America's only certified Skyrace course. Race Beast of Big Creek on Mt. Ellinor in Hoodsport, WA on Aug 3rd, 2024.

America's only certified Skyrace course. Race Beast of Big Creek on Mt. Ellinor in Hoodsport, WA on Aug 3rd, 2024.

Geoff Nudelman for Barrons interviews Michael Martin, CEO of Strava:

 In the U.S. running is now the most popular sport, followed by cycling, which used to hold the top spot.  

The app which started of as a biking app is now an app for runners.

One of the core reasons that people come to Strava is to find out where they can do an activity, not just who they can do it with. Strava as a tool is best-suited to do that with the data our users  shared and trusted with us, but in our “Maps” tab, we didn’t give you any prompts or tools to find these routes or locations, even though our geospatial data set is absolutely unmatched. To fix this, we recently launched an app update that used AI and machine learning to suggest some routes. This massively increased the use of the Maps tab, and it’s an early example of the things we can do. 

It didn’t take long for him to drop the magical word “AI”, cause that’s exactly what I think the app and service was lacking – more AI!

I get that a service used my millions of users will have millions of different perspectives of what the app is supposed to do for them and clearly there’s a distinct difference between the power-user and the causal “I just track my running here” user. But the app is incredibly sticky and has no real competition out there and in a case like this we’ve seen what happens next. Let’s hope that the VCs of Silicon Valley don’t fuck this up like almost every other app that has had this status at some point.

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