At SXSW we attended the talk of Mike McCue, founder and CEO of Flipboard. Mike is a serial entrepreneur and he previously founded Tellme (sold to Microsoft for $800MM) and was VP of Technology at Netscape and seats on the board of Twitter (he knows what he is talking about :-).
Flipboard aggregates and curates news articles shared in your social graph (e.g., Twitter/Facebook) creating a personalized magazin. So it shares a lot of concepts with Photofeed. Apple named Flipboard top iPad app of 2010.
Loren, our Director of Marketing, took some useful notes that I wanted to share:
- Flipboard is doing featured content (I,e, featured categories) - Wired...Pictory - photoblog... more
- All about social real time experience
- Focused on connecting the dots (filtered twitter lists paired with related articles)
- Facebook is most popular category
- They've raised $10.5MM, will last til the end of the year
- Business model: ads, they're just starting now. Will never charge
- Ads inserted into the experience... replicating the magazine experience
- Ads look cool, do not interfere with content
- Not currently doing anything on Android. Next platform is iPhone.
- iPhone will be to quickly scan for info, mark something to read later, etc. Redisigning from the ground up, completely different experience. Get in, get out. Completely different experience. Do over 1-2K mockups before each design release!
- iPhone app is for summer 11, new iPhone is coming out then he let slip ;)
- Android is huge on smartphones not on tablets yet
- 2MM downloads
- Half of users are active weekly/monthly
- Viewing model is work in progress, plan to improve it... showing previews of actual content while you're waiting it for load
- Load time via 3g and 256mb ram has and are challenges
- Process of curation is super important
- Allow people to discover, and create
- Social search is early, but they plan on expanding it
- Can search across all sources/platforms
- Attempting to improve information overload. Talking about missing content on facebook newsfeed
- They had acquired Ellerdale? And they're using their technology to make sure you don't miss out on things from the newsfeed/twitter etc.