Jumptomap.com (United States) is a one stop map site that incorporates via a non-cryptic link various viewable mapping sites for your particular address. These mapping sites include Google, Yahoo, Mapquest, Ask, MSN, Multimap, Maporama, Maps.com, Randy McNally, Maps On US, and Map24.
I had a chance to talk to the site founder Rahul Dhesi and this is what he had to say:
Why is your site different than your competitors?
It appears that there are no direct competitors at this time. My algorithms are patent pending (see more below) and that should give me a competitive advantage in the long run.
What is your business plan or model?
The plan unfolds in two stages. In stage one, this web site will simply provide a free, fast, reliable service that people can use with confidence. Everywhere on the Internet, that anybody provides a street map link to anybody else, they can use a simpler link instead. If stage one succeeds, then we get to stage two. Here, some of the algorithms behind jumptomap.com, currently patent-pending, can be generalized to apply to other services. If the underlying patents become commercially valuable, then the business plan succeeds and the monetization of the patents can occur. The jumptomap.com web service itself remains free, and acts as a showcase for the patents. In the worst case, we may need to sell a little advertising. In any case: Thejumptomap.com web service was carefully designed to have a very cost of operation, so it can be kept going essentially forever.
Why did you start this website?
I found it quite annoying that I had to manually type a street address into each different web site that provided street maps. A search engine could easily take a street address and provide links to multiple mapping sites, but they were not doing it. I decided to provide this service.
How are you planning to market it?
First, through publications like yours, which bring new and interesting ideas to the attention of readers. Second, by providing fast and reliable service. Once a person sending email or designing a web site decides to use a jumptomap.com link, ideally they should never have a reason to stop using it. It should just stay there forever, quietly in the background, acting as a marketing agent to keep traffic coming tojumptomap.com.
Any other information that you believe is relevant to your startup?
Start-ups get funded at various scales: tens of millions of dollars;millions; hundreds of thousands; sometimes tens of thousands. This one was funded by me at approximately $600 (which includes $105 to file a provisional patent application). At the rate we are burning cash, this will last for about a year. By then, we will know how well this venturewill succeed.
Jumptomap.com, launched on December 19, 2007, is a simple site that will definitely cater to those who utilize multiple map sites and are looking for a straightforward interface. Definitely looking forward to seeing this site grow!