Interesting stuff from Korea

At the conferences I attended in Seoul, I came across a number of things that were worth a mention on here that I wanted to do a roundup of.  Sadly, there’s little information available for alot of them in English but they’re still good ideas and hopefully you can get a taste of them from this.

- Minfo: http://wap.minfo.com

Not alot to see here if your device can’t render Chinese and you’re not searching for Chinese content but these guys are big time leaders in the mobile search field, a space where I think we can’t assume any one incumbant company is going to win.  Minfo have a service that can be accessed via browser, text, donwloadable client, and IM and are innovating around the way search-based ads are being delivered in this space.  This is their English-language informational site.

 

- Bicon: http://www.mybicon.com/

This was a cool content-neutral portal for dragging and dropping widgets onto and off of your mobile.  There were a few of these types of thing on show and looked like they could really make for a smoother user-experience for users if they became widespread.

- Fantalog IB: http://fantalog.com/en/pas/pas_02.php?g=02

Internet broswer for mobile that claims to handle ‘full-fat’ web pages more smoothly than others and with a better user interface.  There are quite a few mobile web browsers around (which I find exciting – like the early days of the desktop web!) and I think it will be interesting to see how long it is before they handle ‘mobile web’ and ‘desktop web’ pages in a way that’s seamless and invisible to the users.

- Phonetoshop:

I couldn’t find an English-language site for this software but it was a client that allowed users to do basic video editing right on their phones.  Its probably not ready for primetime yet, but shows that its only a matter of time before people start not only capturing media on the move but also doing more serious production with it.  Interesting to me both from the point of view for using it to allow journalists and professional producers to produce stuff in the field really easily as much as it from a user-generated-content point of view.  I saw users using DVRs on their mobiles to record mobile TV and then send it to their friends so the ability to take video, mash it up, edit it, etc and share it couldn’t be far off.

 

- HOVR – http://www.hovr.com

These guys are using social-networking business models to create a better experience for accessing mobile games – namely that they’re free.

 

- Phone Braver (Keitai Sousakan) 7: http://k-tai7.jp/index2.html

I nearly exploded when I first found out about this – only to find out it wasn’t QUITE as real as I’d initially imagined.  I thought it was a mobile, meets action figure/robot, meets cross-platform content.  From what I could understand this was a mobile that was marketed as a Transformer-like character that had a TV show.  Turns out it was just a toy and not a real mobile, but still a great idea (like so many – if they were real).

The toy:

Clip of the programme:

 

And another with very surreal adult themes/political quotes and a talking cardboard dog – provided purely because it was so wierd:

 

- UFOTown – http://www.ufotown.com/

I wasn’t able to figure out exactly what this was but its designed to be a portal that allows celebrities and fans a means of texting each via a mobile/web portal.  Neat way of using mobile messaging to create hype around talent, if I understand it correctly.

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