Welp. We have our first Wall Street analyst pondering the ‘Yo’ app, the simple app that does nothing but send the message ‘Yo’ to one of your friends, and which became a viral sensation last week.
In his Sunday Start note, Morgan Stanley economist Joachim Fels writes:
Yo. When I first read about this latest must-have messaging app that has raised over $US1 million in angel funding and has over 50,000 downloads, I thought it was utterly ridiculous. The only thing you can do with this app is to send a notification saying simply ‘Yo’ to any of your contacts with one tap, along with an audio alert of the word being spoken. Sounds silly, no?
Well, here’s my Sunday confession: the more I think about it, the more I like the ‘yo’ concept. And it’s not because of the app’s latest feature: you can send a ‘yo’ to the username ‘worldcup’ to receive a ‘yo’ (and nothing else) anytime a team scores a goal. Rather, it’s because I’ve always thought that there is beauty in simplicity. I’m a minimalist. I like to sit in my scarcely furnished study with white-washed walls while I write this comment. I hate Christmas decorations. When on a vacation, I like to sit on the shore and stare at the sea in the summer, or climb up a cold, white mountain silently on skis in the winter. I loved to read the late Barton Biggs’s simple but beautiful prose about investing. Life is full of complexity — family, friends, work, politics, financial markets, the global economy. Coping with complexity requires filtering, sorting, reduction, concentration and, at least sometimes, simplification. Sometimes, a simple ‘yo’ can say and mean more to your ‘contacts’ than all the babble.