I heard that a new ‘X is Y for business’ company was launching at Demo, in this case ‘FoKo is Instagram for business’. My initial reaction was ‘Do we need an Instagram for business?’ After all there are a million ways to share photos already, starting with Instagram, then file sync-and-share apps like Dropbox and Box, and up to and including work management tools like Yammer, Jive, and Podio that support image attachments in sophisticated ways. Still, I thought I’d take a look and see what Foko has to offer.
The app is currently available on iOS and Android devices, although reportedly a web version is coming too.
I installed the free app on my iPhone. The app requires a corporate domain, but allowed me to share with a ‘partner and client’ who was on a Gmail address. However, I never was able to register with that address. I was able to register as an additional stoweboyd.com user, and pass comments on photos, and follow other users.
The premise is that there are functional areas in the world of business where having a means to share files easily and securely — and comment on them in an Instagramish fashion — is a solid value proposition, one valuable enough that the company will pay for administrative options and controls.
Perhaps a small interior decorating company or catering service would like to be able to share photos of furniture and appetizers among staff and clients, and nothing more. However, perhaps because I am so certain that these photos need to be managed in the context of other information — projects, events, tasks, deadlines, and other conversations aside from comments on photos — I can’t see that this is enough.
While the magic of ‘X is Y for business’ — like ‘Yammer is Facebook for business’ — seems like a good fit where Y = Instagram, I don’t think it holds with Foko. By bet is that the app will have to be extended to include something like projects — which have been explicitly omitted as being too complicated — and maybe a lightweight task capability as well, so that photos can be organized in the context of something more than just a sequence of images.