Monday, March 25, 2013

6 Reasons WHY Feature Phones need some loving too (Building reach for digital content via feature phones)

"Think about feature phones, they need some loving too ... " I heard this over presentations by Digi and AIS in the 2010 AppXchange Asia event. Granted 3 years have elapsed since the event and all the spotlight these days are given to impressive numbers of smartphones and tablets replacing feature phone users, there are strong reasons for us to think about feature phones and why they need some loving.

(1) Market for feature phones still overwhelm smartphones today

(2) Innovation in Mobile Internet Services had existed with feature phones, way before smartphones

(3) My First Internet, My First Email in emerging markets happened with Nokia (Ovi) feature phones
  • Nokia Ovi services which was launched 28 August 2008 (disclosure: I was managing the Nokia Ovi services for Southeast Asia then), provided a number of emerging markets globally with their first Internet, and first email experience.
  • A suite of mobile internet services - contents and calendars sync, photo and video sharing, files sync across PC and mobile, maps and navigation, mobile music, mobile social gaming and mobile apps downloads (sound familiar?) were made available already in those earlier years, to users of Nokia feature and Symbian phones (in those days, the N-series (with Maps, Mobile TV services etc), E-series (Push email, mobile device management and PIM sync services) as well as the iconic Nokia Communicator were the smartphones).
  • Nokia Life Tools, a sms-based information subscription service for the emerging markets (China, India, Indonesia, Nigeria etc), with more than 95 million users to date, has provided agricultural, educational, healthcare and entertainment service offerings to Nokia feature phone users.

(4) eBooks are thriving and growing with feature phones

(5) Social chat messaging is also gaining support and growing via feature phones

(6) Cloud will enable "smart" feature phones

Well, 2 more areas to look out at for feature phones are in mobile social gaming with Migg33 (huge in Indonesia, South Africa etc) and mobile advertising (Buzzcity).

Are you convinced yet on the why feature phones today still need some loving attention if businesses are looking to grow and expand their mobile internet business globally?

Let's engage,
Nelson Wee
LinkedIn Profile:
Twitter: @nelsonwee

Photo credit: vernieman / / CC BY

1 comment:

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