Focused app bundling could revolutionise tablets
We often discuss books or TV shows. Do we spend a lot of time discussing the material the the paper is made of or the kind of silicon used in the TV screen? N Madhavan writes.india Updated: Aug 28, 2011 23:08 IST
We often discuss books or TV shows. Do we spend a lot of time discussing the material the the paper is made of or the kind of silicon used in the TV screen? Yet, I find it baffling that there is so much time being devoted to discussing smartphones and tablet PCs without much speaking on what we are actually doing with it.
I recently came across an iPhone application for those who want to learn tabla. On my own Nokia handset, I started - two years after I bought it - using an "app" that helps me know the weather in various world cities. Applications or apps abound in the emerging universe of digital lifestyles. We need to focus a bit more on them.
A year or so ago, I had coined the term "app-phone" to emphasise gadgets that are sold not on the basis of what the handset or tablet is, but the kind of apps that make sense to the buyer.
Think of the fact that Nokia last week launched phones as cheap as $30 - that's just about Rs 1,200. The smartphones cost only twice as much now. Reliance Communications has launched tablets for under Rs 10,000. The way things are, apps and content will matter more. You can buy a gadget if it has just the right apps. Music lovers for instance will gladly buy a 20 GB tablet than a 200 GB memory one - if the seller offers worthy apps or collections (let us say, all the music of the 1960s movies, or an app that helps you learn the guitar).
I am waiting for the next wave now because gadget prices have fallen enough for the focus to turn on apps and content. I had got my predictions right in music when I spotted digital music players pre-loaded with music collections last year. A similar trend is needed for smartphones and tablets. True, one can download or buy apps, whether they are based on the Android, Symbian, Windows or Apple iOS operating systems, but the convenience factor is dramatically enhanced when apps are properly bundled in advance. This can help tablet makers or smart phone makers gain, the way Moser Baer did when it started selling Bollywood movies to boost the sales of its USB sticks and recordable CDs.