Archive for June, 2010

Foursquare And Starbucks Offers Fail

Foursquare and Starbucks have apparently missed the mark on their mobile offer because it wasn’t compelling enough. In hindsight there was too much work involved for too little of a return. People had to become a mayor which could involve a lot of effort only to be rewarded with $1 off their coffee. There were other issues like people always seeing the same offers, (not) geo-targetting, being less worthwhile than other Starbucks promotions (e.g. their loyalty card) and letting Starbucks staff compete. Lots of lessons to be learned from this failure.

You can read more about it on diji and MediaPost. For a detailed analysis of what they did wrong take a look at Forrester.

U.S. Bank Reveals Mobile Coupons, LBS and More

Even the banks look like they’re starting to understand the power of mobile coupons and mobile loyalty. The U.S. Bank has revealed mobile coupons as part of their mobile roadmap for 2010.

Although the details of the U.S. Bank coupon and reward system are vague they’ve certainly made it sound impressive. It appears as though they want to combine it with a mobile wallet. They’ve mentioned some LBS services capable of sending a coupon for toothpaste when the customer is in a grocery store. I’m weary of how well a feature like this will work with current handsets because it is currently quite difficult get the sort of pinpoint location they would need. Nevertheless, this is certainly a step forward for different forms of mobile advertising.

You can read more about it on the American Banker website.

Google Android surpases iPhone in the U.S.

It seems as though Google Android is starting to gain momentum. With Android only just starting to take shape here one can only assume Australia will follow the U.S. in the near future.

Google’s Android operating system edged out Apple’s iPhone operating system for the No. 2 spot in the U.S. consumer smartphone market in the first quarter, research firm NPD Group reported Monday.

According to NPD, devices running Android accounted for 28 percent of the units sold to U.S. consumers in the first quarter of 2010. BlackBerry devices made by Research In Motion, which use RIM’s homegrown operating system, took the top spot with 36 percent of the U.S. market. Apple’s iPhone, which had been in the No. 2 spot previously, fell to third place with 21 percent of the market.

Improving Android Take Up

I just read a great post on some of the things Android should do to keep gaining market share. It really sums up some of the discussions I’ve been having with people lately:

Here are things I think Google should do if it wants to be a true leader in this space

1)   Reduce Fragmentation of Android

2)   Build phone for the masses and not just for tech savvy consumers

3)   Improve App Store Experience

4)   Leave hardware sales to OEMs

For a more comprehensive analysis of each of these points visit the blog post itself.

iPhones in Australia

Here is an estimate I sent to one of my blog readers today detailing the number of iPhones there are in Australia.  It’s a quick and dirty estimate based on publicly available reports. It’s shot straight from the hip with no validation or cross checking. I realise there are flaws but the number feels kinda right. A good starting point is what it is.

From publicly available reports like this one you can workout that there are around 1.4 million iPhones in use in Australia. I’ve based this on there being around 100% mobile penetration in Australia. That is, around 21 million mobiles. From there 21 million x 23% (approx. size of smartphone market) x 28% (iphone share of smartphone market).

This is a rough approximation that is close to the mark when compared to not so public figures.

The 1.4 million is growing quite quickly in Australia. I can’t remember the link for the report off the top of my head.


Scott Middleton
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