Tag: iphone

How fun is the Web really?

Digital Strategy12 Comments

To me, it’s plenty fun but at lunch with my friend Steve Culgan (@sculgan), we discussed what effects new technologies like Twitter, smartphones and the iPad have on people’s attention and our ability to just enjoy ourselves.

As Steve put it, the sheer volume of information and content that we are exposed to has the potential to make us more neurotic. Instead of being able to focus on just one thing (say, TV), there are now multiple channels competing for our attention. Rarely do we ever simply watch TV. For example, right now I am watching Algeria vs Slovenia on TV while writing this post on a laptop and checking Twitter on an iPhone.

The Argument

The argument is that we are no longer able to live in the moment. Obsessive checking of Twitter and the feeling that you might be missing out on something only contribute to this growing neurosis. The problem is further exacerbated when you take into account the amount of noise when your followers grow.

Our ability to enjoy ourselves diminishes as we constantly worry that there could be something else we could doing.

My counter, however, is that while the tools have the potential to disrupt our lives (let alone our brain patterns), human beings are incredibly adaptable.

Just take a look at a typical high school kid. They are growing up in a world where these technologies and multitasking are the norm. They’ve figured out how to juggle all these competing media and still have a good time.

The Challenge

The challenge is for my generation and older who haven’t always had this in our lives and aren’t quite as adept at the whole multitasking thing.

We must know our limits and how much we can handle before it’s too much. As a parent, there is an opportunity to cost to being constantly plugged in. Family-time means giving them my full attention (or at least a close approximation of it) – not being constantly distracted checking-in or posting status updates. When it’s just me, I’m free to do as I please whether it be playing PS3, blogging, tweeting or generally wasting time online.

The point is, you must accept that there are some things you’re going to miss out on. The beauty of something like Twitter and social media is that the cream will rise to the top. Following the right people or subscribing to the right feeds gives me the confidence that if it’s important enough, I’m going to hear about it.

How do you go juggling multiple media devices? Does something have to give or can you do it all?

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Why the iPad will change everything

Digital Strategy6 Comments

Despite already having twice as many computers (including smart phones) than there are people in my house, I’ve still managed to find a place for an ipad.

While it’s true that it doesn’t offer anything truly revolutionary (it is, arguably, a giant ipod touch), it is how it is packaged and the benefits of having a bigger screen that are what makes it indispensable for me.

Here’s why:

The screen is drop dead gorgeous. Nothing looks quite as good as it does on an ipad. Tweetdeck, Wired, even Keynote and Pages.

It’s a great in-between device. For those times (such as this short business trip, where I’m writing this) when you don’t necessarily need the grunt of a laptop or desktop but need something more functional than a mobile phone.

It blends the focused nature of using iphone apps with an infinitely friendlier user-interface. Anyone who’s used an iphone will feel right at home, even if you haven’t it is just so simple and intuitive to use.

Did I mention how sexy it was?

Browsing or in fact doing anything on an ipad is a more communal experience than doing it in front of a computer. Within minutes of firing up the New York Times free app, my wife and my mum were huddled around me interacting with the screen, discussing articles of interest.

The size is just right for so many occassions. On the flight back to Adelaide, for instance, it was so much easier maneuvering an ipad than a laptop with a screen large enough to properly enjoy videos and work on a couple of documents.

Transitioning from one app to another is totally seamless. Waiting at the boarding gate, I could switch from Twitter, to Safari, emailing a link to a colleague and back to watching a video someone sent me without really breaking stride.

Finally, as Craig Wilson puts it, the ipad is a total media convergence.

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Launching the iPad: A Marketing Perspective

Digital Strategy, Social Media19 Comments

apple-ipadWith the interwebs (especially Twitter) all aflutter over the launch of the Apple’s latest technological marvel, the iPad, I thought it would be timely to post my reactions. However, instead of passing judgment on a device that I am yet to get my hands on (hint, hint Apple reps), I thought it would be fun to look at the launch from an entirely different perspective.

First of all, this is not the first Apple product unveiling I have borne witness to. I was there (well, not actually there, but aware of it anyway) when Steve Jobs announced the iPod, iTunes, the switch to Intel chips and the original iPhone. Yet somehow, the hype leading up to those pales in comparison to the amount of speculation and praise that has been heaped on the iPad in the weeks and months leading up to Jan 27. It was hardly surprising that Mac Fanbois, spurred on no doubt by Steve Jobs own comments,  claimed that the then-unnamed Apple tablet was going to be a “game changer”, but then so too did the mainstream press who heralded it as ushering in a new era of computing, entertainment, media, etc.  all before the device had even be released.

While it might turn out to be a game changer, my first impressions are that it is nowhere near the giant leap forward that the iPhone, iTunes or even the iMac were. To me, those three did more to revolutionise how we think about mobile phones, music and the computers place in the home.

ipad_2

Irrespective of whether the iPad lives up to the hype, full marks must go to Apple’s marketing team for another outstanding product launch. They have leveraged the reach and power of internet (not to mention the brand’s mystique) to ramp the rumour mill into overdrive by saying, well, very little. Instead of shouting about it, they leaked snippets of information and essentially left their fans and industry analysts to let their imaginations run wild.

Next time you think about putting out another piece of collateral telling consumers how great you are, stop and ask yourself if you are saying more than you need to. Too much and you run the risk of painting yourself into a corner and alienating potential customers. Not enough and they won’t know what you’re about. While chances are you don’t have the same brand cache and fervent fan base as Apple, it is worth considering how much detail you need to put out there to tantalise your audience and to know what will get them excited.

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Seth Godin is an app!

Uncategorized1 Comment

Seth Godin’s blog is an essential part of my daily routine. It provides me with the inspiration and fuel to help me creatively tackle the business and marketing problems I encounter every day in my work.

Because Seth is such a prolific writer and I want to be able to access his content as it becomes available. So I subscribe to his email alerts and the RSS feed.

I also paraphrase Seth a lot. However, since my memory isn’t what it used to be I sometimes get bits wrong.

Fortunately, he’s got a free new iphone app for his blog that means I can accurately quote him instead of relying on my porous memory.

Seth Godin App

(Oh, and Happy New Year y’all!)

Seth’s original post
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