Killer apps vs Killer clones

Every week a new web startup launches, and I usually hear about it via the TechCrunch website. Doing a task or creating a tool that does something better than what is currently available is essentially the building block of progress. However, it interests me to see those web startups that simply put a new spin on an existing product, and draw in the crowds at the same time.

Yammer is an excellent example of the point above. Designed to be an in-house company message tool, it takes a new spin on the Twitter model, and excels at it. Yammer recently won first place at the TechCrunch50 awards, allowing users to share status updates with co-workers. A simple concept, and a killer clone (so to speak).

What is even more exciting to me, are the killer apps that do not attempt to clone an existing product and put a new spin on it. Instead the makers identify a current gap and need for innovation, and go about creating a product that is the first in its field or domain. The reality is though that these products soon become ‘cloned’, as other people attempt to put their own spin on it, to solve a problem or capture some of the market.

That is business. And that is progress. Each to his own.

At Enzyme IT we are currently researching ways to put a fresh spin on what at first glance would seem like a saturated online marketplace in a specific domain. We’ll of course be using Python/Django as our platform for building this application, and I’m looking forward to posting further information here when the timing is appropriate.


  1. Long time no see mate.

    Python eh, have you played around with google app engine? Seems like a good place to develop concepts with a vision of scaling. What is your take on it?

  2. At Enzyme we have played around with Google App Engine just to ensure that we are oriented to it. However we are opting for Python/Django development from the ground up at this point, and have not used GAE in a production environment.

    I do foresee us using it in the near future though – it’s an exciting service. From a scalability versus cost point of view, it is very positive. However there are limitations, and these would have to be weighed alongside an application’s current requirements as well as its growth/expansion plans.

    Great to hear from you Scott. Let’s make sure we keep in touch.

    Scott Lambert
    Director / Project Manager
    Enzyme IT

  1. 1 Taiwan as an internet startup location « Scott Lambert

    […] If I could say one thing to internet founders in Taiwan it would be this: “Don’t be afraid to think big!”. The reason I say this is because a lot of the internet startups that I have come across are almost too localized, or are attempting to bring a successful startup idea from the West and reskin it for the Taiwanese market. I wrote a post about this a few years ago, titled “Killer apps versus Killer clones“. […]

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