Semil Shah (full disclosure: I have an ongoing business relationship with Shah, but he didn’t pay me in any way, or make any requests for this post):
Jelly harnesses existing social networks to more efficiently “route” questions to those who have a great likelihood of responding and/or knowing the answer. Quora does a great job of this on the web, and it’s a very hard problem to get right. Takes years. The app has a nice touch of pulling the avatars of people you recognize, which creates more of an incentive to engage and respond.
This, I think, is what defines Jelly, and what separates it from asking a question on Twitter, for instance. It’s not just your friends, but your friends’ friends. This huge network of people gives you a vast pool of potential answers. Time will tell whether coupling this to a fun interface is enough to, uh, preserve the attention of users.
So far, my least favourite aspect of the app is that everything remains locked into it. There’s no way for me to export all the answers, or even a permalink for a question (if you “forward” a question via email, the link is only temporary).