Wednesday, December 13, 2006

MoSoSo market taking off or just lurching forward?

Last few weeks were very active for MoSoSo, and specifically mobile social networking. Major players jumped into the space, suggesting that the market is taking off ?

The highlights are:

1. leaked news about a MySpace - Cingular deal,
2. Oz communications (a leader in preloading mobile IM/Email clients) announced a mobile social networking client ( an aggregator approach, a smart move if you ask me).
3.Video Codezone going up fo sale, => 800K ( a bit low for the 3rd most popular myspace video site, could it be due to the fact that myspace blacklisted them?)
4. the results of MoJungle's auction on Ebay. => They had multiple interested parties and decided to break up the Co to sell the slices separately, raising the value. I wonder what they hope to get in total ?
5. And clearly the Verizon- YouTube deal ( as well as the Verizon-Revver deal) are moving user generated video content to mobile quickly.

Im not going to go into detail about previously existing mososo start ups like: Umundo, nakama, treemo, rabble, juicecaster, mocospace, jumbuck island, veeker, fotochatter etc.

All of the above mentioned moves by tier 1 operators and leading social networks/UGC (User Generated Content) services moving into the market is going to start a wave that will turn into a rush to mobilize. The Billions of networked handsets are really that much more of a valuable market then the 700 + million web enabled PCs. Although currently mobile social networks are just a "niche" add on service right now, i think that we will see the owning the mobile platforms will become more important than the PC in the years to come for this space.

However in the current "niche" of mobile social networking start ups, no one has broken through unlike the PC based MySpace "Add On" services (VideoCodezone, RockYou, Photobucket, etc.". This means that there is undoubtedly an opportunity for companies that can provide the "bridge" or "glue" between the existing online PC communities and Operators ( or other mobile consumer touchpoints). The trick however is to manage to position your offering to sit in the center of multiple social networks, thus braking the dependence on another Co ( a bad spot to be in). Like all of the existing PC "Add Ons" that have any success according to Mashable Labs, the mobile add on must sit in the middle of the user traffic for multiple sites. Multiple integration issues need to be solved.

So i think the Social Networking market is beginning its "wave" to mobilize. However it remains to be determined exactly which consumer touchpoints will offer mobile social networking offerings, and which companies choose to develop their own "bridge" to the mobile experience or partner with 3rd parties. A 3rd party who is to be successful in this space must resolve a series of interoperability and integration issues for supporting multiple leading communities.

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