do on a lark, more ephemeral, not something that defines you.

[1]http://techcrunch.com/2007/10/15/justintv-lifecasters-not-we...

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I think there is an interesting conversation to be had about why, in a world with LiveStream, UStream, & YouTube Live Events, people see Meerkat/Periscope as revolutionary. Also apply that question to Spotify vs Rhapsody.

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Timing. I was a Rhapsody user in 2003. I even had an AV receiver that supported Rhapsody back in 2005 or so, assuming it was connected to my computer (for stuff like track listing and whatnot on the device). But it didn't take off because timing wasn't right. People were just at a place to start buying digital tunes -- streaming music was awkward.

But beyond that, it took the iPhone (and devices like it -- but really, let's admit it was the iPhone. I loved my Treo, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile devices too, but it was the damn iPhone) to usher in a device where people could stream on the go. Before that, using Rhapsody (or even Spotify, early on) was kind of a PITA.

Spotify made it easier by letting you sync offline stuff with your iPod or iPhone, but it took widespread 3G and beyond, good data plans and saturation of smartphones for people to be like, "yeah, I can replace my iTunes with streaming music."

The same is, to me, true of streaming video. You could do live streaming close to a decade ago. On your cellphone. Shit, I remember envying people using Qik on the Nokia phones in 2008. But it took a long time, there was massive latency and the quality sucked.

Meerkat and Periscope are fast, easy to use, have restreaming features and are easy to drop-in, drop-out of.

Whether they last or not, I don't know. But just as it took e-sports to make the Justin.tv model work (and I remember when they launched Twitch. All of us, myself included, thought it wouldn't work. But then the devices for livestreaming game videos became so inexpensive and the experience so compelling, Sony and Microsoft built it into consoles. It took the barrier getting super easy and the content being compelling for the user case to be seen).

So again, timing.

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Pretty much. I was a Rhapsody users, too, and I loved it. It was, like, 90% of magic. But Spotify is 100% of magic. And it's that last 10% of magic that matters. With Rhapsody, there were a lot of things that broke the illusion and made you think about the underlying model of how to download songs, how to get them on your device, how to renew your licenses. Spotify doesn't make you think about anything, it just lets you listen to music, as much as you want to, and a pretty clever facsimile of whatever you want to.

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Speaking of timing, we can even say the same thing about Twitch.

Video game live broadcasting existed as early as 2005 from Korea, where we would get a 240p stream from OGN (a Korean cable channel), which would sometimes get replicated over users' personal servers. Only the most hardcore Starcraft Broodwar fans stayed up until 3am to watch these games live though.

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Even more interesting IMO is how Twitch has managed to be so successful (as far as I can tell much more so than any of those) while only serving one market segment - gaming.

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Again, I would say good timing. They tapped in on teh fact that people like watching gameplay videos and they built a great system that made it easy for people to use what were becoming affordable video capture frontends to publish live streams.

And its a niche, but it's in a sense, a way more accessible niche than watching a random person lifecast. You're watching someone game. Which isn't that different from watching people play sports on TV.

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Because they find a way to rapidly introduce new users into a previously stagnant market. The technology isn't revolutionary but something about their implementation is.

To cite classic example, their were plenty of smartphones before the iPhone but the iPhone was still "revolutionary".

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Because the natural progression of software is to take something hard and gradually make it easy.

The same thing happened with publishing text (handwritten HTML to CMS to blog to Twitter). Each step opens the task to a wider audience it was previously inaccessible to.

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Most of the returns come from a few big hits. The essay needs to address why there would be none of those (I say none, because there are already so few that 'less' seems moot).

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With hosts in 34k cities (from article), airbnb probably has more employees if we classified hosts as such. Also, many hosts hire of cleaners. It's quite possible that ~500k people are earning income (directly or indirectly) related to airbnb bookings.

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And how can you classify someone (who works 40hrs in a real job) who rents out their backroom on a weekend as "an employee" comparable to the likes of Mariott et al?

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I'd say they're far better off than employees.

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Says no one who ever needed a job to pay their bills.

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> Twilio told Venture Capital Dispatch it is adding another $1 million in annual recurring revenue every seven days.

Sounds cooler than saying "growing 50% per year".

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50% per year sounds pretty damn cool to me ;)

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Question: why didn't any of these issues prevent the web from taking over the desktop during the years between 1995-2005? Native has always been faster and more feature rich, on every platform and at every point in time.

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Really? If you use Windows, you should be familiar with Windows Explorer. Since Win95 with Internet Explorer 4 desktop refresh (shipped also with Win98) you have a trident (IE) web engine in Explorer. The side bar with the metadata and info is DHTML in Win95(IE4), 98, ME, 2000. And a fork of trident code is used in XP and newer. Also WinXP "Software" application to uninstall programs is basically DHTML based. The newer control panel pages, the newer dialogs, etc. The EU demanded that Microsoft has to document the new UI-engine, used in IE "addons" dialog, Vista/7/8/10 Explorer bars & shell dialogs and Office 2007+, so that there no completive advantage. One has yet to find that in MSDN.

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Corporate controlled most desktops. The web allowed you to access and run stuff even when IT told you not to. Installing a program simply did not happen without an act of God.

Individuals control most phones. The goal of the developers is to intrude on your device and you have permission to allow it.

The issues here are same as "web toolbars". Developers want to intrude on your mindspace and the web doesn't allow that easily. Consequently, they have no incentive to build good web apps.

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My guess:

1) Microsoft made Windows too damn fragile. Installing the app means that setup.exe will write all over the hard drive, and uninstall was never easy. Web didn't required install/uninstall.

2) Windows programs, with a few notable exceptions, were/are butt ugly. Web started as an ugly abomination, but designers catched up quickly. Web applications, even then, on slow connections, often provided more pleasant experience.

Web app on mobile today doesn't have the same luxury - native app install/uninstall is painless; native applications are better integrated and most of the time handle unstable connections better; good native apps are beautiful and often have superior usability compared to web apps.

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I think its because the bar for native apps wasn't that high back then. Also the interactions required for desktop apps are much simpler than mobile apps, where gestures are key part of interactions. Gesture-based animations is actually part of using the app, instead of on desktop where they just make things look pretty.

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Most desktops are far overpowered for the (relatively) trivial computing tasks they are used for. As a result the relatively poorer performance of the webapps most people use desktops for is masked to a large degree, where it's even relevant.

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In the context of this article, a big portion of the risks and costs are supported by national health care (Obamacare). If these gig workers had to acquire health care via the old means (i.e. benefits from a corporation, or hoping an insurance co will accept you), they would not have the luxury to work as contractors.

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ACA/Obamacare is not national health care - it's national health insurance, and despite it being better than before (i.e., no pre-existing condition rescissions), the plans offered by carriers even with subsidies are still too pricey for many.

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I disagree. Gig workers still need to pay for their own health care, before and after Obamacare.

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The mistakes you listed make it sound like you're trying to move too fast. Moving fast is good when it comes to product development. But not on the business side. Just focus on these two things:

1) Find a few users who love the product

2) Improve it to the point where they start telling people about it

Forget about analytics, pricing pages, press, etc etc. If you can't get some family and friends to rave about it, you won't get the masses.

Realistically, it will probably take years to really nail 1) and 2) above. But once it happens, you'll very quickly become the next big thing. Read up on the history of Pinterest for a great example of this.

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This could also be a nice alternative to a steering wheel for driving/racing video games.

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All transactions on ad exchanges are arbitrage, unless the real time bidder is actually selling a product.

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Traditionally, real estate was not a great investment. Only recent boom/busts have turned it into a money maker (for some).

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