Localmind (which I invested in through Year One Labs) is all about getting answers to questions you have around you. You can ask questions of anyone checked-in at a location. Currently, Localmind supports Foursquare, Gowalla and Facebook (more check-in services to come soon.) Why is this interesting?
In my mind the holy grail of location-based services isn’t deals. Deals are nice, we all like them, but more often we want information. And we want it quickly. To some degree a deal is really just more information – it provides additional context to decision-making that we do about where to go, what to do, what to buy, who to go with, etc. Information and context are key. And speed too. There are countless cases for needing information in real-time or near real-time about a location you’re at or a location you’re going to (in the near future). That’s where Localmind comes in. When you ask a question about a place and almost instantly get an answer, it’s an amazing feeling. And incredibly useful.
Mobile games are exploding too (and I love this space, check out our investment in location-based gaming: Please Stay Calm ), but what’s appealing about Localmind is the utility it brings and the speed at which it does it.
In January, I wrote a post titled Someone Else is Already Working on Your Idea. We were never under any illusion otherwise for Localmind, and it’s amazing to see the competition popping up on a near-daily basis. That’s the life of a startup. And if you go beyond the niche that Localmind is carving out there are all kinds of ancillary players in group messaging, location-based social networking, etc. It’s a hot space, but I think it’s just getting started. We’re going to see so much rapid evolution in this space it’s going to be amazing. Some of that will be driven by leaders like Foursquare, and some of the innovation will be driven by constantly more powerful mobile devices.
Localmind is just getting started. The team has a lot of work ahead of them, and they’re pounding away to make things happen. I hope you’ll check it out at www.localmind.com where you can download the app and check out the special SXSW page they’ve put up to show you all the real-time Q&A activity going on there.
And one last thing … here’s a video they did to explain Localmind in under 40 seconds: