Tuesday 9 October 2007

MomoLondon: The Mobile Web One Year On

Someone wants to flirt with you - Mark Curtis @ Flirtomatic

  • abandoned Java (stayed with web & wap
  • only thing that’s on web but not mobile is video
  • 80% of our customers are not interested in dating, just fun
  • very important to show web users which users are mobile (as their responses will be slower)
  • revenue from ads + value added services
  • high usage on mobile
    • 2,500 page view per user per month since last Aug/Sep
  • started over a year ago, making zero revenue at beginning of this year, break even by Q3 next year
  • started off completely off-portal
  • Andrew Odlyzko - content is not king (it’s communication between people)
  • small groups market seems like an opportunity (Zygo looking at this hard)
  • why social network?
    • everybody’s doing it
    • intrigue — “somebody wants to flirt with you”
    • theme specific e.g. Chelsea footballers
  • but why go on?
    • my friends are there
    • it’s fun (people like to feel wanted; voyeurism)
    • sex / lifetime romance
    • content habit - e.g. discussing rugby world cup
  • lost money and time by taking mobile site and taking almost straight to the web
    • continual struggle to keep the two products divorced
    • e.g. “look at me!” people pay to appear at the top — totally different presentation on mobile than for web
  • bare essentials of registration — every additional info
    • flirtomatic use: sex; target flirts; date of birth
  • abandoned flash on the web & java on phones as they stop you deploying new features quickly
    • absolutely impossible to move fast if you have loads of devices to test
    • therefore mobile app has to be only something that isn’t possible on wap — and rest is a link to wap site
  • not yet come across a case study of viral working on mobile
  • operator portals very powerful
  • admob was only channel available on mobile, but now have 7 channels
    • advertise on wap to get onto a wap service
    • 80% register once they’ve clicked through
    • difficult to advertise on web / other as
  • took the opinion that subscription suppresses usage, so ads & value ad services only
  • advertising now beginning to work; May / June beginning to work
  • advertising model on wap currently slavishly copying web, history shows that model always changes
    • expecting a bumpy ride but don’t know which way
  • value added services:
    • e.g. selling pictures of roses
    • bidding for points etc.
    • users will pay to delete their worst rating (delete my freak)
  • shifting to PayForIt using MIG… otherwise PSMS most popular payment method
  • 65-70% of revenue from value added services — expecting to decrease to 50-55% with extra advertising next year
  • payment by mobile is understood and embraced — making more money from mobile users than web
  • flirtomatic pre-moderate all visual material (moderation is a big issue for operators)
  • finding that SMS is a good tool for CRM
  • wap vs web:
    • overlap in users is 15%
    • if you log on to web, you automatically get logged off wap (and vice versa)

Mobile Web Initiative - Crossing the Chasm - Philipp Hoschka @ W3C

  • W3C have mobileOK automatic tests and best practices checker (online version still in beta)
  • Working on a new open source Java version available to download (released fairly soon) — Mobile Test Harness / Open Mobile Web Test Suite
    • community submits tests
    • can be used for browser manufacturers as well…
  • Mobile AJAX Workshop chaired by Dan Applequist
    • discussed API to phone internals…
  • Ubiquitous Web Applications Working Group
    • Device Independent Authoring Language
  • Next exciting area — developing countries:
    • 2006 BBC: 61% of international WAP users came from Nigeria
    • India: many more mobile web users than desktop web users

Content Transformation - Ed Moore @ OpenWave

  • OpenWave transformation product is called OpenWeb
  • Operators are saying that “45% of traffic / 1.8 million requests a month off-portal”
    • trying to make point that people are trying to go to URLs that don’t work for phone
    • but doesn’t that say that portal is not the be all and end all…?
  • weirdies:
    • www.vnexpress.net — loads images using javascript timer 8 seconds after page load!
    • microsoft mobile site, sends wap content type then html content!
  • operators seem to be 2:1 in favour of network proxy over portal URL field
  • wap.* or *.mobi does help to identify mobile sites
    • need to identify site before you make the request, as may need to fake the user agent…
  • operators: simple marketing message & enough capacity — 1 week of traffic went up 9 times in data usage
    • where adaptation has been deployed, there has been at least twice the traffic
  • entering a URL will probably work — increases user confidence — encourages operators to spend more on mobile web
  • predictions:
    1. mobile web will merge with PC web
    2. operators will stay with open gardens and will continue to offer more flat rate
      • admob — internet revenue models
    3. end of the mobile web only brand
      • mobile only services will very specific niche

Content Transformation - Richard Blades @ Novarra

these guys do the content transformation for Vodafone

  • do Java and BREW clients as well as server-side
  • some operators are talking about using both client and server
    • if client — what are the default bookmarks…?
  • operators are using this change as an opportunity to move to web2.0-stylee
  • moving to server-side enables faster deployment of new technologies (e.g. new video codecs)
  • average usage after transformation: 0.6 MBytes / day (from 0.18 MBytes before)
    • top 100 sites on alexa show up high on mobile
    • social networking, email
    • similar time profile to flirtomatic: peaks from 11.30pm
    • not unusual to find sessions of up to 30mins
  • www.novarra.com/faqs — will be available shortly
  • mailto:mobilecontent@novarra.com

Internet Made Mobile - Andrea Trasatti @ dotMobi

  • phone.mobi is the definitive device database on the web
  • trying to build
    • mobile web test suite
    • web interface to device database
    • standards-based API to embed into application
      • easy to install, but keeps in sync with central server
  • create & manage tests on the mobile device
  • contributing opinions — from UAProf and actual experience
  • http://ready.mobi provides emulators for phones

mippin makes it mobile


  • used to make mobizines
  • can’t cross the chasm with a client so switched to server-based
  • off-portal portal providing access to RSS feeds
  • also has mipplets to provide widgets on mippin customised home page

Next momoLondon

  • November 6: 2nd Anniversary + “Mobile Advertising”

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