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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Friendster MMS Photo Uploads

A new service was recently launched by Globe that allows users to upload photos to their Friendster site via MMS. All the user needs to do is to register in Friendster Mobile, and once registered, they just send the MMS containing the photo and caption to 2276. The photo is then uploaded to their Friendster site in a few minutes.

This is probably just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the convergence of mobile and social networking. Any social network that's wants to get far cannot NOT have a mobile component. After all, a social network is by nature composed of people you interact with regularly, whether they're on the web or not. And what's the most convenient way to get in touch with them? Via mobile! (Of course, getting people to pay to use a social network via mobile is a totally different thing.)

Just some examples of mobile social networking - Facebook SMS/MMS, Multiply's mobile interface, myspace mobile and even Mixi in Japan.

The thing is - I think there's still a lot more to go - it's not as simple as translating the social network site to the mobile and offering the same features. It's looking at new opportunities and mashups that mobile provides. Presence, location information and push to talk are just some services a social network can take advantage of once it's mobile.

One thing that I'm forecasting to hit big though - Twitter (if ever it gets popular here.) It's content has a 140-character limit, making it ideal for SMS. That's 40 million potential Philippine users instantly.

Hmmm... could this be an idea for a new Philippine startup?

Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Internet in Plain English

Have you ever tried explaining RSS, Twitter or even social networking to your mother, your sister or someone who's clueless about technology? That has happened to me several times. I even remember my mom hesitating to use a mobile phone, although now she texts left and right.

But getting back to the point, I just discovered a site called Common Craft, which contains videos about some technologies explained in, well, plain English. Some of the videos featured are RSS in Plain English, Twitter in Plain English, and Wikis in Plain English. Check it out guys and girls, and never need to explain to your mom why you just have to post your vacation pictures on the internet again.

By the way, I learned about Common Craft through this new podcast I discovered, produced by Revision3 - PopSiren. It's a video podcast about modern culture, technology, science and DIY from the point of view of women. One of the hosts is Jessica Corbin of InDigital and Tekzilla fame.

Guy Kawasaki interviews Steve Ballmer

Every March, developers and Microsoft enthusiasts troop over to Las Vegas for the Mix event. Through the Mix event, these developers get a chance to attend workshops and interact with Microsoft. I have never heard of this event before last week, when I saw an Mix 08 excerpt at Microsoft's Developer Roadshow at Megamall.

The highlight of this year's Mix event was Guy Kawasaki's no-holds barred interview of Steve Ballmer. Questions like "Why do you want to buy Yahoo?" and "What's the deal with Vista?", as well as Apple being referenced as a chihuahua and Steve Ballmer shooting down the Macbook Air were some of the highlights.

Head on over to Mix 08 website, and you can also view/download the video of the interview.

iPhone SDK 2 out!

Yes folks, the iPhone SDK 2 is out! Apple sent me an email last Thursday. When the SDK first came out, I immediately registered to become an iPhone developer (even though the iPhone isn't officially offered in the Philippines yet.) I downloaded the Gigabyte-sized SDK (whew!), downloaded the instructional videos, but haven't installed it yet. Why, you may ask? I have a Powerbook G4 and an Intel iMac, both running Tiger, so I can't really run the SDK, can I?

Going back to the SDK version 2. The biggest difference with version 1 is that it now has an interface builder, so that you can just drag and drop to create your user interface. Part of my hesitance in using the 1st SDK (aside from not having Leopard) was that it would be pretty difficult to do an application's UI without an interface tool. Well now, that's no longer a problem! (but me not having Leopard still is!)

I do hope that SDK version 3 would allow me to use my iPod Touch (yes, I don't have an unlocked iPhone!) as a test device, so that I can create programs for myself and run it on my iPod.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Welcome to the mobilefutures blog. In this blog, I plan to talk about mobile technologies, the internet and gadgets from the Philippine perspective. I work for a telecom operator, so some of my posts might be colored because of my background. Please note however, that all my views are my own and not of my company's.

Feel free to comment on any posts I have, negative and positive alike. My feelings don't easily get hurt! =)

Have fun reading!