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  • Writer's pictureBryan Jun

2 apps no mains

Here's the start of a new category of posts - apps and companies that I think are undervalued. What I really mean by undervalued (I did not conduct some fancy financial analysis to understand what industry multiples are at, etc.) adhere to the following criteria:

  1. When I tell my immediate and broad social circle about them, 90%+ have "never heard of it."

  2. It's currently not public (SPAC is OK).

  3. I use it a lot.

After listing out the grading rubric, I now recognize that undervalue may not be the best term to use, but I think it gives off the appropriate nuance. Additionally, in this day and age of everyone being a day trader, I'm sure it'll attract a decent following (while criteria #2 means that this will serve no purpose to them, at least at the moment).

To start things off, I'm sharing two apps that I use quite frequently - some on a daily basis and others once a week at the least. My exposure to these applications vary, but loosely speaking, there was a need I had to satisfy and therefore Googled "apps that _____." It's very possible that there's better versions of these apps that do the exact same thing but better - please let me know if that's the case as I'd love to immediately replace them.

  1. Nextdoor - right off the bat, I'm cheating a little with the criteria as Nextdoor recently announced plans to go public via the SPAC pathway. I also believe 90% of my social circle not knowing about this app has to do with its target audience - most of my feed on this application seems to be at least 40+ in age, subscribing to a suburban lifestyle, and looking to complain about how their city or town is going to shit. My only use for this app is to sell used items locally, prompted by my near term move back to California. The platform now calls this function "Finds," which (at least to my belief) is at the center of the app for a reason. I've sold numerous items so far - when compared to Craigslist, there's a enhanced sense of security and trust (starting off with the aesthetics as well as the "your profile is on the line" aspects) as well as efficiency. As someone who's not on Facebook, I understand that Marketplace may serve this exact purpose with a wider audience; however, I like to think that niche apps are more efficiency for niche activities, and have no plans to reactivate Facebook just to sell my desk for $20. Outside of selling and buying your neighbor's goods, the news feed is either cluttered by local politician propaganda or the elderly posting about how violence and Uber prices are out of control. As you might expect, most of these posts spiral into political debates, often paired with perfect grammar text responses that you may expect from your parents. Nevertheless, I think Nextdoor presents a great solution to giving people a virtual sense of community while targeting the ever growing "boomer" generation, that are often forgotten by the tech industry.

  2. Picsart - my assumption is that this application (unless it's acquired by a public company) has no plans for an IPO. As the name suggests, the app is your generic photo editing app that recommends you to buy the premium plan every time you edit a picture. While I'm a big fan of Snapseed by Google (which I think has a marketing problem due to its name - what seed are we snapping exactly?), Picsart's key function is its ability to create and apply stickers. Similar to my comparison to Facebook Marketplace above, I'm aware that Snapchat (not to be confused with Snapseed) has the same function, but I've given up the teenage app as a new year's resolution for 2021. Aside from the frequent advertisements in the free version, I find Picsart to be the best solution for quick Photoshopping to be the funny guy in your group chats.

I wanted to start off strong quantitatively, but starting from the next post I'll be sure to go in depth for one app or company (is there a difference anymore). I also plan on creating videos (probably more on the startup side, with expected backlash saying "that's not a startup") on this topic as well. Hit me up on Nextdoor if you're in need of a desk, mattress and more.

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