While the media obviously point their cameras, story writers and everything else at the startup poster boy Nick D’Aloisio (and let’s be honest it’s a good story) the tech press are now starting to swing their attention to Yahoo’s press release of the new iOS app.
Okay putting aside that $30M is small change to the likes of Yahoo! it’s going to be the users, or as I like to call them “products”, that will be the ultimate judge.
At it’s peak Summly had an user base of one million users but that’s the true metric, the true metric is active users and nothing else. So a conservative estimate of 30% active users would give 300,000 users. Or in Yahoo terms $100 per head.
Now with most media/tech companies whether it be Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo!, Google and so on it really boils down to ads in front of users. Ad impressions cost nothing, in to the realms of microtransaction land. Mix that with collaborative filtering of story ratings, read stories and so on you have the start of a data gathering service of who likes what.
See a pattern emerging?
Marissa is going for the “we’re a cool company” again and rightly so, I believe she’s the right person in place to steer it forward. Look at the data, kill what’s not working and concentrate on what is. The key questions are i) will users return from their portals of info back to Yahoo!? and ii) is advertising revenue going to be the key to their revenue.