Future Vision Video subtitled in Chinese and French

Video with chinese subtitles
Within the first week after we have published the Future Vision Video we already reached over 10.000 views on YouTube. But we also published the Video on DotSub to enable users to subtitle the video. Within a few weeks the Mocom 2020 Community subtitled the video in Chinese and French.

Thank you for your support and engagement to offer the video in many different languages. You can also participate and translate the video in Spanish, Greek or any language you want.

Video: Mobile Future on DotSub.com

Evolution of Computer Capacity and Costs

Evolution Computer Power and CostsArtificial intelligence pioneer Hans Moravec made an interesting slide showing the evolution of computer power and cost, and the trajectory toward a thinking machine comparable to a human brain. “Evolution of Computer Power/Cost”.

Evolution Computer Power and Costs

Wikipedia: Hans Moravec (born November 30, 1948 in Austria) is a adjunct faculty member at the Robotics Institute (Carnegie Mellon) of Carnegie Mellon University. He is known for his work on robotics, artificial intelligence, and writings on the impact of technology. Moravec also is a futurist with many of his publications and predictions focusing on transhumanism. Moravec developed techniques in machine vision for determining the region of interest (ROI) in a scene. Other ROI techniques exist, including the patents of Sherman de Forest (U.S.), and the machine vision / image processing articles by Sobel. His last academic publication was in 2003.

Key Trends at CTIA Wireless 2009

CTIA 2009 - Mobile LifeI attended the CTIA Wireless 2009 show in Las Vegas, April 1st – 3rd, 2009. The attendance was reported to be down 10%-15% compared to last year, which was 40K. I could feel the cut back in attendance, especially on the 1st and the 3rd days of the show. There were less exhibiting booths, much smaller booths, and felt like, only LG had a good size booth! Since CTIA is so close to MWC in Barcelona, held just 6 weeks ago, CTIA is turning into a North American regional show. iPhone is a major leader in wireless industry, but Apple was not at CTIA. Nor was Google, despite their huge Android and G1 initiatives. Cisco was also absent. So, there were some major no shows.

The key take aways from CTIA 2009 were:

LTE is the next major investment industry will be making. With Verizon’s recent announcements, U.S. market seems to be now leading on the LTE front.
It is the Apps and in particular, App Stores that garner the most interest, especially with RIM launching, and others such as Microsoft and Nokia are expected soon; but all far behind the iPhone / iTunes leadership Mobile adverting & mobile marketing, despite (and maybe because of) a large number of smaller players, the progress being made is painfully slow. This portion of the industry is still in its infancy; not clear what direction it is going to take. There were several interesting developments in WiMAX, Femtocells, Healthcare, Smartphones, messaging / twittering, music and video services, and Al Gore’s closing keynote! First, some interesting numbers that reflect the state of the wireless industry:

Globally, we had 3.6B mobile subscribers in 2008, increasing to 4B this year, and targeting 4.9B by end of 2009. Wireless operator revenues were $700B last year, and will grow to $855B by 2012. Handset sales will decline briefly, from 1.22B to 1.2B this year, but expected to reach 1.4B by 2012. Industry capital spending will also decline briefly from $51.2B in 2008 to $50.7B in 2009, and stay around $50B for the next 4 years, and finally U.S. market reached 270 Million mobile users, with the 14 Million adds in 2008.

It looks like the global economic problems are not significantly affecting the wireless industry; in fact wireless may become an engine or core element of the global recovery.

Verizon’s LTE supplier decisions generated significant presentations, discussions and demonstrations. The winners such as AlcaLu and Ericsson were displaying a lot on LTE, including Evolved Packet Core (EPC). It looks like AlcaLu will play a more evolutionary role with Verizon, since they can provide the “transition from CDMA to LTE”, while Ericsson’s approach might be more Greenfield.

On the App Store front, Research in Motion (RIM) was the talk of the town! Their Blackberry App World was the subject of the Keynote on April 1st, starting with 1000 apps in the store, covering both enterprise and consumer apps. During the exhibits, Blackberry booth was one of the liveliest, with lots of interest. However, 1K apps is no comparison to 25K apps that iTunes has. Also, it was revealed that RIM will be keeping about 20% of the App revenues, the rest will be shared between the operators and the developers. In iTunes case, Apple gets 30%, and the rest goes to the developers. Nokia’s Ovi and Microsoft’s App Store are also on the way. However, there is also a major cost factor for app developers.

According to MTV, it cost $5K to $20K to develop an iPhone app that runs on 17M iPhones and iPods around the world, whereas $100’s K is needed for Java or BREW apps. That is a huge difference!

Skype app was made available on iPhone and on Blackberry in the beginning of CTIA. It had more than 1 Million downloads in 2 days, just for iPhone. There were lots of people trying out Skype calls with these two devices on Wi-Fi environment (it is not supported on the cellular networks!), with mostly positive feedback. However, there may be some operator / regulator push backs, both in the U.S. and in Europe, in the coming days!

Mobile advertising / mobile marketing is taking the center stage for the new business models being pursued for mobile services, apps and content delivery. There are a large number of young companies involved in different parts of the mobile advertising eco-system. There is a clear shift of ad budgets from traditional marketing media to more focused & more personal mobile user environment. However, value chain is still complicated and requires a significant amount of coordination & cooperation. The four major U.S. operators have recently reached an agreement, through Mobile Marketing Association, on standards for mobile marketing practices, which should improve significantly the operational efficiency and time-to-market for mobile marketing campaigns. However, this segment of the wireless industry is still in its infancy, and we should expect some consolidations / re-structuring in the eco-system.

Video seems to be major mobile app, with mobile video downloads increasing significantly. MTV was quoted with 25M downloads in 2006, 50M in 2007 and 100M in 2008, i.e. 100% y/y growth! Also, Nielson was quoted as 11M American watched video on their mobile handsets in 2008, spending average 3 hr 42 min per month. On the Mobile TV front, Digital TV (DTV), based on ATSC, will start to be deployed later this year. I saw some excellent quality LG handsets that receive DTV video broadcasts. Qualcomm’s MediaFLO is not shying away from the competition; in fact, MediaFLO is expanding to new cities, now offering service in 68 markets across the U.S.

Some people in the industry think that WiMAX is dead, due to the economic downturn we are facing. I don’t believe so, because of three reasons. First, Clearwire had a strong presence at this show, reiterating their commitments to national deployment, emphasizing that the key issue is capacity for the U.S. market, and they’ve got huge 120 MHz of spectrum across major markets. Second, recently issued U.S. government’s economic stimulus package dedicates $7.2B for new broadband deployment across the rural U.S., which will be dominated by WiMAX solutions. There were a few rural U.S. WiMAX deployment announcements during the show, and some suppliers are promoting WiMAX as “shovel-ready” technology, meaning that it is ideal to stimulate the U.S. economy! Finally, there are lots of WiMAX deployment opportunities in the developing world, such as India, and I have heard a target of 100 new WiMAX operators this year.

Femtocells are maturing and getting ready to be deployed by major operators. Verizon, Sprint and AT&T are completing their Femto trials. Show floor had several Femtocell suppliers and demonstrations of collaborations across the industry, primarily focusing on fixed mobile convergence (FMC) theme. There were 3G, WiMAX as well as LTE versions of the Femtocells. In my mind, pricing / cost is still the major issue!

In the handset space , the most exciting things happening are with the Smartphones . Even though only 13% of the new phones were Smartphones in 2008, this number is expected to be 23% of the new phones in 2013 (which is 300M Smartphones); this represents a 95% growth over 4 years. iPhone was, no doubt, the star of the show, being mentioned by some speakers as stealing the show, or being compared to as the reference Smartphone of the industry. However there were few other interesting Smartphone developments. Palm’s Pre, which will be launched by Sprint in the coming months, looks very exciting, with its touch screen and iPhone like UI. I was told that Palm and Sprint were demonstrating Pre’s many apps to a friendly audience behind closed doors! It will be Sprint’s major opportunity to compete with AT&T’s iPhone, provided that it is offered at a reasonable price. Incidentally, Nokia was displaying the thinnest Smartphone, e71x, that is similar to Blackberry, and will be launched on AT&T network next month.

LG booth, which was one of the best booths at CTIA, had several interesting handsets, but the most elegant was the 3G touch-screen wristwatch phone GD910, with its video conferencing capability (007 style!), expected to be available later this year. Price is unknown, or secret!

One of the most interesting presentations was given by Dr. Eric Topal on how wireless technology is completely making over the way the healthcare industry operates. First, he demonstrated how wasteful and inefficient U.S. healthcare system is, and what wireless technology can / should do to personalize delivery of healthcare. He quoted wireless wrist monitors, video transmissions from ambulances to ER rooms, wireless sensors placed in the bottom of shoes, pills with wireless technology that can deposit the medicine in the specific areas of the body & activated at the prescribed times. Interestingly enough, healthcare is one of the industries that is receiving U.S. government’s economic stimulus money, and thus one of the economic bright spots in the industry.

Mobile messaging continues to be a major traffic growth area. I have heard that we have surpassed 2 Trillion mobile messages per day, globally. In the U.S., where texting was not popular until recently, over 1 Trillion text messages were sent during 2008, an unthinkable number just a few years ago! Lots of messaging companies are focusing on new applications such as mobile payments / banking, M2M apps, LBS apps, etc. However, mobile messaging is taking a new direction in the light of Facebook, MySpace, IM, Twittering, etc. I was tweeting during the CTIA show! By the way, social networking continues to be a major area of interest for mobile Internet users. Currently about 16% of most active social networking users are accessing via mobile, and this number is expected to mushroom in the coming years.

There were several Green initiatives that were in display; solar panel or fuel cell powered base stations, handsets made from recycled material, biodegradable packaging, handset recycling programs, or solar-powered chargers, etc. There were presentations from major manufacturers and operators articulating their environment-friendly green programs. However, one of the interesting award winners in the Green category was a Smartphone application from ViralMesh, called ShopGreen, that tracks and logs your eco-friendly activities. You should try it!

Finally, Al Gore was the closing day keynote speaker; as expected, it drew a large audience. His theme was smarter planet, and he emphasized that wireless industry holds the key to climate change, and could be a core element of smart grid. He acknowledged the environment-friendly steps wireless industry is taking, but ask that a lot more needs to be done. He finished with an African proverb: “if you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. We need to go far… Quickly.”

Who will bring out the first eNewspaper Reader for free?

Rupert MurdochThis week Murdoch’s News Corp. annouced that they are developing a device that would be used to read newspaper content on a large screen. Murdoch says “its time consumers started paying to read Web content.”

Mobile technology could save the ailing newspaper industry, according to Rupert Murdoch, the CEO of News Corp. and one of the world’s leading media barons. The problem is well known: Newspaper sales and advertising is declining steadily because publishers, fighting tooth and nail for eyeballs, have made most of their content available for free on the Web. Think of it as a price war where the price has dropped to zero.

Murdoch said the project is in its early software development stages, and he provided few details on what he introduced as a potential solution to the problems ailing the publishing industry. “People are used to reading everything on the net for free, and that’s going to have to change,” Murdoch said at the cable industry’s largest annual gathering in Washington, D.C.

Why News Corp. is going to the expense and hassle of developing a dedicated device when the Kindle and its rivals already exists is unclear. Today, Americans can download and read the Wall Street Journal (owned by News Corp.), for example, each day on the Kindle for $10 a month. While neither the Kindle, nor its enhanced successor, the Kindle 2, is perfect, they have been widely lauded for providing a relatively easy reading experience on an electronic device.

Moreover, Amazon is also breaking new ground with its business model. Rather than subsidising the device, as a mobile operator might do, Amazon has priced the Kindle high, but doesn’t charge for the 3G airtime needed to download new titles, so that users can typically buy publications for less than it would cost them to purchase paper copies.

Of course, Murdoch may want a device in which both the hardware and the software are highly-optimised for the delivery of breaking news, potentially pushing headlines, sports scores and other fast-changing content out to his customers as they happen. But is there really room in consumers’ pockets, handbags or brief cases for another dedicated device, especially when they cost several hundred dollars apiece?

The Question for the MOCOM 2020 community is looking into the future: When will somebody bring out the first eNewspaper Reader for free? As the Kindle is sold for few hundred dollars right now, the vision of giving away eBooks or eReaders for free or for 1 USD is not far away.

When do you think this will happen?
And would you take an eNewspaper Reader for free?

Via Dave Pring and
Total Telecom.

4G needed to avoid wireless network overload?

The surge in popularity of mobile applications and smartphones is resulting in significantly greater data consumption, which could soon push existing wireless networks to their limit.

From 2005 to 2012, mobile traffic will have increased a thousand-fold, according to a keynote address at the CTIA Wireless 2009: Mobile Life conference. A Cisco white paper predicted that usage on wireless networks would double every year for the next several years, potentially multiplying 66 times between 2008 and 2013.

“It’s hard to conceive of that type of growth—can we keep up with that type of demand?” said Benjamin Wolff, co-chairman/CEO of Clearwire Corp., which partnered with Sprint on 4G WiMax technology (see story). “We’re already having some challenges with today’s networks to keep up with consumer demand, and as an industry we have to deal this capacity crunch to avoid the threat of network overload.

“We’re seeing a huge amount of wireless data consumption, and it’s only going to go up,” he said. “Capacity is the wireless industry’s dilemma, and today’s apps and devices are just the beginning.”

Today’s smartphones use 30 times as much data as feature phones, while laptops use 450 times the data of a standard mobile phone.

The popularity of new mobile applications is driving bandwidth consumption.

Read more at Mobile Marketer.

Instant Speech Translation – Hyperspeech Transfer Protocol (HSTP)

Multi-Language Instant TranslationGiving a new dimension to the internet, the Indian research arm of the US-based IT giant IBM has developed a technology that will allow users to talk to the web and create voice sites using mobile phones.

“People will talk to the web and the web will respond. The research technology is analogous to the internet. Unlike personal computers it will work on mobile phones where people can simply create their voice sites,” IBM India Research Laboratory Associate Director Manish Gupta said.

For this technology, IBM has developed a new protocol — Hyperspeech Transfer Protocol (HSTP) — which is similar to the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).

“India now has over 360 million cell phone subscribers. Last month we added 15 million,” he said pointing out that the research technology targets ordinary mobile phone users, all of whom may not be literate.

The spoken web is a network of voice sites or interconnected voice and the response the company got in some pilot projects in Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat and the kind of innovations that people came up with were just mind-boggling, Gupta said.

Full article at Indiatimes.

Skype Application for iPhone

Skype and Apple announced the official Skype Application at CTIA 2009.

Via Cnet.com

Months after teasing us at CES with an announcement of Skype’s native VoIP client for the iPhone, the free Skype for iPhone will finally be available to download from the iTunes App Store sometime on Tuesday. We got a chance to sit down with the application’s principal engineer before the announcement was made at CTIA 2009, to see Skype for iPhone do its thing. While most of the features aren’t too surprising–Skype does want to maintain some consistency across its mobile applications, after all–there are a few capabilities that are notably missing, and a few iPhone-only perks that are refreshing to see.

skype apple iphone skype apple iphone

Motorola presents iPhone rival Evoke QA4 at CTIA 2009

Full feature phone is packed with integrated widgets, real Web browsing and IM-style messaging

Motorola today introduced Motorola Evoke QA4, a socially-inclined device with a 2.8” full touch-screen that keeps you constantly connected. Evoke supports different messaging styles with a full touch-screen QWERTY keyboard and slide out traditional keypad. Customize the home screen content with integrated widgets and personalized RSS feeds, and use the full HTML browser to share pictures, videos and more online.

“We understand the importance of having a mobile phone that helps you stay connected simply and seamlessly with your friends and family, whether you prefer to talk, text or network,” said Mark Shockley, corporate vice president and general manager, Motorola Mobile Devices. “Motorola Evoke offers the cutting-edge convenience and instant gratification of a full touch-screen, intuitive online browsing and the ability to stay plugged in on your terms.”

Whether you stay connected through phone calls, messaging, Web feeds, social networks or all of the above, Evoke meets your preferences. The device offers multiple ways to make a phone call with a physical slider keypad and intuitive dialing features on the touch-screen. Equipped with an accelerometer, turn Evoke on its side to reveal a full-touch QWERTY keyboard for easy texting1. Home screen messaging icons, predictive text and IM-style messaging1 make it easy to follow the back-and-forth of multiple conversations. Evoke also places a premium on clear and convenient communication with noise reduction technology to help lower background noise on phone calls and Bluetooth technology to keep in touch hands-free2.

It’s easy to customize Evoke and bring the content that’s important to you straight to the display. Use integrated widgets1 to access real-time information, social networking sites, and personalized RSS feeds from the Web such as weather, sports scores, stock reports, news headlines and more1. You decide which widgets appear on your home screen and which are hidden.

Use Evoke to let others feel like they’re with you as you snap pictures and record video. Fast Web connectivity lets you easily publish photos and clips taken with Evoke onto your favorite blogs and sharing sites such as Picasa 1,3. Touch the screen for instant access to a full HTML browser1 and use quick-start widgets to easily bring up popular sites such as MySpace and YouTube 1,3. Built-in integration with MySpace also lets you keep close tabs on friends and post instant updates to your profile in one easy step.

Motorola Evoke QA4 will be available in Q2 2009. For more information, product specifications and images of Evoke, please visit www.motorola.com/mediacenter/ctia2009.

1 billion mobile broadband subscribers by 2013

Earlier this week, comScore reported that daily web usage on mobile devices had doubled in the last 12 months, with nearly 22.4 million U.S. mobile users using their devices to go on the web.

Today, another research firm, Infonetics Research reported that despite the global economic downturn, the demand for mobile broadband is only going increase. They expect that there will be more than 1 billion mobile broadband users by 2013 vs. 210.5 million at the end of 2008. These are connections that use 3G technologies such as W-CDMA, HSPA, CDMA 2000 and EVDO. The sales of mobile broadband PC cards (and embedded 3G modules) were around $4.1 billion in 2008 and show no signs of slowing down.

Mobile Broadband Development 2007, 2008, 2009, 2013

Net-net, this is good news for mobile carriers, which raked in $49.8 billion in mobile broadband revenues in 2008. Infonetics predicts that these revenues will grow, percentage-wise, in the double digits over the next 5 years. In-Stat says that at the end of 2008 there were only 11% of worldwide wireless subscriptions were 3G but by the end of 2013, the percentage of 3G and 4G subscriptions will reach 30%.

If that is the case, then companies like AT&T need to improve their network quality. Right now, buying a 3G from AT&T is like buying a confiscated car in an auction lot: You just don’t know what you’re going to get.

Wireline versus Wireless or Mobile

This mobile broadband growth is creating lot of opportunities for the entire wireless food chain, from interesting applications for Apple’s iPhone to backhaul equipment providers to equipment makers like Cisco Systems and Ericsson.

According to In-Stat, there were 132 announced deployments in the fourth quarter of 2008, consisting of 95 HSPA, 18 WCDMA, 12 mobile WiMAX, six CDMA EV-DO, and one TD SCDMA.