Service Innovation : Smartphones. Service Inside! Synchronization as a service

Apple redefined the smartphone with the iPhone, a sleek device with an excellent user interface controlled by your fingers through a touch screen. Apple enhanced even more the customer experience integrating an Application Store. Applying the same strategy form from iPod+iTunes, as we discussed in a previous post, where the user co-create value thanks to the mix of product and services.

Today, is not possible to bring just a product, the new smartphone operating systems like Google ‘s Android, offer services out-of-the box . Including an applications store called Android Market and Google services like Gmail and Calendar that provides front-stage interaction to their back-stage servers. You no longer need to backup your mail, every Google application is synchronized with Google’s servers (Video 1). All these services and new ones like the Google latitude for location sharing, enable the user to get a great costumer experience with richer interactions. Right now, even Microsoft is trying to include services into their windows mobile, with myphone you will able to backup your contacts and appointments.

Video 1: Google Android

Palm took the serivce integration further, with a new operating system called WebOS. The new Palm’s Operating System use “cloud computing” (or Internet as a Service, that is an emerging tendency which allows to companies use higher processing capacities from third parties with less costs for them) to do server side processing from your information sources (not just Google’s applications, like Android) that are available to the user trough a single mobile interface provided with the new Palm Pre.
The fundamental concept behind the WebOS is Synergy, that takes synchronization as a service. When you add an appointment or modify a contact in the smartphone, the changes will be synchronized into the palm’s cloud. This Synergy happens from many sources, like Facebook. So, when you add a friend in your Facebook account, it will be reflected in your phone contacts, even if you got a repeated contact (same contact form different sources), it will be unified at a single one at your contacts application in the smartphone (Video 2).

Video 2: Palm Pre WebOS Synergy

The innovation from Palm is driven by services out of the box from different providers, where you no longer need to synchronize your data with your computer. All the synchronization happens in the Palm’s servers from different kind of sources. This service innovation takes the smartphone user experience a step further, with richer interactions that let users to co-create value. Palm is back from the dead with a great value offer that sets a new trend in mobile devices.

Egon Lüftenegger

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