Friday 4 April 2008

OverTheAir: Introduction & Keynotes

John Darlington — Director of Internet Centre

  • Internet Centre used to be the London eScience Centre
  • Presents a slide on “Life Planning: Vortix”
    • Expanding mobile with NFC & touch paradigm
    • Mobile applications can be aware of your context to cut down the information presented to you
    • Also an Imperial College RTIP Demo on business planning — what is there to do in an area within a certain amount of time
    • No mention of Kizoom…

Matthew Postgate — BBC Mobile

Some experimental apps that fell by the wayside up to 2005:

  • RadioMate — real-time EPG for radio, complete with text to the studio, etc
  • “Come and have a go if you think you’re smart enough”
  • Locating Coast material in actual locations

In 2005, chose to put a lot of focus on broadband — iPlayer — but the plan was to follow this up with mobile. So now that iPlayer is done (nearly, anyway), mobile is high on the agenda.

Mobile for the BBC now means: “Any interaction between the BBC and its audience over a portable device or within a mobile situation” — a very wide context with four key platforms:

  • Mobile internet — possibly more important than fixed-line internet
  • Mobile media
  • Mobile messaging
  • Out of home — ubicomp, pervasive computing (e.g. the Coast project)

Took 1999-2007 to get to 1.5 million monthly users, and 6 months in 2007-2008 to add another million…

An interesting area is combining within and without — transferring easily between the two, and bringing the advantages and unique capabilities of each together.

Margaret Gold — Vodafone Betavine

Market research often doesn’t generate new ideas. As Henry Ford said — “if I’d asked people what they wanted, I would have ended up with a faster horse”

Idea generation:

  • think of any company
  • match it against any world problem (global or local)
  • think of a new technology
  • now put them together and brainstorm

Rudy had some very pretty slides in his presentation -- I've embedded it for you below so you can have a look.

  • #12 shows all Nokia mobile phones from 1982 until 2006 -- there are a lot! And Nokia have only expanded their production since then...
  • #23 is a graph from m:metrics showing the percentage of handsets in Europe and the US with 3G capabilities -- it's starting to reach 25% in most countries (including the US which is catching up fast, though Italy is way ahead with 30%).
  • #28 is another graph, but this time of cellphone activity around a Madonna concert in Rome — showing a big peak over the stadium

Claiming that next frontier is between mobile apps and the browser. He’s just come back from CTIA and the US are thinking everything is going to be browser-based, but he’s not so sure — apps can be more powerful. This could be ‘cos it’s so hard to get an application on a US mobile.

Useful companies & sites:

  • Funambol started as sync4j and have now expanded into a mobile messaging platform.
  • provides live stats from and
  • mob4hire - market for mobile testing
  • Sample traffic numbers from mobile social networks:
    • 200m mobile pages a month
    • mig33: 2m sessions a day
    • compares pretty well with Kizoom's c.6m mobile pages a month!
  • frengo: open social mobile toolkit
  • — urban mixtape — create a trip for your friends

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