Mobile Advertising

Business Week writes: “Advertising is about to get very personal. Marketers are taking tools that they already use to track your Internet surfing and are preparing to combine that information with cell-phone customer data that include not just the area where you live but also the street you’re standing on. The aim is to target the exact person who is most likely to buy a product at the precise moment they’re most likely to buy it. It’s the ad industry’s dream come true: a perfect personalized pitch. For privacy advocates, though, this combination of behavioral and geographic targeting is an Orwellian nightmare.”

Google’s Money Machine

Read/Write Web writes:

Google – through its text ads strategy – has managed to weave itself into the very fabric of the Web. In doing this, the company freed itself from even Internet geography and became ubiquitous. By empowering companies and individuals to publish Google ads on their sites, Google solved the unlimited supply and demand problem in one fell swoop.

So how does Google compare to Starbucks, which is a very good money making machine in the real world? The key differences between Google and Starbucks are:

* Starbucks spends money on expansion, but Google ads spread themselves;
* Starbucks spends a lot of money on maintenance, Google spends little;
* Starbucks spends money on marketing, but businesses flock to Google because it just works;
* Starbucks relies on people, Google relies on software.

These differences make Google by far the more attractive business, compared to Starbucks. To put it simply, Google has almost no friction.

Paul Graham on Microsoft

Paul Graham writes in an essay entitled “Microsoft is Dead’:

What killed them? Four things, I think, all of them occurring simultaneously in the mid 2000s.

The most obvious is Google. There can only be one big man in town, and they’re clearly it. Google is the most dangerous company now by far, in both the good and bad senses of the word. Microsoft can at best limp along afterward.

[Ajax] was the second cause of Microsoft’s death: everyone can see the desktop is over. It now seems inevitable that applications will live on the webnot just email, but everything, right up to Photoshop. Even Microsoft sees that now.

The third cause of Microsoft’s death was broadband Internet. Anyone who cares can have fast Internet access now. And the bigger the pipe to the server, the less you need the desktop.

The last nail in the coffin came, of all places, from Apple. Thanks to OS X, Apple has come back from the dead in a way that is extremely rare in technology.

Product Launch

Chris Gill writes: “Like the tree falling in a forest that no-one hears, if you launch your product on an unsuspecting market and no-one notices, the question is not just has it made any noise, its probably more along the lines of do you have a viable business?
Considering the amount of time, energy, sweat and money startups spend on new product development, Im often amazed at how little thought they put into the product launch In my experience build it and they will come is a recipe for a lot of hanging about, waiting for a customer to come calling, and is unlikely to deliver the meteoric growth required for an acquisition at YouTube levels or timescales.”

Mobile Payments

DMNews writes:

As more marketers are using mobile phones to promote products, many firms are answering the call to create new platforms that make payments via cell phone possible.

Through premium SMS, cell phone carriers work with mobile marketers to create a bill-to-phone option in which consumers can purchase through the phone by sending short codes. The short codes linked with each promotion are as memorable and effective calls to action as call center numbers or Web site URLs.

The biggest and largest opportunity in the market is for monetizing traditional calls to action, said Michael Becker, executive vice president of business development at iLoop Mobile, San Jose, CA. That interaction can be monetized with a call to action put on a billboard, TV [and] radio, and is driving consumers back to these traditional media.

TECH TALK: Letter to a Two-Year-Old: A Day in Your Life (Part 2)

Dear Abhishek,

In the evening, I try and come home on most workdays by 7 or 7:15 pm. You wait for me. You know I am coming. Because you want me to take you outside! And on many days, I do. I guess you also need a little change. After dinner, which like lunch is a major exercise for your mom, we play till you want to sleep. It is a mix of all kinds of fun games. Nowadays, cars are your life and so we create games around cars. And then, finally, it is time to sleep. You first go fetch your three blankets (or biyas as you call them), and then get your baby pillow. Then, your mummy pats you to sleep. We now sleep on a mattress on the floor (new bed) so theres little chance of you falling out of the bed.

And so it is that your day winds down. You take each day on its own merit. No great thinking about the past or the future. Looking at you, I wish I could do the same. Just live for the present. Enjoy each moment. Live life to the fullest now. I guess I too was like you once upon a time.

On Sundays, we normally end up going out. Either to the malls or to Bhavanas parents home, so your other set of grandparents can also see you. (You get plenty of face time with my parents since they stay with us.) We try and meet more people for you to learn from and have fun with and delight with your expressions and smiles.

When we take the car, nowadays you always want to be next to the driver. You sit on my lap or stand. I guess you like that because it gives you a clear wide-angle view of the world outside. I show you a few things but I mostly let you be. You will point to some things and Ill label them for you. Then, you remember.

You love watching Boowa-Kwala on the computer ( There are times when you will wake in the middle of the night and want me to switch on the computer and play the songs there. I hated the songs at first but gradually began to like them!

Youve started communicating a lot more as the year has gone by. It started with single, indecipherable words. Now, you manage a mix of two-three words quite well, even sentences. And with actions, you can get across your point rather nicely. Sometime during the year, you became a person I could have a little conversation with. And we started doing that as we went out together. Of course, most of the time you had monosyllable replies for me. But I knew that you were listening.

So, each sunrise brings forth a new set of experiences for you. Each day is unlike the other for you and for us. I couldnt ask for more.

Tomorrow: Memories

Continue reading TECH TALK: Letter to a Two-Year-Old: A Day in Your Life (Part 2)