Friday, May 9, 2008

Mobilenet....Live In The Palm Of Your Hand!

"Mobilenet" is now being touted as the next great technological innovation. If you're currently a smarthphone user, you're probably already living in this world to some extent.

However there are some innovations coming which are worth noting. Al Ries recently published an article in Ad Age called "Mobilenet Promises To Be The Next Big Medium".

Ries claims: "A MobiPhone with a 2D barcode scanner will enable consumers to get a wealth of information by scanning products in supermarkets, drugstores, clothing stores. "

He continues:

"It's easy to visualize what a useful device a MobiPhone could be if it is served by appropriate dot-mobi websites.
  1. Location of the nearest hotel/motel and the price of a room?
  2. Location of the nearest gas station and the price of gasoline?
  3. Location of the nearest restaurant by type and price level?
  4. What's the Parker number on that bottle of wine? (One of the many facts that might be available by simply scanning a label.)
What consumers can do with the receiving device is not the most significant aspect of the Mobilenet. More significant are the changes in structure the new medium will facilitate."

He comes to these conclusions based on this fact: "The potential Mobilenet marketplace dwarfs the internet. Last year more than 1.15 billion mobile phones were sold worldwide, compared to only 271.2 million personal computers.

In other words, more than four times as many mobile phones were bought than PCs. And, in my opinion, most consumers will find a GPS-equipped MobiPhone to be a device they can't live without. "

I've written before about how I have consolidated alot of my digital behavior onto my smartphone. I store 100's of songs on my 4 gig smartcard, use it as a photo and video camera, use the scheduler, surf the web (facebook included), listen to 1000's of streaming broadcast and internet radio stations and oh yeah...occassionally make a phone call!

The 'bar code" option is powerful. An instant scan and 'poof'' there's gratification! The key to all of this once again is battery life and screen size. Bandwidth will be less of an issue as devices go to 4G and and Wi-Fi/Wi-Max adoption. A France Telecom research team has already developed the first "m-ticketing services" and the screen shot is shown above.

All this is being supported by a massive build-out of high speed phone networks that won't even use a standard internet type connection. Sprint and Qualcomm are already using TV bandwidth to get programming to handsets.

In the last week alone, Nokia (which i'm a shareholder of) also made the statement that they are now trying to run themselves more like an 'internet' company than a 'handset manufacturer'.

Early on, ringtone sales we're driven by mobile use. Most ringtones were sold to kids who didn't own a PC. They'd use their phone as their personal computer. Now more and more business people are finding the same passion for the handheld device.

By the way...if you're a gadgeteer and have more than one iPod in your home...then you definitely need this handy little device to transfer music without a PC. MiShare allows you to send non DRM music from one ipod to another and it's only $99. Check it out here.

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