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Tech Cocktail Chicago

Jason Fried: 37signals Will Be Simplifying Its Product Line in 2014

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37signals, the company already known for its love of simplicity, announced at Tech Cocktail Sessions Chicago last week that they plan to simplify their product line even further in 2014.

“We’ve done too much,” said cofounder Jason Fried. “Next year we’re going to slim down our product line, spin a few things off, and get back to the basics. I’m really looking forward to that.”

37signals is the creator of Basecamp, a project-management tool; Campfire, a group chat app; and Highrise, a contact manager.

“One of the mistakes [we made] wouldn’t be seen as a mistake, but it’s trying to do too many products at once that turn out to be successful products,” said Fried. “These products are not mistakes, but what they do is they dilute you. They keep going and you gotta maintain them.”

Fried mentioned a few other plans for 2014, including a version of Basecamp that’s installed on your computer and can go behind a company’s firewall. They’re also doing a huge research project on new markets to go after, and Fried wants to spend a month talking to users himself about how they use 37signals products. And, Fried said, “I think it’s time that we give Basecamp away for free to schools.”

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About the Author

Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in startups, innovation, and new trends. In 2012, she returned from a 6-month whirlwind tour of Asia, where she met tons of welcoming, inspiring, and infectiously passionate entrepreneurs. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact kira@tech.co.

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