Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Yauba IS the Indian Anti-Google

I know.

We have heard it all before.

Remember Cuil? Powerset?

After a lot of self generated media hype, both these companies ended up flaming out very quickly. (Note: Powerset at least was able to sell itself before it embarrassed itself. As for cuil, let's just say anyone with that company on their cv will be a laughingstock for quite some time.)

Well, I am going to go out on a limb here and stake my entire online reputation on one single sentence:

Yauba IS the Indian Anti-Google.

I was fortunate enough to get a special preview invitation to see the development version of the product before the official launch. I have now spent 2 days exploring the product, and I can only say that my initial impression has not changed:

Yauba rocks.

The company has asked people who have received preview invitations to not publish any reviews of the product until the official launch, so I will have to refrain from doing so here. But what I can say is that it is obvious that the engineers behind Yauba have put a lot of thought behind the service by focusing their efforts on those things that Google does not do very well and coming up up with ingenious solutions around them. At least a half a dozen times, it made me giggle with delight and made me ask myself "now why didn't anyone else think of that?" In a certain sense it is almost the anti-Google ... it does things that Google does not, or cannot do, and makes it somehow all come together.

This is not to say it is perfect.

Far from it. But as an young Indian who is eagerly anticipating a new era of great entrepreneurial Indian companies, I can't think of a better example right now of such an era than Yauba. And I cannot wait for the official release so that I can post a full review and explain of why this is the first product since probably the Apple iPod that has made me so excited.

Yes, Virginia, it is really that good.