How the Internet disrupts our way of living

Mar 10, 2017 by

Over last 20 years, the Internet sprouted several game-changing startups that took existing business models and transformed them into more accessible and much-improved versions of themselves.

New brands appeared, and old went into dust. Here is a quick view of some spectacular brick-and-mortar failures to adapt to the Internet age and new exciting startups that are tapping into resolving our everyday needs.


In full disclosure, I must admit that this one is close to my heart. There was something special in going to bookstores like Barnes & Noble or Borders and be able to stroll through the many rows of paper books. Heck sometimes by walking by some sections you could discover something entirely new that you never expected to find.

It was like going to a grocery store to buy milk, and walking out with a cart full of things that you never expect to purchase in the first place!

You could grab a stack of books, bring it to your table and indulge yourself with a cup of delicious coffee and browse through pages. Since the Internet was still in its infancy, there was not much quality information available online. Books were the primary source of “how-to,” good stories and overall entertainment.

There was one problem, though. There were many more books available out there than a single bookstore could carry. That’s why Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, decided that books seem like a perfect product to sell on the internet. As he explained in this video, he decided to open an online bookstore when he noticed in 1994 that the growth of the Internet usage was increasing at 2300% year over year. Jeff Bezos felt that books are the perfect product because at any given time there were millions of various print available and computers are superb at cataloging things. That’s how Amazon was born. As we all know, Barnes & Nobles and the other main bookstore retailers, ignored the online sales and today are just a part of a nostalgic memory of the past. On the other hand, Amazon grew to be a mammoth in the space of e-commerce, cloud computing, and online streaming.


Video Rentals

Who doesn’t remember Saturday evening trips to a local Blockbuster store? Most of them conveniently located right next to your grocery store provided an economical way to provide the weekend entertainment for your family. Blockbuster went belly up under pressure from companies like Netflix which changed how entertainment is consumed today. Both price and convenience played a significant role in Netflix success. First receiving DVDs in the mail and later streaming movies directly to your computer or TV made a huge difference. The Blockbuster’s epic failure to adapt should be a lesson for “old business” for years to come.


Hotels & Vacation Rentals

Online real estate rentals is another classic example of how the Internet enables companies like Airbnb to become the largest hospitality provider in the world without owning a single piece of property that they rent for their clients. Nowadays you can travel to virtually any place in the world and stay at local house or apartment for a very affordable fee. Millions of users chose this form of vacationing over what traditionally was handled by hotels and lodging business.


Taxi Service

Recently Uber had been under major gun fire for all negative press it received both from NYC airport fee spike but also by some startling remarks by Uber ex-employee who exposed very questionable HR practices; however needless to say that this new star of startup unicorns has changed how we travel in the local cities. You can book your ride in a matter of minutes, and you can see who your driver is and how soon they will arrive at your place.

Companies like Lyft and others have been offering service similar to Taxis. For the most part, you are getting better cars, better service, and reviews that could prevent some unpleasant surprises.

And then there are new startups that will change our life in years to come…


Car Selling Online

Have you ever tried to sell your car? Not a pleasant experience! What if you were in a car accident and then you had to sell your wrecked car? Worse yet what if you needed to get rid of your vehicle? What do you do if you want to get some cash for junk cars? In the past, you must be putting up with dealers who will pay you close to nothing or even refuse any trade-in or deal with junkyards near you to throw some pennies.

Now there is a company that provides a better way to sell your less-than-a-perfect car! CarBrain gives instant offers on most of the cars. You can go through their online price calculator and get paid in 24 to 48 business hours.


Household Tasks Outsourcing

Have you purchased an excellent piece of furniture recently? Great! Now how about assembling it? Yeah… that’s a pain. Wait! There is a solution for that. One of many “crowdsourcing apps” available on the Internet that will connect to willing helpers is a Task Rabbit. You just pick what work do you need to get done, and all those small annoying tasks can be taken care of by simply paying a small fee.

There are many more hopeful start-ups sprouting out every year. Lots of them get a huge investment money, way beyond what they will ever make; however, there is a strong movement to keep improving and changing our lives.

Without a doubt, we are building a more connected world in which computers and smart devices will play a pivotal way of building new economies and services that will change forever how we live our life.

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