Posts tagged 'SMS'

Top 5 Android Apps Of May 2013

Are you looking for new apps to download for your Android device? Here’s a list of our favorite Android apps for May 2013. You will find everything from gaming to personal finance to apps that will protect your personal data.

1. Fruit Ninja – Gaming






To start, use your finger to swipe through new game and classics, fruits will automatically be thrown up in the air and you will need to slice them as fast as you can. Fruit Ninja me seem like a simple game at first, but the speed picks up and bombs are thrown into the mix. Whatever you do make sure you don’t try to slash through the bomb, otherwise game over! Fruit Ninja is a fun and addictive game. You can download Fruit Ninja from the Google Play Store here.

2. Pulse News – News Info






Back in April, it was announced LinkedIn acquired Pulse mobile-news reading app for $90 million. Pulse News app will take the latest from news sources you add and will present them in a easy-to-ready mobile format. Pulse News is similar to Flipboard, and lets users browse stories by source or subject. It can be customized to your liking, and there’s a search function which allows you to search for your favorite sites. This app makes reading news on the go simple and easy. If you find a story that really caught your attention you can save it by hitting the star in the top right hand corner. You can also share articles through LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, email and SMS. You can download Pulse News from the Google Play Store here.

3. Pandora Internet Radio – Entertainment





Pandora is an internet radio app that allows users to create customized stations based on their favorite artist, band, or song. You can also indicate if you like a song, and Pandora will program the station accordingly to your likes. Pandora is a great way to discover new artists and genres. When you register with the app, your profile will be public, unless you decide to make it private. You can download Pandora Internet Radio from the Google Play Store here.

4. Vault-Hide SMS, Pics – Privacy & Security





If you’re looking for an app that will protect your photos, videos, SMS message and call logs, you may want to check out Vault. Vault can hide everything from work-related messages to unflattering selfie pictures you don’t want anyone to get ahold of. Personal data is encrypted and can only be seen if a correct password is typed in. Some other beneficial features of Vault include making private contacts invisible and being able to make Vault icon disappear so no one can see that app exists on your device. You can download Vault-Hide SMS, Pics from the Google Play Store here.

5. – Personal Finance





With Mint, you can keep all of your personal finance accounts into one place, so its easy to manage your money while you’re on the go. Track your spending, create budgets, and save more money. If you end up losing your device, your app is passcode protected. You can logon to and deactivate your device access straight from your profile page.
Download Mint app from the Google Play Store here.


-presented from a research and post by

June 17th, 2013

The Indian Web and Mobile Markets by the numbers

(excerpted from GigaOm Pro article at

Katie Fehrenbacher with Gigaom is traveling with Geeks on a Plane in India. She writes following stats provided by Google CEO Rajan Anandan to the Geeks on a Plane group :

Rajan Anandan on Indian internet scene : “We’re probably in 1996 in the U.S. in terms of the Internet market in India.”

Here’s the stats from Anandan’s deck. India has:

  • 1.2 billion people
  • The 9th largest economy in the world, with $1.7 trillion GDP
  • 600 million people below the age of 25
  • 22 languages
  • 250 million in the consuming class — these are the folks that buy e-commerce
  • 900 million mobile accounts, with 600 million unique mobile subscribers (many people have more than one account)
  • 30 million PCs — it’ll be a mobile broadband world
  • Average revenue per user (ARPU) is $3
  • 100 million Internet users, and 120 million Internet users by the end of 2011
  • By 2015 there will be 300 million to 400 million Internet users
  • 37 percent of Internet users access the web from home, 27 percent from an Internet cafe, 22 percent from an office, 3 percent from school
  • There are 50 million mobile data subscribers
  • 5 million access Internet only on the phone
  • In 2010/2011 e-commerce emerged as a $7 billion market, with $6 billion of that going to online travel
  • By 2015 the e-commerce market is expected to be $40 billion
  • 67 percent of e-commerce customers by electronics and cell phones. 18 percent buy apparel.
  • 15 million 3G mobile subscribers
  • Broadband is 250 kbps to 500 kpbs fixed line
  • The use of smart phones will grow 52 percent CAGR
  • There are 37 million Facebook users
  • Google Plus use is bigger than Twitter use
  • 23 million unique users on YouTube India
  • There will be $1.3 trillion in online ad spend in 2011
  • The English Internet will not scale beyond 200 million, says Anandan
  • 159 million read Hindi newspapers and 31 million read English newspapers
  • There will be a massive tsunami toward vernacular content on the web, says Anandan
  • 70 percent of non-travel e-commerce is “cash on delivery” (no online payments, buyers pay cash when goods are delivered)
  • This cash on delivery market has a 30 percent return rate
  • Web 1.0 and 2.0 are happening at the same time in India, says Anandan.

Some Internet sites that have found success in India:

Thanks to Gigaom for the above post.

December 14th, 2011

After TRAI, it’s MMA’s turn now to make mobile marketer’s life difficult

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recently launched the strict policies governing rules for companies using mobile marketing medium to curb SMS and tele-marketing calls in order to save the masses from being disturbed all the time by pesky calls and SMSes. Most businesses have suffered highly as most of their marketing has been effected due to these rules.

However, some time back, one CEO of one of the top e-commerce companies asked me that inspite of being a research company, why we at CellStrat are not saying anything about the new TRAI regulations which is making their and other’s lives difficult. I just said that all of the hoopla is more of a hype  as one of our old vendors for whom we used to resell SMS solutions, had sent me an e-mail saying I can carry out business as usual without any worries. Thus, I was sure that these guys have already found out their way around the TRAI policies.

All companies are frantically looking for ways to either bypass these rules some-how or find a way to connect with consumers via mobile without facing heavy penalties. A few days back, I even heard people are trying to adopt international calling cards facility which will cost tele-markets about 2-5cents per minute of calling but they would be saved as calls would be getting routed through US servers, which are not so easily traceable. But for the time being people are trying legible ways.

News worth noting however, is that some companies have already found a way out of these rules and some consumers have started getting same marketing messages, they used to get earlier. this means TRAI has failed.

Now, it’s Mobile Marketing Association’s (MMA’s) turn to make developer’s lives difficult and in turn companies getting their mobile apps developed or using currently as they have issued App Privacy guidelines. The Wall Street Journal found that 45 of the top 101 iPhone or Android apps analyzed did not provide privacy policies on their sites or in their apps. Smartphone apps have come under increasing scrutiny in the last year, with a growing body of research and reporting showing that companies provide little information about what — or how — user data is collected and shared. These app privacy guidelines outline best practices and provide advice on ways to inform people about how data is collected and used, and on the security and confidentiality of user information.

“These new privacy policy guidelines fill an urgent need for all companies doing business in the mobile marketing industry,” stated MMA Global CEO Greg Stuart. He added that the privacy framework released Monday is the first in a series of privacy policy papers the MMA will create with input of industry members.

One of the first pieces of advice is for developers to consult legal counsel in adapting the guidelines to craft their own policies, since each will have to be customized according to the type of app and jurisdiction where it is available.

The guidelines also address collection of mobile location data, which became a privacy flashpoint earlier this year following much-publicized reports that iPhones, iPads and Android devices collected detailed information about users’ locations.

“At a minimum, application developers should take into account whether the app is advertising-supported and whether data is obtained by an ad network or other third party for the purpose of ad targeting,” states the guidelines.

Among more than 50 mobile-related companies and groups participating in drafting of the app guidelines was 4INFO, AT&T Adworks, Millennial Media, TRUSTe, Unilever and Velti.

According to last estimates, India has close to 400000 mobile and web app developers including students and professionals. It would be worth observing how many actually come to know of these policies and how many of them actually adopt and educate about the same to their customers. Ones who do, will actually succeed in the long term.

October 19th, 2011

Social, Relevance & SMS come together to serve customers

Ever wondered as to what could be the solution that is a mix of social, viral, SMS with an earning potential for consumers and lead generation tool for advertisers with relevance built into the tool.

Yes, such a tool has been created by my friends at Wit Innovations of Bangalore. It’s called SMS2Cash . It works on the concept of relevance of content and spreading the same through SMS by spreading it in one’s peers and friends interested in that content. It’s an app created for Java, Android and Blackberry phones. Once downloaded, it will show just ads by various advertisers. If you feel it can be of interest to somebody in your friend circle too, you forward the ad message to your friends in your network. Thus, advertiser gets eye balls on the application users as well as through SMS on mobiles of those people most interested in that kind of an ad. While, app users will be able to generate some revenues too for sharing the ad content with each of their peers. Application can be downloaded by visiting the following site on the phone’s browser:

Currently the apps are still in beta phase but already advertisers are showing interest and have signed-up for the campaigns. these are ShoppersStop, UTI, Artha Property, ICICI Bank, HomeShop18 and Cleartrip

August 29th, 2011

Relevance in Brand Messages is what Mobile Consumers want

Since about an year or two now, message relevance has caught attention of the markets. In India, consumers got fed-up, complained but are still complaint, though on a lesser level about irrelevance of messages being broadcasted to them by companies. And most of these come from real estate industry. This has risen to so high levels that most people besides youth have stopped seeing messages considering that all must be coming from some or the other unwanted companies. Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) tried to intervene and control it a lot by introducing NDNC (National Do Not Call) and DND (Do not Disturb) registry etc. whereby people had an option to register their number in order to restrict the irrelevant calls and messages. But still no respite to consumers as in India, mobile marketers are generally able to work out ways to by-pass these rules and/ or don’t even bother about them.

I would like to cite a recent study done in US recently.

According to a new research from consumer insights agency Communispace, people want more personalized brand communications through their mobile devices, and they want tools that help them manage and filter the flow of content.

Yes, believe it, people are craving communications from brands — but they want those communications to be relevant and on their terms.

There is a set of rules people expect brands to follow as they communicate through mobile devices — the first one being to avoid unsolicited contact. According to the research, people still value their privacy and don’t want to engage in brand interactions that they have not approved.

“A very specific [good] example would be having a mobile app that, whenever [a certain] product is on sale, it sends me an alert,” says Julie Wittes Schlack, senior vice president of innovation and design at Communispace. “I, as the consumer, have indicated what I’m interested in and I’ve opted in. And the message you’re giving me is information that I want.”

Once people have acknowledged they’d like to receive marketing messages, the brands should be ready to communicate with messages that provide some value for the consumers, whether they are a deal on a specific product or a location-based offer.

“If you’re a retailer or manufacturer and you know someone is in a specific location, reach out to them in the moment,” says Wittes Schlack. “Or do it by creating apps that actually provide value, and not purely advertising or offers and promotions.”

At the same time, marketers have to learn to let people dictate the flow of the conversation. Ultimately, they’ll decide the level of interaction they want to have with a brand, and it will be up to the brand to provide those many (and specialized) levels of communication.

“What we’re hearing is that people want to be selective in who they want to hear from and how,” Wittes Schlack says. “But if people have opted in, it’s because they want that content, that dialogue and that promotion. [Brands] have to be really broad and really nimble in how they respond.”

August 22nd, 2011

Mobile moms & how to harness there power

Consumer electronics in general, and the smartphone in particular, are becoming an indispensable part of family life.

According to some recent studies, 71% of moms do not go more than one day without using the Internet, with 40% saying they can go only a few hours without using a mobile phone and the Internet. (Comparatively, only 18% say the same about television.) In fact, 79% said that cell phones are a necessity, compared with 42% saying the same about a typical landline.

“While the penetration of smartphones is significant, moms use [them] in so many different ways. “These things have essentially become a tool for modern families.” Moms have embraced mobile — email, apps, SMS, voice, and the mobile web — in a big way. This isn’t a burgeoning trend. It’s the reality right now.

According to another study where more than five thousand moms were surveyed, moms are 18 percent more likely than the general public to have a smartphone. And they are using them all day, every day.

From researching family health questions to scheduling and documenting her kids’ lives to diffusing her child’s meltdown in the checkout line, mom’s smartphone is her constant companion. It helps her save time, money, and her sense of humor.

For marketers, mobile represents fertile, new area. But to reap the benefits of this new channel, you have to keep a few things in mind.

She loves her smartphone
Mom has an emotional connection to her smartphone. It delivers a sense of confidence and accomplishment that decreases her stress. She is absolutely (and unabashedly) addicted, spending 37 percent of her media time on her smartphone, more than twice what she spends on TV. Mobile is the first thing she checks in the morning, the last thing she looks at before bed, and the media source she visits most frequently throughout her day. Mobile also enables her to easily fit guilty pleasures like music, entertainment, and gaming back into her media diet, by allowing her to “snack” on bits and pieces as she commutes to work, waits in the bus/ metro line or relaxes after bedtime.

Takeaway for Marketers: The mobile media channel has a 24/7 prime time and mom is always tuned in. Creating multiple mobile touch points is not only viable, but advisable.

She demands utility
Utility is her new luxury. Motherhood adds 10.7 daily hours of parenting time into mom’s already busy schedule. She needs to get more done in less time so she can spend more time with her family. Smart mobile solutions help her do both.

Takeaway for Marketers: Mom loves mobile because it helps her solve problems faster, better, and more efficiently than ever before. Help mom be better at her job and you win.

At the same time, families are still heavily reliant on face-to-face for intra-family communications. While 81% of moms use Facebook and 57% use blogs on a daily basis to communicate with each other, only 2% use Facebook to communicate with their kids.

Moms respond well to mobile ads. 46%+ moms have taken an action after seeing an ad on their smartphone whether it’s an online purchase after seeing the ad on the phone or followed up with more research later or clicked a banner ad to go to a mobile wap site or purchase the product later in store or clicked to call…

Share your views on how you have harnessed the mobile mom’s power…we would love to see your comments and case studies in this area…

August 9th, 2011

Event Roundup from Mobile Apps Conclave, Bangalore

Mobile Apps Conclave – the conference organized by CellStrat concluded successfully on 29th April, ‘11 at The Chancery Pavilion Hotel, Bangalore. The Conference saw tremendous interest with a large no of audience from all over India. The star-studded speaker lineup and intuitive content on Mobile Apps and Web fueled interest in this event. The theme for this event was : “The Mobile Web Disruption – Life, Media and Business get Appified”.

In addition to Bangalore, audience came from cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Chennai, both from brands and senior management of companies as well as the developer community.

More than 200 blue-chip audience participated in this event on the hottest topic in modern times – Mobile Apps, App Stores and the Mobile Internet. Most brands, mobile device manufacturers, app store and app development firms were present to learn about the Business of Mobile Apps and Web.

Details of the event and photographs are available at

Event Brief :
The Mobile Web – the new name of Growth around the world. Mobile Internet Tsunami – as many refer to it.

Mobile is the industry of this decade. Mobile has taken world by storm. The feature phone growth is fast evolving into smartphone growth driven by the emergence and popularity of The Mobile Web and those tiny ubiquitous Apps – hundreds of thousands of them literally. Mobile Web is upending so many industries, it is breathtaking to say the least. Many of these businesses are succumbing to the trend which the venerable firm Apple started – businesses like news and media, advertising, gaming, productivity, publishing, telecom, entertainment, commerce, financial services or healthcare..the list goes on and on. Whoever you are, wherever you are – either have an App and Mobile Media strategy or be prepared to loose substantial traction in the marketplace – because, indeed, your customers are App savvy even if you are not.

You are on the road and want to check nearby promotions, there are many apps for that; you want to track your supply chain, many apps for that too; track Social Network updates; many apps there as well; there is even an app for Confessing to God. Apps are orchestrating the growth in intelligent smartphones; next playground is Tablet followed by Computers. Are you ready for the brave New World of Mobile and Mobile Tablets ? Are you ready for the Mobile Web revolution ?

Conference Sessions :
Here are some notes from the Keynotes and Panels that transpired at this event.

In the morning session, there was an intuitive keynote by Pratapa Bernard, Vice President and Head – COE – Data Services (Emerging Markets) at Vodafone. He addressed the impact of the Mobile Web and Apps on the modern consumer and businesses. He mentioned the imperative need to focus on user experience and not technology itself citing the example of Apple etc. He went on to say that 80% of internet access in India in 2015 will be from mobile devices.

Next came a panel on “Mobile Apps go mainstream – Content, Engagement and Lifestyle on Mobile Apps”. This panel discussed the Mobile App revolution and how Content and Entertainment is being delivered via Apps. The panel speakers included Rajiv Kumar (CEO – RockeTalk), Deepak Swamy (Head – Flypp App Store, Infosys), Sanjay Bhasin (VP-Getit Info Services), Vikram Tanna (VP – STAR Digital), Rajesh Reddy (CEO, July Systems) and Narasimha Suresh (CEO – TELiBrahma). This panel focussed on App monetization and how developers are finding it a challenge to monetize their apps. This panel also discussed the need to “Indianize” the Western business models, cost structures as well as offerings to make them work in India. On HTML5, the panel members said this new standard will be big against Mobile apps but the “when” is not clear yet.

After the first panel, there was an interesting keynote by InMobi (top Mobile Advertising firm) executive Sridhar Ranganathan (VP-Product Management) on how market pressures are forcing firms like InMobi to push the boundaries of creativity with immersive advertising and the need to think of Mobile Ads like mini-apps. He mentioned the need to un-learn the PC and focus on Mobile as a separate experience.

In the afternoon session, there was an innovative keynote by Sunny Rao, MD – India and APAC of Nuance Communications. Sunny spoke about some of the innovations in Mobile Web world surrounding Speech Technology, Voice-based Social Networking and automotive vehicles as mobile channels. Sunny’s keynote was followed by an interesting panel on innovations in Mobile Apps and Mobile Web. This panel had some true Mobile innovators in Amiya Pathak of ZipDial, Kalyan Manyam of MojoStreet, Indus Khaitan of Bitzer Mobile and Soumitra Sharma of IDG Ventures. This panel discussed specialized vertical Apps which are popping up in industries like Payments and Commerce, Social Gaming, Healthcare and Education.

The Mobile Innovations panel was followed by a Startup showcase where Sriram Mohan, Associate Editor at helped introduce some startups which are creating innovative business models in the Mobile App ecosystem.

The last (but not the least) panel was on Emerging Devices and Tablets. Advent of Apple iPad has opened a whole new world of possibilities and truly heralds a world of post-PC era. Prabha Aithal, CTO at CanvasM moderated a panel of speakers which included Alap Ghosh of Mobango (App Store), Pradeep Rao of Research in Motion, Ashish Gupta of Helion Ventures and Dr Sharad Jaiswal of Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs. This panel discussed the impact that the tablet and emerging devices are having on the ecosystem. Emerging Devices is a hot new area and is seeing digitization of content at a blistering pace from a variety of industry verticals like publishing, entertainment, retail, media etc..

Conference Partners :
Overall, it was an action-packed conference with active participation from speakers and audience. Partners included Presentation Sharing Partner authorSTREAM on which the presentations by CellStrat, event speakers, exhibitors and partners can be found. The Mobile App Partner, Hazel Media provided an event app for this conference. Whereas the Mobility Partner, MobiVite published a Mobile WAP site for the same.

InMobi was the Platinum Sponsor for this event. AgileCO was the Gold Sponsor. Other supporters included partners like MOMO Bangalore, The Morpheus and Indian Angel Network (IAN). Media Partners include the online media firm and TelecomLead. was a Premium Partner for this event and it provided online media visibility as well as Anchor support for the event.

Mobile Solutions Expo :
This conference also saw an interesting exhibition on Mobile Solutions where some innovative app companies exhibited their apps and solutions. This Expo dazzled the audience with some interesting apps and solutions in the Mobile space. The exhibitors included WINIT, Nanostuffs, RockeTalk, Bitstream, Softtrends, MobiVite and some others.

For photos and other details from the event, check the event website at :

Shyam Kamadolli (Director – Fidelity Growth Partners India) was one of the attendees and has some intuitive notes from this conference on his blog :

May 16th, 2011

Does Mobile Web fit your Integrated Media Strategy ?

Mobile Apps and Web have taken the world by storm. Certainly, Apple deserves credit for orchestrating the Mobile Web experience when it created the iPhone and its App Store. In the process, Apple unleashed the creative energy of hundreds of thousands of Mobile developers worldwide. As of last count, Apple App Store counts 350,000 Apps in the store. With the launch of the iPad tablet, Apple popularized the Tablet computer category and now lot of developers are developing Apps for the Tablet version. Tablet has started what most refer to as the post-PC era. Certainly firms like Microsoft, HP and Intel are in lot of trouble as many consumers and businesses are going the Tablet way instead of upgrading or buying regular PCs and laptops. Now Apple is trying to bring the App experience with its launch of the MAC App Store.

Mobile Web is the latest and greatest Media channel today. It is a most apt media channel for a variety of reasons which we will explain a little later in this post.

Are the various Media firms and Brand Marketers prepared to adjust to this titanic shift of Mobile-based Media ? Do Mobile Apps and Web even belong in a firm’s Integrated Media portfolio ? We will attempt to answer these questions below.

Today media consists of various channels :

Media Channels

 How does Mobile Web fit in this scheme ? The schematic below elaborates the various Digital and Mobile Advertising formats :

Digital Media Channels 

 Consider this (taking Indian context here) :

  • There are 770 million Mobile Subscriptions today (out of a total population of 1.2 billion people) – granted only 550 million are Active Mobile Subscribers : still almost 45% of Indian population are active Mobile Subscribers
  • India has less than 10% internet penetration
  • Mobile is the first and only communications tool for most Rural and Semi-Urban Audience in India
  • Mobile is personal, has context, is location-aware and is always ON
  • Admittedly 90% of Indian mobile market is comprised of feature phones, leading to SMS as the dominant marketing channel in India. But the fastest growth rate is now seen in Smartphone uptake – with acceleration in sales of cheaper smartphones from the likes of MicroMax, Lava etc in addition to established Brands like Nokia, Samsung etc. Mobile Web is now proliferating throughout the Indian consumer class much more rapidly than the feature phone growth.
  • The 3G launches this year will only accelerate the move to Broadband Mobile Services (think Mobile Web with much superior user experience and faster speeds)
  • The post-PC era may have started with Tablets taking over the role of laptops and computers. Many leading businesses and business execs are using tablets for business travel instead of their laptops now.
  • Print Media and Book Publishers are rapidly shifting en masse to Mobile Apps and Mobile eReaders as the delivery channel.
  • People are increasingly consuming media, content and advertising on Mobile phones and tablets.

Given the above advantages – Mobile can be a top Media and Marketing Channel for any Agency or Marketer today in India, much better than the Internet at least.

Now how many Brands and Media Agencies in India have actually integrated Mobile in their portfolio ? Our research indicates that most Media Agencies and Brands in India are yet to include Mobile as a captive Media channel (more on this in our upcoming Research Report : “Mobile Apps Innovation Report for India“. Contact us for details). Though many firms have tried the SMS and VAS marketing route in India, the future now lies in capturing the Mobile Web and Mobile App Media market which is developing rapidly in India.

Our upcoming conference on Mobile Apps (April 29th) – the “Mobile Apps Conclave – Bangalore” will address the entire gamut of topics on Mobile Web and Mobile Apps. Do not forget to register – there are some early registration promotions going on right now.

March 7th, 2011

“2011 Analyst Outlook for Wireless” – Notes from Wireless Technology Forum, Atlanta

(from our Atlanta desk)

I attended the Wireless Technology Forum, Atlanta meeting on 18 Nov. The topic was “2011 Analyst Outlook” – an excellent one as we all are very curious to know what comes in 2011 in Wireless. Here are the notes from the meeting :

Speakers :-

There was an excellent lineup of speakers –

Keynote : “Prospects for LTE in 2011″ by Steven Leonard, Regional Director, Data Sales, Verizon Wireless

Panelists :

- Phil Hendrix, Principal Analyst, Institute for Mobile Markets Research (or IMMR)
– Jorge Fuenzalida,
Vice President, Strategy and Technology Group, inCode Telecom Group (now part of Ericsson)
- Jeremy Schneider,
Principal, Telecommunications, McKinsey & Company, Inc.
- Robert Prudhomme, Vice President, Client Services, Telecom Practice, The Nielsen Company

Moderator : Gerry Purdy, Principal Analyst, MobileTrax

Steven Leonard (Verizon Wireless) on LTE in 2011 :-

LTE offers 10 times faster speed compared to 3G networks. Verizon will have LTE in 38 markets by 2011. Verizon has the valuable 700 MHz spectrum which allows high speed and data accuracy in network transmission. LTE utilizes the MIMO technology. MIMO (Multiple Input, Multiple Output) is a technology that  increases in data throughput and link range without additional bandwidth or transmit power.

Another key aspect of 2011 is the growth of Tablets and accompanying data demands. 181% growth expected in Tablet usage in 2011 over this year. Verizon is the only carrier with contiguous 4G spectrum in USA (AT&T may disagree : )

Lte is 3.5 times faster than CDMA in how far signal will travel without diluting. It offers Latency near 30 ms where earlier it was 150 ms.

Verizon 4G leadership (per Steven) :-

    – Joint innovation lab
    – Open devl
    – Verizon developer community
    – LTE innovation center
    – M2M management center in partnership with Qualcomm

Note : M2M or Machine-to-Machine is the new wireless industry developing around putting wireless chips in home appliances, hospital equipment and other such non telecom functions).

Verizon Launch mkt this year – Athens and Atlanta are included

Wireless broadband features in LTE include :-

    1 Advanced applications :- like Entertainment and Music

    2 Innovative devices

    3 Location agnostic : Whereever you are availability

As per Steven, Verizon 4g network rollout will be completed in 2013 in the USA.

Phil Hendrix (IMMR) :-

Phil gave a presentation on Mobile Commerce, an area which is rapidly evolving. The most happening event in USA on Mobile Commerce has to do with NFC phone proliferation expected in 2011 with Google Nexus S and Apple iPhone – both NFC enabled phones coming out potentially as per reports.

As per Phil, Mobile Commerce has three perspectives :-
    – Consumers : mobile shopping
    – Brands : mobile advertising
    – Retailers : m-commerce

8 dimensions which together constitute mobile commerce:-
    – Mobile Shopping
    – Mobile Funds Transfer
    – Mobile Advertising
    – Mobile Rewards
    – Mobile Coupons
    – Mobile Booking
    – Mobile Offers
    – Mobile Payments

Today we are only in the initial stages of Mobile Commerce.

Certain trends are accelerating Mobile Commerce. These Accelerators include :-

    – Location-Based
    – Hyper Local sensitivity – what is around us
    – Social Media
    – Yield Management
    – Supply Chain integration
    – Big Data

Jorge Fuenzalida (inCode) :-

inCode Telecom Group, the telecom strategy consulting firm, has been acquired by Ericsson recently. inCode is famous for its “top 10 predictions” in wireless every year. Jorge said that these are not finalized for 2011 but offered a Sneak preview of the top 10 :-

Predictions :-
    1) Over the Top goes over the top (in other words, over the top video/OTT or IPTV accelerates and everything in video goes online)
             2009-Netflix becoming very popular – CPE based OTT
             2011-all content goes online eg Google TV or other such offerings
    2) Tablet rush – in 2011 it will overtake netbooks
    3) The new Gold Rush in 2011- wireless rural broadband – due to government stimulus

Well said, Jorge.

Jeremy Schneider (McKinsey) :-

Core wireless has matured. Revenue growth has slowed in voice and messaging

What is next then? Three predictions (since it is the day of 3 predictions from all analysts : ) :-

1) Data will grow much more than what most analysts are calling for. McKinsey thinks 17 times growth from 2009 to 2012 in mobile data
     McKinsey thinks that even this number is relatively conservative. They think it could be 25 times growth by 2012.
     Tablets, mobile video and broader consumer adoption of mobile browsing will drive mobile data growth.
2) Enterprise will outstrip Consumer in wireless (this is surprising as per me as consumer has been the bigger driver of smartphone data via apps so far)
     Enterprise mobility will enable employee mobility etc
     – 6 times higher willingness to pay in enterprise consider to consumer
     – big market. M2M sensors estimates keep rising on a daily basis
     – many verticals are ripe for innovation

     Healthcare is particularly exciting in the M2M arena.
     Healthcare will expand in 5 trillion dollars overall in 5 yrs. At current rates healthcare will be 30% of us GDP
           * Remote Monitoring
           * Remote Consultation
           * Medication Management
           * Health and Wellness

3) New directions in Application Architecture
     – Data growth needs efficient network
            * 30% time waiting on mobile browsing
     – Platform independent tech like HTML5, JIL (Java Intermediate Language), WAC (Wholesale Application Community – the operator consortium), SNs (?)
     – Delivered in the cloud (aha – Cloud Computing – we know it)
          * Consumer – Large portions of iPhone apps already on the Amazon Cloud or EC2
          * Enterprise – 40% savings by moving to cloud

Robert Prudhomme (Nielsen) :-

Growth has slowed in postpaid the USA. Prepaid is going well.

Only verizon and AT&T were able to get net adds in Pospaid this year. However, all of these came at the expense of T-Mobile or Sprint (no wonder, with 80%+ market penetration for wireless in USA, you can only get new customers by poaching from your competitors)

AT&T is doing well with its Connected Devices business, however a concern is that Standards and Business models around these new devices are not clear and their financial worth is not known.

The erstwhile prepaid kings, the carriers Cricket and Metro are suffering as the Big-4 wireless operators are getting most of the prepaid now.

Sprint is competing on pricing while it tries to retain its customers who are churning fast. The No 1 reason to win a customer now is promotion and pricing. This means price wars as are seen in $50 all you can eat plans from some carriers. Now, Sprint is even undercutting T-Mobile in pricing. (my conjecture is that the profit margin in $50 all you can eat plan is really next to nothing).

Of course wireless has lot of bright areas too on the premium side – mainly Record smartphone sales. On premium side, smartphone (driven by top smartphones like iPhone and Android phone) sales are driving fast growth.

Wireless Tablets remains an unpredictable play for the operators. This is depicted by the fact that only 1/10th of iPad tablets sold are activated on the AT&T network. Rest are using WiFi or exported out of the country. (But AT&T still scores as it has a respectable nationwide WiFi network – of course free public WiFi for broadband customers is a customer retention strategy by carriers like AT&T and not really a revenue generator).

Smartphones are driving increases in App adoption (finally a direct reference to Apps)
    – 59% smartphone owners download apps
    – 9% feature phone owners download apps

AT&T – 74% postpaid net adds in last quarter are iPhone customers (did I get it right – 74% ?).

Interesting stat from Nielsen : -950,000 netadds lost from AT&T if they lost iPhone exclusivity per Nielsen estimates. In other words, with the impending Verizon iPhone and potentially on other carriers too, AT&T might loose almost 1 million net adds per quarter. A significant number but one AT&T is already planning for most likely.

In France and other European countries, when iPhone exclusivity ended with one carrier, Apple doubled their share or more in some cases. So one can conclude that the Apple stock price may be trading at a discount if its market share is about to rise (now let me run and buy some Apple stock.. : )

Overall an excellent discussion on the 2011 Outlook for US wireless by some Industry heavyweights in the Analyst world. Congratulations to the team at Wireless Technology Forum (Atlanta) and especially to Gerry Purdy of MobileTrax for putting together this awesome event.

November 22nd, 2010

Bubbly mobile voice blogging service launched in India

US firm Bubble Motion has launched a new mobile voice blogging service called Bubbly, which claims to be a voice-based Twitter for handsets.

Users add voice messages to the service by dialling a shortcode then speaking. People can also follow users on the service, much like they would on Twitter, getting SMS alerts when there’s a new voice-blog to listen to.

Bubbly is launching first in India, where Bubble Motion has signed up various celebrities to get the service off to a running start. Bubbly’s beta has already signed up 150,000 users there.

Bubble Motion is rolling the service out elsewhere via partnerships with mobile operators, who it’ll work with on the recording and storage of voice messages, as well as SMS notifications and billing.

“The launch of Bubbly delivers a new, exciting way for people to connect socially on mobile phones with the power of voice,” says president and CEO Tom Clayton. It’s expected to launch in Europe and the Middle East this year, following the Indian roll-out.

February 11th, 2010

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