Assignment 2. Application Critique of Discord

This is for CS3216 class. If you don’t belong to it, please read more here before continuing: https://cs3216.github.io/assignments/seminar/


Discord Landing Page

Among the 10 presentations we had in our class today, Discord was the only one I haven’t had heard before so I was looking forward to it.

The group mentioned that it is:

  1. Available on both web and mobile. Also it is present in around 99 countries which shows it has traction and a mature product.
  2. About the ugly side of this product was no way to search the chats, and no concept of user profile.

3. I loved what the group suggested: use micro-transactions to monetize its products, introduction of video chat, and screen sharing.

I wasn’t entirely convinced on how this business model can be used for musicians to record music or be an interactive tool for presentations when there are better solution out there for each of them. It will be similar to ask to use Facebook as a script writing platform. In this case, this is not the primary use of Facebook and secondly there are better script writing platforms out there without any frills. Getting the drift?

I am personally not a gamer so it is not meant for me but the group itself didn’t seem to use it much, except Zhi Ng who uses it occasionally and I won’t be surprised as the product wants to be everything I believe and not provide specific value add or have retention.

Hmm… so it wants to be a Skype-cum-Teamspeak for gamers and also at the same time, it wants to break Slack.

The only takeaway I was going for was that more features doesn’t necessary mean a better product. The golden rule of product development,

Feature is not equivalent to value.

One of my favourite examples of this is the gmail ‘forgot attachment feature. It’s simple to build, but it’s extremely useful and gives user the “Aha” moment.

Zen like feature: Forgot attachment.

For me the product felt like Slack rip-off for gamers but I will be happy to be wrong to see how it can fly but again I am not their ideal user.

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