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Microsoft word overseas trends a key influence in the development of mobile apps in australia - shane williamson


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Marketing IQ interviews Shane Williams about the challenges associated with the
development of mobile apps, and how the Australian market compares in
contrast with other countries in the way that mobile devices and applications are
being used.

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Microsoft word overseas trends a key influence in the development of mobile apps in australia - shane williamson

  1. 1. Overseas trends a key influence in the development of Mobile Apps in Australia Q&A with Shane Williamson, Co-Founder of Mobile Monday Sydney, M. App Con 2011Mobile applications for smartphones and mobile handsets such as iphones,BlackBerry, Nokia, Google Android, ipad or Windows Mobile devices are thefastest growing marketing channel for businesses across all industries inAustralia at the moment.Marketing IQ interviews Shane Williams about the challenges associated with thedevelopment of mobile apps, and how the Australian market compares incontrast with other countries in the way that mobile devices and applications arebeing used.Marketing IQ: What are some challenges you are facing when it comes to theissue of identifying the best resources of internal or external development ofmobile app?Shane: Well, I guess, for organisations this can be something that can be a bit ofa barrier and I guess it’s something that’s very important for organisations tounderstand that a lot of this thinking is already internal within their organisation,within their IT department, especially with what they’re looking at doing online.So the first thing I’d say is – that organisations should evaluate what their currentonline strategies are and then try to bring mobile in alignment with that. That isgoing to help them to understand whether or not that they need to bring in third-party resources for developing mobile applications or mobile sites where they’renot utilising the existing expertise they have internally to build that. So really it’sgoing to come down to the strategy they have around IT and how they’re lookingforward with that and how they’re going to implement mobile.Marketing IQ: How can a company successfully identify providers to develop amobile app that meets specific requirements?Shane: Well, again, I guess this is something that they hopefully would alreadyhave a strategy around how they’re working with customers online and that is a 1
  2. 2. great place to start. They can then start to verify the level of functionality thatthey want to work with customers. Mobile is an extension of online, whilst it doeshave some various components that can be used where we can’t use that online,it’s important to sort of start off a main core level of where we already have thatinteraction with customers and start with it. So when we’re looking at identifyingpotential partners or provided that we can use it there, I guess, one of theimportant things to see is - is there a track record with that organisation?One of the things we’ve noticed with working with mobile applications with what’sgoing to pass with online is that we’ve been here before so it’s important to workwith partners who understand the online environment quite well and then to lookat their track record in what they’ve done. Now this should again come backdown to the strategy you have with online of how you see that you are going totest working with customers or working with your staff inside the organisation withmobile applications and services, and then how you can sort of then take that tothe next level. Therefore you might actually look at working with multipleproviders.Marketing IQ: How does the Australian market compare in contrast with othercountries in the way that mobile device and applications are being used rightnow?Shane: Well, good news here is that there are other countries that are actuallyleading a little bit with how they’re actually using mobile and that’s a great thingfor Australia. That means that we can actually see some of these trends andhow a mobile is being used both with applications and online components andthen specific countries we can then use that to develop our own mobile strategieswithin organisations in Australia. So in particular, when we look at the marketaround mobile, a lot of the advanced countries that use mobile have beenspecifically around parts of Asia, in particular Japan and Korea, and when welook at Europe mainly northern European countries like Sweden and Norway. Sowe can take advantage of looking of where they’ve already been in developmentand used in applications and we can bring some of those learnings into Australia.Now, America for a long time was actually lagging behind in what was happeningin mobile but they have started to take advantage of the new technologiesaround mobile, specifically 3G and the new 4G that’s just been announcedrecently. So we’re actually starting to see some very strong headway in Americain how they’re using mobile. So in the end, it comes down to how we look atspecific country, see the likenesses within our own countries and then we canthen target specific strategies from the things we’ve seen already taking placeoverseas. 2
  3. 3. Marketing IQ: Will mobile applications be a long term marketing channel or arethey a current trend phenomenon?Shane: Well, I guess I wouldn’t be in a job if I said it was just a trend, but no, thisis definitely a long-term marketing channel. So, one of the things that I consultwith companies about is bringing mobile into the mainstream IT strategy that theycurrently have within the organisation. Again I use the example of when theinternet first started to come out and companies started to look at that, they wererelying very heavily on third-parties to develop that for them but they realised thatit became a crucial partner in their intellectual property, and they brought both thehosting of the infrastructure as well as the processes around what they did onlineinternally within that company; and mobile really should be seeing that.Mobile within a company has two different areas. One is how the organisation isusing it to better their business processes; and then secondly, how you’re usingthat with how you’re working and communicating with your customers. So, it’simportant that it’s seen as a strategic component of what they’re currently doingnow and how they’re going to benefit from both the technology and the trendsthat are coming out from it.Marketing IQ: What security issues do you currently face with your mobile appand how can these be resolved?Shane: Well, we’re not seeing a lot of issues around security. But we can see asit becomes more popular that this would be something that will become an issue.So, there are a lot of different ways in which we can ensure the security and alsofrom how we are using them internally within organisation to how we’re workingwith our customers. I guess the key thing her is that it’s not new, it’s somethingthat has been around for quite a long time of how we ensure both the data aswell the connectivity, and once again we’ve seen a lot of this already in the onlinerealm and this is something that we can take advantage of and bring towards into the mobile.So, we are seeing a lot of great progress around how we can ensure that peoplewho are using the mobile will be safe both in their accessing applications orstoring their information on websites, back into ensuring that organisations thattheir data is safe and how they’re exposing that through a mobile interface aswell. So, we take advantage of a lot of the existing security business processesand technologies that we take for granted online today. 3
  4. 4. Shane Williamson has worked in both the information technology and mobile industries in various technical, marketing, strategy and management roles. Shane’s extensive experience has included roles within the South Pacific and South East Asian regions, working for companies such as Microsoft, 3 Australia and Optus. Shane is the co-founder of the Sydney chapter of Mobile Monday ( MobileMonday Sydney is a monthly mobile industry networking event that has been inoperation since 2006.Convergence and innovation of mobile technologies are Shane’s passions andhe has established a Blog called Universal Convergence to publish his findingsand articles written on these subjects and discuss them with the globalcommunity. 4