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An in-depth look at Bump's latest app and strategy

Remember Bump? http://bu.mp/ The famous app lets you bump contact info and other stuff to other people's phones.

They just shipped a new version and +David Lieb, CEO, shows it to me . Turns out the data they were studying shows people like bumping photos. They also noticed that people wanted an even simpler app than they were already shipping.

The thing that hits me is very few people ever ask me to bump my contacts to them.

Can they "cross the chasm" and become as commonplace as asking someone for a business card? That's a tough challenge.

But it's always interesting to sit down with an app company so many people know about and hear where things are going.
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25 comments
 
I think it will be as popular as beaming contact info with our Palm Pilots got. LOL
 
I think it's worse than Palm, because if you saw another person with a Palm, you at least knew that beaming was possible.
 
I fear they need to pull a game like PayPal did with having people give away money to their friends as a way to get them to install/register.
 
To spread well enough to do something as ambitious as replacing business cards for everyday use they'd have to make some kind of phenomenal advertising. Also cross platform compatibility would be crucial. And some sort of universal standard for the contact cards. It's like he said, until millions are using it daily it's not gonna be a 'necessity' app.

It does look like they're going in the right direction though!

Anyway, brilliant interview +Robert Scoble! Thoroughly enjoyed it.

EDIT: Thinking about it now, why the hell isn't this included in +Android? Let's see it in Jelly Bean!!
 
What's the socially appropriate way of asking to "Bump" someone??
 
I could see them bumping FB profiles and making 'friends' that way. Which makes Bump a perfect FB acquisition.
 
"Would you like to make the bumpy bumpy?"
 
Android Beam kind of replaces this app for people that have phones running ICS with NFC. Still, until those phones are more prevalent, it's great to have someone offering this type of solution. It will be interesting to see how they will continue to progress in the near future dependent on whether NFC takes off.
 
Try Hoccer. It's similar to bump but has a neat little twist.
 
I like the changes Bump made for v3.0, and would love to see it catch on, since it's much more convenient than carrying a stack of business cards everywhere. That said, I think it's a technology that needs to get licensed (or just copied?) by either Apple or Google, so that it can be built in on an OS level, in order to see large scale use/adoption. That way, the question is not 'Do you have Bump?', but just 'Want to Bump?'.
 
Great interview Robert. The story behind bump is NOT about photo but it's about meaningful connections. +David Lieb does a good job at talking about the story and the track record the team has shipping a product. I wish he could share more about the business model. Really - what do Sequoia and Horwitz see that you can't share? would be a good idea to help out the rest of the startups that think they can build in a vacuum.

The story of bump is one of steady execution and user advocacy - they do a great job. I really hope they can stick to his last point: focus, focus, focus!
 
Are they planing on adding NFC support ??
 
Great interview! Staying focused is truly important for any business no matter how small or big.
 
Nice Interview +Robert Scoble, and that is a great app.
Did he say "YC" founders at 07:33? What’s that?
At 07:40 he said "and Alex and (Krovly?) from (where?) came over"
 
What is with the "they would have to" type language? In terms of traction, they already have it. It makes no sense to tell a company that they would need to do something to get traction when they have more users than the PR obsessed Four Square....
 
Cool interview, I remember trying out Bump a while back expecting it to be the "new business card". While that hasn't happened yet, I'm glad to see that the possibility hasn't been completely ruled out yet.
 
+Jennifer Nelson it beats my mind. The use case for this app is very limited: taking out your phone, finding the app, bumping (its just too much, IMO). I downloaded it a few months ago, but deleted it because its practically useless to me. I wonder the engagement on this app. hm...
 
I love these app company interviews...great way to hear about cool apps and take a little peak at growing tech companies. Cool stuff, thanks +Robert Scoble , looking forward to more of these! Now off to download bump for my Galaxy Nexus...
 
Bump is the kind of thing that is awesome if baked into the OS. Far less so if it is a proprietary app.
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