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Brief Published: 27 Oct 2020

The Insperience Economy Booms During the Covid-19 Era


As the Covid-19 pandemic has driven events and experiences into the home, the so-called “insperience economy” is set to boom, with its value predicted to reach £168m ($217m) by mid-2021 (Barclays, 2020). We look at the latest initiatives from Amazon, Zoom and Oda to stimulate and engage with passive screen users.  

  • Armchair Travel Takes Flight: This September, Amazon launched Explore, a platform for live virtual experiences led by local experts. It offers a range of digital adventures focused on learning and creativity and provides the opportunity to view cultural landmarks in real time. These include taking a Cantonese language lesson from the streets of Hong Kong and visiting Taipei’s Longshan Temple.
    The platform’s two-way real-time communication between the host and the viewer sets it apart from the YouTube-style video format by turning the user from a passive audience member into an active participant and making them feel present in the experience. The platform is currently invite-only for US-based customers.
  • Remaking the Intimacy of Live Music: A new speaker system from US-based audio start-up Oda provides a direct feed to artists’ studios, bringing live music into the home. With real-life concerts on pause with no firm return date, this set-up works to recreate the intimacy and spontaneity of a live performance. A musician simply has to press a button to activate the speakers and they can play directly to their audience. 
    Unlike typical smart speakers, Oda’s are made out of natural cherry wood while a vibrating internal panel helps recreate the reverberation of a live instrument. The system retails at $299, with an additional $79 for a three-month membership, which allows access to live performances. 
  • Meet-Ups Get Monetised: In October 2020, Zoom announced a new marketplace for virtual experiences, dubbed OnZoom. It enables Zoom users to create, host and now monetise traditionally in-person events, such as stand-up comedy, improv or painting lessons. 
    Brands such as WW (formerly Weight Watchers) have collaborated with the platform to launch workshops that include tips for beginning a weight loss and wellness journey.
    For a deep dive into the insperience economy, look out for The Mild Life, which is publishing on November 9, 2020.