Speaker: Ralph Kunz, vp of multimedia experience, Nokia
The highlight of Kunzâ€™s presentation was a demonstration of his map-search enabled phone. The phone is GPS and navigation enabled, allowing users to pin-point their location, find nearby locations and get navigation directions.
“We believe there is an opportunity to change the rules of the game,” Kunz said.
Initially, the application will be available on high-end Nokia phones, but next year Nokia will start releasing low and mid-range phones with the mapping system.
In a year, Nokia expects to have 180 million devices in market.
Kunz’s talk in a large part a pitch to yellow page providers to partner with Nokia to supply content and advertising to the application.
Nokiaâ€™s maps will feature sponsored icons and advertising information related to location-based businesses and services.Â Nokia also expects users to generate location-specific content, such as restaurant reviews and feedback.
In 2007, there will be 3 billion mobile devices in the world. Just a year ago, industry experts predicted the 3 billion mark wouldnâ€™tÂ be surpassed until 2010.Â With price reductions, weâ€™re seeing bigger market penetration.
And more people are expecting their phones to be more than phones. For example, sales of digital cameras peaked in 2006.Â As digital camera phones improve, people are replacing separate cameras with the phones.
Kunz said the same thing is starting to happen with MP3 players.
In a survey of Nokia S60 yeas, 51 percent said they want map-based search.
Nokia’s new app is pre-installed on phones and gives users the ability to rapidly find information and locations.
Nokia is seeing 26 percent month-over-month growth in search queries, and 65 percent of users click on map links from search results.
Most maps applications today sit on a server and stream map panels to browsers and mobile devices. With the Nokia device, the maps and information will be stored on the client devices, so that users can access map information even when they are not connected to the network.
“We are interesting in providing a platform for content partners.”
“Branded content is important to get people lured in.”