Category: Mobile (page 1 of 1)

When is a mobile a tablet? And more useful questions.

[Written originally for the CIPR Friday Roundup.]

"When is a mobile a tablet?" was the high level strategic question (that's sarcasm) that I was debating with our CIPR TV guests this week the minute before we went live.

We decided the answer is subjective. It's a tablet at the point you think you look stupid holding it to your ear. (Actually that's not verbatim. We used a more descriptive word than stupid.)

Fortunately, the show itself addresses more important matters. For me, the most important morsel emerged during the conversation about apps, in particular the idea that today's obsession with apps is just a moment in time. Read more

The Twitter / Blackberry / Facebook Riots

The hot topic of the week has been covered extensively on The Conversation and the mainstream media... the English riots. This Roundup aims to reconcile two polarised camps debating the role of social and mobile media.

First up, a statement from the Prime Minister in the House of Commons yesterday: "... we are working with the police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality." Conversationalist Mark Pack asks whether it is simply a question of politicians and pundits always trying to ban technologies they don't use.

I think the question has been poorly phrased when it takes the form... Were these riots caused by Twitter / Blackberry messenger / Facebook? No of course they weren't. Riots long preceded the rise of such media. But what if the question was rephrased... How was the character of these riots altered by the availability of such media?

The primary message coming out of The Conversation this week (see below) is that you can't blame social media or society's enthusiastic adoption of it. Yet this belies or at least underplays its influence in my opinion. I would never resort to such tabloid misrepresentation as when the Daily Mail labels one photograph of a London bus ablaze "Twitter riot", but equally it appears that mobile and social media were prominent over other media and forms of communication in organising the riots. Read more

CIPR Social Summer on mobile marketing

I'm not a fan of the iPhone, or iPad come to that (more later). But it wasn't until yesterday evening at the CIPR that I learned quite how manic some marketers have become. The following conversation won't be verbatim as I wasn't party to it, but it's a good representation of the story as I heard it last night from those who are having these conversations too regularly:


Marketer: We need an iPhone app?

Mobile marketing expert: Righteo. Why's that?

Marketer: Because they're really cool and cool's where it's at for our target demographic.

Mobile marketing expert: Cool, yes, and who's the target?

Marketer: Teenagers.

Mobile marketing expert: Do you know that iPhone penetration is just 4% in the UK, and that's only 0.5% amongst UK teenagers?

Marketer: Oh :-(


The Social Summer events bring all sorts of people together under one roof for a beer and a chat about specific interesting issues. On conducting a quick straw poll of the super collection of people last night, we had roughly an equal split of Blackberrys, iPhones, Android (mostly HTC) and 'other', making for an unrepresentatively high proportion of smartphones. Read more

Friday Roundup – Monitoring Social Media 09

I thought I'd highlight some great contributions on the subject of mobile in today's MarCom Professional Friday Roundup, and then point you to an event covering a topic close to my heart, social Web analytics (my ebook on the topic is here).

So, first up, the ever vigilant Andrew Grill always points his readers to useful stuff. This time it's the latest publication from Bena Roberts at GoMo News, a collection of insightful essays on all things mobile.

And David Knowles aims to inject a dose of realism into the iPhone app craze. If you're intent on getting an app out there, here's what you should know about what's working and what isn't.

Monitoring Social Media 09 is bringing together social media monitoring experts and suppliers with PR and marketing professionals for a one-day conference in London on 17th November 2009. Speakers from Nielsen Buzzmetrics, Market Sentinel, Brandwatch, Edelman, The Conversation Group, and the UK's #1 PR blogger, Neville Hobson, will be discussing issues such as ROI, sentiment analysis, reputation management, infuence detection and data quality. (There's an early bird ticket until 17th Oct.)

I'll see you there.

Best regards, Philip and the MarCom Professional team. Read more

Mobile World Congress – devices every marketer should know about


Despite the recent follies of the bankers, business remains business and technology marches onwards. And at this year's Mobile World Congress the mobile industry is putting the user front and centre in every effort to differentiate one from another.

Smaller. Lighter. Brighter. Faster. Easier. And most of all, as user-friendly as can be.


This colourful image is a bank of Samsung Omnia's demonstrating their bright OLED screens. I'd like to show you one of their new devices but photography was not permitted. What a crazy decision. This is a SHOW. There are many journalists and bloggers here and Samsung tells us photography is not allowed... it can only make anyone think that the Samsung team has no idea about social media marketing!

I spotted a marketing innovation from Qualcomm Mediaflo... a technology to stream data to mobile devices predominantly for video applications such as real-time TV. Rather than interrupt viewing with the same adverts for all viewers, one of their latest innovations allows a different set of adverts to be delivered based on rudimentary user segmentation. Read more

MMS – the perfect storm

According to Mark Imrie, formerly Head of Products for O2 and now Head of CRM and online capability, "MMS was a technology-led service that was rushed to market".  Quoted in Billing World last month, Mark succinctly explains the lacklustre performance of MMS to date.  But where next? What's required for MMS to take off in 2008?

I'd say it boils down to phone design, pricing and applications, and these three are coming together nicely to form the perfect storm next year.

The clumsiness of early camera phones is history, and user interfaces (with the potential exception of Microsoft's) have evolved to make MMS a joy. Coupled with improved optics and resolution, the modern mobile phone simply teases marketers.

And then there's the cost.  As operators seek to monetise MMS indirectly, via us marketers no doubt, and as they get more efficient at shifting data round their infrastructure, flat rate data tarrifs are accompanied by flat rate messaging.

Lastly, the applications.  Web 2.0 has spawned new opportunities and new applications of MMS.  Moblogging, photo websites, social networking, all tempt the mobile phone customer to keep in touch; and a picture paints a thousand words.  And marketers aren't hanging back.  My favourite stories of recent weeks capitalise on similar technology.

Universal ran a promotion for the launch of "The Bourne Ultimatum" in August tempting fans to take a photo of the ad and send it in, receiving free mobile content in return.  And Craze Production, the urban music specialist, is inviting consumers to send in pictures of a CD or gig poster which, with the magic of image recognition, rewards the consumer with relevant links to ringtones, video clips, concert tickets and other information.

If MMS features in your marketing programme, I'd love to hear what you're doing.