6Wunderkinder continues to churn out native versions of its task management app that are optimized for their respective platforms. The latest version, for Android tablets, includes widgets and inter-app sharing.
Sometimes one company’s failures can provide valuable lessons for other startups. That’s definitely the case with a major strategy shift from productivity upstart 6Wunderkinder, which we can reveal.
Productivity startup 6Wunderkinder made a big noise on the Berlin scene when it launched, but it’s been quiet for a few months. Now CEO Christian Reber explains why other German startups should follow suit and focus on their product — and why he’s worried about Windows 8.
Why did one early investor in apparently thriving Berlin startup 6wunderkinder sell up? We’ve solved the mystery: it looks like the German public-private HTGF venture capital firm hit the limits of what it was allowed to do and decided to cash out.
Om has called 6wunderkinder “one of his favorite new companies”, and there’s good reason. The startup is one of the leading lights in the burgeoning Berlin scene, and impressive take-up claims for its first app could spell good news for its second, more fully-featured offering.
Despite being only a year and a half old, the company already has two core task management products. 6wunderkinder said this week that Wunderlist has amassed two million users in the 15 months since launching, but so far they’re keeping schtum on uptake for the still-in-beta Wunderkit — a fuller project management platform that could have enterprise as well as consumer appeal.
Wunderlist’s adoption seems to be accelerating: six months ago, 6wunderkinder said the app had drawn a million users over nine months. Those are the sort of numbers that drew in $4.2 million of funding from Skype founder Niklas Zennström’s Atomico last November.
Part of the acceleration, however, may be down to the fact that the company has taken the app to more platforms. While it began as an iOS, PC, Mac and web-app affair, with an Android version built on the Titanium platform, it has since then expanded to Linux and BlackBerry while gaining a less-kludgy native Android iteration. A Windows Phone version is also on the horizon.
Announcing its second milestone earlier this week the company gave some stats for Wunderlist’s usage so far:
But even though it’s now launched Wunderkit, 6wunderkinder says it won’t be abandoning its previous app. In a cute ‘love letter’ to its first app on Tuesday, 6wunderkinder stressed that Wunderlist may have lacked attention during the first weeks of Wunderkit’s existence, but the older child would not be left behind.
“You’ve probably been asking yourself: why is my sync not quite as reliable as it used to be? Why does Wunderkit get recurring tasks? We’d like to reaffirm our commitment to you. Over the coming year we’re going to make sure you get the attention you deserve. We’ll be rebuilding you from the ground up, making sure that you run faster, lighter and better than you ever have before. We’ll even be able to get you those new features you’ve been dying to have.”
As for how it intends to make money? Well, 6wunderkinder posted an interesting update last week. The original plan was to have a paid version of the service, at $4.99 a month, which would have been needed if the user wanted to collaborate with people outside of their own ‘workspace’.
But users responded by saying the platform’s adoption would probably be hindered by crippling its collaborative nature, and 6wunderkinder changed its mind and de-limited the free version. The $4.99-per-month Pro scheme still stands, but it’s now targeting heavy users who might want increased storage, for example.
6wunderkinder told GigaOM that Wunderlist saw a brief spike in takeup after Wunderkit went into public beta. The company has not disclosed Wunderkit’s adoption figures yet, but it did say 140,000 people had joined the waiting list for that beta, and it expected Wunderkit to hit the million-user mark as quickly — if not faster — than Wunderlist did.