Monday, September 17, 2007
Utterz: speak your blog entry
1.8 billion people on this planet have mobile phones. Finland*, Italy, UK, Sweden and Hong Kong have already exceeded 100% market penetration and the Chinese wireless mobile market is expected to grow by 65% through 2010. Even though globally, after rising by an average of 25% in 2004, 2005 and 2006, the over all mobile phone subscriber growth is expected to decelerate in 2007, mobile phones are being used for new purposes every day, including for blogging and social networking.
While some companies are already doing their best to capitalize on the increasing popularity of this Mobile 2.0 phenomenon mobile phones are becoming more significant as internet connectivity devices as they now allow not just consuming of the content but also producing it. Even Linux based phones are becoming more popular with over 20 million units.
Podcast voice messages directly from your phone
Taking my first steps as a mobile phone blogger recently I bumped into this mashable.com article by Kristen Nicole reviewing a new mobile blogging platform named Utterz. I have heard about and done some mobile blogging. It's pretty obvious that if people send so many sms messages to each other they can also send messages directly to their blog, making them walking bloggers. But Utterz take this idea one step further. They allow you to podcast voice messages directly from your phone. now that is cool.
The Utterz stream was implemented similarly to the way it was done by the Twitter guys, only, naturally, they made it smaller and obtained support for spoken blog entries, appearing as audio files as part of your stream.
Having a Utterz account you can call 712-432-Mooo any time and speak your mind, voice an opinion or share a joke with the rest of the members. When you are "tongue-tied" you can just txt your messages to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also post mixed messages of voice, video and text and Utterz 's system will put them together for you. Simply snap some with your cell and send them to email@example.com.
Must be a 10 digit US phone number
Utterz is first of all a blogging platform and as such they understand most bloggers wehere not invented just for them. Thus they managed to make themselves "blogger friendly" and provide a nice collection of widgets for their users to plug-into existing networks, including custom made widgets for TypePad, Blogger (blogspot), Xanga, MySpace, LiveJournal and Facebook.
While trying to join the party I got this message saying "Must be a 10 digit US phone number". Na... I checked and found that Utterz is kept free because they "have relationships with phone companies to get a small portion of what you are paying your cell phone company for your calling plan". This business model is interesting but it also limits expansion ratio and on top of everything is somewhat non-compatible with the Internet spirit of a limitless borderless environment.
Anyway, its not everyone's problem that I am an Israeli so bottom line I would say Utterz is one more step for mankind but I hope someone at the high windows of the Utterz building will listen to my cry and get a deal done with my mobile service provider (that would be Cellcom, Israel) as soon as possible.
* Edit 22:45 GMT+2: Leena, a proud Finnish and an avid Conceptis Addict adds that no matter how figures are interpreted, Finland is the world's leading country in terms of mobile phone penetration levels. Sorry for missing that important figure and thanks Leena!