While applications like Google Maps and Yelp seem to provide an inexhaustible source of information about local restaurants, stores and other points of interest, they can also come up short — moments when you arrive somewhere only to discover that the hours you had were wrong, or the store is closed for a holiday, or it’s just shut down altogether.
The team at StreetCred is trying to build a better system for gathering and selling that data. And it’s raised $1 million in seed funding from Bowery Capital and Notation Capital.
CEO Randy Meech explained that if someone wanted to build the next Uber or the next Pokémon Go, they’d need location data to make it work. And while they could buy that data now, it’s “very difficult, very expensive.”
Plus, he sees room for lots more data — while Foursquare has data about 105 million points of interest and Google has 100 million, Meech estimates that there are more than 1 billion POIs across the world, many of them in developing nations where the data is more spotty.
So StreetCred is building a marketplace where users should be rewarded for collecting this data, while interested companies should be able to buy the data more easily.
Meech has been working on mapping for years, serving as the CTO at MapQuest (which, like TechCrunch, is owned by Verizon/Oath) and then as CEO at Mapzen, an open source mapping subsidiary af Samsung. That’s where Meech met his StreetCred co-founder Diana Shkolnikov — he said StreetCred was created partly in response to the disappointment of shutting down Mapzen earlier this year.
“If we can get this protocol and data economy right, it can’t be shut down,” Meech said. That means leveraging blockchain technology: “It’s a very natural way to open up and decentralize the data and also
Source:: TechCrunch – Startups