02 Aug Readers respond – Imagining the possibilities
What a difference a week makes. In last week’s issue, I noted that while wireless communications were about to get dramatically better, data services for mobile phones were still rather uninspired. For all the hype around mobile data services, we were pretty much wallowing in news, sports, and weather – the fare that was easier and cheaper to receive on the car radio than on the mobile phone.
Then I had a pretty busy week, visiting with young companies that are rising to the challenge of what to do when reasonable bandwidth is available to mobile phone customers. Over the next three months, mobile data services are going to get a lot more interesting. I saw valuable services both for delivered content and user-generated content, ideas that are in test phase now and that will be real before the year is out.
I hate to be a tease, but you know the routine: I see these things under NDA and can’t talk about them in any detail at all until they launch at DEMOmobile in September. (And here’s the shameless plug: Sign up now at http://www.idgexecforums.com/demomobile2 and you can see these new services firsthand.)
While I can’t say much about what’s just around the corner, I can share what I heard from reader Gord Harling, CEO of semiconductor firm Elliptic. Here’s his list of the concepts he’s seen in his travels:
In South Korea, a Samsung executive gave Harling a demo of video-on-demand playing on his mobile phone. Unfortunately, these phones still lack the battery power to play back video for very long.
In Ottawa, one company claims a patent on a technique to use the mobile to measure and send a live ECG measurement to emergency health care providers.
A number of companies are working on speech recognition technologies to enable voice access to a range of mobile services.
Location-based services are enabling ideas in social gaming, using your mobile phone to identify your proximity to other game players and clues. Experiments with these types of games have been played out in the U.K. and Netherlands, Harling notes – and I can tell you that you can expect to see them in the U.S. before long, too.
These are a few of the ideas that are in the works. Still, from my mail I can tell you that most people want one thing: reliable cell coverage wherever they go. I guess we really do dream big.
DEMO 2004 alumnus Citrix has officially launched its GoToMeeting service (at DEMO 2004 the product was launched by Expertcity, which was bought by Citrix). GoToMeeting lets small groups conduct online meetings. The company announced flat-fee pricing of $49 per month (or $468 per year) if you subscribe by September 30. The flat-fee pricing allows for unlimited online meetings for unlimited duration, the company said. A free 15-day trial is available, so head to www.gotomeeting.com to try it out.
Speaking of collaborating, one of the challenges of using a Webcam to speak with family members is that both parties need one. Logitech (another DEMO alumnus) has solved this issue by offering the BuddyCam package, a gift pack that includes two of its Web cameras in one convenient box. Use one and send another to a loved one, instead of waiting for them go truck off to the store to get one. The BuddyCam pack costs $80 and is available now.
If your company has been burdened by Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, you’re not alone. A recent PricewaterhouseCoopers survey showed that 84 percent of those polled said Sarbanes-Oxley (passed in the wake of accounting scandals at Enron and WorldCom) was a challenge. Of those, almost half said complying was a “major challenge.” You can read more about the survey online at www.nwfusion.com/news/2004/0730pwc.html.
The search is under way to find the 50 products that will launch at DEMOmobile 2004, September 8-10, 2004, in La Jolla, California. DEMOmobile is a high-visibility launch platform that will set your company on the path to success. It’s the best venue for positioning new mobile and wireless products and establishing strategic relationships with the players who will lead you to success. The conference’s stringent selection process and excellent reputation serves as an endorsement for your product as it comes to market. DEMO events have helped companies like Palm, Handspring, IBM Pervasive Computing, Logitech, Mirra, Tapwave, Macromedia – even Microsoft – launch their products, create critical business relationships, and sell to thought-leading early adopters.
DEMOmobile 2003 demonstrators benefited from more than 162 million media impressions before, during, and long after the event.
Visit: http://www.idgexecforums.com/demonstrate/tour/index-demo2.html to learn more and complete an online application.
September 8-10, 2004
Hilton La Jolla
Torrey Pines, La Jolla, CA
Chris Shipley is the executive producer of NetworkWorld’s DEMO Conferences, Editor of DEMOletter and a technology industry analyst for nearly 20 years. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Shipley, has covered the personal technology business since 1984 and is regarded as one of the top analysts covering the technology industry today. Shipley has worked as a writer and editor for variety of technology consumer magazines, including PC Week, PC Magazine, PC/Computing, and InfoWorld, US Magazine and Working Woman. She has written two books on communications and Internet technology, has won numerous awards for journalistic excellence, and was named the #1 newsletter editor by Marketing Computers for two years in a row. To subscribe to DEMOletter please visit: http://www.idgexecforums.com/demoletter/index.html.
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