Tuesday, April 29, 2014

3 Ideas Assignment

1.     Driving Enthusiast’s App; This would be an app based off of other navigation applications such as Google Maps, Apple Maps, Waze, etc but instead of the purpose being navigation from A to B, the purpose of this app is to guide the driver to great driving roads. The user would open the application and choose the parameters of conditions that they would like to drive on (e.g. winding mountain road, easy mountain road, suburban, country-side, sunny, rainy, snow, temperature ranges, traffic density, etc.) and the application would make a recommendation. The cost effectiveness of this is relatively high due to its low start up cost and low cost to maintain. The intention would be for the app to be free with advertisements and an optional “pay to remove ads” in order to gain money from users and sponsors. The return on investment of this idea is potentially fair to good. I would not expect to make any significant amount of money off this application, however I would expect to easily cover costs to maintain as well as have some profit; enough profit to help, but not enough so that I could retire in a year. I do not predict a direct benefit to the standard of living from this application. I do, however, expect a benefit to society on a small scale in that I will give driving enthusiasts a solution to a common problem that many enthusiasts face; “I wish I knew of other really good roads to drive on in my area.”

2.     Grocery Store Guide App; This app would be similar to other navigation apps, however it would be applicable to the inside of stores such as Wal-Mart and Target, etc. It would combine a shopping list app with an app that helps you get your shopping done faster. Through a partnership with grocery stores to be able to live monitor their stock count, we would give customers the luxury of an application that plots their route through the grocery store aisles for them, in the most efficient manner based on current store stocks & their shopping list. This would remove customers having to re-trace their steps through aisles multiple times. The cost effectiveness of this application is mixed, in my prediction. While it is an app that a large majority of the population (in the US) would benefit from, there would be tedious negotiations with large volume grocery stores in order to reach an agreement where this application could access, in real-time, their stock count. Due to the fact that this app would require a lot of partnership by large corporations, I leave the cost effectiveness of producing and implementing this strategy at mixed; potential for failure or success. The return on investment is also mixed at this point. If negotiations with corporations work out positively for both parties, the return on investment could be exponentially high. However, this would depend on the corporations willingness to partner; if they would chose not to partner or to take a large majority of the profits from the application, the ROI declines significantly. On the other hand, the benefits to standard of living as well as society and humanity are significant. This application would reduce time spent in grocery stores by a large margin which would increase customer satisfaction (they can find their groceries on their own), efficiency and allow these customers to have more free time available to them by reducing the amount of time spent on this one chore. 

3.     Back Seat Headrest; This would be a headrest that is in the backseat of vehicles, in my example a 5 seat, 5 door sedan, like a Toyota Camry. During long road trips, the backseat passengers are tasked with the challenge of finding a comfortable position to rest their heads to sleep. Often the solution to this is bunching up a pillow against your head and the passenger window and leaning on the door. My idea removes the inconveniences of not having something to rest your head on already introduced into the vehicle. The headrest would be a cushion that is located behind the rear passengers’ head, in between the headrest and the D pillar of the vehicle. When the passenger wants to go to sleep, they could reach behind them (or in higher model sedans, press a button), extend the headrest so it comes over their shoulder and adjust the height and positioning as they see fit. Because this headrest would be anchored by an adjustable arm extending from the rear of the vehicle, it would be able to stay firm and give the passengers comfort on longer car trips. The cost effectiveness of this idea would be high because it would be involved in automobiles and marketed as a “feature” which would likely lead to a large difference between cost to produce and price for consumer. I would grade the cost effectiveness as potentially good. The return on investment would be minimal. In order to put this idea into practice, it would require partnership with an automobile manufacturer who would probably just buy out the rights to the idea to implement into their current models. Due to this being a one-time settlement agreement and not a long-term investment I grade the ROI as minimal. The benefit this would have to the standard of living would be a significant benefit to a small customer base. We would be targeting only new models of medium to luxury class sedans, the customers for which are a small portion of the population. The benefit to society and humanity would be minimal as this is a very niche idea that would not touch upon people in a large scale.

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