Apparently Tungle has shut down development, although they still allow people to sign up. Turns out their acquisition by RIM last year must have been an acquahire (technically an acquisition, but really an admission of defeat).
Tungle had an incredibly viral business model, perhaps the most viral I’ve seen since Plaxo, solving a problem I and many others encounter on a near-daily basis: Help people schedule meetings and calls with each-other.
So what went wrong? Their usability SUCKED. I desperately wanted Tungle to work, but almost every time I tried using it to schedule a meeting with someone, something would screw up and we’d have to resort to manually scheduling via email. This was embarrassing when it happened, but even so I tried over and over again. Every time I did could have been an opportunity for Tungle to sign up a new user, if their usability wasn’t so bad.
So if there is anyone out there looking for an idea that could be the next LinkedIn-scale viral phenomenon, all you have to do is reimplement Tungle, but this time get the usability right. If I weren’t already rather busy I’d be doing this myself.