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Friday, July 11, 2008

Did the iPhone Just Change Social Media Forever?

If Apple had released the new 3G iPhone in the evening instead of 8AM like they did this morning they would have missed a whole day of sales and media coverage but they didn't and now we are getting the best reviews of the new 3G iPhone and live updates via Twitter of people trying to find out How to fix a bricked iPhone from the new 7.7(43) iTunes Update.

At 2PM here in Old Town Pasadena the line at the Apple Store is still stretched around the block and if it had been an evening event the line would have die around Midnight. But it didn't happen that way. The line keeps going and I'm wondering if they are going to run out of new 3G iPhones.

None the less, while people have been standing in line they are sharing information about Apple products and the iPhone and had the new 3G iPhone already been out I think they would have been sharing newly posted videos on it while they were standing inline.

Apple has change the way we consume music and they are working on changing the way we consume video. Just as Twitter and Facebook are changing the way we communicate with our friends I think the new 3G iPhone will have some social media apps that will change our social behaviour once again and there will also be new ways to make money with iPhone Apps and the video on the iPhone.

There are many cool new iPhone apps. You can find a list of the best new iPhone Apps at the bottom of this post. mDialog is one of those new social media apps on the iPhone that has the potential to change the way we communicate with video. - Disclosure - I am working on a project for mDialog.

If you are not familiar with mDialog they are a company who delivers high-resolution social video via their website and they have an application on the Apple App Store that enables iPhone and iPod touch users to view and share high-resolution MPEG-4 and h.264 video with advanced social features.

This mDialog iPhone App opens up a whole new world of possibilities for both users and video publishers by bringing a range of social capabilities for video publishers and their audiences that go beyond basic viewing, include video surveys, voting, private sharing and flexible distribution options.

mDialog also takes full advantage of the iPhone's extensive SDK (Software Development Kit). This means mDialog works seamlessly with the iPhone's camera, address book, email, geo-locator and multi-language support.

The mDialog for iPhone application is available for free to users in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Spain and in three languages -- English, Spanish and French -- from Apple's App Store on iPhone and iPod touch or at www.itunes.com/appstore/.
More languages are planned to be rolled out in the coming months.

I think there are some interesting monetization opportunities with the mDialog iPhone App just around the corner and I think the 3G iPhone will not just change social media forever I think the new 3G iPhone will change the way we monetize video.

Lower your head, watch your step and enjoy the rest of your day on the Internet.

List of Best New 3G iPhone Apps according to the Telegraph:

The prices are in pounds but you can figure out by reading the descriptions if you would be willing to spend your hard earned US Dollars on them.

Rotary Dialer (free): Brings a touch of old-school glamour to the cutting-edge iPhone. Use the virtual rotary-style dialler instead of the numeric keypad to make calls.

* Twitterific (free): A must for Twitter addicts, this simple but beautifully-rendered application provides a rich user experience and elegant layout.

* Starmap Planetarium (£6.99): Astronomers and space nuts will love this - a stargazing guide that provides information about constellations, planets and even shooting stars, plus oodles of scientific details.

* Lonely Planet Mandarin Phrasebook (free): With the Olympics just weeks away, now is the ideal time to get to grips with the Chinese language. This audio phrasebook provides a phonetic guide to Mandarin. You'll be debating the gold medal chances of the Chinese gymnastics squad with a noodle street vendor in no time.

* Remote (free): Turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a remote control for your Mac or Apple TV. It works with your wi-fi network so you can control playback and shuffle tracks from anywhere in your home.

* BA Flights (free): The UK's national airline has a live flight tracker application, which also allows quick access to the BA website. Sadly, there's no built-in baggage tracker. A shame the launch of this program didn't coincide with the opening of Terminal 5...

* PhoneSaber (free): Utterly pointless, but thoroughly cool, this app turns your iPhone into a light saber, complete with sound effects.

* UrbanSpoon (free): Can't decide where to eat? Shake your iPhone to pick a good restaurant. You can use GPS to find nearby eateries, or filter results by cuisine or price. Covers most US cities, as well as London.

* Etch-a-Sketch (£2.99): Twiddle the virtual dials to start a sketch, or draw directly on screen using your finger. "Tilt technology" will be added soon to enable you to move the iPhone itself to create a drawing.

* Meal Splitter (£4.99): There will be no need to squabble over restaurant bills with this application, which precisely calculates what each diner owes based on the cost of the meal. Okay, so the iPhone's in-built calculator could do pretty much the same thing, but this takes the pain out of the entire process; it will even work out how much the non-drinkers should pay compared to the drinkers.

* Vicinity (£1.79): Takes advantage of the iPhone 3G's GPS to provide one-tap access to information about local services and amenities. It will even pull in relevant Wikipedia entries and Flickr photos.

* Band (£5.99): Compose your own music using the collection of virtual instruments.

* Where? (free): A location-based application that will recommend the best restaurants, the nearest Starbucks, and even the location of friends in your network.

* Exposure (free): A quick and easy way to access your Flickr photo stream, as well as all your photosets, tags and contacts. An advertising-free version is available for £5.99.

* TypePad (free): If you've got a TypePad blog, download this application to instantly update your blog from your iPhone.

* Currency (free): This currency converter provides up-to-the-minute exchange rate information for over 50 currencies and 70 countries.

* Stage Hand (£4.99): Control your Apple Keynote presentations using your iPhone or iPod touch, and read and review slides on its screen.

* WeatherBug (free): Keep track of live, local weather information in up to three cities. Includes satellite maps and radar forecasts as well as severe weather alerts.

* Facebook (free): The simple interface allows you to chat with friends using Facebook messenger, post pictures to your profile, and check on your friends' status updates.

* Super Monkey Ball (£5.99): The pick of the bunch of new games for the iPhone and iPod touch. Tilt the device itself to control the progress of a monkey inside a transparent bubble. The graphics are first-rate, and the gameplay is highly addictive.


Eric Reid said...

Meh - it's kind of tough to even say, "change social media forever," when it's hardly been around that long. It's like a baby's soft head - the thing's in process all the time. Everything's changing it.

IMHO, the iPhone is just another toy that does some social stuff.

Stephen said...

While I understand the skepticism voiced regarding the iPhone and the sea-change it represents, I disagree.

To my thinking, any analysis of the iPhone has to view it as a platform. Now that I think about it - it wouldn't surprise me to hear that Apple was planning on dropping the "Phone" from the name, much like they dropped "Music" from the iTunes Store and "Computer" from Apple, Inc.

It is all about the "App Store".

Unlike any device before it - the iPhone is a portable network interface (cell networks, WiFi, 3G) that allows third-party software to be broadly and easily distributed, and allows that software to implement the most sophisticated graphical UI in the market.

1) Third-party software access
2) Network ubiquity
3) A beautiful and fluid UI

That's the game right there. You can argue about it not having a video camera, about the pixel count, about whatever. It won't matter. There were many MP3 players out before the iPod. There are many that have been released since that were technologically superior. None of that mattered.

And finally, you have to set this against the near-term technological advances that Apple has promised. Effortless synchronization, push updates, and an increasingly streamlined and easily programmed platform.

I sympathize with anyone experiencing "Apple fatigue", but I expect that it's only going to get much, much worse. These things are going to be _everywhere_.

1 Tim Street said...

Hey Eric,

Thanks for the comment.

I agree with Stephen and see the 3G iPhone as a new toy that is a new platform that will allow distribution of video content and monetization of that video content through advertising and digital download sales.