Apple Watch

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The “wearables” field was already on fire when Apple threw its hat into the ring in 2015. In classic Apple fashion, the company reinvented the category, from interface to Apple Pay, downright to the intricacies of attaching watchbands. When Apple designer Jony Ive stated that the Apple Watch could endanger Switzerland’s traditional watchmaking industry, many industry watchers dismissed the boast …

Airbnb

Airbnb

Michael Tchong Innovation

Airbnb has ushered in the concept of “home optimization,” offering homeowners the same opportunity to boost cash flow the major airlines have enjoyed for years, a disruptive innovation. The option of staying in someone’s private dwelling as an alternative to hotels can be truly liberating. Many times it’s cheaper too. Airbnb already claims an inventory of 2.3 million rooms, which …

Starbucks

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Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is a visionary man. His Starbucks vision has catapulted the company to the exalted position of the world’s No. 1 coffee retailer. Today, there are some 25,572 Starbucks stores worldwide and in 2016 Starbucks registered its highest profits ever, contributing to an 11% leap in annual revenue. While the success of Starbucks is driven in part …

Amazon

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Amazon has changed the way America shops. In September 2016, Bloomberg reported that more than half of U.S. online consumers begin their product searches on Amazon.com’s site or mobile app. That was an early distant warning. America’s retail establishment was not prepared for what was to happen next. As of Spring 2017, some 2,671 major U.S. retail stores will be …

Domino’s

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While FedEx was first to introduce parcel tracking in 1986, Domino’s is the first restaurant to apply the technology to pizza delivery. The Pizza Tracker combined with Domino’s radically reinventive “tasted like cardboard” campaign, its Pizza Hero iPad app plus its transparency efforts, puts Domino’s at the head of the restaurant innovation class. The Pizza Tracker is a perfect example …

Google Inbox

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With the average U.S. business executive spending 3.2 hours daily on work email alone, it’s no surprise that email is the bane for many. After many years of stagnancy, email innovation if finally accelerating. In 2015, Google Inbox became available to the more than 5 million businesses that use Google Apps for Works. The Verge put it best, “using Google …

Sketch

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You can’t call Sketch an overnight success. Its creator, Pieter Omvlee, has been working on it for 10 years now. But what Sketch has achieved in that timespan is truly noteworthy. Sketch, a Mac only software, has become “quite the darling among design teams right now.” A formidable ecosystem of templates and plugins outpaces that of Adobe Photoshop in areas …

Slack

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Slack launched in August 2013 and one year later it had already attracted 1.1 million users. By December 2015 that figure had reached 2 million users, 570,000 of whom were paid accounts. With that type of heady growth, it’s no surprise that Slack is a Silicon Valley “Unicorn” — scoring its last $160 million venture capital round at a $2.8 …

Tesla

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You know the Tesla effect is rippling across the auto industry when a headline proclaims that “Porsche, Mercedes building electric cars to challenge Tesla.” Comments one insider, “Although competitors are years behind, things might get interesting in the future.” What sets Tesla apart from most innovation startups is the indefatigable enthusiasm Founder Elon Musk provides to both Tesla and his …

Tuft & Needle

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There is no industry in America in need of disruption than the mattress industry. That’s because most mattresses are sold with a time-tested technique that revolves around smoke and mirrors. Phoenix-based upstart Tuft & Needle has taken the call to reinvent the mattress business, and they’re succeeding. The $15 billion U.S. mattress industry is dominated by the four “big S” …