Tuesday 16 June 2009

MomoLondon: Demo Night

View from the top

A brilliant evening in a beautiful venue, with a fantastic view to round off the evening. Demo nights are one of the things that makes Mobile Monday great. 14 different presentations, most of which involving hands-on demonstrations and all for real, shipping, mobile software with plenty of ideas to inspire. Sure, some of the apps weren’t exactly new (ReVoice presented way back in 2007) and not all were particularly exciting, but with so many people presenting their ideas, you’re sure to pick up some valuable nuggets.

Here’s the presentations, with the tidbits that caught my attention:

Do Tank Studios: Photo Fit iPhone app

Adam Hoyle

Take a photo of several people and mix them up like a game of consequences: a forehead from Fred, the eyes of Isabelle, the nose of Norbert, the mouth of Millie and the chin of Charles. The app lets you take photos or source them from your photo album, and line them up using basic eye and mouth alignment. Shake to mix up further, or slide to choose your mix. Simple and fun.

Adam runs a design agency and this app is a hobby app to show that they can produce iPhone apps. They’ve mostly been focussing on a fashion app, which is currently waiting for app store approval. They were going to make Photo Fit free, but there was already an app on the store that did something similar for £1.20, so they put it in the store for the next price point down. Apparently they’ve made enough to have a few beers.

Total Hotspots

Alex Housley @ahousley

  • Global Wirefree Community — help people find the best WiFi connectivity
  • partnered with Rummble in October 2008
  • iPhone app rummbles to twitter and Total Hotspots website (using Yahoo GeoPlanet to show surroundings and identify location name)
  • had a few thousand downloads from iPhone store at £3 each
  • also working with Microsoft
  • Alex worked at multimap for a while while they were being taken over by Microsoft
  • Total Hotspots’ database includes data direct from service providers
  • cf. WeFi: client connection software, that has background app that does WiFi collection as you walk down the street — picks up personal and corporate wifi (mostly secured)


Mark Rock

“as used by Stephen Fry…”

  • geolocation embedded in the meta-data of the audio
  • will be releasing API in about 3 weeks
  • business plan:
    • there’ll always a free version
    • plus version: £2.95 a month
      • longer recording time
      • queuing recording
    • pro version: for companies
      • just signed first customer: British Library
  • community auditing of inappropriate content
    • had to put this in place before the app was accepted in the iPhone store


Dave Hodder

  • software for mobile network operators
  • previously solely in Belgium
  • acquired location company that uses app on SIM or device to identify accurate location using nearby cell strengths as well as current cell tower location (TILS)
  • in London tends to be sub 100 metres accuracy
    • lower resolution outside built-up areas
  • work with mobile operators — have their mast data
    • also drive around the area
    • improve with usage too
  • gets better accuracy than Google Maps for Mobile (using cell ID only)
  • end customer is mobile operators
  • will probably implement GSM ONE API when it gets more developed (i.e. has more event-based APIs)


James Norris

  • payWave credit cards on an NFC phone
  • working with MasterCard
  • can change PIN over the net (combined with the secure element)
  • they use J2MEPolish for their JavaME apps
  • integrates with secure element in SIM
  • person to person payment is not supported with existing terminals & framework
  • upcoming NFC devices:
    • Nokia 6216 — has secure element on SIM
    • Samsung & LG also coming out this year (also USIM-based)


Dan Phillips

  • mobile learning service
  • clients are schools & cultural venues
    • have 25 venues signed up
  • provide hardware and software
    • old Nokia phones that you can buy for £50
  • every object in the physical environment is labelled with a shortcode (two-letter code)
  • type it in on the phone to see and hear content
  • can write why collecting it
  • find out who else collected it
  • take photos or record audio to annotate it
  • all info collected is uploaded to a shared space to consider later

Synchro Arts’ ReVoice Karaoke

Jeff Bloom

As mentioned above, these guys have been around for several years now selling essentially the same thing, but the demo always gets a laugh… Jeff sings horrendously out of tune and badly timed into the ReVoice system (here an iPhone app), then uploads his “masterpiece” and has it retuned by the ReVoice server. The result is perfectly in tune and in time and still recognisably Jeff.

  • now have an iPhone app
    1. record yourself
    2. gives scores for accuracy
    3. uploads, corrects, downloads to iPhone and shares online
  • can try out on http://singtone.com
  • aim is to send it to someone else as your ringtone
    • when you call, they hear your voice
    • At the moment, this doesn’t work with the iPhone, as you currently have to pay Apple to make a ringtone (unless you hack something…)

Masabi Rail Ticketing

Ben Whitaker (getting married this weekend— congratulations!)

Ben Smith (of the Really Mobile Project) recorded video presentation; may also be on Slideshare (old version)

  • Working with ATOS Origin (heathrow express & national express)
  • only 12% of rail tickets sold on the internet — most bought at station
  • masabi’s implementation has no sign up — no usernames or passwords
  • mostly offline…
  • for consumers: if it feels slick and looks slick, people will use it
  • Chiltern trial: compelling reason (get out of queue) got people who had never downloaded an app before to use mobile ticketing
    • advertise at the pain point — “while you’re queuing, try this”
  • Q: How have TfL responded? A: They’ve already put their investment into NFC
  • Big rail & bus operators like the soft roll-out of mobile barcodes rather than ITSO…
    • “there’s space for both”
  • IATA have legislated that all major airports must implement barcode tickets by May next year
  • In Germany, if you turn up with a mobile ticket and your battery runs out, you’re fined!

Corebridge with Wings

Simon Taylor

  • VPN via small app on phone
    • iPhone, Blackberry, WinMo & Symbian
  • If phone rings, CRM app launches on laptop
  • Similarly, click a phone number on screen and phone makes call straight away
  • App logs phone calls made from mobile back onto corporate server
  • Can send SMS messages from Lotus Notes & Outlook, but this system uses your actual mobile phone to send — so responses come to you, not the SMS gateway
  • Also provides enterprise-wide voice mail


Alex Will

  • 21st Century version of Timeout
  • high quality local event content
  • 30,000 events per month
  • iPhone app — Event Radar
  • LBS mobile Java app launching in Q3 2009
    • complete with maps…
    • looking at options for map source
  • have small editorial team of 5 editors to cover the whole of London
  • has some social features — meet up with your friends, etc.
  • “user generated content is great for cats on skateboards”


  • Samsung Mobile Innovator
    • includes lab.dev testing (using Digia remote devices), market.dev pitching
    • core partners are invite only but still free
  • Staines office focusses on supporting Symbian
    • ramping up skills to support Symbian Foundation
  • Samsung IQ widget competition:
    • opens on 24th June
    • £15,000 top prize, 2nd & 3rd prizes too
    • download the i8910 HD DevPack
    • submit entry at http://www.samsungiq.com
    • widget marketplace (More Widgets) is free to user


Tanvin Sharif http://vopium.com/

  • based in Denmark
  • free calls on your mobile via VoIP, or else local call then VoIP then local call
  • free to download app — runs in the background transparently
  • first 100 SMS are free then charged after that
  • available from all channels
  • can do free mobile termination for Skype!
  • merge address books and identify with phone number
  • cf. Fring, Nimbuzz — they’re aggregators and run within a separate app
    • main competitor is TruPhone — seamless integration into phonebook
  • tells you if totally wifi or involves a local call
    • doesn’t tell you if one or two local call
  • remote leg: Vopium pay 1p, charge 2p


Mun Kong, d2see http://peepr.tv

  • stream live from any webcam — pick up on http://peepr.mobi
  • can send an SMS when you detect motion
  • launches native media player on phone
  • showcase of technologies
  • cf. Qik: phone to PC, this is PC to phone, with no app needed on phone
  • can make feeds private, but not password protected


  • mobile access to alternative to 0870 numbers
  • iPhone app got rejected — “circumventing carrier policies”
  • Android app intercepts standard dialler
  • with 5 minutes call length, estimated savings of £54K
  • 0870.me — open API for anyone to access, or even download the whole database
  • API integrates with 0800buster.co.uk

OverTheAir — September 25/26th

Keep the date free!

Thanks to the organisers!


Anonymous said...

Vopiumis on every app store - ovi, Apple, Android, Blackberry. Great Service i am impressed with the call quality.

James said...

Hey Adam,

Good to see you at MoMo & thanks for putting up a piece on everyone! I'm on twitter at @j_norris btw :)