A prominent international software firm focusing on Internet personalization, Phorm, Inc., operates branches in Bucharest, London, and Sao Paulo. Through partnerships with Internet service providers, Phorm offers consumers its flagship product, Discover. This service provides recommendations to users based on their interests. Users must activate the service through an unmissable opt-in page, after which Discover begins to collect data and promote relevant articles, videos, blog posts, and other content tailored to users’ personal preferences.
Since Phorm’s service works in real time, it quickly adapts to changing interests and recommends only the most up-to-date media. For example, an individual who reads a great deal about soccer will receive suggested news articles and videos related to the sport. After the end of the soccer season, when the user begins to look at potential activities for an upcoming vacation, the Phorm system makes recommendations related to his or her intended destination.
Phorm developed its product through significant research on end-user experience and opinion. In 2009, an extensive study showed that users appreciated the amount of time saved by Discover, as well as the product’s remarkable ability to connect individuals to the most interesting and personally-relevant content. While users of all age groups expressed appreciation for Phorm’s product, young adults and individuals over the age of 55 found it to be the most useful.
Phorm remains vigilant about online privacy and never shares personal information with third-party companies or partners. Phorm uses a 24-digit randomized number to identify users, thereby safeguarding their identity. Users remain anonymous even to Phorm employees.