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weThink Podcast: June 17, 2011

, Aug. 25, 2011

Advertising on tablets, virtual currency, photo-sharing apps, cloud gaming and more were the topics for discussion in this edition of Resource Interactive’s weThink podcast.

Is it Interesting?

The “Is it Interesting” segment kicked off the podcast with a chat about a virtual currency theft and Facebook’s rumored mobile platform and photo-sharing apps.

  • Facebook may develop a mobile platform: Early rumors suggest that the social networking giant is planning to launch a mobile platform codenamed Project Spartan, with one goal being to take on Apple in the mobile app market. The panel thought it was interesting that Facebook may use HTML5 to distribute web-based applications to its nearly 700 million global users. However, they didn’t think it was necessarily a challenge to Apple’s existing app distribution system.
  • Facebook developing a photo-sharing app: The Palo Alto-based social network is already the most popular photo-sharing site—more than 100 million photos get uploaded daily—but Facebook may be creating a service that rivals apps such as Instagram, Color, Liveshare and others. The panel said this development has the chance to be interesting, but questioned whether the alleged photo application would offer the options consumers have come to expect from photo-sharing apps.
  • Bitcoin has its first major theft: A user of the peer-to-peer, virtual currency recently had 25,000 Bitcoins stolen. That’s equal to nearly $500,000 U.S. Since Bitcoins are traded through a decentralized, anonymous network, it’s nearly impossible to identify the thief or get the currency returned. The panel found this interesting, but didn’t think it would be a major hindrance to the future of regulated virtual currency.

The Future of Advertising on Tablets

As tablet use continues to increase, it’s critical for brands to get a handle on how this new medium will help them connect with customers. Forecasts suggest that 55 million and 81 million tablets will sell in 2011 and 2012 respectively. As the number of consumers embracing tablets grows, so to do the opportunities for brands to deliver relevant targeted messaging.

MasterCard partnered with Wired Magazine to create a sponsored section in the publication’s June iPad edition. This section allows consumers to read Wired’s ratings of various gadgets and click through to buy them from Amazon. The panel considered this a great addition to not just Everywhere Commerce, but also a peek into the future of tablet advertising.

Soon digital advertising as a whole—from banners and mobile ads to in-app features and videos—will be more relevant to consumers. This means brands will give consumers messaging that’s local, social, personal, transactional and motivational. The podcast experts discussed how these relevant and dynamic ads will decrease in number but increase in effectiveness, boosting consumer engagement and completely changing the way we shop.

Picks of the Week

Matthew: OnLive is a service that uses cloud computing to deliver on-demand gaming to PCs, Macs, TVs and mobile devices. Regardless of a game’s native platform, OnLive passes the game experience on to end users without the need for disks or hardware.

Dan: The Ping iPing app is Ping’s free app that works with an iPhone or iPod Touch cradle ($30) by attaching to a golfer’s putter. Using the device’s gyroscope and accelerometer, the app identifies a player’s stroke type, analyzes impact angle and measures tempo to establish a putting handicap.

Barce: The life-size, pinball machine skateboard park. New Zealand Mountain Dew built a 600-square foot pinball machine to promote the launch of three new flavors. The park treats the skater or BMXer as the ball and allows them to earn points—displayed on a backboard—by doing tricks on tunnels, ramps, flippers and bumpers.

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