It’s been a pretty busy year spent with the amazing team at SuperAwesome as well as my incredibly talented colleagues in Potato (Jason and Luke), Hoxton Ventures (Rob and Hussein) and Brown Bag Films (Cathal and Doc). It’s quite a unique perspective. Here are a few thoughts on 2013 I’ve collected from this combination of viewpoints.
-Biggest disappointments: every single piece of wearable tech.
–Greatest positive productivity impact: Trello (super task management), UberX (quietly surpassed Hailo for me in London), Pocket (simple and effective content saving), Quibb (high quality collection of articles).
-Greatest negative productivity impact: Google Calendar (for woeful multi-calendar support).
–Most exciting startup I’ve seen: a cloudsec company which Hoxton just invested in (not yet announced).
-Greatest frustration: not being able to invest in lots of ‘good-but-not-great’ companies.
–Watching very closely: Moshi Monsters Village. If Mind Candy crack mobile, they’ve got a huge opportunity.
–Most under-reported story: Disney quietly acquired the rights to Indiana Jones and locked down entertainment for the next thirty years (Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and Indy all now under one roof).
–The thing nobody is talking about: Single-product cashflow valuations versus churn cycles in consumer applications (or “why King postponed their IPO”).
–Biggest lesson (re)learned: Any company’s real business is people. Everyone is in the headhunting business, it’s simply a question of whether you realise it or not.
–Mulling over: Successfully launching new IP is harder than ever for content producers. Yet we’re still getting breakout social companies like Upworthy and Buzzfeed. Somewhere between those two is the new content model.
–Deal of the year: Google Ventures investing in Uber. Ridiculous and brilliant but it might take three years for people to realise.
–Game of the year: Buggy as fuck but XCOM on iOS rocks. Still playing it.
–Most interesting games trend: ‘real’ (full price and/or indie) games starting to make a real impact on tablet.
-Still waiting for: a decent iOS joypad, touch-screen Macbook Air (2015), a fail-proof projector, an Airbnb laundry service and better car rental.