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Google canceled their Berlin Campus plans

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1 hour ago, Krieg said:

Soundcloud, while founded in Stockholm moved to Berlin long time ago.  

 

Companies set up in Germany all the time.  Soundcloud is, however, the only one ever quoted for Berlin and required a $170 million rescue package in 2017.  That money came from good old merchant banks.   It only exists now thanks to mainstream business, in other words.  It is easy to lecture others on their "conservatism" if you can rack up a $100 million loss and just walk away :rolleyes:.   But it is not sustainable and locals know that.

 

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-40907724

 

Quote

In July, the Berlin-based company laid off 40% of its workforce, a total of 173 people. In a note circulated to shareholders earlier this week (obtained by Axios) Mr Ljung said without the money Soundcloud would not be able “to continue as a going concern”.

 

(Ljung (CEO) was then fired too).  People here do know all this.   If that is who the "start up" scene is referencing as a "success", it is no wonder people are increasingly saying "thanks but no thanks".   The proof of the pudding has been in the eating. 

 

The idea that "people just want to work for start ups" is also pretty flaky in 2018, imho. Another of their lines.  In the places where the tech firms and venture capitalists want to be, they quite often don't.   They want to work for creative industries, arts foundations, universities, humanitarian organisations, policy makers, international development, not for profit and such.    These firms quite possibly want to be in these places exactly because locals do not want to work for them, possibly?  That is exactly their problem.   If they went to places where people might see them as alluring, of course they'd be wanted.

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18 minutes ago, zwiebelfisch said:

Where is google streetview?  Its at google.  There have been similar businesses doing similar things in Berlin (nokia maps for example) but they didnt work out.  Thats what startups are like.

 

I think some people here have the idea that a start up must end up in a product or service that revolutionizes the world.    As long as they become a stable company and they produce profit a start up is successful, they do not have to be the next Apple or Google.

 

This start up is from Berlin and the son of my friend works there, I actually think it is pretty useful and I use it myself:

 

https://www.justwatch.com/

 

There is a movie or series you want to watch, new or old?  you search there and it points you to where you can find it, it can be a streaming service, cinema, physical DVD/Bluray, etc.

 

Do I think it will change the world? Probably not.  Do I think it has the chance to grow and become profitable, totally.

 

Then there in the other hand this one, as well from Berlin:

 

https://www.blloc.com/

 

It is a minimalist phone, do I think they will succeed?  I am not so sure, I wish them the best, but they have it tough in a saturated market.

 

There are literally thousands of startups at the moment in Berlin.  Will something big come out?  The future will say.

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4 minutes ago, swimmer said:

 

Soundcloud is, however, the only one ever quoted and recently required a $170 million rescue package.

 

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-40907724

 

 

People here do know this.   If that is who the "start up" scene is referencing as a "success", it is no wonder people are saying "thanks but no thanks".   

 

This was exactly the kind of comment I was expecting.   First this is normal business, basically every big company has been many times at the border of having serious financial issues and they need investing money.  Second, once they become a "serious" company they are not anymore a "start up", they can't be by definition.   

 

They proved they had a market and they tried and maybe they will fail in the process of expansion, maybe not, maybe their market was not that big so they should have not expanded that much, maybe they failed at creating the market, whatever, the future will say.    Maybe they should have as well mixed more commercial music in their catalog, like Spotify did, which as well started as an unproven start up.   Or if they wanted to continue focused in the independent music maybe they should have tried to go for publishing as well, like, Distrokid (another start up) is doing very successfully.  But those are just my uneducated opinions, I know a bit the music market but not that much.

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Lets cut to the chase, this is what some people are trying to say:

 

Can Berlin please get back to being a place with high unemployment and therefore low prices so us rich foreigners can live the high life for cheap?  We came here in the 80s and its not our fault prices shot up and we got rich, the others should have to live like peasants to support us.

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No expert in this but I think the difference in attitudes and laws with respect to bankruptcy between parts of the US and Germany helps explain the comparatively conservative nature of a lot of businesses here.

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49 minutes ago, zwiebelfisch said:

Lets cut to the chase, this is what some people are trying to say:

 

Can Berlin please get back to being a place with high unemployment and therefore low prices so us rich foreigners can live the high life for cheap?  We came here in the 80s and its not our fault prices shot up and we got rich, the others should have to live like peasants to support us.

 

This would be only one part of the population.   The situation in the hipster districts is so ridiculous that newcomers with low income still do whatever it takes to live there, it is so crazy nowadays, like 1400 EUR for a two room apartment, so they start WGs and overcrowd the apartments and people struggle with up to 75% of their income going only to rent and utilities, all just for the sake of living among the coolest of the coolest.     Then on top of that, because the WGs are illegal they can't get an Anmeldung so they suffer begging for someone to borrow their address, or if they managed that one time to register they never re-register.   There are people charging for allowing people to register at their address.   It is all nonsense anarchy.

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43 minutes ago, zwiebelfisch said:

Lets cut to the chase, this is what some people are trying to say:

 

Can Berlin please get back to being a place with high unemployment and therefore low prices so us rich foreigners can live the high life for cheap?  We came here in the 80s and its not our fault prices shot up and we got rich, the others should have to live like peasants to support us.

Perhaps, but what I'm trying to say is that I can see where these people are coming from. It isn't all hipsters and the unemployed who are affected by (and opposed to) gentrification. Look at that Australian guy a couple of weeks ago who bought a tenanted apartment a decade ago and was looking for advice as to how to evict the elderly pensioners who have been living there for decades. Rising rents are affecting everybody - making restaurants, bars, and retail outlets raise their prices or shut down completely.

 

In fact, for the older generation - the ones who really have been here since the 80s and earlier - the current gentrification wave is adding insult to injury, because in the long run, West Berliners were the biggest losers of reunification. They immediately lost their Berlinzulage (a blanket 10% discount on income tax), exemption from military service (an entire generation was essentially affected by this change, since the general suspension didn't come around until 2011), and even discounted stamps for inner-Berlin mail. Depending on your viewpoint, you could call them dirty hippies and draft-dodgers, or you could call them brave veterans of the Cold War, who chose to live here despite the fact that their property and lives could have been lost to a Soviet occupation or blockade at any time.

 

And before you ask, personally, I've profited from gentrification immensely, but that doesn't make me blind to the suffering it's inflicting on others. I certainly don't want Berlin to become the next Manhattan or San Francisco. Monoculture isn't good for any society.

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I get your point Jeffo, but is creating new jobs really gentrificating?   There are a bunch of companies in Charlottenburg-Nord/Siemenstatd and I do not see any hip gentrification going around here where I've been working for almost 20 years and lived for 6.    I saw no big difference when Nokia, Redknee, Sony-Ericsson, Fujitsu, etc, opened (and closed) around here and created much more jobs than Google was going to create.

 

Gentrification in my opinion is created by an influx of people willing to pay whatever it takes to live in a particular area that has some kind of attraction to them.

 

I don't think anyone would say that Kreuzberg and specially North-Neukoelln was better 20 years ago.   The gentrification was until certain point positive and the neighborhoods improved a lot and the living conditions as well.  But yes, things are very crazy nowadays, the places are way overpriced at the moment and it will probably get worse.    But the whole thing is a free markets thingy, so it is very difficult to fight it.   Maybe more regulation, maybe more access to WBS for the elderly who are the victims of the displacement that are more affected, maybe they should be an allotment of WBS only for the elderly in gentrified places.

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3 hours ago, zwiebelfisch said:

There have been similar businesses doing similar things in Berlin (nokia maps for example) but they didnt work out.

 

didn't work out?

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Here_(company)

 

ps I can personally recommend their app for navigation, as it works very reliably "offline" (without a data plan or perhaps in a pinch without a signal), provided your gps impl is functional without "assistance".  It's saved my ass on a couple of occasions.

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36 minutes ago, El Jeffo said:

And before you ask, personally, I've profited from gentrification immensely, but that doesn't make me blind to the suffering it's inflicting on others. I certainly don't want Berlin to become the next Manhattan or San Francisco. Monoculture isn't good for any society.

 

Pooo-er...

 

https://www.dailywire.com/news/37507/san-francisco-now-has-snapcrap-app-help-residents-emily-zanotti

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2 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Here_(company)

 

ps I can personally recommend their app for navigation, as it works very reliably "offline" (without a data plan or perhaps in a pinch without a signal), provided your gps impl is functional without "assistance".  It's saved my ass on a couple of occasions.

 

My very first smartphone was in fact a Nokia and its Symbian OS was pretty cool, also their satnav app. May look into them as one of my brand new hates is TomTom from Holland. Having been led up tiny villages with my caravan in France a few times thanks to their shitty map data I'd love to leave them standing.

 

I used to work in the unglamorous world of updating maps (would love to go back to GIS btw PM me sly plug). I can tell you noone wants to QC map data, it's like watching paint dry.

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16 minutes ago, lisa13 said:

 

didn't work out?

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Here_(company)

 

ps I can personally recommend their app for navigation, as it works very reliably "offline" (without a data plan or perhaps in a pinch without a signal), provided your gps impl is functional without "assistance".  It's saved my ass on a couple of occasions.

 

Well, it didn't really work out in the way they planned.  By now it is clear Google Maps dominates the market and Waze now owned by Google too is enjoying big success, while Here never really flew as they wanted, which is a shame because I liked Here a lot for their offline capabilities during the pre- free EU roaming era.

 

And since we are talking here about start ups, maybe it is good to mention that Here is here in Berlin because Nokia Maps bought Gate 5, which might be considered then another successful start up from Berlin, because the whole maps things from Here works around the software made originally by Gate 5.

 

But a couple of years ago Here was not really in good conditions, they relocated in Berlin and let go a lot of people.   It was the acquisition by the car companies that saved them and maybe it will make them again relevant but not really in the navigation app market but in the car software of plenty of German cars.

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46 minutes ago, jeremytwo said:

 

My very first smartphone was in fact a Nokia and its Symbian OS was pretty cool, also their satnav app. May look into them as one of my brand new hates is TomTom from Holland. Having been led up tiny villages with my caravan in France a few times thanks to their shitty map data I'd love to leave them standing.

 

I used to work in the unglamorous world of updating maps (would love to go back to GIS btw PM me sly plug). I can tell you noone wants to QC map data, it's like watching paint dry.

I love how the guy who hasn't worked for the last 20 years and has no idea about what's going on in Berlin keeps pretending like he can make relevant contributions to the thread.

 

j²: I don't know of any successful Berlin startups

everybody else: Here's a bunch of examples

j²: I used to play the guitar!

 

Me: I'm from the S.F. Bay Area

j²: Ooh, er, people poo there!

 

Somebody else: Nokia Maps is now "here"

j²: I used to have a Nokia phone!

 

SQUIRREL! SHINY THINGS! LOUD NOISES!

 

Sometimes the kids and drunks should just be quiet when the adults are talking.

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Aw c'mon, Jeffo. Just put him on ignore.

 

I was just thinking what a great discussion this was with many different views and opinions and no trolling.

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34 minutes ago, Krieg said:

But a couple of years ago Here was not really in good conditions, they relocated in Berlin and let go a lot of people.   It was the acquisition by the car companies that saved them and maybe it will make them again relevant but not really in the navigation app market but in the car software of plenty of German cars.

True - BMW and Daimler made out like bandits on that one. But that was also a huge step toward ensuring that the luxury German carmakers won't just become a moving platform for Silicon Valley products, which is what many people were talking about at the time.

 

Reliable maps are a huge part of making self-driving cars, which will be coming at some point. Having their own map product prevents them from becoming vassals of Google and Apple. To say nothing of the possibilities for monetizing a platform that's subscribed to by millions of people (I read somewhere that Daimler has 4 million active CarConnect users).

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43 minutes ago, El Jeffo said:

Sometimes the kids and drunks should just be quiet when the adults are talking.

 

 

Anyone know of any decent comedy clubs in Berlin? Just asking for a friend....

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1 hour ago, El Jeffo said:

I love how the guy who hasn't worked for the last 20 years and has no idea about what's going on in Berlin keeps pretending like he can make relevant contributions to the thread.

 

 

Why do you always feel the need to bully someone? Do you really think your contributions are worth anything?

 

 

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1 hour ago, jeremytwo said:

 

Anyone know of any decent comedy clubs in Berlin? Just asking for a friend...

Yet another thing you don't know about Berlin. I'll add it to the list.

 

23 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

 

Why do you always feel the need to bully someone? Do you really think your contributions are worth anything?

 

 

He said, butting in and bullying someone. As someone who has lived in Berlin for over 20 years and has quite a bit of experience with the tech sector here, yes, I think my contributions are worth something. Certainly more than yours, at least so far.

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25 minutes ago, El Jeffo said:

Yet another thing you don't know about Berlin. I'll add it to the list.

 

He said, butting in and bullying someone. 

 

mila kunis lol GIF by IFC

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