Archive for the ‘Mobile 2.0’ category

1st TrendSlam a great success!

October 20, 2006

TrendSlam LogoCongratulations to Monty and his team for organizing the 1st TrendSlam in history. A well attended event of top media experts and entrepreneurs was challenged to present in exactly 5min their ideas, trends and thoughts about the future in “new media”. Top speakers at this well attended event were i.e. Felix Petersen from Plazes, Anina and Florian Forster from Fon (have you seen their recent announcement to give away routers free-of-charge?), who all presented a compelling story and value proposition. The next TrendSlam is supposed to take place in New York with a focus on US trends. Well done all together!

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Debitel launches Mobile TV offering for €9.95 per month

June 2, 2006

According to various sources, Debitel has launched a mobile TV offering in cooperation with MFD. MFD, a young German start-up has managed to secure a nationwide DMB license earlier this year. Now, Debitel is on air with a €9.95 / month package with four channels (Pro7Sat1 Channel, MTV, N24 and ZDF) in Berlin, Cologne, Frankfurt, Munich and Stuttgart. Other cities to follow during the Worldcup.

Takeaway: A new, exciting area has started for German consumers! At least for some – for the time being! As the only commercial handset available in the market currently is the SGH-P900 from Samsung which requires a €199 contract with Debitel.

Recommendation: This major milestone in the history of mobile TV will provide a lot of opportunities for young, nimble start-ups which will fill the various promising niches between the two major parties (mobile operators; content providers). MFD is a very good example of a young start-up challenging the traditional contenders. I am sure, we will see more of these in other related mobile TV areas….

German MNO Alliance for Mobile TV

May 29, 2006

What a big bang announcement! T-Mobile, Vodafone, O2 and e-Plus have announced a cooperation to deliver 14 TV Channels and 2 Radio Channels based on the DVB-H Standard.

Takeaway: This is a big move in the overall mobile TV landscape. So far, only young and motivated start-ups (MFD, etc.) have started to set-up their own programs and channels on i.e. DMB. This recent German alliance of the four leading MNOs is a big move, which could change the still nascent mobile TV landscape dramatically here. It remains to be seen, if this alliance is flexible enough to deliver on its promises or if small start-ups are more nimble than the big ones.

Jajah moves HQ to Silicon Valley

February 23, 2006

An interesting Austrian start-up called Jajah has been making a lot of traction and “noise” in the VoIP market. Some people are calling it already Skype 2.0 as the company positions itself “JAJAH introduces global VoIP telephony between normal landline and mobile phones – without software download, installation process and headsets.” and a potential successor to the acquired and no-longer independent Skype.

Rumors over the last few months have indicated a recent financing by a top tier silicon valley VC (Sequioa). Now the recent announcement on their web-site to move headquarters to the US and establish European HQ in Luxemburg (Skype model!) is a clear indication for funding by a top-tier West-coast VC. If so, well done guys!

Takeaway: Jajah and its couragous management is a great example for a European / Austrian company in the emerging VoIP space. Like Skype, Jajah might join the ranks of successful European start-ups in this space.

Recommendations: Watch out for more start-ups in this space. VoIP is hot and innovation – this time – (also) comes from Europe!

Neomedia snaps up 12Snap – Munich based start-up

February 16, 2006

NeoMedia has purchased the mobile phone marketing agency 12Snap established in 1999 for about $22M. According to various sources, more money has flown into this venture than was delivered back to the investors.

Takeaway: Mobile marketing is a booming market. Still early stage, many companies have struggled over the last 5 years to develop a value proposition for their clients. Only recently, consumers, agencies and brands are picking up on mobile marketing and some start-ups are growing successfully. The future looks bright but still might take some time to come…

Dialog Imaging Systems receives EUR22.25M First Round

February 15, 2006

Eur 22.5M have been invested into DIS. The company “makes camera modules for mobile phones which will aim to offer the same superior quality as stand-alone digital cameras. The company’s 41 employees located near Stuttgart, Germany, and at Clinton in the USA will be lead by Roland Pudelko, former CEO of Dialog Semiconductor” according to a recent press announcement.

Takeaway: Camera enabled phones are booming at the moment. Pixel resolution is rising and is already hitting the 5-7 Megapixel threshold, making them a 1:1 competitor to classical digital cameras.

Google And Skype Join forces with Serial Entrepreneur to form FON Web Start-Up

February 9, 2006

What another bolt move by serial entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky. After establishing several leading start-ups such as Ya.com or Jazztel, he has now started his next “big thing” FON.  As he has demonstrated recently at the DLD conference here in Munich, he is a great visionary! And getting top tier investors and supporters on board deserves a lot or respect.

Takeaway: I am curious to see how Martin is going to execute on this. First, there is already a large community of free Wi-Fi spots in public places, which users can use free of charge. Secondly, I wonder how FON will convince the ISPs – especially the major ones such as T-Online etc. – to cooperate with FON. Their user agreements usually do not allow their users to open up their internet connections to other parties.

Recommendation: VoIP is still a hot topic and I am confident that we will see many various business models and variations going forward of this revolutionary technology.