Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Has Anyone Noticed?

Watching the endless coverage of Hurricane Katrina, I am noticing one particular company, with just ONE of their services, playing a key role in another way the news is being reported.

I am seeing this all day long from different stations.

They are infiltrating the news in many ways.

Can anyone guess what/who this is?

The answer lies in the red letters...

Scan And Deliver

From Ad Age.com Putting scanners in shoppers hands

The Container Store mailing touted a new customer service with a clunky label, GoShop Scan & Deliver, but a potentially transformative premise.

As of this month, shoppers at the Container Store in Manhattan can register a credit card number at the counter and get a wireless hand-held scanner. As they walk the aisles, they scan in barcodes on desired items then pay for the purchases, which are delivered to their homes the same day.

But the Container Store is going the next step, eliminating the need to carry around items, wheel around carts or lug purchases home. That also eliminates physical and psychological limits on how much is purchased in a single trip.

Is the next step, registering your credit card and using your cell phone?

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Is Google The Next Microsoft?

From InsideBay Area Could Google be the next Microsoft?

Interesting story...The times, they are a changin.

For years, Silicon Valley hungered for a company mighty enough to best Microsoft. Now it has one such contender: the phenomenally successful Google.

But instead of embracing Google as one of their own, many in Silicon Valley are skittish about its size and power. They fret that the very strengths that made Google a search-engine phenomenon are distancing it from the entrepreneurial culture that produced it — and even transforming it into a threat.

Now, in the view of Kraus, "Microsoft is becoming IBM and Google is becoming Microsoft." Kraus is the chief executive and a founder of JotSpot

NASCAR Does Mobile Marketing

From NASCAR.com NASCAR to launch mobile marketing tour

The National Association of Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) announced the launch of NASCAR Street Tour, an interactive marketing initiative bringing the sights, sounds and excitement of NASCAR to sports fans in key west coast markets just as the 2005 Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup begins

NASCAR introduces the NASCAR Street Tour to San Diego fans Friday, August 26 at PETCO Park prior to the Padres home contest vs. the Colorado Rockies. It continues to make its way through major West Coast cities including, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Las Vegas at various sporting events, fairs and festivals, Ford dealerships, partner retail locations, auto shows and multicultural community events

Saturday, August 27, 2005

When Is A Text Messsage Not Really Communication?

From Ben Maller NCAA Coaches uses text messaging

Text messages, the electronic communication — which allows messages to be typed and sent to another person via a cell phone — has become the preferred method of contact for many college recruiters during the no-contact period, according to the HOUSTON CHRONICLE.

Until Sept. 1, college coaches can have no personal or voice-to-voice communication with prospective football players.

"As soon as this technology became available and we knew that most of the players had phones that were capable of texting, we started doing it," said Texas A&M recruiting coordinator John Barr. "It's basically an unlimited use of contact we can use during a time when we aren't allowed to telephone or visit with a recruit.

But will they be able to read the messages...:)

Rave Wireless Gets Financing

From Boston Biz Journal Boston VC funds invest $5 million in Rave Wireless

Location based mobile marketing gets financing.

Two Boston-based venture capital firms have teamed to invest $5 million in Rave Wireless Inc., a developer of youth-focused technologies for mobile devices.

The firm's technologies enable users to publish content such as location-based alerts, announcements, polls and location-based coupons. These content items can either be user-generated or from existing Web sites.

Friday, August 26, 2005

BlueTooth Mobile Marketing Concerns

From News Factor Bluetooth ad prompts virus concerns

Viruses and spamming are the drawbacks to this type of mobile marketing.

A newly developed Bluetooth advertising scheme could make mobile phone viruses more commonplace by teaching users bad habits, I.T. security experts said today.

The technique, known as Bluestreaming, has been pioneered by British firm Filter UK. It involves beaming pictures and music direct to people's mobile phones.

The commercial director of Filter UK pointed out that the marketing method itself cannot be hijacked by mobile virus writers.

"It would be very difficult for a virus writer to spoof a campaign like this," commercial partner Fred Durman said.

I think the concern is that these campaigns will condition people to download anything to their phone, more than bluetoothing will be the DIRECT cause for viruses.

The Google Roadmap

From BusinessWeek Google's grand ambitions

I've been saying Google is going head to head some of the majors, and they should be worried.

In typical Google fashion, the company chose an unusual moment -- the sleepy doldrums of mid-August -- to shake up the tech world with a flurry of announcements. First, Google confirmed that it had quietly acquired mobile-phone software startup Android Inc.

Then came the surprising news that it would add $4 billion to its cash war chest with a secondary stock offering. And then on Aug. 24, the search giant announced it was getting into the instant messaging and Internet telephony businesses. No wonder tech watchers from Silicon Valley to Bangalore are all wondering the same thing:

What the heck is Google up to?

I have lots of ideas on what Google could do with this infrastructure, do you?

Incentivated Launches New Mobile Marketing Tool

From e-consultancy Incentivated launches new mobile marketing tool

Incentivated's Iris allows companies or their advertising agencies to run local, regional or national marketing campaigns for themselves using the very latest in text and picture messaging technology

With a single interface that can be used on any PC iris enables users to set up two-way interactions with their customers’ mobile phones, enabling customers to respond immediately to promotions or offers, as well as send one or more text or picture messages at a time

iris has an extensive range of applications including two new mobile services:

- ‘Find My Nearest’ A system that links national advertising (outdoor, print or direct mail) to the customer’s nearest outlet using Location Based Services. ( I wonder what technology they use for this)

- ‘Ticket Request by SMS’ – Allows customers to order brochures or tickets to be posted to them by texting their house number and postcode. Alternatively by sending an email address, an e-Brochure can be ordered and delivered by email.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Katrina And The Waves

Katrina is deciding to pay a visit to South Florida. This is throwing off my travel schedule.

I'm planning on going to NYC for a week starting tomorrow. Have some companies I want to see, catch some US Open tennis action and also see Virgin's new digital music service at their MegaStore in Times Square.

I will try to keep up with the blogging and I will post pics of Virgin and other mobile marketing campaigns at Mobile Moblog

I have some Katrina pics from the beach up now.

Drop me an email if you want to get together next week in the City.

GoogleTalk Speaks Volumes

Looking closer at Google's Talk, I realize they are in the process of dominating the mobile space as well. One of the ways to get GoogleTalk is is if you have Gmail (or are invited for a Gmail account).

Now you can get a Gmail account AND GoogleTalk if you just give Google your mobile number. What a smart way to not only to get people to sign up, but to get a mobile phone number database.

Some people are worried what Google will do when they have your mobile number. That's the beauty with mobile marketing. The FCC has issue rules prohibiting companies from sending commercial messages to wireless devices without the user's permission.

To sign up for a Gmail account. They will send a text message back on your phone that you use to open your Gmail account on the PC.

My thinking is this, if Google does become the preeminent mobile player, and they continue offering these fantastic services, I want to AT LEAST register my name for a Gmail account now.

Kind of like a mini mobile land rush.

At any time you want out, just reply with STOP or END. I can't see Google DOING ANYTHING TO JEOPARDIZE this valuable gem.

Things I see Google does with this if they create a mobile messenger.

Google would have a permanent search window on your mobile for search, IM, or VOIP.

Google SMS would be incorporated into this search window.

Google would keep track of all of your mobile search requests in your Gmail that you could review later on the big screen.

See an interesting product and want more info? Type in the barcode or take a picture and send to Google SMS. Get info back on the product and that info is stored in your Gmail account under "Things I Mobile Googled Today".

Type in the phone number in search window and connect using VOIP (with all of the dark fiber they have been buying).

I would love to know how many Gmail accounts there and how many people sign up using this mobile invite.

Some people are starting to say Google is taking over the role as being hated like Microsoft. No way!!! I CHOOSE TO USE Google's services. The options for an operating system are pretty limited when you buy a new PC.

Microsoft should be worried, very worried about this.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Nextel Plays Big Brother On Employees

I don't know how happy I would be if I was a Nextel customer about this.

Nextel's "Mobile Locator" allows you to view and monitor employee location in real-time, either singly or within a group, on a zoom-able, online map.

Also allows you to see an employee's location history, based on your last five queries, and to discreetly(Nextel mispells the word in their own ad) send them standard text messages

There's nothing discrete about this. Where's the OPT-OUT feature?

Time Warner Invests In Glu Mobile

From Games Industry Glu Mobile secures strategic investment from Time Warner

I like to see this. Big Media takes a stake in mobile content player

Glu Mobile (formerly Sorrent, Inc. and Macrospace Ltd.), a leading creator and global publisher of mobile entertainment, today announced that Time Warner Inc. has made a strategic investment in the company's series D round of financing that was led by Granite Global Ventures in May of 2005.

Glu publishes original titles and entertainment based on major brands including Atari, Cartoon Network, FOX Sports, Nickelodeon, PopCap Games and Twentieth Century Fox.

How Businesses Use SMS

From Source Wire Top 10 business users of SMS text messaging revealed

KAPOW out of the UK put together this top 10 list

1. Recruitment agencies: people looking for temporary work can now register to receive SMS alerts about potential work from recruitment agencies. By sending a broadcast SMS to suitable candidates recruitment agencies can save considerable time and money.

2. Entertainment information services: SMS is being used to deliver an variety of entertainment information services such as ringtones, logos, jokes, competitions and horoscopes to customers. This generates significant revenue for many organisations.

3. Clubs and bars: many clubs and bars are using SMS to notify customers, who have opted in, about special drinks promotions and events for when they are in the area.

4. Internet service providers and hosting companies: SMS is being used to notify engineers when systems go down or if suspicious criminal activity is occurring across a network, meaning that problems can be dealt with quickly and efficiently.

5. Couriers: courier companies are using SMS to provide information to their couriers as to where to collect and deliver mail. Additionally it is being used to alert customers when items, such as concert tickets, are being delivered, so that they can ensure they are around for the delivery or can reschedule for a more convenient time.

6. Schools, colleges and universities: students and parents can now be alerted by SMS if buildings are closed due to bad weather, etc. This saves them having to wait for updates on local radio or having to call to find out if buildings are open, etc.

7. Hair salons, dentists and surgeries: individual patients can now receive automatic text reminders telling them the time and date of appointments. Patients can also postpone and reschedule appointments via SMS meaning that appointments are less likely to be missed.

8. Mechanics and body shops: mechanics are using SMS to notify customers when their cars are ready. This can save both the garages and customers time, because as soon as a job is logged as completed the customer can be automatically alerted, whether they are at home or at work, etc.

9. Charities: charities are using SMS in a variety of ways ranging from using it to alert people about fundraising activities or as a means to collect donations with enabling people being to make a pledge via a text shortcode with the donation being taken from their next bill.

10. Insurance companies: mobile users can now receive quotes and cover confirmation from insurance companies via SMS, which has helped to enhance customer service as users can have access to information 24 hours a day.

Mobile Sleaze Doesn't Please, Just A Tease

From The Guardian Tease not sleaze on mobile phones

I think when you look at it logically you will understand why.

Money from adult content has failed to live up to the hype.

Sex sells, according to the old marketing adage. But while the adult entertainment industry swooped on the introduction of video recorders, embraced multi-angle DVD players and hijacked the internet, mobile phones seem to have slipped its grasp.

At the height of the dotcom boom, as mobile phone companies began looking for revenues from non-voice services, adult content was lauded as a money-spinner based on its success in the online world.

The pornography industry seems to adapt to any new medium first but there is a big reason why it hasn't taken off yet.

Did you ever try surfing with your mobile phone on a site with images? I shut off the image function on my Treo just to make it go faster.

I will be willing to bet the adoption rate increases with higher wireless speeds.

Disturbing Trends In Advertising

This is a little off topic but it pertains to where the trend in advertising is going. There are two disturbing trends I see with this.

From SunSentinel.com Reality TV drives ads with average bodies

Maybe you've seen them on billboards, smiling and full-figured, proudly posing in underwear. Or perhaps you did a double take when you saw their oversized body parts in commercials and magazine spreads with tag lines like "I have thunder thighs."

A new batch of advertisements glorify female parts that are much closer to the norm than those strutted by supermodels.

What is the point of advertising, to increase brand awareness and get people to buy your product. People buy a product because something about it makes them feel good or sexy. It satisfies an urge for something.

Do you honestly think the women wearing lycra stretched to its physical limit feel good or sexy?

Do you think people that could buy this product want to look like that?

Nike is putting out slogans like "I have thunder thighs" and "my butt is big". What kind of message does that send? American society is struggling with an obesity problem and the largest sports apparel company that is trying to encourage sports activities says this?

Maybe Nike's next slogan should be "if you feel like it someday, try to make at attempt at it"

I hope Adidas doesn't start this nonsense.

The fastest growing sport right now is the triathlon. I don't know how many sports allow amateurs to compete directly against the pros. There isn't any skill involved. It's pure endurance which can be attained if there is enough desire.

If enough desire is there, anything is attainable.

Nike apparel is nowhere to be found for the triathlete. There's DeSoto, TYR, Asics, Reebok, but nothing from Nike.

Here's what I would do if I was a Nike brand manager. Hire Jessi Stensland or one of the other triathlete hotties and introduce a line of apparel for women. Instead of giving in, reach out.

Nike has the opportunity to tap into the fastest growing sport out there.

Have we given up?

Is the 15th place trophy now our goal?

Reality show Americas Biggest Loser was a dud. People like reality shows, but I think this one missed the desire of the people. Maybe we hate seeing fat people, or maybe people don't like being reminded they need to exercise. The real reality in that show is you have to exercise to lose weight. That message is too close to home..

The Celebrity Fat Club is another example of what people don't want to see.

In case Madison Ave forgot, "sex sells", and the reality to reality shows is sex sells. There is no reality in being stranded on an island competing for a can of Pringles. People tuned into Survivor to see Jenna and Amber in those bikinis, not Sue the truck driver.

Nike, in my mind, can be the brand that tackles America's obesity problem, but not with ads and the message like this.

In addition, I know I have no interest in looking at these ads, so did Nike lose male eyeballs with these ads too?

Honest answer, which picture above did you look at longer?

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

William Morris Agency Goes Mobile

From WorldScreen.com William Morris Agency enters deal with mobile content outift

This is a great sign for mobile marketing. When the major ad agencies start partnering with mobile marketing companies, instead of trying to do it themselves.

The William Morris Agency is working to secure strategic and marketing partnerships as well as content deals for Amp’d Mobile, a mobile entertainment company specifically targeted to the 18 to 35 set.

I hope Amp'd offers better ideas to WMA than what they highlight on their own website. Their site is way too slow, too difficult to navigate, and that's using a broadband connection.

Google Offers Location Based Services?

Everytime my new Business 2.0 magazine comes I feel like Steve Martin in The Jerk yelling "the new phonesbooks are here!". There's always so much useful information in it.

The full story of GoogleNet by Om Malik is in this months issue.

He elaborates on how and why Google is building "the infrastructure" that the will allow them to continue their growth.

Here's a paragraph that caught my eye.

In April it launched a Google-sponsored Wi-Fi hotspot in San Francisco’s Union Square shopping district, built by a local startup called Feeva. Feeva is reportedly readying more free hotspots in California, Florida, New York, and Washington, and it's possible that Google may be involved.

Feeva CEO Nitin Shah confirms that the company is working with Google but won't discuss details. Google's interest in Feeva likely stems from the startup's proprietary technology, which can determine the location of every Wi-Fi user and would allow Google to serve up advertising and maps based on real-time data.


Not only can Google continue to dominating advertising on the Internet through the PC, but if Google can determine your location through Wi-Fi, they could own the location based services market too.

I am thinking ahead, but what if GoogleTalk gets adopted on the cell phone.

Add their location based service(using Wi-Fi) feature to a cell phone and think of the possibilities.

By using a Wi-Fi locator, does this eliminate the GPS function? Can Google go right around the service providers?

Permission will still be required to advertise though, but I'm sure brands can think of creative (and useful) services that will get consumers to opt-in.

Thoughts, comments?

Mobile Marketing Meets The Movies

I commented on WideRay last month from a NY Times story, but it looks like they are rolling out their mobile marketing called(bluetoothing, bluejacking, bluespamming) in even more theaters.

From The State.com Cell phone advertising

Europe is generally ahead of the United States in cell phone advertising, as more Europeans have video-enabled phones.

However, San Francisco-based WideRay is testing a system in 11 U.S. and U.K. movie theaters over the summer

It installed transmitters in theaters operated by Loews Cineplex Entertainment so people waiting in the theaters’ foyers for the next show can download movie trailers

Google To Offer Instant Messaging

From Yahoo Google to launch instant messaging program

Talk about bringing the world together. I'm waiting for Google to launch this for the mobile.

I can see a mobile search application, a VOIP application, a mobile keyword application, a location-based application...and I can see Microsoft/Bill Gates getting ready to take another butt-kicking

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) - Google reportedly plans to launch an instant messaging program as early as this week, in a challenge to America Online, Yahoo and Microsoft

"Google Talk" will allow computer users to chat with their keyboards and allow users with headsets to have voice conversations with other computer users with headsets, according to the Los Angeles Times, citing unnamed sources.

Sprint Offers Corporate Location Based Services

From Business Wire Sprint Precision Locator helps locate fleets and mobile workers

This is good, but there is other technology that offer MUCH MORE in the way of functions for corporations using location-based services.

-- Access interactive maps with full panning and zooming capabilities to easily locate a worker or group of workers without interrupting field productivity

-- Set schedules and have the application identify the location of a mobile device or group of mobile devices to ensure specific tasks are performed at designated times

-- Create landmarks on maps that are important to the business, such as offices and warehouses, and track if an employee leaves or enters established landmarks

-- Use reporting functionality to track mobile workforce location history to determine where efficiencies can be gained

-- Use text messaging feature to reach a mobile worker or group of workers

Mobile Marketing Merges With Location Based

From New York Business.com Mobile content firms combine to widen business

Consolidation in mobile marketing, with a twist. Mobile marketing with location-based services

Two Manhattan mobile content companies are joining in a bid to broaden sales of wireless applications beyond ringtones and games.

Zingy Inc., which has sold personalized songs, wallpapers and games since 2001, said today that it has acquired Vindigo, a provider of online articles, maps, photos and chat

Zingy will inherit Vindigo’s mobile subscription and information services such as its popular CityGuide application found on personal digital assistants (PDAs) and cell phones

Monday, August 22, 2005

Chase Credit Card Offers Mobile Alerts

I saw an ad on TV tonight that Chase is now offering alerts sent to your mobile phone.

Not only is it a great idea, but if just one person is alerted to suspicious activity immediately instead of next month statement, it would pay pay for itself.

What I see is Chase offering a free service, that will lead to permission mobile marketing if they do it right. See how a brand gets permission?

What are Chase Credit Card Free Alerts?

Free Alerts are notifications about your account sent by e-mail or phone. E-mail alerts in text format can be sent to your e-mail address, mobile phone, pager or PDA to keep you informed about your account.

If you select Phone alerts, we'll call you with the important account information you requested at the number you designate. Free Alerts can remind you when your payment is due, notify you when your balance reaches a set amount, and much more.

With Free Alerts, you're always in the know and you can choose the Alert preferences that are right for you. The service is free* and can be discontinued at any time. There are six credit card Alerts to choose from.

You can select the Alerts below you'd like to receive:

My available credit is less than ($ USD) <____>.
My available credit is less than <____> % of my total credit limit.
My balance reaches ($ USD) <____>.
More than ($ USD) <___> is charged to my card for a single transaction.
My payment is due in days.
No payment was posted to this account.
A payment has been posted to this account.

Less Push And A Lot More Pull

From NetImperative.com Brands offered a new way to go mobile

Brands which want to go mobile are being offered a new service from mobile network Orange and agency Netsize

The partnership will offer brands the ability to appear as if they have a direct presence on the mobile Internet, when in fact the underlying access is provided by Orange, which gets revenues, and the customer experience goes through Netsize, which gets the contract

Leading brands want to be present on the mobile internet and are looking for partners like Netsize who can provide an end-to-end solution including content management, billing, integration, site creation, hosting and managing relations with mobile operators on an international scale

Just "being present on the mobile" is not enough. Brands will have to be creative in order for consumers to INTERACT with them via the mobile.

Push based advertising is out, pull based advertising is in if you want your brand to capture the next emerging adverting space, the cell phone

What Is Verisign Up To?

From Yahoo News Verisign eyes seamless Wi-Fi cellular roaming

The What Ifs are endless if this happened.

Playing the role of stalking horse for wireless carriers, VeriSign last week announced trials at three major universities to integrate on-campus Wi-Fi to any wide-area wireless carrier network for data and voice roaming between networks

Although the Wireless IP Connect Service will be used primarily to link mobile and Wi-Fi networks, it can also connect to a wireless carrier any device with an IP connection.

I am envisioning all of those RFID tags that Verisign will provide URL's for. Every object with an RFID tag will have its own IP address someday, registered by Verisign.

Could Verisign create a ubiquitous computing society? Is this how the physical world gets "turned on"?

Commercials By Cellphone

From WSJ ONline Commercials by cell phone

Leave it to creative Richard Branson and Virgin to adopt an emerging technology for mobile marketing first

Passengers waiting to board a Virgin Atlantic Airways flight at London Heathrow airport may get an unexpected invitation on their cellphone these days

Under a new advertising program, transmitters are beaming out text messages to the phones of people walking by to ask them if they would like to watch a video-clip ad on their phone's screen

Two London companies are behind the new ad approach -- Maiden Group PLC, which has handled billboard advertising for 80 years in the United Kingdom, and Filter UK Ltd., a small firm specializing in the transmitter technology

One limit to the spread of the cellphone video advertising will be the number of phones capable of receiving the ads. The ads work only on high-tech phones enabled with Bluetooth, the short-range wireless technology that allows text, sound and pictures to be sent to a computer, phone or other electronic device

Cellphones offer an attractive opportunity for advertisers because of their popularity, especially with young people, who are proving harder to reach as they spend less time watching TV or reading newspapers and magazines.

Friday, August 19, 2005

"TEXT"reme Home Makeover

IN April, Alltel sponsored a $1m to build their dream in the "TXT2WIN $1 Million Home Sweepstakes," partnership with Kyocera Wireless Corp. and featuring Extreme Makeover: Home Edition designer and TV superstar Ty Pennington.

"Wireless customers are just beginning to realize the convenience and the many uses of text messaging," said Frank O'Mara, executive vice president of marketing for Alltel. "Customers will be amazed by the simplicity of text messaging, and they just might win a $1 million dream home of their very own in the process."

On Wednesday, a Spartanburg woman says she's still in shock after she won a national contest -- and the $1 million that came with it.

Lisa Porta won the Alltel "Text To Win A Million Dollar Home" sweepstakes.

It was a random drawing, and Alltel officially declared her the winner Wednesday.

When asked what she would do with the money, Porta said she wants to buy a new drum set and sign up for lessons. Ahhh the American Dream hard at work.

Another sign that advertisers have no clue how to approach mobile marketing.

Interactive TV With A Mobile

From New Media Age Sky TV to use interactive mobile TV

3G operator 3 is launching what is one of the first truly interactive two-way mobile TV channels.

The move demonstrates the potential of fully interactive mobile TV channels for more mainstream branded content, such as quiz shows.

The Psychic Interactive service, developed by Requestec, makes use of video shortcodes, which enable users to access content by simply making a video call on a 3G phone to have it streamed to them.

The nature of the video call means the content can be fully interactive, enabling the caller to be seen by the TV presenter.

Froogle Goes Mobile

From MacWorld Google offers Froogle Mobile

Google UK has revealed Froogle Mobile, a price-checking service for mobile phones. Type in http://wml.froogle.com

Based on Google's search technology, the service offers Froogle's full complement of price ranges and comparison and shop and product ratings and reviews.

The service means high-street shoppers can quickly check to see if a better bargain is available online.

I went to Froogle Mobile and typed in a barcode 042283156326. I got several listings of online retailers that sell it pretty cheap.

I still think price comparison shopping using a mobile phone will never take off and is a big waste of optical character recognition technology, but I also thought.."why do I need download software to scan a barcode when I can just type in the number?"

I know what the other price comparison services will say about Froogle mobile, "they don't provide a way to click to the online retailer and buy, we do".

There HAS TO BE ANOTHER reason to "turn on" a physical object besides price comparison.

Nighty Night Goes Mobile

From BBC.com Nighty Night sitcom goes mobile

Fans of dark TV comedy Nighty Night will be able to preview clips of the second series on video mobile phones.

The BBC Three show, written and starring Julia Davis, has won a British Comedy Award and a Royal Television Society award for best sitcom.

The experiments are part of the BBC's look at how TV programmes can be delivered outside of the traditional broadcast using new technology

Who Wants To Be A Thousandaire?

From TelusMobility Text&Win $1000

Let's label this as mobile lottery marketing.

Play monthly trivia between June 1 and August 31, 2005, and for every answer, you'll be entered to win big bucks from TELUS Mobility! For each question you answer, you'll be entered into a monthly draw for $1000*.

For each correct answer, you'll be entered 10 times. There will be one winner for each month of June, July and August.

Text the word 'TRIVIA' to 835873 and get started today.

*Each answer costs $0.15

Just make sure you don't send in more than 6667 texts to keep the contest cost effective.

Hypertag Brings Mobile Marketing To Music Albums

From Brand Republic Hypertag launches Goldfrapp album

Mobile marketing for music albums.

LONDON - The launch of the new Goldfrapp album is being backed by a link with mobile marketing company Hypertag to offer downloadable mobile content in posters.

The campaign will use Hypertag's new Hyperstore m-commerce application so fans can download live updates and content directly to their mobile phones.

Fans can text a shortcode (80004) to receive the Goldfrapp Hyperstore or through Hypertags at Goldfrapp gigs

Thursday, August 18, 2005

The 14 Essential Mobile Blogs

My physical world compatriot Russell Buckley and the well-known mobile writer from The Feature, Carlo Longino have put together a list of the 14 Essential Mobile Blogs and how to read them on your mobile.

Both these guys write some amazing stuff and I have noted their works on PP.

I'm flattered that the Pondering Primate is listed with these sites.

What they have done is listed their top 14 Mobile Blogs and teamed up with the guys behind Free News and come up with our very own RSS Reader

- FREE to all MobHappy readers - the full version costs $20 a year.

Instructions for downloading are at the end of this post

But that's not all. Our RSS Reader includes 14 other essential mobile blogs that we've chosen for your delight and edification

Here's a run down of the list:

i-mode Business Strategy. No one can fail to notice that much innovation in mobile comes from Japan. And historically, i-mode has done a lot of that innovation. It's therefore pretty essential to follow what's happening there and these guys do a great job of keeping us all up to speed with events.

MobHappy and the link blog. Well, we weren't going to get left out of our own gig :-) The link blog is stuff we think is interesting, froody or quirky enough to be worthy of your interest, but which we don't really have anything to add to.

Mobile Burn. Michael focuses on the really important stuff - with a handset bias.

Mobile Weblog. Russell started this site, but Oliver Starr has ably taken over with news and insightful comment.

MocoNews. Another highly authoritative and comprehensive news source, with some incisive comment thrown in. Sister site of the prolific Paid Content.

Om Malik's Broadband Blog. Om is highly prolific and his inside knowledge and vast array of contacts means that he's often breaking important news.

Phone Scoop. Important news and comment from the mobile world.

The Pondering Primate. Makes us think, with a constant stream of new ideas.

Russell Beattie. It's a little known fact that to be a great mobile blogger, you need to be called Russell and have a surname beginning with B. This Russell focuses on usually one quality post a day and very much opinion based. We say it's essential to know what he's thinking.

SmartMobs. This multi-authored blog, led by Howard, is a news based blog covering how mobiles are changing the world. Inspired by Howard's book of the same name, it's essential reading.

TechDirt Wireless. Carlo's other blogging gig and a must-read for mobile enthusiasts. Mike Masnick also has an annoying habit of pinching our stories - before we write them, leaving us with nothing more to add.

Textually. Emily's blog empire also includes Picture Phoning and Ringtonia which combined cover everything there is to know about mobile news.

Tom Hume. One of the oldest blogs in the UK and winner of a Net Imperative blogging award, no less. Always something new here, which you won't find anywhere else.

We may update all these from time to time and we'll certainly feature a new Guest Blog pretty regularly. You don't need to do anything to get this new content, by the way. Just carry on using the reader.

How to Download Your Free MobHappy Browser

It's pretty simple actually.

Just point your phone's browser to http://mh.wap.at and download the application. Or if you're a download and sych to your phone kind of person, point your computer's browser here.

Most phones are supported, but it doesn't work on Verizon and if you have a Treo, you'll need to download Java. For a more complete guide to compatibility, click here.

That's it. We hope you enjoy your RSS Reader. Tell your friends!

The MobHappy RSS Reader is for you, so if you think we've left someone off or would like to nominate someone for a guest slot, leave a comment or email us

the whole story

Rolling Stones Go Mobile

From Avalon Rolling Stones Offer text message contest

Through a text messaging program, fans who have already purchased a ticket to a Rolling Stones stadium concert will have the incredible chance to have their ticket exchanged & upgraded for one on stage.

The details are simple; concert goers are encouraged to bring their cell phones to the concert. Upon entering the venue, fans simply dial the reserved Rolling Stones short-code - 25852 and enter the word "Stones" (no additional charges, standard text messaging fee applies).

Winners will be chosen through a random draw and will be escorted On-Stage with up to one guest for an incredible concert event

Interactive Music Posters

From DM Europe EMI Records launches interactive music poster

The physical world meets the digital world for mobile marketing.

UK record label EMI Records has launched a mobile campaign for independent rock group The Magic Numbers.

The campaign allows 3G handset owners to directly access video and audio excerpts of the last single, ‘Forever Lost’, and the forthcoming single, ‘Love Me Like You’. Fans can also buy a selection of The Magic Numbers’ official ring-tones

By combining offline media with the mobile channel, we are opening up the ways in which we can put our artists directly in touch with consumers

Consumers are prompted to dial a short code, which automatically streams a 30-second video or audio clip back to their mobile. Those who want to buy ring-tones can navigate to a separate WAP page, where a selection of real-tones and polys can be purchased

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Is Google Getting A Mobile OS?

From Business Week Google buys Android for its mobile arsenal

Think of the revenue Google could generate with MOBILE KEYWORDS

In what could be a key move in its nascent wireless strategy, Google has quietly acquired startup Android Inc., BusinessWeek Online has learned

One source familiar with the company says Android had at one point been working on a software operating system for cell phones

"Windows, we don't need no stinkin Windows"...I wonder if Google ever uttered that sentence.

"Wireless is the next frontier in search," says Scott Ellison, analyst at research outfit IDC

A couple questions for Pondering Primate readers:

Would you download a Google toolbar for your mobile? Instead of going to www.google.com, you had a little search box that you could type a search query in.

What if that search window incorporated GPS into your search query?

What would Google have to offer you, to make this part of your mobile screen?

Do you see where this is going? When you agree to download this mobile toolbar, you have given Google (and their clients) permission to advertise to you.

Think of taking Google's keyword revenue model and DOUBLING IT by offering a mobile version.

Would love comments on this one....

Google would probably have the best mobile analytics database..

Sprint Nextel To Sell Music

From Yahoo Sprint Nextel plan to sell music

Sprint Nextel Corp. , will combine wireless service plans from Sprint and Nextel in early September and launch a mobile music download service in time for the holidays, an executive said on Tuesday

Lauer also said Sprint Nextel would have a music service in time for the winter holiday shopping season. It plans to sell wireless song downloads at prices above Apple Computer Inc.'s popular iTunes music service, which charges 99 cents a song.

Is Jamdat's Blow Up A Warning?

From Real Money.com The mobile-content field is overcrowded

An interesting piece from Tero Kuittinen (sub req'd). His take is that Jamdat's blowup is a sign that there's no organic growth, and there are too many mobile content firms buring venture capital money.

He's right, have you ever looked at the ads for ringtones, screensavers in many magazines? Everybody is in this space.

I see TV ads for horoscopes delivered via text for $1.99. 4INFO gives you this for free.

An offering I can't understand is screensavers.

If you have a camera phone, and have the ability to use it, why would you pay for a screensaver? Can't you take a picture of Jessica Simpson in any of the 1000 magazines she's in and use that?

I think People magazine is doing right with their celebrity news alerts. They are giving me something (news) in return I give them permission to advertise on my phone.

Qualcomm Acquires Mobile Content Elata

From Finanzas.com Qualcomm acquires mobile content deliverer Elata

QUALCOMM Incorporated a leading developer and innovator of Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) and other advanced wireless technologies, today announced it has acquired ELATA, a global leader in mobile content delivery software, based in the United Kingdom.

ELATA's software products provide operators with innovative solutions for managing, delivering and marketing rich wireless content

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Get Ready For Text Ads

From Personal Tech Markerters readying cell phone text ad blitz

Marketing via text messages, already widely done in some areas of the world, provides a big opportunity for companies in the U.S., according to a white paper released Monday by a technology vendor

For the first time, it's possible to send content directly to an individual audience member -- and to do so at costs significantly less expensive than more traditional media. As markets become saturated with handset users, the value proposition becomes more compelling each day

If used properly, an audience will view wireless content as value-added rather than as advertisements

Monday, August 15, 2005

Boost Mobile Offers GPS, Location-Based Mobile Games

From Telematics Journal Boost Mobile intros first location-bsaed, GPS games in the US

Wireless entertainment and the material world today announced a new partnership that is providing Boost Mobile customers with a gaming experience like no other in the United States.

Starting today, Boost customers are the first and only mobile phone users in the nation to be able to download and play location-based GPS (Global Positioning System) games on their wireless phones.

GoogleNet, It's Everywhere You Want To Be

Om Malik from Broadband Blog and Business 2.0 writer has a great story called GoogleNet this am.

What if Google (GOOG) wanted to give Wi-Fi access to everyone in America? And what if it had technology capable of targeting advertising to a user’s precise location? (that is the sentence I find powerful)

Could Google create the most effiient, localized, targeted, opt-in advertising engine?

The gatekeeper of the world’s information could become one of the globe’s biggest Internet providers and one of its most powerful ad sellers, basically supplanting telecoms in one fell swoop. Sounds crazy, but how might Google go about it?

Think it's crazy?

There's already a logo called Google.net

Maybe Google will steal Visa's slogan, "it's everywhere you want to be"

Autonomy Offers Opt-In Mobile Content

From NetImperative Autonomy upgrades mobile search

This is showing how mobile marketing has to be done, customers will HAVE to opt-in in order for ads to be shown

Software developer Autonomy has upgraded its mobile search service to appeal to network operators who want to provide consumers with targeted opt-in mobile content, such as videos or ring tones

There is no doubt that targeted messages and personalized search will drive new revenue for mobile etailers

News Corp To Buy Blinkx

From LA Times News Corp eyes search engine Blinkx

Two questions I have. Is News Corp doing this to tap into the growing online advertising market or are they buying their own search engine because they are tired of paying other search engines for keywords etc

Whatever reason, News Corp seems to be doing everything right these days, old media companies could learn alot from them

News Corp. is in negotiations to buy Blinkx, a privately held Internet search company based in San Francisco, according to people close to the world's fourth-largest media giant.

The prospective acquisition of Blinkx is part of an aggressive bid by News Corp. to take on such Internet powerhouses as Yahoo Inc. News Corp. is trying to build a rival portal by acquiring fast-growing Web businesses and by leveraging the sites of its in-house brands, including those of local Fox TV stations, the Fox TV network and cable channels such as Fox Sports and Fox News

Blinkx would provide search capacity for the Fox portal and could give News Corp. an edge in what could be the next big sensation on the Web: search engines for finding movies, TV episodes and news clips