Backtrack to 10 years ago and compare the tech then to now. You might just think we’ve hit a new era with the enormous difference. It kind of gets us thinking maybe innovations are changing how we should be measuring time as well. Industries are radically altering as we speak from transportation to communication to tourism to payment systems and much more. These are just three of those that changed how this generation lives. These days, having good mobile signal and data connection is not a luxury but a necessity.
After so many years, the accommodations industry is getting a massive upgrade. This app provides travelers with unpredicted alternative options for short stays. AirBnB allows resident owners to lease their own rooms for more affordable rates than hotels. Aside from affordability, one unique benefit to this is the living like a local setup. Timing has definitely been on AirBnB’s side as backpacking and less mainstream-type of trips have gained great popularity over recent years.
Travelers are now seeking for a more local-living experience during their journeys, even on business trips without sacrificing the necessary comforts. Resident owners can state the different amenities and services available upon renting their rooms such as wifi, towels and free breakfast to name a few. Some even add unique offers like free use of bicycles with the benefit of accessibility located in quiet to interesting neighborhoods.
AirBnB has been so groundbreaking that with its success, new hotels are offering the same residential vibes with the amenities of hotels such as a gyms, modern interiors, etc. Businesses are now taking into serious consideration the purchasing power of today’s traveler. When you’ve got an industry to start thinking differently, you know you’ve got something revolutionary.
What AirBnB has done for the hotel industry, Uber has done the same in transportation. Private cars are now a new norm, competing with more traditional methods such as taxi cabs and other local forms. Simply indicate where you want to be picked up and your destination. After which, the app can give you the exact cost of the trip. If you want to proceed, the app books you a ride with one of their registered drivers in a quality car. Think the driver or the car didn’t meet up to standards as it should have? Users are encouraged to send feedback and rating once you reach your destination.
In addition, the company has released more features such as the option to schedule a ride ahead, choosing between cash or card for payment, and more upscale cars available for those who want the VIP treatment. The company is now operating in more than 50 countries around the world. In a smart move, the company is now capitalizing on their edge in transportation with their latest services, UberRUSH, an on-demand delivery network, and UberEATS for food delivery in select locations.
Outside of China, it hasn’t swept up a storm like it did in its home country but that hasn’t made it any less successful. With 800 million users, WeChat is the full-packed communications app that’s integrated into a user’s everyday activities. It’s not simply a messaging app but a social media platform on its own, showcasing features such as micro-blogging called Moments, video calls and interest groups. It also has payment features so you can use it to purchase groceries, split the lunch bill with friends, pay rent, book a train, schedule a doctor’s appointment―name it!
Granted that if Facebook, WhatsApp and the other similar app giants hadn’t been blocked from the country, WeChat may not have been able to gain ground as they did. Despite that, the app has come such a long way from the foreign first-movers, we’re not surprised if these international startups are now looking this local tech as the new standard.