Are content providers ready for Vodafone’s HTC Magic?

With the release of Vodafone’s HTC Magic last week, Keynote Systems has asked if content providers are ready to provide the apps and content that this and other Android-based smartphones require.

Last Friday, Vodafone launched the second Google phone in the UK, the HTC Magic. The Magic went on sale to Vodafone customers in the UK, Germany, Spain and France, and non-exclusively in Italy.

The number of Android-based smartphones should multiply in the months to come with T-Mobile announcing the launch of its second Android based phone and Samsung also set to launch its Android based I7500 in the near future, said Keynote. These devices are set to provide serious competition for Apple’s iPhone which has a strong foothold in the UK market. More than one million devices have been sold in the UK, and the phone has even claimed the title of O2’s fastest selling device in the carrier’s history.

The emergence of these smartphones, which facilitate internet access, stimulate the mobile market and present new economic opportunities for all members of the mobile ecosystem (operators, content providers, advertisers) also present a huge challenge, especially where performance is concerned; how do you ensure a user experience that is as good as that on a fixed line to users who can connect anytime and anywhere?

Martin Stern, regional manager at Keynote Systems for the UK and Ireland, Middle East and South Africa, stated: “Today, the mobile internet needs to be an integral part of web players’ strategy if they want to attract and retain new internet users who have a very different way of consuming the web. Attractive mobile content, the ability to work across every mobile model, and great ergonomics are all vital for success in this fast growing, competitive market, but this alone is not enough.

“Even more so than with the traditional web, availability and response times play a major role in the popularity and adoption of new mobile services,” continued Stern. “The mobile phone is a very personal object and synonymous with reliability and immediacy. The quality of the end user experience will be the determining factor of the winners and losers in the mobile market. Apple has long understood this; let’s hope that with Android, the mobile manufacturers, content providers and providers of other associated services will be able to do just as well, if not better.”