business, mobile applications, social media, technologies

Mobile’s new best friends – playing nicely?

MDA AnalystsWhile the title of the annual market analyst forum suggested a certain current harmony between the cloud, social media and analytics, a series of analyst viewpoints indicated that the developing multi-device landscape might be a little more complicated.

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consumer experience, regulation, social media, technologies

How to report online abuse?

reporting abuseWith recent high profile cases leading to public outcry for standardised procedures, the subject of online abuse has rarely found itself under such a spotlight.

How can online abuse be reported and managed?  Is it even possible?  What are the right questions to ask?  Where should the burden of responsibility rest?  Government, police and relevant authorities?  Website Owners?  Internet Service Providers?  Another body?

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business, consumer experience, social media, technologies

Hardware step change and the reinvention of normal

easier for some than others.

With Christmas approaching and the tablet war currently in full swing, Amazon’s television campaign is pushing its products and services using the claim that it has ‘reinvented normal’. But as well as the online services that gradually seep into day-to-day habits, significant changes in media consumption produce significant emotions.  Manufacturers and vendors need to make us feel safe in our spending.

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consumer experience, social media, technologies

most of us still on message

New Mobile Data Association (MDA) statistics released this week reveal that 11 million SMS messages are sent across the UK’s networks every hour.

Traffic will ebb and flow at certain times, but this average has been approximated after the release of the MDA’s Q4 2009 messaging statistics, aggregated from the mobile network operators.

The average daily count of text messages was up to 265 million in 2009, while the annual haul stood just shy of the coveted 100 billion mark, at 96.8 billion.

Certain times of the year and special events are revealed as being key for spikes in picture messaging use – and you might speculate that personal events also drive MMS use: weddings, newborns, or even for some, new shoes.

But the continued surge in mass use of mobile messaging, particularly SMS, gives clear evidence that it will not be usurped by alternative messaging forms for some time yet.

Social media platforms depend on a level of wider engagement which many people simply might not care for; whereas mobile messaging is an instant, reliable, one-to-one trigger-press.

All the relevant statistics from the report, together with reports from previous years, are held on

This post has been reproduced in part from an original, posted at the MDA blog.


WiMAX or LTE – what will connect us in in 2030?

As we slump over our cornflakes browsing a “newspaper” in the future (my bet is it keeps the term in the same way “video” has), how will it be reaching us? On our mobile device via 3G data? Using a Wifi connection? Or with a new adaptation: 4G, WiMAX, or even LTE?

Today WiMAX and LTE (Long Term Evolution) technologies are commonly spoken of with the same sweeping breadth as the digital coverage it hopes to attain. So it can be tricky to get a definitive handle on precisely what they are, how they’re being used and what we hope to achieve with them.

This was what I hoped to address by attending Wednesday’s WiMAX event at City University, London.

Jointly hosted by the MDA and the DCKTN (Digital Communications Knowledge Transfer Network), the line-up included a number of speakers who have been working at the coalface of these technologies for a number of years. Their full presentations can be accessed via the secure members area of the MDA site.

WiMAX Network Operator, Freedom4 opened with a number-heavy discussion of today’s 4G network and how it impacts the speed of CDMA and OFDMA data transmission through Mobile WiMAX, IMT-Advanced and LTE, amongst other media.

Graham Currier described WiMAX as a purpose designed high capacity mobile data access technology, taking advantage of Internet Protocol network scaling, flexibility and low cost.

Graham MacDonald of Intel, who make the enviable claim of being The World’s Largest Semiconductor Manufacturer, outlined the global WiMAX ecosystem.

With eleven globally dispersed Test Sites, Intel is supporting ubiquitous broadband coverage with a preference for today’s 4G, because LTE is not commercially available and won’t be for another two to three years.

Around 500 WiMAX trials and commercial deployments are currently in place across 141 countries in the world, whereas there are no LTE commercial deployments at all.

Spectrum, Intel believe, is the true enabler of a wireless broadband world.

Milton Keynes Council assigned Connect MK with the mission to raise active broadband use from 60-65% in 2007 to over 90% by 2010/11 through broadly enabling access to PCs and broadband. Adepteq, the company behind Connect MK, persuaded Microsoft to produce a Social Software Licensing Model which has led to PCs being loaded with a fully licensed operating system and loaned out at £1.50 per week. Freedom4’s widespread WiMAX solutions enable the service’s users generous connectivity.

Next up, WiMAX network operator, Airspan – a founding member of the WiMAX forum, explained how WiMAX might not be perceived as a 4G technology. And how you might argue that nothing is. It extolled the virtues of next generation technologies converging and accommodating both data and voice services for the masses.

How? Obviously by using Airspan’s cutting edge products.. Its smart applications included machine-to-machine communications, which will become increasingly topical with the approaching smart metering juggernaut, and embedding WiMAX inside devices such as cameras and Sat-Navs.

While the level of audience interaction, extended debate and conjecture was encouraging for the space, it also suggested many competing viewpoints in a space where assertive direction is needed for significantly progressive infrastructure.

Nobody really knows how these technologies and robust infrastructures will develop in the coming years, or how much cash is available to develop them. Or how much of a priority they really are. I left the event with more questions than answers.

– Will the development of voice technologies through LTE have the edge over data and WiMAX?
– Can WiMAX pilot projects encouraging digital social inclusion in marginalised areas, be transposed into larger cities?
– Or do they benefit from more flexible infrastructures allowed by unique, arguably anomalous locations such as the UK’s new town, Milton Keynes?
– Is consumer WiMAX more of an immediately compelling proposition for remote towns and islands than it is for large cities?

These were slightly narrower questions than those which I entered with: the sign of an informative and engaging event.