26 Sept 2016

Analyse Asia Podcast: With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemies

Continuing our last discussion, we analysed changing alliances in the transportation and gaming industries. In particular, we focused on two interesting cases that transition from co-operation to rivalry: 1) Google vs. Uber in ride-sharing and autonomous vehicles, and 2) Niantic vs. Nintendo in the mobile gaming space. Will these companies continue to co-operate, or will their rivalries drive them apart?

Show notes and links to the discussion (with time-stamps included):
Uber vs Google [1:15]
  • How did they go from allies to competitors? [1:46]
  • Google Maps adding a ride-sharing aggregation option that compares Uber's prices with rivals such as Lyft. [2:43]
  • Google’s implementation of ride sharing through Waze [3:40]
  • Who owns the customer, Google Maps or Uber/Lyft ride sharing service: Comparable per user engagement metrics (vast difference in size of userbase) – Reference: Uber, Google & the Future ofRidesharing. [5:22]
  • What are user engagement metrics for Uber vs Google Maps? [8:11]
  • Biggest reason to be positive about Uber’s chances is that they recognize the threat caused by the shift to self driving cars: TravisKalanick’s comments (where he recognized the threat from Google) on going autonomous. [10:26]
  • Is Uber vs Google like Google vs Facebook with Google Plus? [11:10]
  • Google’s Android advantage against Uber [12:07]
  • Google’s loss of their self-driving car team and Uber acquisition of Otto. [13:30]
  • Why is there no network effects with a fleet of self-driving cars? [14:30]
  • Uber is going autonomous soon and they are already trialling and of course, in Singapore, Nutonomy has also trialled their self-driving car into taxis next year, does that mean that these services will not be asset light any more with their business model?  [15:00]

Niantic vs. Nintendo [16:00]                             
  • The difference between a mobile-first and console-first approach
  • Why Niantic and Nintendo are setting themselves up for a rivalry? [16:40]
  • Niantic’s business model and defensibility. [20:32]
  • AR location based gaming as a platform, confirmed by Niantic.
  • Nintendo’s approach is dramatically different and mirrors those of other console players attempting to move to mobile (Free Trial + Paid Access, e.g. TellTale, Ubisoft, etc.). That revenue model has never achieved true scale on mobile, irrespective of IP (Game of Thrones, Rayman, etc.). Some revenue generated on iOS (explains iOS only approach).
  • How do companies navigate themselves from alliances to rivalries and then still need each other within the ecosystem?  [25:00]

Source: Analyse Asia