Happy first Friday of Q2! Closing and opening a couple quarters got you down? We’ve just the thing to pick you up with some customer service schadenfreude from Garadget, Audi expanding its mobility footprint, and a real subscription service for virtual reality.
Shutting down irate IoT customers
It has happened to everyone who has ever been in customer service. An issue between customer and provider turns into a screaming match. You did all the right things—empathized, apologized, and tried to find a solution, and you still end up with someone cussing in your face. Customers can get even nastier on the internet—but what do you do when they cross the line? IoT-connected garage door opener Garadget just shut off an impolite customer’s connection to the network, disabling his door controller. Was this the right thing to do to a nasty customer or setting a bad precedent for IoT customer service?
Audi doubles down on mobility
Audi was an early entrant to the luxury mobility service market with its Audi on demand and Audi at home car services. Cadillac, BMW, and other have since entered the market, and Audi is not about to get its subscription doors blown off. This week, Audi announced it will buy Silvercar, a U.S.-based car sharing startup that was founded specifically to address the high-end airport rental car market. The company’s fleet is already made up exclusively of Audi A4 cars, so it’s not exactly going to be a dramatic shift in Silvercar’s offering.
Real subscription for virtual reality
Virtual reality has been sputtering along since VR headsets for mobile devices first starting getting strapped to disoriented trade show attendees a few years ago. HTC has found a surprising success in its Vive VR headset, though. To celebrate its one-year anniversary, HTC launched its Viveport VR subscription service this week. The service will allow PC-powered headset owners the chance to download 5 compatible titles for $6.99 per month. All Vive owners will get a one month free trial to the service. The cost for the gaming service is easy to swallow, but whether you get queasy in the headset is another matter.