24 October 2008

Mobile Internet World was tiny!

I swung by the Yankee Group's Mobile Internet World show in Boston yesterday to check out what was going on. Google's Rich Miner, the head of the Android effort, was doing a Q&A at 2 pm, so I figured I'd see what folks were asking him and check out the vendors on the show floor.

The show was tiny! Boston has two convention centers and when I arrived at the BCEC, things were so quiet that I was worried I was at the wrong one. I eventually wended my way to the back corner where the show was being held and found the show floor. There were only a couple of dozen vendors present and only three of those had anything other than the tiny pipe and drape style displays. I bumped into Derek Speed who I knew from Digital Semiconductor showing off the Moblin SDK for Intel, which was fun, but other than that it was pretty disappointing.

There were perhaps 80-100 people at the Google Q&A (or about 25-30% of the turnout that they had for their developer day in Cambridge last year). In addition to Rich Miner, they also had Justin Mattson from their developer program there to answer questions.

Nothing earthshaking was revealed in the Q&A. Rich said that the early reviews from the media were at the high end of the range of what he thought was possible. He was also pleased with the T-Mobile pre-sales. As for futures, he thought they could do a better job with integrated search (phone + web) and multi-modal search (voice), but didn't say anything about when/if that would be improved.

One thing that I missed before was that the App Market popularity would be computed on both downloads and usage, so they must be uploading usage stats. Rich said there was no plan to expand the app market to content types other than apps because it wasn't a profit center for them.

If they have the show again, I'll definitely look more carefully at the exhibitors list before deciding whether it's worth even an hour or two.

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