Posts in Mobile

Amazon bows SMS shopping

262966 spells A-M-A-Z-O-N on your dialpad. It's the shortcode for TextBuyIt, the online retailer's new SMS shopping system.

Just type what you want - iPod Nano, for example, text it to that number and numbered search results appear on your handheld device's screen. Respond with the number of the item you want, respond to the prompt for your email address and postal code, and you'll get a call from Amazon to complete your purchase.

It's all so instantaneous, except for the waiting for it to arrive in the mail part.

Amazon TextbuyIt

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Q&A: Sarah Fay CEO of Aegis Media North America

Sarah Fay, the chief executive of Aegis Media North America, is known for her smarts, a genuine warmth, and not incidentally, the fact that she's one of the most powerful women in advertising in North America, if not the world.

A 10-year veteran of Carat, Fay has steadily risen in the ranks until she ultimately achieved the top slot in 2007, when the company merged the digital and traditional media assets of Carat and Isobar into a single integrated operating unit.

We caught up with Sarah to ask about advertising in a recession, trends in media buying, and what's been surprising and inspiring her since she took up the reins at Aegis.

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Report: Twitter raising more money at $250m valuation

Twitter, the popular microblogging service that has become a favorite social media marketing tool, has signed a term sheet to raise more venture capital money at a $250m valuation. That's according to a report published this weekend by TechCrunch.

Thus far, Twitter has raised approximately $20 million in funding. The dollar amount of the latest round is not yet known.

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Bazaarvoice brings reviews to mobile

Bazaarvoice, best known for its product review engine, also offers online retailers a suite of other social media marketing and analytics tool. It's just added one more to its arsenal of offering: mobile reviews.

Dubbed MobileVoice , the product delivers mobile optimized reviews to shoppers in bricks and mortar stores as well as to those shopping major brands. Participating retailers get a dedicated URL, m.NameOfStore.com. Shoppers can browse product categories, search by keyword, or find reviews by SKU number. Product pages are displayed for every category, along with product and review pages.

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Google profit drops but strong revenue helps it beat estimates

The results are in: investments in AOL and a company called Clearwire contributed to a 68% drop in Q4 profit for Google but an 18% increase in sales helped the beat analyst expectations.

All told, Google achieved net income of $382m on total revenue of $5.7bn. Sales, excluding commissions paid to partners, was $4.22bn, beating the consensus estimate of $4.12bn.

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Mobile app review: Truveo video search for iPhone

Video search engine Truveo has released an updated version of its iPhone app with new features and 'Intelligent Query Completion' to improve the search functionality.

Since iPhones are sold with YouTube pre-installed, the app already has some strong competition to overcome, though users have viewed some 3m videos through the app since it launched in July last year. I've been trying out the updated version of Truveo's app and seeing how it compares to YouTube.

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New mobile phone features confuse users

When you're a techie, it's hard not to gawk at the evolution of the smart phone and to think about the implications of a growing mobile internet.

Yet for average mobile phone users, the increasing number of features is leaving many 'baffled'.

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Will inauguration be a "Wireless Woodstock?"

Tomorrow's inauguration activities will stretch Washington's mobile networks, very possibly to the breaking point, according to The New York Times.

Crowds in D.C. are expected to number two million (or more) for Barack Obama's big day. It's a pretty safe assumption that the number of mobile devices on will number only slighty less. 

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In-store phone users more inclined to buy

Those distracted-looking shoppers who are calling and texting in bricks and mortar establishments aren't just killing time or catching up on messages. 6% of them are more likely to buy, according to a ForeSee Results study.

In “Mobile Apps: The Next Big Thing," the study found shoppers using a mobile device in-store are 6 percent more likely to buy.

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Inauguration streams in on iPhone

How do you spur adoption of an iPhone app? Make it a must-have by Tuesday. Even if it hasn't yet been released.

Hard to concoct a better marketing strategy than live video streaming site Ustream has to spur buzz around a new product launch. You certainly can't fault the timing. Install their iPhone app now (if you can get it, which you probably can't), and you can watch Tuesday's inauguration of Barack Obama as president of the United States anywhere, so long as there's a mobile signal. No computer or TV set required.

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American Idol teams with Habbo

Brand launches in virtual worlds were all the rage a couple of years ago - until they weren't


It's been a while since an announcement came down the pike that a major brand was teeming with a vitual world for a major launch, but that's exactly what Fremantle's "American Idol" plans to do with kids and teens oriented Habbo. Ninety percent of the site's users fall squarely into Idol's top audience demographic: teens age 13-18.
American Idol has been something of a mobile sensation with this age group as well. Episodes generates up to 78 million text message votes for singing contestants in the talent showdown.

The Idol space will be free to Habbo members and open year round. It will be filled with branded merchandise for sale, as well as expose users to sponsors and advertisers whilst they are watching mini talent shows and other events on the stage.

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Palm proves that you can teach an old dog new tricks

Most of us tend to root for the underdog. There's something powerful in the thought that the most disadvantaged can muster up the strength to overcome a significant challenge or a more potent competitor.

Few, however, seemed to be rooting for Palm, the company that created the market for the smart phone.

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