It's Carnival Time! Welcome to the 156th edition of the Carnival of the Mobilists.
But first, a special offer for Carnival readers. Last month I wrote about delivr, a new way to share and promote many types of web content to both PCs and mobiles. It's a powerful combination of social bookmarking, micro-blogging, a short URL service and 2D barcodes and its free. delivr registration is normally by invitation only (although it can be used anonymously with fewer features). delivr founder David Harper is offering a limited number of full registration codes to Carnival readers. To sign up go to https://delivr.com/signup and enter the code 43TY148 when prompted.
As always our carnival midway is lined with colorful and eloquent barkers eager to share their unique insights into the huge and varied world of mobile computing and telephony.
We start with a trio of fortune tellers. These crystal ball gazers have looked into the future of mobile software, services and hardware and are predicting that 2009 will be a great year for mobile.
Mobilestance's Jamie Wells knows "What to Expect in Mobile in 2009". What will happen with mobile video, search, Apple, Android, Palm, Sprint, Motorola, acquisitions and applications? Jamie's "Proprietary Crystal Ball" tells all.
On his blog, which is hosted on a mobile phone running Nokia Web Server, Antoine RJ Wright designs the perfect next generation mobile device in "Wanting More in 2009 Devices". Antoine goes on to predict which handset maker might deliver it.
In tough economic times developers have to make the right choices to survive. At WIP Jam Session, Caroline Lewko looks at industry trends and makes suggestions as to what startups and coders need to to do to survive and thrive in, "2009 Predictions for Mobile and Wireless Developers".
Software and Services
Innovation never stops in technology and the mobile software and services built on it. What's new and hot and what's not? Here are looks at different areas of mobile of mobile services.
C. Enrique Ortiz at About Mobility examines Redmonds's rediscovery of 2D bar codes in "Microsoft Joins the Physical World Connections and Interactions Space with Microsoft Tag". Too bad they felt the need to create a new proprietary format. Argh! More fragmentation.
Talking Video's Tsahi Levent-Levi highlights where video calling is a success and where it's not in, "Video Calling to Grow Because of Mobile? Give Me a Break".
Writing at Smart Mobs, Melanie McBride spotlights a new service called The Extraordinaries that helps you turn your spare time into social good. The service connects volunteers with tasks supporting not for profit and non governmental organizations. These volunteer jobs, which can each be performed in 20 minutes or less using only a mobile phone, include making calls, sending texts or entering information on a web page.
Design and User Experience
Great design and usability are key factors in any product's success. This is especially true in mobile where device size, intermittent connectivity and limited battery power conspire to make the designer's job difficult. Our Carnival design and UX experts offer some advice on solving these problems.
Matt Davies at Taptology contributes a great list of the "Top 10 User Experience Design Resources for 2009". It's a fantastic list of the sites of some of the top people in the fields of design and user experience.
Little Springs Design's Steven Hoober draws observations on optimal user experience from an unlikely source, his experience in renting a truck. Read about it in, "first, do no harm". I found it very insightful and an entertaining read and am giving Steven the Post of the Week honors.
Peter Odum at Idlemode looks at mobile usability from the viewpoint of the international traveler and finds plenty of room for improvement in "Mobile User Insights: Tips When Designing for Travelers". Peter's post is my choice as the Best Post by a New Carnival Contributor.
It's a busy time of year for mobile conferences and events around the world. Catch up on two of the biggest with these posts.
That Canadian Girl, Vero Pepperrell offers a "Future of Mobile 2008 Round-up", Vero's post includes a link to the slides from the presentation she gave at the London event on using community in marketing.
In Las Vegas, CES, the Consumer Electronics Show, wrapped up today. The biggest mobile news of the event was undoubtedly the Palm Pre. Jose Colucci at M|STRAT looks at Pre's potential in the Enterprise in "WebOS, Palm Pre and Enterprise Mobility". Jose also links to several other blogger's pieces on the Pre.
Marketing and Strategy
The mobile industry is huge, with a trillion dollars in annual sales, bigger than TV, bigger than the advertising industry , bigger than the combined alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage business. Still, it's not an easy field for small businesses and startups to thrive in. In such a big arena it's hard for little companies to get noticed. Distribution of mobile games and applications has traditionally been controlled by the mobile carriers and is very inefficient and with high barriers to entry. But things are changing. Here are some looks at ways to overcome the visibility and distribution hurtles.
The enormous success of the iPhone's App Store was a revelation in 2008. Finally, there is a way for third party developers to make money in mobile applications. Open Gardens' Ajit Jaokar analyzes why the Apple store works and announces a conference dedicated to the App Store phenomenon.
mjelly founder James Cooper has some great suggestions for promoting mobile startups in "7 viral marketing tactics for mobile internet services".
You've reached the end of the carnival midway, time to head back and revisit your favorate attractions. I hope you have enjoyed this week's Carnival. The tents and rides unfold again next Monday at with a new edition of the Carnival at mjelly.