This story is from the 2016 Access 25: How Mobility is Reshaping the Globe. Explore more from this issue

The Mobile Concierge Economy: An Uber for Everything

On-demand services are disrupting all kinds of industries.

March 2016

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Once a novelty, Uber’s driver-on-demand service is now a bona fide business model. Need someone to do your errands? Call TaskRabbit. Are you a physician looking for specific high-tech equipment? Cohealo can help. And what if you need a quiet space to get work done or simply chill out? The Breather app will help you find and book your urban oasis.

And then there’s DUFL, which promises to make lost luggage nothing but a bad memory for business travelers. The service is elegantly simple: Punch up your DUFL app, and the company sends you a Dufl-branded suitcase. Pack it and send via FedEx back to DUFL, which inventories its contents and sends it where you need it to go next. And once your trip is over, FedEx ships the suitcase back to DUFL, where your clothes are cleaned and repacked, ready for your next journey.

In short, it’s the type of on-the-go, on-demand service that illustrates what could be called the Uber-economy.

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