Monday, May 29

A static, un-mobile way to get mobile downloads

What do you do if you have an under developed mobile infrastructure and a nation of young, trendy mobile phone users? You improvise.

Mobile gaming is a fairly new phenomemon in Vietnam and due to various technical limitations, downloading "on-air" is limited. So, as you would expect, budding entrepreneurs have found a way to get the content to you. And it's distinctly non-mobile.

Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) is the cafe capital of the world. So what better way to provide content to a captive audience. I sat in a cafe sipping my 'ca phe sua da' (Iced Coffee) whilst browsing a catalogue of ringtones, wallpapers, applications, videos and games.

When you see something you like, call the waitress and pass her your phone. Ten minutes later, just as the ice is beggining to melt faster than I can drink the coffee, my Samsung reappears. Freshly installed with some cool games and a wallpaper of a manga character.

It's not mobile as we know it, but it's civilised, cheap and low on hassle. Perhaps something for Starbucks to think about.


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