September 14, 2010
More New Mobile Technologies Launching This WeekZappli's founder says of myShopanion at DEMO today, "we put an end to buyer's remorse." MyShopanion is a social shopping application for the iPhone, making it easy for people to cross-check products while you’re shopping around. You can either scan the barcode of a product using the iPhone’s camera, or enter the product’s name. The application then populates a list of products matching what you’re looking for, letting you sort by relevance, ratings, or price, and see what’s on offer elsewhere.
Check out the CEO's funky and creative pants below. Impressive.
Range Networks' goal is to ensure that everyone has access to affordable wireless communications services. Sustainability is a big part of their pitch; says one of the co-founders on the DEMO stage, "we provide the world’s lowest cost, sustainable, full featured GSM infrastructure."
To-date, they have shipped over 100 systems based on their OpenBTS software stack, software defined radio and Internet protocol-based VOIP core network. He says, "we have broken through the low cost cellular barrier so that those in developing countries living on $2-3 a day can now have access to cell phones." Note: their website needs work; there is barely any content there.
Particle Code is all about platform fragmention, which CEO Guy Ben-Artzi on the DEMO stage says, "is the single most challenge facing app developers." Particle Code is an open and extendable cross-platform IDE that automates the porting process, enabling developers to create native applications using fully powered programming languages.
By allowing developers to more efficiently create and maintain their apps through the use of a single code-base, Particle enables teams to focus on more innovative cross-device experiences. Free to developers, they can customize the look-and-feel of every app easily and quickly and no longer need to focus on any one single app store. He ends his presentation with a humorous and endearing pitch for recruiting new developers for their Palo Alto based location. Looking for new engineers, he says, "Facebook isn't the only place with coconut water in their fridge. If you're fired up about the app economy, consider making us your new home."
August 17, 2010
PhoneTell Builds "Impossible-To-Find" Numbers into Your PhoneYesterday, PhoneTell announced a new mobile app for Android phones that incorporates “IMPOSSIBLE-TO-FIND” phone numbers into the app so you can easily access that information instantly from your Android phone.
Convenience at your fingertips is the idea. We've all had the experience of searching for a hard-to-find phone number and coming up short, particularly at times when we need to put our hands on the number quickly. PhoneTell has added hundreds of the most difficult, hard-to-find, buried-five-layers-deep and at the bottom of a web page in mouse-type numbers into its mobile application for Android phones.
Essentially, anyone with an Android phone can download PhoneTell free from the Android market or GetJar starting today. Whether you’ve lost your luggage and need the 800# for the airline baggage claim or you’re trying to locate the customer service number for Amazon.com, Apple, Paypal, Toyota, MasterCard or Dell, PhoneTell instantly provides you the precise phone number to reach a real live person to solve your problem.
Launched earlier this year at TechCrunch Disrupt, PhoneTell expands phone number search beyond your mobile phone address book, connecting you to your "personal cloud" of contacts in Gmail, LinkedIn or Salesforce.com, as well as contacts in the “public cloud” such as Yelp!, Yellow Pages, White Pages and Bing– all in one app. PhoneTell instantly scours these data sources and with its patent-pending algorithms, searches, verifies, de-dupes and delivers ranked search matches instantly to your phone.
The new list of additional phone numbers is comprised of hard-to-find customer service numbers (e.g. Direct TV, Disneyland Resort, the Geek Squad, PayPal), unlisted numbers and national 1-800 numbers. These are numbers that you can’t get by calling 411 and are impossible or nearly impossible to find on the Internet. Some hard to find numbers included in PhoneTell are Amazon Customer Service, American Airlines Baggage Claim (haven't we all needed that more than once or twice), AOL Customer Service, Apple Customer Service, Ameritrade Customer Support, Bank of America Credit, eBay Customer Service and IRS - Individual Taxes among countless others.
February 19, 2010
Apple Approves Toktumi's Line2: Gives Users 2nd Line on their iPhonesThis week, Apple approved Toktumi's Line2 Upgrade, so people can use their iPhone calling app over 3G, Wi-Fi, or cell networks using the same number. Ideal for small businesses and people with poor or no cell reception at the home or office, Toktumi's VoIP-enabled version of its calling app Line2: Version 2.0, is now available on iTunes.
For the first time, you can use your iPhone the same way, with the same number, whether placing or receiving calls over Wi-Fi, 3G, or Cellular Voice networks. If you live or work in a dead cell zone, or just want to reduce your cell bill, Line2 is a great solution.
Peter Sisson from Toktumi's perspective: "In the wake of the news that Verizon Wireless plans to put a crippled version of Skype on its phones, one that will not work over Wi-Fi, Line2 catapults AT&T to the front of the pack. The Line2 service is a huge win for AT&T’s iPhone customers, and demonstrates both Apple’s and AT&T's commitment to supporting next generation communications tools."
Line2’s Wi-Fi capabilities allow international travelers to place and receive calls while overseas without incurring voice or data roaming charges. Using Line2, calls to any number back home will be free, as will calls to other Line2 users, wherever they are worldwide. Calls to international numbers start at $0.02 per minute, whether calling from home or abroad.
Line2 is designed for professionals who can't afford to miss a call. It combines the best elements of Skype and Google Voice, but adds business grade features, reliability, and live customer support.
There is no other calling app available on the iPhone or any other mobile device with the flexibility and features offered by Line2. Line2 detects the best available network based on customer preferences and places and receives calls over that network automatically.
Advanced VoIP calling features include call waiting, call transfer, and conferences for up to 20 people – all without burning a single cellular minute. Wi-Fi call quality is better than cellular with Line2, and Wi-Fi calls between two Line2 customers use 16-bit HD audio for crystal clear sound quality that is stunning to experience.
Line2 is literally a second line on the iPhone, so that you have two numbers on one phone, each with its own voicemail, caller ID, and contacts. Business people can stop carrying around two phones, one for personal calls and one for work.
Each Line2 number integrates with Toktumi's hosted PBX platform, providing office phone features like auto-attendant ("Press 1 for..."), call screening, caller-specific call forwarding, after-hours settings, voicemail by email, and PC-based calling, all integrated with the Line2 application. You can get just one line or set up an entire office, with all lines billed to one account and managed centrally.
Line2 is a $0.99 download that comes with 30 days of free service. After that, service costs just $14.95/month for unlimited US/Canada calling and access to all features.
January 07, 2010
Unveiled at CES, Zorap Clubs Increase Traffic & Fan Engagement on the WebIncorporating all forms of digital-rich media to extend customer and fan engagement on the web, brands can now more effectively engage, communicate and collaborate with photos, videos, music, files, chat and more, using Zorap Clubs, unveiled by client Zorap today at CES.
Zorap Clubs are a group of custom chat rooms that are dynamically created and accessed by users through third-party websites.
Custom clubs are personalized with a brand’s look-and-feel and cancan be used to not only increase traffic and amplify fan and customer engagement on the web, but can offer audiences a streamlined, one-stop environment to interact with and around a brand’s message, services and their content offerings.
Whether it’s a new product announcement, an event, or a concert, Zorap allows you to put audio and video promotional content on stage in front of your audience in an exciting new way, so viewers can participate and engage with you in real-time from anywhere in the world.
Zorap Clubs enable social interaction and full audience participation around targeted content, while also allowing providing users with the opportunity to drag & drop their own personal media files into rooms, which ensures a more personal experience for them.
Individuals can also use Zorap by going to www.zorap.com. They can create and customize their own rooms, inviting friends and family to share rich multimedia content in real-time. An example of what a room looks like with shared content below:
They also support social media. Integration with Facebook Connect ensures timely and unique engagement experiences for Fans and Fan pages. Fans can invite friends from their social networks, make new friends, and remain active members of your community after their experience.
For bloggers and press in Vegas for CES, the Zorap team will be demoing Zorap Clubs and more at the Zorap booth at the ShowStoppers Media Event, on January 7, 2010 in the Lafite Ballroom at the Wynn Las Vegas, from 6 pm to 10 pm PST.
December 17, 2009
MobileGlobe's Yoann Valensi on Cheap Calls #tg09MobileGlobe's CEO Yoann Valensi hosted Traveling Geeks for a dinner last week in Paris in the Marais. His mission is to make mobile calls cheap and easy from anywhere in the world. Listen to why you should care.
October 31, 2009
Is Blackberry Doomed?
Is the Blackberry doomed? Check out take from Toktumi. Chart from their post.
July 28, 2009
Ribbit for Salesforce.com
I met up with the guys from Ribbit in London at BT’s offices earlier this month.
We saw the latest developments for the consumer market as well as Ribbit for Salesforce, which is a recently launched application from BT Business that features voice-to-text conversion.
Ribbit for Salesforce saves time and improves productivity for sales professionals and other mobile workers by making it easier for them to record customer information on the move.
Says BT’s Sandeep Raithatha, "think of it as an online personal sales assistant."
Available in both the US and UK markets, any Salesforce.com user can now dictate notes and memos verbally on their mobile phones.
If you hover over any of your messages, they're converted into text. If a call comes into your mobile and you miss the call, they flow into Salesforce.com.
Ribbit’s technology takes the message and converts voice to text. It also assigns it to a sender and their account.
“The notes are transcribed and flow directly into Salesforce.com and into the user's inbox, eliminating the need to type updates, increasing user productivity,” says Sandeep.
The solution simplifies sales management by storing and organizing voicemail as email in Salesforce.com, categorizing leads, contacts and in-progress deals.
All voice messages are delivered as SMS or email, so users can respond or forward immediately without dialing into voicemail.
British Telecom is the first supplier to integrate voice with the CRM solution Salesforce.com through a cloud computing platform.
Ribbit has dragged the phone world over to the web world, whether it be for Salesforce or applications that can be used by consumers. It's independent of VoIP.
Says Ribbit’s Crick Waters who was over from Silicon Valley during our visit, “we're not just VoIP, so you can opt to take Ribbit on Skype, MSN, your mobile phone or over the web. We let the system figure out how to get in touch with you."
He adds, “our objective is to make it easy to adopt for anyone."
July 20, 2009
A Chat with BT Openzone's Chris Bruce
We used their dongles on the road from London to Cambridge and back again. It's essentially the equivalent of the Verizon EVDO card I have for my Thinkpad.
£9.99 gives you the dongle and works for people who have a Home Broadband (ADSL) Option 3 connection - with 1Gig 3G access for 18 months and an array of other features including unlimited wifi.
Prices for other packages vary depending of amount of 3G Gigs per monthly usage and features of the ADSL broadband.
For pure pre-pay customers, the cost of the dongle cannot be covered by a monthly usage charge and so the cost is obviously higher.
July 19, 2009
Skype and the Social Web
Perhaps a little known fact outside Skype Headquarters is that the social web is fundamental to its product development strategy.
During the development of Skype 4.0 for Windows, for example, over 50,000 individual pieces of feedback were gathered from users around the world, from blogs, forums and Twitter as well as direct surveys.
Skype's experience team, which consists of a mixture of designers and researchers, reviewed and analyzed the data they received, and their findings had a direct influence on the way the product grew and matured from beta to final versions.
Functionality and user interface were both greatly influenced by the views of Skype users, but not, of course, without the expert knowledge and experience of Skype's engineers and designers.
For Skype, however, this wasn't a one-off; it's an everyday way of doing business. Peter Parkes, Skype's blogger-in-chief, works daily with product teams to gather, collate and pass on feedback. And it doesn't just go to the engineers and designers who build the software itself.
The feedback also helps their customer support team provide better answers to users' questions, and helps their marketing team produce more compelling copy. Remember, every tweet counts.
Refer back to the video interview I did with Parkes and community manager Dobb.
Skype was a sponsor of the Traveling Geeks UK tour.