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This closer marriage between Mobile and Internet

The IAALD-AFITA-WCCA Conference in August 2008 in Japan highlighted the importance of mobile communication to bridge the digital divide. In the final declaration about “Theme 1” of the conference – Mobile Telephony in Rural Areas – one of the panel prediction was:

“mobile phones will be used as workstations and effective Web2.0 platforms

I totally agree with this statement and I’m very curious to see how this topic will evolve and what ideas will come out of the special Online Forum on “Mobile Telephony in Rural Areas” – 17/28 November 2008, that I’m joining as Subject Matter Expert.

Since the beginning of this reflection about convergence between Mobile and Internet, I’ve seen two main directions where this relationship is going:

  • In Parallel: offering to different user groups a few basic services with some points of contact (short term);
  • Towards interaction and partial merge: with users accessing either or both technologies to collect and share data (medium term).

mobile-internet convergence

New cellphones, ad-hoc software (have a look at iPhone Appstore and android market) and enhanced services are necessary to sustain this integration process!


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The first competitor for the iPhone

A new challenge for the iPhone was launched yesterday: it is the first mobile phone with Android inside.

Even if not everybody seems to be so enthusiast about the product, more than everything else in the DEV perspective, at least, I see a very interesting trend for prices. The announced price is 120 Eur (at certain conditions) which is fine is compared with many other models and the iPhone itself. So, the tendency of prices to get lower is happening this time as well and we can really start thinking about a wide spread of these tools, also in developing countries.

Linking this news with the possibility of wider access available in two years time, than the scenario could be very much different in the near future.

Are WE going the same direction? Will we be able to provide good services for that time? How much time do we need to design new services for these devices? Are our Human Access Points ready to help us designing them?


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Prices are going down. Are we ready to exploit new possibilities?

iPhone 2Last year we discussed about the value of the iPhone and the most common doubts were about the price of the device. Yesterday Mr jobs launched the version 2 of his jewel and ops!!!, now the price is right!! The suggested price is now 199 USD, that is to say around 130 EUR. It was 499 USD last year…

In the meantime, almost half of the population of the world has a mobile phone. The numbers are incredible and the increasing rate is astonishing: 3,3, billion subscribers (this number does not indicate the number of people but the number of lines). The first billion was reached 4 years ago and the second billion, only 2 years ago!

I really think we have to start thinking about the ways to move our applications and competencies to mobile. And I see that other influential people agree on this idea!

We have to re-think communication in terms of mobile devices, instant and everywhere access. The idea is that we will be able to exchange (information in my case) everywhere and in every moment. Are we ready to exploit this possibility? So far, haven’t we been too much conservative due to the lack of connectivity for PCs? have been our applications planned with the possibility to be delivered through mobile phones, as well?

I hope so. I don’t think so. I want to work on this from now on!

p.s. iPhone is the hardware AND Android, the software, is coming out pretty soon. I see so much in front of us!!!