Start-Up News: Vayable Launch, Airbnb Rebirth, and a Place Where There Are No Strangers


VIABLE?, the world’s first experience sharing platform, launched last week in New York City.  “The company began operations less than four months ago, growing a passionate community in their hometown of San Francisco and has quickly gained popularity in key national and international markets.” New York was a natural next stop, said founder and CEO Jamie Wong, who came up with the idea while working at The Daily Show.

“ is a new service that lets anyone discover and book great things directly from others in the community, providing a dynamic and compelling alternative to dusty guidebooks and double-decker bus tours.  Individuals are making money offering diverse experiences such as a private concert in a concert pianist’s downtown Manhattan loft, a fashion model sketching session with an instructor at Parsons, and a tour of Wall Street hosted by a Bloomberg TV reporter.”

TRUST EXERCISES. “But the founding of our company simply does not compare to recent events. Two weeks ago, Airbnb got a wake up call. We experienced what felt like a rebirth, and we have since committed our company to trust and safety. Since the beginning of August, we have designed, built, and shipped over 40 new trust and safety features. Check out a list of the new features in our Trust & Safety Center.”

WE’RE GOING TO NEW WORK CITY, WHICH NEEDS AN INTERN. “We’re looking for a bright, exciting, energetic person who just can’t wait to befriend everyone they meet to be our intern. Have them apply here. We’re having our Learn • Build • Share event this Thursday. Save the date Friday, September 16th: New Work City’s Third Anniversary party.”

SURVEY SAYS. New features added to, which struggles to stay relevant in the age of Yelp. “New groundbreaking search features (Compare, Matrix and Stats view), a completely redesigned deals program, Zagat Exclusives (now powered by Savored) and an integration with OpenTable, allowing users to make restaurant reservations without leaving our site.” And more.

CHECKINPOCALYPSE! Foursquare adds event check-ins. “For when a place is more than just a place.”

TO SUM UP. XYDO launches XYDO Brief, “a news-via-email service that delivers personalized and relevant headlines based on a user’s social networks and interactions right to their inbox.” Invite-only.’s iPhone app Calorie Count just released voice activation. “VHX is now web-mobile ready… It can also stream videos to your AppleTV using AirPlay. It’s like magic.” Native iOS apps are next. Who will be the first to tweet about watching on the can?

Nate Westheimer’s Coding for N00bs class sold out in a day on Skillshare.

Shapeways celebrating its third anniversary on Friday.

Photo-sharing game Badger hit the App Store.

NEW THING. “It’s called ‘a third place‘ and is a space for getting to know people. Normally, we become acquainted with others via mutual friends, common interests or activities, or serendipitous meetings (i.e. attending the same event). At a third place, there are no strangers. everyone provides a brief, anonymous introduction to their life–and you can initiate a conversation with anyone.”


Start-Up News: Vayable Launch, Airbnb Rebirth, and a Place Where There Are No Strangers