At the heart of Duolingo is its mission: to increase free education and to increase income potential through language learning. However, the same mission has helped it grow into a $ 2.4 billion worth of business with over 500 million registered learners, continuing to define the business.
If you don’t want to charge users then how will you survive as a startup? How do you build a startup that is not too difficult for people to lose, but it is not very easy to compromise education? How do you balance monetization goals while keeping education product-free?
For my first EC-1, I spent months with Duolingo executives, investors and of course competitors to answer some of these questions.
In the story left on the cutting room floor, my favorite description is that Duolingo co-founder and CEO Luis von Ahn compared his company to the elliptical. I was pressing him on Duolingo’s effectiveness and long-standing criticism that it still can’t teach a user how to speak a language fluently.
“Now, there is a difference in whether you know that you are doing elliptical or yoga or running, but so far, the most important thing is that you are doing something [other than] Just moving around, ”he said.
One of the things von Ahon is getting is that Duolingo’s biggest value proposition is that it helps inspire people to learn a language, even if it’s just five minutes – or an elliptical workout -. one day. He thinks motivation is harder than learning. Do you agree
If you enjoyed my series, be sure to check out the other EC-1s and subscribe to ExtraCrunch to support me, this newspaper, and the rest of the team. I would love if you follow me on twitter @nmasc_.
In the rest of this newspaper, we will talk about Tesla, the ethics of public and vertical telehealth.
There is always a tesla angle
When I was working in Boston, the newsroom said that “there is always Boston Angle.” In a remote, tech-dominated world, I’ll tweak it: there’s always a Tesla angle. As we all prepare for Elon Musk to grace the SNL stage, there is a story you want to see.
Here’s what you know: Tesla exploited a small Canadian startup to produce cleaner and cheaper batteries. The price tag will surprise you, but the story makes a big statement about patented technology, and the external impact that a small startup has on Tesla’s battery path.
Really taking us with you:
While equality usually lightens and punishes it, we talked about a deeper topic this week: the ethics of going public. Startups have been private for longer than ever before, but one CFO argues that leaving the nest and providing returns to the general public is a moral obligation. The company that followed SPAC was another CFO on the show with that CFO. It has ended up being the CFO’s most interesting conflict.
Here’s what you know: The entire mess has played a role in Venture Capital’s development as an asset class and has warmed the nest for many startups. We talk about whether the tides are turning, or we are saying goodbye to a world in which a company like Salesforce will start pricing for $ 11 per share.
While you are focused on Twitter tip jar, Other money news you may have missed in the meantime:
Where does telehealth go from here
As I start covering digital health, the biggest question I ask and ask is where does telehealth go from here. The use of virtual caretaking was accelerated due to the epidemic, but is now starting slowly as the world reopens and vaccination is on the rise. For telehealth startups, this means building a pitch that explains why virtual care makes sense for the conditions you serve.
Here’s what you know: I spoke with Expresswebble about becoming epidemic-proof in healthcare, a virtual speech therapy startup that has just raised millions of rupees in venture capital money. Part of the startup’s product differentiation is an EdTech platform that inspires consumers to asynchronous practice speech practice with the help of parents and friends.
And down the rabbit hole we go:
Seen on techcrunch
Seen on extra crunch
and that’s that. Thanks for reading along and supporting me. I will never reach it.