All posts tagged ‘Social Networking & Communication’

by CalebNovember 4, 2009

Loopt's Pulse Dishes Out Location Based Advertising

loopt pulse location based advertising

While Loopt has been a leader in location based social networking, it has had some catching up to do in the advertising space. They did this today with an entirely new feature called Pulse where users can now check-in and be served with relevant and highly targeted advertising. Foursquare has been working on this with brands like Fatburger. They also have been experimenting with time and location relevant event suggestions. Loopt's Pulse presents users with digital coupons, route, and contact information for a more enjoyable trip to Jack in the Box. Context is everything, and this new "cost per pair of feet" model continues to bring both advertisers and consumers closer together in a more ideal trade-off.

[via techcrunch]

by MelvinAugust 18, 2009

StarHub Launches New Social Networking Value-Added Service


StarHub recently launched a new social networking value-added service that allows its mobile post-paid customers to enjoy unlimited local access to Windows Live Messenger and Facebook from mobile devices, at no data usage charges. According to the company's press release.

This announcement makes StarHub the first mobile service provider in Asia to offer free local data access to Windows Live Messenger and Facebook, which are fast gaining popularity with mobile customers in Singapore, particularly the youths who are avid users of social networking services to keep in touch with friends.

This is a smart move by Starhub. By making the data and service free of charge, Starhub is sending a message to teens that Starhub understands them. It’s not always about the best price, but also about tailoring freebies to targeted behavior. Plus we’re guessing Starhub also wants to start nurturing mobile web surfing familiarity in as many users as possible from an early age. Today it's mobile facebook applications, tomorrow it’s news, sports, RSS feeds, and anything else under the sun...

With Singtel moving into the mobile music market with AMPed, Starhub and M1 had to respond with some form of strategy to counter what has been a very successful teen marketing campaign. This latest move by Starhub is really clever as data consumption is a very low trade off compared to AMPed’s heavy licensing and royalties.

What will be key to the success of this campaign is to make it less handset-specific and more customer-enabled. Currently, the service is available to customers using selected handset models pre-installed with the Windows Live Messenger and/or Facebook clients, such as Samsung OMNIA II, HTC Diamond 2, Nokia E63 and the new LG GM730 multimedia touch-screen smartphone.

We know that Starhub will continue to roll out more models, but we would also like to see this service extended beyond embedded mobile handsets. If the service is free, we think customers will be more than happy to download an app or widget onto their mobile phones. After all, the point is to encourage socialization. The more customers are able to socialize with each other--regardless of what handset they own--the better.

- Melvin Kee, MobileBehavior Singapore

by MBAugust 18, 2009

News to Us: MySpace to Buy iLike, Swebapps Launches, Brightkite Builds on Layar and More


Research: Most People Still Not Interested In Mobile Music [mocoNews]
There's a lot of promise for mobile music but currently only about 10% of adults in the U.S. listen to music on their phones compared to 27% of Brits and 70% of metropolitan Chinese. 60% of U.S. phone owners also said they had no interest in buying music for their device.

Sweb Apps Launches [via Press Release]
Sweb Apps is a new online application that gives business owners of all size the tools to easily build their own branded iPhone application.

Mobile Data Show Friend Networks [BBC News]
Friendships can be inferred with 95% accuracy from call records and the proximity of users, says a new report. The results also showed that those with friends near work were happier, while those who called friends while at work were less satisfied.

MySpace tunes up for $20 million deal [Telegraph]
In an attempt to cement (or retain?) their identity as the home for bands and new music, MySpace is close to acquiring iLike, a social music recommendation service, for $20m. This is part of a move away from linear social networking to become a "window for the youth (16-30) to reflect their creative talents", according to a senior digital executive close to the site.

Dear iPhone Users: Your Apps are Spying on You [ReadWriteWeb]
With location data made available to many iPhone apps, issues of privacy are taking the spotlight.

Mobile phones - Better Than Sex and Chocolate? [Tech Digest]
Research for Lumison in the UK has found that 85% of people would rather give up sex, alcohol, or chocolate for a month than their mobile.

Compared to the US, Facebook is Younger in Asia and the Middle East [O'Reilly Radar]
In contrast to users in the US and Europe, Facebookers in Asia, the Middle East, and South America are skewing younger. The majority are under 25, and in Asia 13-17 was actually the second fastest growing group.

Blackberry 'Fastest-Growing Firm' [BBC News]
Fortune magazine has ranked RIM as the fastest growing company in the world. The ranking was established using profits, turnover, and investment return. Apple is 39th.

Brightkite Augmented Reality [Vimeo]
Brightkite, the location-based social sharing network, has partnered with Layar to offer its users an augmented reality version of the service.

Are Carriers Changing Their Tune on Mobile VoIP? [GigaOm]
Verizon and O2 have recently touted their networks' support of VoIP, a change from the general carrier stand on the technology.  Control over voice is becoming secondary as carriers focus more on data as a revenue source.

Top Four Colleges in Social Media [Advergirl]
SUNY, Wiitenburg University, Mayo Medical School, and University of Minnesota are examples of schools who have successfully used social media to attract top students, organize PR campaigns, and improve on-campus communications.

by TristanAugust 17, 2009

Mobile Citizen Journalism: The Phone As Global Equalizer


The Iranian crisis put Twitter in the spotlight as an organizational tool showcasing how the online world could be used to communicate and unite people, despite government censorship. Armed with cell phones, Iranians were able to text, tweet, and send pictures and videos to the world community, focusing the spotlight on this world-altering event. Their efforts were not in vain; the international community rose in uproar to defend the democratic principles of Iran, forcing political and religious leaders to publicly discuss the issues.

The universal access and power afforded by digital tools is breeding a new kind of world citizen and establishing this type of “citizen journalism" as a crucial supplement to traditional media.  A couple years back we wrote about Dateline's citizen journalism on Facebook, and the trend has only been growing with the advent of enabling platforms and the increasing prevalence of mobile phones. From protests to war, anyone with a cell phone can become an automatic witness to history and participate in the process--even in a small way.

Speaking to Rachel Sterne, founder of citizen journalism site GroundReport, about the integration of citizen journalism and mobile devices, she emphatically linked the two: “Mobile devices are the perfect tool for on-the-ground reporting: they enable event documentation that is instant, rich and location-based. Tools like TwitPic, a photo publishing Twitter application, the iPhone's new YouTube video publishing feature, and the Nokia N97's video streaming ability, empower people to report wherever they are with multimedia capabilities.”

There is plenty of criticism around treating citizen journalism as news, and it has some legitimate grounds. The most prominent ones are the lack of verified sourcing, the often limited analytical skills found in many articles, and devaluation of the professional reporting. But criticism aside, this movement promises to grow as more people around the world connect using their mobile device. “As the trend of ground reporting grows, the challenge for citizen journalism organizations is to distinguish fact from fiction," says Sterne. "This need will only grow as the world becomes savvier in using mobile devices and content production tools to document events and share information. These are early days for the phenomenon. Eventually, citizen reporting will be just another crucial element of the mainstream news production process, an information source that is part of every journalist's toolkit”.

Beyond just reporting events, this trend highlights a redefined sense of “me” in the new generation. In the past, community participation often had to dominate the members’ individuality to exist. Within citizen journalism, both the indivudual and the group can coexist. It promotes individual activity and sourcing, while enabling the person to still take part in something bigger than them. It also proves the value of Twitter--and  the lifestreaming concept as a whole--beyond telling people what you are eating for lunch.

by MBAugust 13, 2009

News to Us: Nearby Now, Yellix, Mobile UI Revolution, Nokia's Grand Plans and More


Wallet of the future? Your mobile phone [CNN]
In Asia, your mobile lets you make payments, access the subway, control your TV, and even open your front door. While some wonder if the technology will translate to the U.S., others think that mobile payments will take off here within five years. The article also goes over the low to high tech ways to pay, including RFID, barcodes and SMS.

Facebook Grew Twice As Fast As Twitter In July [TechCrunch]
Between April and July, Facebook grew 30% in unique U.S. visitors, while Twitter only grew 25%, an increase that could be attributed to the launch of  their “Everyone Button".  This gave Facebook members who didn’t have public profiles (i.e. most people) the option to share items in their stream with everyone else on Facebook on an item-by-item basis. Not only did this drive more people to Facebook, but it also increased the time spent on the site.

Yellix Dials in to Mobile Social Networking [Kelsey Group Blogs]
There is a lot of potential to leverage the phone's address book as the ultimate social network. To this end, Yelix has released an app for Android phones that automatically shows Facebook picture and status when receiving a call from a friend.

User Interface IS the Holy Grail [Wireless Week]
The user interface on a mobile phone is of the utmost importance, and its future lies in cloud computing. The cloud will lead to increasingly sophisticated applications, which in turn will offer the end user a higher degree of personalization.

As Ad Spending Declines, Magazines Move to Mobile [GigaOM]
Nearby Now seeks to move magazine advertising to mobile phones. The digital shopping service app lets users find and reserve products they’re looking for in local brick-and-mortar stores, as well as directing users to web sites to purchase products online.

“Leaf” Phone Runs On Solar Power, Doubles As Wristwatch [PSFK]
The Leaf is a cellphone that runs on solar power and is made of flexible material that enables it to double as a wristwatch. Lower-end phones might end up being simple, small, and eco-friendly.

Made-For-Mobile Comics: The Future of Pulp? [CNN]
To follow its audience, the comic industry has been slowly but surely offering paid content on the mobile screen, a move the print industry seems to have come to terms with.

Nokia Rocks the World: The Phone King's Plan to Redefine Its Business [Fast Company]
Nokia is evolving from a hardware company into a content provider, with grand plans to become the biggest entertainment media network in the world. Can they do it? "Look at the real world: It's not about people in the high end," says one Gartner analyst. "The real world is people in the middle, and Nokia owns that world in terms of numbers. They may not own mindshare, but they certainly have a lot to work with."

Xbox Gaming Platform May Soon Span Web, Console, Mobile [Ars Technica]
A recent job posting from Microsoft suggests that they are looking to bring the Xbox Live, Windows Mobile, and other similar properties closer together. More specifically, there's talk of a "casual and social gaming platform" that would be available across platforms and devices.

Augmented Reality Game Plus Facebook Equals Gaming for the Future? [Technomix]
Zugara's “Cannonballz” game uses the motion capture technology from their Webcam Shopper to “appear” in the gameplay. In this case, they are dodging cannonballs while trying desperately to save their friends (which are imported via a Facebook Connect integration) and accumulate points. Once their game is over, people can share their scores and the game by uploading it to their Facebook stream.

In Terms of Mobile Data Traffic, a Month in 2014 Will be More Than Whole 2008 [IntoMobile]
ABI Research has found that mobile data usage is going to increase so much that by 2014 there will be more data transfers in a one month than in all of 2008.

Cell Phone Sales Declined 6% in Q2 2009, Smartphone Sales Grew 27%
[Unwired View]
Research from Gartner points to the decline of cell phone sales in general, while smarphone sales have gone up 27%. The demand for "more than just a phone" is high.

by MBAugust 11, 2009

News to Us: WSJ Barcode Ads, Virtual Rolodex, Facebook x Friendfeed and More


BMO Capital Markets Introduces 2D Barcode Ads [Daily DOOH]
The first advertisements sporting the 2D bar codes have begun running in The Wall Street Journal. Using the camera on their mobile phone, readers can use a special free application to photograph an ad’s barcode which links directly to a customized page.

Can Mobile Preserve Soc Networks As Gen Y’s Virtual Rolodex? [Ypulse]
In spite of the waning interest we've seen in social networking as a virtual hangout, Meredith believes their contact management function will hold up, perhaps in the form of a killer mobile app.

Why Handset Makers and Social Networks Need Each Other, Take Two [GigaOm]
On that note... This article talks about how cell phone makers and social networks need to partner to design devices tailored for social networking, from the camera to the address book.

What Do Cellphone Users Want Most? Cheap Service [NYTimes]
Nielsen reports that call quality and network availability are slipping down in terms of what consumers look for in a carrier. Top 3? Price, family plan, and payment options.

Facebook Takes FriendFeed To Take On Twitter [TechCrunch]
Media analysts are seeing the acquisition of Friendfeed by Facebook as an attempt to silence Twitter's rise. Facebook has also added live status search capabilities and is rolling out its new iPhone app soon.

SMS PhD: 'Pointless' Text Messages Analysed [Telegraph]
Caroline Tagg, awarded a PhD in text messaging, discovered that people text in the same way as if they were talking, using unnecessary words such as 'oh', 'erm' and often use grammatical abbreviations like 'dunno'.

Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, To Stage First Twitter Opera Made Up Of Tweets [Sky News]
The Royal Opera House is set to create the first opera entirely created by Twitter fans. Once the fans have created the story line via Twitter, the opera house will compose the music and stage the performance.

Penalties Ordered for Dirty Texting [China Daily]
The Henan province in China is banning erotic, insulting, or threatening messages. The SMS ban carries a fine of $73 and up to five days imprisonment. So much for sexting...

Mobile Marketers Must Look Past The iPhone [Silicon Alley Insider]
Thinking of the iPhone as the end-all be-all of mobile devices is a short-term play for marketers that might hurt their long-term competitiveness.

Will Smartphones Help Crack the Economy's Secrets? [Fast Company]
Flurry suggests that observing the mobile market (e.g., app creations, mobile social networking updates, SMS interactions, data plans) is similar to looking at the real estate market to get a sense of the economy.

by MBAugust 10, 2009

News to Us: Kickball with the Jonas Bros, Obamedia, Text-a-Librarian, Cameraphone Check Deposits and More


What Parents Think Teens Are Doing on Social Networks, and What the Teens are Actually Doing [LA Times]
Common Sense Media has found that 37% of teens claim to use social networks to make fun of others, though only 18% of parents believe their own kids do so. The rest of the data illustrates parents' misguided perception of teens' social behavior.

Verizon, LG Give Jonas Bros. Fans a Kick [AdWeek]
The Jonas Brothers are holding  video contest that will allow U.S. concert attendees to create an interactive video of themselves jamming out or playing kickball with the band, via green screen technology. "Playing live in front of our fans and interacting with them in new ways is really what it's all about for us," said Kevin Jonas.

Will Barack Obama's Media Ubiquity Be the Most Significant Aspect of His Presidency? [New York Magazine]
Through Twitter, Flickr, SMS speeches, Facebook campaigns, and an iPhone app, this White House is defining itself by its use of social, digital, and mobile technology in reaching to the American people and the world.

Your "Real" Friends are Your Online Friends (or so Says Gen Y) [ReadWriteWeb]
A recent UK Myspace study amongst 16,000 14-21 year old found that 36% found it easier to talk about themselves online than offline. Compare that to  72% who felt "left-out" in their offline social interactions.

A Text Messaging Reference Service [ResourceShelf]
The Alliance Library system has partnered with 50 libraries to offer SMS reference inquiries to its users. Patrons will be able to text an actual librarian to receive info about specific books.

Apple to Stream First Live Concert to the iPhone Tonight [NewTeeVee]
Tonight Apple will produce its first-ever live event streamed to the iPhone: A concert by the electronica band Underworld. You can view the stream at or

Think Again: Twitter [Foreign Policy]
As Twitter is being hailed as a democratic power tool, users must bear in mind that authoritarian regimes will not have too much problem tracing back to dissidents.

Need to Deposit a Check? Try Your iPhone [MarketingVOX]
This week, the USAA bank will releasing an iPhone app that allows its customers to take a picture of a check as a deposit method. After the picture is taken and sent, users can even void or destroy the check.

AR + Physics + Marbles [RubbishCorp]
Students at Columbia University's Computer Graphics and User Interfaces Lab have developed an augmented reality game that guides a virtual marble through a dynamic maze of obstacles.

Can Smartphones Save the Sex Business? [Fast Company]
The current slump in the adult entertainment industry is about more than just the recession. Like music and news, porn must compete against a raft of free content. Now the business is betting that mobile is its salvation.

Big Media Companies Navigate Free Content and Apps [NYTimes]
Media companies are rushing to offer iPhone apps, while trying to find the right revenue model, including one-time payments, in-app ads, monthly subscription, and paid content.

British Troops Encouraged to Tweet (To a Degree) [Marketing Pilgrim]
Soldiers from the UK have been officially allowed to tweet as long as the info shared is respectful of army policy. The move comes as a sharp contrast with the US army, which has banned all use of social media while on duty.

Millennials Are More Likely To Pay For Your Content [Engage: Gen-Y]
New research shows that 80% of Gen-Y would consider paying for music compared to only 52% of baby boomers. Similar results for paid TV content (Gen-Y 69%, Boomers 51%) and news content (Gen-Y 43%, Boomers 36%).

New Use for Your iPhone: Controlling Drones [Wired]
MIT has been exploring intuitive ways for the military to control unmanned robots, including an iPhone app. Not only would a iPhone-like controller make soldiers’ jobs much easier, it also opens up UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) to a whole new, non-military market. If robot control is cheap and intuitive, people might find all kinds of new uses.

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