on-demand services

  • Real Solutions For On-Demand Worker Classification Crunch Network

    Real Solutions For On-Demand Worker Classification

    This past year will be remembered as the year of the on-demand economy. For many people, especially those outside of Silicon Valley, it seemed to come out of nowhere. On the consumer side, this was almost universally a welcome surprise. The impact on workers was, of course, much more hotly debated. Read More

  • Why Increased Efficiency Will Make Us Miserable Crunch Network

    Why Increased Efficiency Will Make Us Miserable

    My life just keeps getting easier. These days, I don’t have to run out to the store to replenish my pantry — within an hour, Amazon Now will deliver my groceries. A cleaner from Handy comes in and cleans my apartment while I’m at work. And thanks to Sprig, Munchery, GrubHub and other food delivery apps, I’ll never need to cook again. Unfortunately, this convenience comes… Read More

  • The Real Reason On-Demand Startups Are Reclassifying Workers Crunch Network

    The Real Reason On-Demand Startups Are Reclassifying Workers

    Over the past several months, a handful of on-demand startups reclassified their independent contractors as employees. Others have publicly acknowledged they’re considering the same move, and have been hailed as the “next generation” of the sharing economy: one that takes care of its workers. Meanwhile, established companies like Uber, Upwork (Elance-Odesk), LiveOps and even… Read More

  • On-Demand Darwinism: Survival Of The Fastest Crunch Network

    On-Demand Darwinism: Survival Of The Fastest

    When it comes to evolution, many focus on those special specimens that survive, known as the “fittest.” But what about the losers? Those that couldn’t adapt and simply fell off the merry-go-round of life? In startup-land we have a healthy obsession with failure that helps drive iteration and, in turn, survival — and hopefully massive success. Read More

  • The 5-Step Uber Playbook That Will Disrupt The On-Demand Economy Crunch Network

    The 5-Step Uber Playbook That Will Disrupt The On-Demand Economy

    Most people are familiar with Uber as the ridesharing king; it has taken the world by storm, with much fanfare. Less has been written about its new family member, UberEATS, which now delivers lunch within 10 minutes by the push of a button. What’s interesting about the two ventures is the playbook that Uber uses to identify, design and market them in their Uber world. Perhaps we ought… Read More

  • Cuba’s Startup Paradox Crunch Network

    Cuba’s Startup Paradox

    You see them everywhere. Throngs of young and old, men and women, heads down on their smartphones, fingers rapid fire, mouths curling into smiles as they soak up the joy of an Internet connection. Why are all these people clogging the sidewalks instead of logging in at home? This is Cuba, and in Cuba, you can’t log in at home. Read More

  • Can Entrepreneurs Succeed In Today’s On-Demand World? Crunch Network

    Can Entrepreneurs Succeed In Today’s On-Demand World?

    Intuit recently released an eye-opening new survey reporting that there are currently 3.2 million American workers who participate in the on-demand economy. By 2020, it’s estimated that there will be almost 8 million of these on-demand workers. Many (including Intuit) praise this on-demand movement as supporting a “new class of entrepreneur,” giving workers the tools they need… Read More

  • The Race To Frictionless Parking Crunch Network

    The Race To Frictionless Parking

    Parking. It’s an issue that impacts everyone who owns a car. People might not think about it or talk about it, but it certainly can be one of those daily frustrations that ignites stress. Traditionally, drivers will circle the block for a coveted on-street parking space or a parking garage that has an affordable hourly rate. However, there is more to parking than white lines, garages… Read More

  • Three Tips For Worker Classification For The Next On-Demand Startup Crunch Network

    Three Tips For Worker Classification For The Next On-Demand Startup

    While Uber and TaskRabbit have become household names, and the on-demand economy continues to boom, the problem of worker classification continues to bedevil companies in the on-demand marketplace. For new startups looking to enter this exciting landscape, there are many lessons that can be learned from the demise of companies like Homejoy, as well as from companies like Instacart and Luxe… Read More

  • Our Marketplace Obsession And Bubble Crunch Network

    Our Marketplace Obsession And Bubble

    Service marketplaces have recently become Silicon Valley darlings. The marketplace model has been a popular way for VCs to efficiently tap into the local economies at scale, specifically the $800 billion home services space. It’s a model that dates back to the initial concept of Yellow Pages in 1883. And it makes sense — giving homeowners a convenient way to find local… Read More

  • Techy Is An On-Demand Repair Service For Laptops

    Techy Is An On-Demand Repair Service For Laptops

    While companies like iCracked have extensive repair networks allowing you to get a phone or tablet repaired in just hours, getting a laptop repaired normally requires making an appointment, dropping your device off, and eventually picking it up days later. Techy (a recent winner of our TC Radio pitch-off) solves this problem by providing an on-demand platform for laptop… Read More

  • “Desksourcing” Is A New Labor Market Concept In The Mobile-First World  Crunch Network

    “Desksourcing” Is A New Labor Market Concept In The Mobile-First World 

    I’ve always been fascinated by how labor markets work. People are the foundation for how things get done. How we organize across and within companies impacts both creativity and efficiency. The first big labor market shift in my lifetime that I can remember was outsourcing. Fueled first by globalization and ignited further by Internet connectivity, arbitrage opportunities in labor… Read More

  • Understanding The Future Of Mobility Crunch Network

    Understanding The Future Of Mobility

    We recently had the opportunity to participate in two important conferences focused on the future: one on the on-demand economy (On Demand Economy 2015) and the other on mobile communications (Rutberg Future Mobile 2015). While each conference covered a range of fascinating topics, if taken together, one can develop from the conversations and presentations a clear picture of the future of… Read More

  • Why Homejoy Failed … And The Future Of The On-Demand Economy Crunch Network

    Why Homejoy Failed … And The Future Of The On-Demand Economy

    On the heels of Homejoy’s failure, the fundamental “on-demand marketplace” model has come into question by investors, the media and even consumers. That questioning is very relevant, as there has been an overload of VC money that has been injected in the on-demand service platform space over the past few years ($4 billion-plus in 2014). Read More

  • A Car Full Of People With No One Driving Crunch Network

    A Car Full Of People With No One Driving

    Since the days of the horse and buggy, there has been a fundamental relationship between vehicle and driver. The advent of driverless cars will invert this dynamic as we all roll forward into the future. What should cities do now to prepare? Due to the popularity of application based on-demand vehicle services, we have some foreshadowing of what may arise. Read More

  • The Fall and Software Rebirth of Middlemen

    The Fall and Software Rebirth of Middlemen

    Every region has its evil. In Hollywood, it’s content pirates, and in New York, it’s banking regulators (or Michael Bloomberg if you live outside Manhattan). In Silicon Valley, though, we don’t choose a small profession as our bogeyman: that’s way too pedestrian for us disruption gods. No, we choose all of middlemen as our foe. In the pantheon of evil conjured up by… Read More

  • Startups Serving The 99 Percent Will Be the Next Billion-Dollar Companies Crunch Network

    Startups Serving The 99 Percent Will Be the Next Billion-Dollar Companies

    Many fast-growing companies in Silicon Valley have one thing in common: they cater to a small, affluent, urban population — the 1percent. Residents in high-cost cities like San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles can order an array of goods and services from their mobile phones. These startups, including Uber, Instacart and a host of food delivery apps like Munchery, GrubMarket, Blue… Read More

  • Uber Ruling Is A Harbinger Of The Need For Employment Law Change Crunch Network

    Uber Ruling Is A Harbinger Of The Need For Employment Law Change

    The recent ruling by a hearing officer with the California Labor Commission in a case involving an Uber driver is bad public policy. The issue this ruling addresses — whether the driver should be classified as an “employee” or “contractor” — is of crucial importance to Uber and all the on-demand companies that use a similar business model. Read More

  • Pamper, An On-Demand Manicure And Pedicure Service, Wants To Reinvent The Troubled Nail Salon Industry

    Pamper, An On-Demand Manicure And Pedicure Service, Wants To Reinvent The Troubled Nail Salon Industry

    Amid controversy around nail salons following several reports of poor and hazardous working conditions, a startup called Pamper is hoping the moment is right to change how the business works. Pamper is an on-demand manicure service that serves the southern San Francisco Bay Area. The basic manicure starts at $36, and customers can add extra services for an additional fee. Pamper has four… Read More

  • Someone Build A Startup To Make Things Less On-Demand

    Someone Build A Startup To Make Things Less On-Demand

    Tech companies old and new are powering an on-demand revolution, letting us get everything from house cleaning, to lunch, to products, to almost literally everything where we want it, when we want it. Read More