My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Kik buys Blynk - Why chatbots are the future of music and shopping

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Kik buys Blynk - Why chatbots are the future of music and shopping

“We’re open minded and we think about how to build the best experience. If [there are] teams that help us to do that and accelerate that, we’re always interested. We see a lot of people building on chat [and] a lot of ways to partner with them.”

Head of strategy and partners, Jae Kim in an interview with Techcrunch about the purchase of Blynk

The Kik Messenger App is bringing on the Robots.

On Monday December 21st 2015, Canadian company Kik Interactive Inc. purchased Blynk, a fashion App as reported in the article “Kik Messenger Buys Fashion App Blynk to Build More Chat Bots”, published December 21, 2015 By Kurt Wagner, Recode.

The staff of four that runs Blynk will now become a part of Kik as reported on the Kik Blog in a post entitled “Fashion advice startup Blynk is joining Kik!”.

Kik most likely plans to use Blynk Style to chat with customers via the Kik Messenger, now 150 million users strong as reported in my blog article entitled “150 million users @Kik Messenger with Promoted Keywords and better Photo Sharing – Teenagers say Kik me Please with Love from the Canadian with the Golden Gun”.

Blink will help them to build better text-based semiautonomous program or chatbots like Blynk Style to assist teenagers with make decisions about music and fashion as explained in the article “Kik Invests In Its Platform, Buys Fashion Startup Behind Popular Kik Bot”, published December 21, 2015 by Jon Russell, Techcrunch.

So who are the developers at Blynk? Also why did Kik Interactive Inc. purchase Blynk?

Kik buys Blynk - Why chatbots are the future of music and shopping

Blynk was founded in 2013 by Jaclyn Ling and Shums Kassam.

The App uses a Tinder-like swipe interface with a visual Q&A voting system within the Kik Messenger to help users chose from various outfits show to them as explained in the article “Messaging company Kik acquires fashion App Blynk”, Published Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 by Shane Dingman, The Globe and Mail.

Swiping left means you dislike the outfit and swiping right to give it some love is how Blynk Style works, narrowing down you preferences. Gradually, as Blynk Style gets to know your style, it shows you fewer and fewer things that you like and more of what you prefer.

Blynk's business plan was to make money from commission fees from retailers on any purchase of clothing, a sort of like affiliate or referral links but based on sales as explained in my MICO Wars blog article entitled “How Jamaicans can make Money from Referral Websites”.

Despite the failure of this business model, they amassed an amazing three to five million swipes a month on its iOS and Android apps even though less than 10,000 persons had downloaded Blynk Style. This attracted the attention of Kik who want to use Blynk tech to create an army of these chatbots similar to the Facebook Messenger chatbot but specialized to assist customer making purchases in one specific area.

Expect Blynk bots to start sprouting up like poppies inside of your Kik Messenger to assist you with everything from music, fashion and even telling you what the future holds for you!

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