Internet & Mobility Holds the Promise for Future
Date: Wednesday , March 02, 2011
I started Jigsee several years ago because I saw a shift occurring in the way people consume content. The fundamental shift as I perceived it was in the concept of borders. Borders dictate the kind of content we are exposed to, and can have a significant impact on the development of our respective communities, and even societies as a whole. To some extent borders may make life easier by book-ending the world we are exposed to. But the idea of what a border is, and how it gets controlled is evolving. My belief is that borders should not be up to governments, infrastructure providers, or content programmers to dictate. Rather, the people who live within them should define borders. In most developed countries, applications and web sites allow people limitless access to content. Borders are still there, but our interests, personalities, and social circles, as opposed to some third party, define them. In the developing world, this is not yet the case.
The vision of Jigsee is large. In a grand sense, we want to free video content from the economic, and infrastructure-related borders that confine it today. Economically, video is still a luxury for a large percentage of the world. By focusing on open models for distribution, and by making content accessible via basic devices, we’re hoping to expand the reach of video to the middle and even base of the pyramid. Technically, it’s a challenge to deliver video using the infrastructure that exists in most developing countries. Our intention is to make video content ubiquitously available to all people, everywhere. Our wireless streaming innovations, which allow us to deliver continuous video streams with as little as 50 Kbps of bandwidth, are a step in this direction.
The next few years will see the Internet expand to include all of humanity. Mobile devices will become the primary means by which most of the world is able to access, share, and discover content. Industries will change, as will the business models that define them. Technology will allow rural farmers from India to share ideas with rural farmers in Peru. South Korean soap operas will find an engaged audience of Maharashtrian housewives. The market for regional content will become global. This is the shift Jigsee will play some role in enabling.
Finally, I’d like to provide a piece of advice for new entrepreneurs. As an entrepreneur, one needs to recognize a problem and find an effective solution for it. The inherent challenge is in freeing our imaginations to consider the most effective solutions. If we confine our thinking to the technology, business models, and constraints of the day, we may not be as effective when it comes to solving the customer’s problem. As Henry Ford once said, “If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse’.
Often times, we are trained to conceptualize a product and business plan that our peers or investors will understand. My advice is to know your customer and put their problems first. Don’t be confined in your approach to solving their problem. If you’ve adequately solved their problem, then they will pay you for your solution. And in that vein, you will have no problem attracting or satisfying your investors.