14) The Last Bit: Marco Polo App — How Will they Monetize it?

I have to admit — I’m hearing more and more about it. This app took off virally in Sept. 2016 and has been steadily growing ever since. It’s kind of like video voicemail. You can record and send a video to a friend and he or she can choose to watch and answer now — or later. Yes, it can have its own share of spammers. And yes, it reminds you of Snapchat. (One writer said it’s like “Snapchat for old people.”) Of course, as with all these apps, “Buyer Beware.” The app essentially won’t work until you release its fangs on your phone’s entire contact list. For this reason (I’m morally opposed to the idea), I installed — but haven’t used it. You can SKIP the screen instructing Marco Polo to access all your contacts and send them to the Marco Polo servers BUT if you do, you apparently can’t do anything but wait for someone else to message you. (Seriously — the app is DEAD unless you relinquish control to your entire address book.) In my case, I know several people who would just as soon keep their identities (and their phone numbers) secure. But Marco Polo verifies your phone number during sign-on. So I’m wondering — how will they monetize this app? There was ZERO privacy agreement during sign-on. So … maybe the way they monetize it is … sell the largest verified list of phone numbers in history to the buyer with the most bucks? I don’t know… and neither do you, for sure, because they haven’t revealed it. But — if sending a video voicemail is your thing and you want to do it in social networking form with individuals and groups without paying a dime (up front) [and if you don’t mind selling out your entire set of friends and everyone you know], then maybe Marco Polo is for you? In my own case, I’ll pass. Thank you very much. Available for both Apple and Android. For example…

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/marco-polo-video-walkie-talkie/id912561374?mt=8

2 Responses to 14) The Last Bit: Marco Polo App — How Will they Monetize it?
  1. Marc Reply

    I sent my kids a video pretending to be my long lost twin named Michael. Within a month or two, Michael started getting mail from car dealerships at my home. I don’t have a family member named Michael and that was the only platform I used that name. It seems they’re harvesting and selling information from within the videos.

    • Johnny B. Reply

      Hi, Marc. Question: in your msg as your “brother” did you mention cars? Just curious if you see a correlation between conversation and advertisers. Thanks for any light you can shed. We’re wondering the same thing about the hazards ahead :)

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