Mobango is a very popular mobile file sharing site. After registering at the PC site mobango.com, you can upload ringtones, wallpapers, videos and java apps from your PC to Mobango and them download then to your phone from the Mobango mobile site wap.mobango.com (wml browser required). When you upload a file you can flag it as either public or private. Any registered user can download public files which currently number over 200,000. The file size limit is a relatively generous 10 MB per file. There is minimal help on Mobango’s PC site and none on the mobile site. The site is pretty easy to figure out though. Here are a couple tips,
- You can’t immediately download the files you have uploaded. Uploaded files end up in your “My Mobile Files” area on the PC site – you have to transfer them to your “Locker” before they can be downloaded.
- It’s much easier to browse and search for files on the PC site than on the mobile one. Send any files you want to your locker using the PC interface – the locker is a single click from your mobile home page.
Mobango has a social aspect too, you can search for users by age, sex, country and make and model of phone. Members can exchange messages and files through both the PC and mobile Mobango sites.
Most Mobango services are free. I did get prompted to buy credits when I tried to add a 2.5 MB video to my locker. I could buy various quantities of credits from $2 up. There was no explanation how much credit was needed to transfer the file in question. I had no trouble transferring files up to 2MB in size. Later after I uploaded more files, I was able to move the 2.5 MB file to my locker for free. So maybe you can earn credits by uploading. Update: I received an email from Fabio Pezzotti at Mobango who was surprised that I saw the page regarding credits. He assured me that all services on Mobango are free and that my seeing the credits page was bug that shouldn’t re-occur. Mobango may eventually offer a wap push service which will allow you to send files to any phone and for that there will be a charge. Fabio also said that within two weeks Mobango’s current 100 MB upload limit will be increased to 1GB!
Mobango can convert some content to mobile format. There is a simple online image editor which allows you to resize crop and add effects to uploaded images. The site also claims to be able to convert non-mobile video formats to .3gp. I tried converting a 2 MB .avi but the conversion failed. Mobango claimed that the original file was corrupt even though it played without error in the embedded player on Mobango’s PC site.
All sites hosting user submitted content have the problem of users sharing copyrighted material and Mobango is no exception. Each time You upload a file Mobango requires checking a box asserting that the file is the yours to share legally. I’m sure Mobango responds to take down orders as well. What else can they do? Manually checking 200,000 files is impossible and even YouTube hasn’t yet been able to do it programmatically. I don’t know what the answer is to intellectual property issues on file sharing sites. Sharing content you have created is great, sharing the hard work and livelihood of independent musicians and software developers is not. I hate DRM and the heavy handed approach of the RIAA, etc but just asking people not to post or download copyrighted material isn’t going to work. What do you think? Comments please.
For more on Mobango, see Oliver’s review at MobileCrunch. Mobango is linked from the Technology/Mobile/Downloads page on yeswap.com