Seeking a way to reduce friction while exchanging contact information, David Lieb and his two co-founders launched Bump – a service that allows users to swap everything from calendar events to music samples by simply tapping their smartphones together.
In part II of his Founder Stories interview with host Chris Dixon, Lieb tells Dixon the big picture plan. “There is a lot of time spent figuring out how I interface with this [smartphone] to go access the virtual world, but nobody has really spent a lot of time thinking … how do I want to interact with other people and things in the real world, and that is the problem that we want to solve, we want to build that new UI layer for the real world.”
Prior to making this point, Lieb and Dixon discuss Bump’s decision to allow companies like PayPal (and hundreds of others) to embed its code into their apps. While this would seem to be a big opportunity for Bump, Lieb notes, “as it turns out, our growth has been so rapid that our app just dwarfs any of these other apps that use our API.” Regarding PayPal specifically, Lieb says, “last time I checked I think there were like 10-million installs, maybe, so we have 6-times that.”
Having steered the company though such growth, Lieb says managing emotions is still a bit tricky. “There are definitely days where I am like wow, we are just killing it, this is awesome and then 18 hours later, someone says something or we get some new information and we are like, ah man, we are totally screwed, and usually the answer is somewhere in the middle.”
Make sure to watch the entire video of additional insights, along with episode I here.
Past episodes of Founder Stories, featuring Drew Houston, Eric Ries, Kevin O’Connor, Christopher Poole and other leaders are here.
Episode III of Lieb’s interview is coming up.
Bump Technologies builds mobile applications and APIs that allow two smartphones to identify one another and connect by simply being bumped together. The company was founded in 2008 and is based in Mountain View, California. Bump Technologies is funded by Y Combinator, Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and other angel investors.