A New Platform for Social Computing: Cell Phones

We should realize by now that social computing is not by any means limited to the desktop PC.

For years, cell phones have been off-limits to independent software developers and startups, at least in the United States. But that’s beginning to change, as subscribers gain access to free and paid software and services that let them do more with their phones.

A good example is Q121, a social networking and media-sharing service launched in June by the online marketing firm Traffix of Pearl River, NY. People who register with Q121 can upload their favorite songs, videos, and photos to the site, then send them to the cell phones of other registered users. It’s free, for now — yet Q121 wouldn’t exist if the big cellular carriers weren’t allowing it to sell premium content with the charges for it appearing directly on customers’ cellular bills. “Our interest in doing this really picked up last year, when the carriers opened up their walled gardens,” says Andrew Stollman, president of Traffix…. Source: technologyreview.com