Currently Browsing

Frontlines

Hot Mobile Topics at Frost GIL 2012: China

frost gil 2012

by Steve Guengerich, Executive Editor

I had the pleasure of being a guest at Frost & Sullivan’s Growth, Innovation & Leadership (or GIL) forum yesterday in Shanghai.

Regrettably, I could only attend a portion of the day’s activities, so I focused on the portion of the program in the afternoon that concentrated on mobile, per Appconomist’s editorial mission.

The sessions I attended were part of an afternoon track – or “Industry Think Tank” as described in the Frost agenda – that covered the broad area of “Technology, Medias & Telecommunications.”

Of particular note was Haoyong (“Fox”) Hu’s presentation on the development of mobile e-business.  In the session, he covered a nice overview of subjects ranging from current trends and near-term expectations for sectors ranging from gaming, to shopping, to mobile payments.

For LBS services, it was of great interest to see how the combination of satellite and wifi technology, combined with the GPS capabilities, are expected to fuel dramatic growth in new apps, like innovative social, home-based, and shopping services.

In gaming, it was interesting to hear Hu’s data that described how mobile gaming’s growth has more than tripled, while other gaming categories (platform, PC-based, MMORPG) have stayed relatively flat or declined in share.

Further, he discussed how proven revenue models in gaming – including advertisements, virtual goods, subscriptions, and VIP membership privileges, as well as hybrids thereof – continue to make mobile games an attractive category for mobile developers.

For mobile payments, it was of interest to hear Hu’s comments on the positioning that continues to evolve among many different players for setting the agenda for payments infrastructure and services: from the banks, to the telecommunications companies, to the network technology providers, to global, mobile brands.

One of the things that was different about the GIL event from so many that I attend was its intentional, big picture agenda.   It wasn’t just technology “how to’s;” instead, it was deliberately oriented around big themes – the iconic “Megatrends,” as first popularized by futurist John Naisbitt 30 years ago.

Clearly, the audience and setting for the event were carefully modulated for this kind of strategic reflection for the day.  It was a nice change of pace, yet no less urgent in its overall message, which is “China and the world are changing fast” and one can either react to the changes or be part of a global community of innovators helping to lead it.

For those who were unable to attend the event, there are two opportunities to stay connected to the GIL thought leadership. One is by opting in to receive Frost’s ebulletins.  The other is to check-in with the GIL online community from time to time.

Building the Mobile Enterprise in Uncertain Times

enterprise panel logos-small

I had the pleasure of chairing an absolutely terrific group of panelists over the weekend at an event in San Jose.

The panel topic was “Building the Mobile Enterprise in Uncertain Times” (avaialble for download on Slideshare) and it was an open forum to address a wide range of potential issues, from enterprise security, to app development build/buy decisions, to user experience and UI design essentials, and much more.

The reason for the topic was pretty straightforward, even if somewhat counterintuitive by today’s standards.  I say counterintuitive, because the prevailing wisdom of the moment seems to be that consumer product design and marketing has overcome the former influence of business-to-business product design and marketing, when it comes to decisions driving enterprise IT planning and deployment.

Apple’s success (sometimes closely accompanied by Microsoft’s struggles) is frequently cited as “Exhibit A” in this line of thinking.  A related piece of supporting evidence is the contribution that small businesses and the freelancing industry make to the overall economy, representing half of the overall business economy in the US and a similarly large portion in other countries.

Of course, what gets lost in these simple observations is that large private and publicly traded enterprises, representing billions of annual revenues and millions of jobs, generate the other half of the economy.

And, even though those same enterprise employees more frequently than ever carry around with them smartphones and tablets, just like their small business brethren, the privacy, operational, financial, and other legal requirements are vastly different for the enterprises.

To tackle such a topic, I couldn’t have been more pleased with the panelists who participated.  They included:

  • Adam Lipman – COO, Chaotic Moon Studios (starting closest in photo, then moving out)
  • Quinn Li – Managing Director of Qualcomm Ventures, North America
  • David Patron – Director of Innovation, Emerging Technologies, PepsiCo IT
  • Vishy Gopalakrishnan – Vice President, SAP

They were an absolutely amazing, killer group of speakers.  My only regrets were that the conference organizers didn’t do a better job of featuring such an all-star group of presenters and that we couldn’t have continued the panel longer than the 50 minutes that we had, because the majority of the audience were glued to their seats as we just barely scratched the surface of the possible discussion areas.

Of those discussion topics, the 3 major points of interest to the audience members were the following

1 – The importance of good user experience design in the enterprise.

All four panelists were unanimous in their strident belief that the user experience of apps designed for a single enterprise – even a very large one – needed to be every bit as well thought out and satisfying to use as that of a mass market consumer mobile app.  Even though enterprise users are a “captive audience,” an app will fail if the user experience is poor.

They recommended that the app design team really intensely focus on the day, the life, and the situation of their typical enterprise users.  “Put yourself in the context of the people in the field,” was their advice.  Then, begin to design the app’s functions and its user interface (UI) from a storyboard of how the app would be used.

2 – The oft-debated value of platforms (see the notes from the other panel I chaired last week, on Cloud Services).

There was somewhat of a consensus among the panelists of the merit of mobile development platforms for providing affordable access to expensive infrastructure and tested, production-ready code for services like user authentication and notifications.

However, when it came to discussing the pros and cons of one development platform over another – like HTML5 versus cross-platform development tools like Appcelerator, they asserted that developers should be wary of pre-conceived notions about a right vs. wrong way to build an app.

A simple example they used had to do with the relative need to app connectivity.  For example, in some situations, having access to a 3G or 4G network can make an app better, by tapping the data stream that is available from a real-time connection. But in other situations, being able to download the app’s data to the device for local storage can be a major advantage, even if it takes longer or requires more frequent syncing.

Among the scenarios where this could be essential was the case in which a field person is deep inside a store speaking with and answering questions of a busy store manager.  The field person needs their app data available in an unconnected/offline state, so that they can still respond to the needs of a store manager immediately, in the moment of need.

3 – Managing customer expectations.

Both in-house and independent developers in our audience wanted tips from the panel for how to better prepare prospective clients and/or manage their expectations for the level of effort required for a successful mobile app design, deployment, and on-going management.

With the advent of “freemium,” template-based mobile apps for simple tasks like event information or contact management and media attention given to high school classes where students design their own apps, many in the audience expressed frustration about a misperceived expectation of simplicity and low cost for mobile apps.

The panelists had a number of suggestions for mitigating this misperception, but the most universal closely hewed to another advantage that a strong user experience capability provides an enterprise.  They said that by putting the client “in the shoes” of their intended users of the app, from the very beginning, the client would re-focus their attention on what the app really needed to accomplish and the associated level of sophistication it needed to deliver.

In short, they counseled that the focus of the conversation needed to quickly move away from the pure timeframes and economics (“speeds and feeds,” in IT parlance) and move towards a definition of success and a thoroughly satisfied user base.  With that shift made, the client would invariably have a better, shared understanding of the costs and development timetable required.

Lei Jun, Tim Draper, rapping and the GMIC Silicon Valley

Lei Jun

by Appconomist staff

You know that something rather fundamental has changed when the kick-off speaker for the biggest 1st year conference to hit Silicon Valley in quite a while delivers his remarks in Mandarin.  But, that’s what happened at the GMIC-Silicon Valley when Yuri Milner interviewed Lei Jun, Xiaomi’s founder.

They led off an event that one fellow participant, next to me, observed a rapid “revolving door” of speakers, welcomers, organizers, and panelists for the morning.  The mayor of San Jose, Chuck Reed, even got stage time encouraging everyone to “max out their expense accounts” while visiting the city – there’s a man with a mission, on behalf of his business community!

The overall message we would observe, from the variety of fireside chats and panels, is two-fold:

  1. that mobile remains the most fast-changing, innovative industry, bar none, and
  2. that it is rapidly headed to a future of convergence – a post-mobile world

In this post-mobile world, the technologies that we think of as mobile, i.e., hardware devices and software apps, are embedded in everything…from cars to clothing, from appliances to artwork, from weapons to wristwatches (assuming the Pebble can bring the wristwatch back).

Some of the morning speaker highlights included comments by Vaughan Smith, Facebook’s VP of Mobile, who said that its mobile users had crossed over 600 million per month.  When they switch to mobile, Facebook users spend 20% more time on it.  And lastly, he said they churn (i.e., stop becoming active users) of a product 18% less than through other non-Facebook mobile channels.

Another highlight was Tim Draper, of DFJ.  His expansive comments ranged from the role that mobile played in enabling the successful transition to democratic governments during the Arab Spring, to the potential for mobile to influence the support for free markets and outing of corrupt leaders in Africa, to his enthusiasm for Draper University, which is targeted to provide life-changing experiences for 18-28 year-olds, as future leaders.

Ever the venture capitalist, Draper also encouraged participants with great mobile products that are truly different to contact him (Tim@DFJ.com).  He also brought “down the house” with a live performance, partly singing / partly rapping a tune he called “The Riskmaster.”

We attended the GMIC in Beijing in May and were pleased to join as a media partner of the inaugural US event, based upon the strength of what we saw in China.  So far, we haven’t been disappointed.

Watch for more articles and updates via twitter (@Appconomist) and hashtag #TheGMIC, as well as Sina Weibo updates (also, @Appconomist).

Cloud Services for Mobile App Developers

IMG_3291

by Steve Guengerich, Executive Editor

I chaired a great panel today at the kick-off of the 2-day App Conference in San Jose.  The panel topic, on “Cloud Services for Mobile Developers,” really is one of the most important topics for developers.  Because, at the proverbial end of the day, the ability to be “bigger, better, faster” than others will make a key difference in an app developer’s long-term success.

I was fortunate to have three terrific panelists join me:

  • Alan Knitowski, Phunware
  • Steven Citron-Pousty, Redhat
  • Dave McLauchlan, Buddy

You can view and download the overview slides I presented, as well as the intro slides that they each prepared.

What was terrific about them was that, while they each presented a different cloud services/ platform solution, they also spoke very frankly about the issues, concerns, and struggles app developers confront, when choosing the tools & technologies they use to build and deploy apps.

There were a number of gems in their comments. Among the most urgent discussion was around answering the question: “is it actually cheaper to run in the cloud?”

All three said “no” when it comes to the pure out-of-pocket expense for hardware, software, data center / communications facilities, etc.  In fact, Dave from Buddy said they had benchmarked the difference with the cloud option being 2.5 X more expensive than the DIY (do it yourself) option.

But they all further went on to say that the cost of people’s time, management resources, upfront investment in perfecting a mobile app infrastructure, and ability to move rapidly made mobile platforms a better option for early or smaller development shops – whether an in-house enterprise dev  team or an independent app dev agency.

As Steven from Redhat asked the audience (rhetorically), “who here likes to do server administration?” to which no hands raised their hand in answer.  The point being, leave that kind of time-intensive drudgery to a platform provider.

Alan took the “is the cloud cheaper” question one step further.  He contrasted the potential for saving money by building one’s own platform services with the consequence of delivering a mobile app for a large client with critical service level needs or that has high visibility brand awareness with consumers.

“Is it really worth it?” he asked the audience, to risk a terrible experience – one he cited was NBC’s Olympics app that crashed repeatedly and received a one-and-a-half star rating in the Appstore – by using an early-stage, in-house set of mobile services.

Their companies all represent good options for developers to build robust apps.  On the two ends of the range were Redhat and Phunware, with Buddy somewhere in the middle.

You can read more about each platform and gain access to varying levels of “sand box” functions & features, by going to their respective developer sites:

Whereas Redhat’s Openshift caters perhaps more to the open source/independent developer or agency, Phunware’s PRAISE caters more to the large, multi-brand enterprise or agency-of-record for big consumer product & services producers.

Buddy’s difference is in its scenario-based approach, as well as its addition of Microsoft Windows 8 as a native option for app developers – something that few offer.

Appcelerator/IDC: Is Facebook Mobile Toast? And Other Findings

appcelerator-IDC logo

by Appconomist staff

Earlier this morning (early evening, US time), Appcelerator and IDC distributed their latest quarterly report on app developer community trends and preferences.  This closely watched report has been an excellent source of US-centric indications of the shifting trends in the app development community.

While it’s nearly unavoidable for a vendor like Appcelerator to work in a couple of shots at the competition (like HTML5) or plugs for its strategic directions (platform services), our opinion is that the reports, balanced with IDC’s touch, have been a valuable contribution to developer community knowledge.

After a quick initial read of the report, here are a few of the findings that caught our eye:

1.  A very strong sense (almost certainly driven by developer activity) that Facebook is vulnerable. Mobile developers appear to be going after that weakness aggressively, hoping to disrupt Facebook significantly enough to provide an opening for one or more emerging, mobile-centric social networks.

2.  We are a little surprised by the data that indicates a 4th consecutive quarter of declining interest in Android development.  This finding is especially befuddling, given the data later in the report showing that developers are overwhelmingly motivated by the installed base and price of smartphones.

The sticking points seem to be: (1) concern about the revenue potential for Android apps, as compared with iOS and (2) continuing fragmentation of the Android platform, with developments like Alibaba’s Aliyun fork not helping matters in terms of developer confidence.

3.  A very strong base of support (right now, perhaps best characterized as wishful thinking) for the Windows 8 platform and introduction of new wave of mobile devices like the Surface.  However, there is a dose of reality in the wishful thinking that indicates developers understand the difficult road ahead for Microsoft to make significant gains on Apple and the Android ecosystem.

Finally, we were quite intrigued by the developer persona provided at the very end of the report.  While not labeled that way, it provides some fascinating insight into the present attributes and opportunities for the developer community, for example, the enormous gender disparity, of 96% men to 4% women.

You can download a copy of the report, at no charge, by completing a form on Appcelerator’s website.

A Made-in-China Event for a Made-in-America Industry

IMG_2649

by Steve Guengerich

Global. Mobile. Internet. That about says it all, doesn’t it?

When we first attended the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) in Beijing this past May 10-11, we were eager to see how “global” the event was.

We’ll have to say, for a relatively young event, we were impressed – and we attend *a lot* of events!  Selfishly, among the few things that we wish we’d seen was more participation from US companies and English-speaking entrepreneurs.  You can read the trip report of firsthand observations, key learnings, etc. from our sister company, Appconomy, Inc.

However, we were sufficiently impressed with the event that when we learned the producers – the Great Wall Club – planned to hold their inaugural event in the US a full year earlier than we had been expecting, we wanted to help support it.

And, thus, we’re pleased to say that Appconomist has joined a number of other media, association, and promotional partners to create awareness of the event and encourage you to strongly consider putting the GMIC-Silicon Valley (#GMIC-SV) on your calendar for this October 19-20.

GMIC-Silicon Valley is themed “Connecting Global Innovators” and features a terrific line-up of speakers and panels on the shifts, challenges and opportunities for mobile innovation in growing markets.

In addition to the main program, the producers are featuring a couple of parallel tracks of mobile programming and competitions, to provide more hands-on appeal to mobile developers and entrepreneurs: the AppSpace/appAttack and the G-Startup SV.

Speaking of mobile designers and developers, Appconomist is giving away 20 free Developer (Expo) passes worth $50 each.  Although they are probably more valuable to those readers who are within a daily commute of the San Jose McEnery Convention Center, where GMIC-Silicon Valley is being held, all are welcome to claim one.  To get one now, click this registration link – hope to see you there, in a month!

Design Rules: Barcamp Shanghai Recap

app - barcamp shanghai

by John Biesnecker

This past weekend, I had the chance to present at Barcamp Shanghai.  Barcamps are semi-structured “open” conferences, typically organized by volunteers and offered to the participating audience at no or low-cost.

But, don’t let the egalitarian, slacker-ish description fool you.  The organizer of the Shanghai event, Techyizu, runs a well-organized, efficient event that has plenty of pre-planned, subject matter expert (SME) presenters lined up to talk, well before the conference begins.

I was one of the prepared presenters, speaking on the topic “Product Design for Chimps,” drawn from my experience as a software product development manager. If you’d like the slides, you can download them here.

In addition to my design-related topic, another one I enjoyed listening to was Matt Meyer, Principal of Reign Design, who’s presentation was “Insert Title Here.”  His overall thesis was that software designers could often, greatly improve the experience of their users by designing a user interface (UI) with a “placeholder” – a faux report, a sample completed account profile, etc. – that helps users understand what they are supposed to do.

By Matt’s way of thinking “a bad placeholder is 1000 times better than a good error message.”   He cited a couple of excellent proof points.  Like Apple’s iPhoto which, when first loaded, is absent of any of your pictures.  However, rather than presenting you with a big, white, blank canvas, it instead provides a series of prompts with attractive pictures of models, enticing you to get started uploading and manipulating your own photos.

There are other great examples: Basecamp by 37Signals, which provides you a sample of what a completed project plan is supposed to look like.  Even the classic 404 error messages fall into this line of thinking, by providing software developers an opportunity to make them fun, soothing, reflective of their company culture, and most importantly, informative as to the steps the user might want to take to find the web page they were seeking but didn’t find.

I linger on this design topic for a few reasons. One, because it’s so critical, especially in the era we’re in, where every app is moving to mobile devices.  Two, because it’s so expensive, with the true cost of researching and creating a design often underestimated, in terms of complexity (it’s hard to make something simple – Exhibit 1: iPhone) and cost.  Three, because it’s a large part of what I do.

Which leads me back to a few more Barcamp Shanghai summary observations.  If you desire learning about broader, “big think” topics, then Shanghai is the destination for you, with topics on design, clean tech, social entrepreneurship, etc. tending to be the norm.  There also tend to be more foreign, ex-pat, and English-speaking presenters at the Shanghai venue.

The Beijing Barcamp, on the other hand (where I have also presented), tends to have fewer sessions with wild titles like “Lean Sex Machine” (a riff off of the Lean Start-up technique) and more on tactical, practical topics, like how to solve a particular development-related problem.  The Beijing Barcamp also attracts a larger Chinese-speaking and native audience.

Speaking of Beijing, one of the more straight-up mobile talks I attended was by Frank Yu, co-curator of Beijing StartupDigest and Founder of Kwestr.  Titled “Welcome to 1999,” Frank’s thesis was that we are presently at a point in the maturity of the mobile eco-system that is similar to the maturity of the web 1.0 (aka, dot-com) ecosystem in 1999, which history tells us now, was just the beginning of what web could do.

Among Frank’s big points was that native mobile apps will continue to prevail for a number of years for a few reasons:

  • They outperform mobile web apps in speed and other performance measures (sound, rich graphics, etc.)
  • It will be some time yet before browsers are fully reimplemented to deliver an experience on mobile devices that they deliver on conventional PCs and laptops
  • And, finally, Apple has been somewhat unkind to browsers and apps that have attempted to duplicate native apps, prohibiting them from being included in the iTunes appstore

There were more memorable topics – “My MBA is from Amazon.com” and “How taking a job in Shenzhen at 19 changed my life,” for example – that I enjoyed and, of course, I haven’t even mentioned the personal networking that goes on at Barcamp… greeting old friends and making new ones.

The Changing Mobile Landscape

by Justine Ealy

“As companies branch out and create more products, the clarity between partners and competitors is becoming clouded. Apple is competing with Cisco, Comcast is going after AT&T’s business, Visa and Verizon want to be the payment channel of choice, Amazon is gunning for Microsoft’s enterprise business, so on and so forth. Nothing is set in stone.”

So says an astute new report from Chetan Sharma Consulting, covering the State of the Global Mobile Industry.While the greater strengths of Sharma’s research is in the carrier space, we found the analysis and illustrations from a number of sections of this Half Yearly Assessment – 2011 to be insightful and very deserving of summary coverage, which we provide in the following paragraphs.

Please refer to the firm’s website for additional information about publications and services.

Apple and Android are proving to be tough competition in the tablet market. With Apple’s long-standing market lead and Android’s competitive pricing, other products are finding themselves playing a constant game of catch up.

OEMs have potential if they can sell at competitive prices that attract different demographics, but they continue to struggle to keep up with features. Microsoft is planning the release of its Win8 tablet in 2012, but will face stiff competition as the iOS ecosystem continues to expand.

Proving to be a favorite computing option due to their convenience and portability, tablets are rapidly replacing netbooks and taking over a considerable share of the desktop and laptop marketplace.

Typically used indoors, WiFi is the primary mode of connection used by tablets. As family data plans become more available, there will be a rise in cellular activation, but WiFi will continue as the prevailing method as it provides a better, less expensive user experience.

A lack of product planning and execution have caused both investors and developers to leave Nokia and RIM. Nokia’s appraisal has been halved allowing HTC to surpass the once leader of the industry. Nokia’s N9 shows potential, but the first generation of Nokia Windows Phones faces significant pressure.

A good collection of devices may incite a taste for  Windows Phones and allow the team a ranking as number 3 in the market. Together, HP and Palm are bringing in new products, but still lack traction without an effective network of support .

Many desktop and laptop players are expected to exit the industry amid the overwhelming shift in consumer preference to mobile computing. The atmosphere of this market is rapidly changing as companies that once limited themselves to one product market are now surfing all over.

Companies from Apple to Visa, from P&G to AT&T, from Facebook to Time Warner, from Google to Best Buy, are delving into projects in order to glean the backing of consumers – and a piece of their wallet.

Mobile is sweeping through and overhauling consumer behavior habits in spending, communication, and sharing. Much to the delight of advertisers, buyers are eager to promote purchases they are satisfied with.

While mobile is allowing advertisements to become more narrowly targeted, the ultimate game-changer for any company will be prove to be extensive knowledge of the consumer. Success is imminent for those who can learn their customers the best.

Headlines Hotter than the U.S. East Coast

by Tom Parish

Are you still wondering “How Mobile Can Help Business-to-Business Marketers and Retailers?” That’s the title of an article by Lori Colman where she provides the following three data points for you to consider:

  • More than half of devices connected to corporate networks will be mobile by 2015.
  • Mobile is already the preferred method to accomplish many tasks, especially social media engagement.
  • Mobile search is now an $8 billion industry, accounting for 11 percent of total searches.

This is one of those articles worth circulating to your B2B management if they remain skeptical about the medium being relevant to consumer brands alone.

If you’re a fan like I am of these information-packed graphical representations called  “Infographics” then check out this one on the “Mobile Commerce Revolution: Smartphones & Smarter Shoppers.” The information was collected from the team at Microsoft Tag, a bar code scanning app for mobile. Accuracy can vary, but from an overview perspective, it’s a useful indication of trends.

One of the big mobile app development debates of 2011 for enterprise is whether or not HTML5 is going to become the best solution for most, if not all, mobile apps – versus hand crafting native apps for each mobile platform. Phillipee Wintrop takes a stab at this debate in his article, “HTML5 is Not (Yet) a Panacea for Mobile Enterprise Applications.”

Spurred by the news that Financial Times decided to snub Apple by launching a new mobile app that runs entirely out of a web browser, this happened just weeks before Apple began retaining 30 percent of all revenue made by publishers who sell through Apple’s App Store. There is a lot more to the HTML5 issue than merely creating a publishing app. If you’re following the HTML5 app trends, then read both articles for some insight. As a side note, I interviewed James Pearce during SXSW2011 about HTML5 trends.  James covers this topic in greater depth during the podcast so when you have a moment, give it a listen.

Speaking of app development for the enterprise, another trend that is quickly coming on the horizon is the demand for enterprise app stores.  There is a growing need for business service providers and enterprises to come up with their own stores to service a global ecosystem of apps for their enterprise.  Dana Gardner delves into this topic at length in his article, “Rise of Enterprise App Stores Point to the Need for Better Applications Market Place Services.” I highly recommend giving it a read considering it’s astute depth.

Are you considering a Home Depot run to replace your tungsten light bulbs? I for one have been wondering if I could save on my electrical bill this way, but it’s difficult to be sure. Here’s a little app that might wet your whistle – Eco App. It calculates the cost of savings when the light bulbs are replaced. I have yet to try it out, but it sure looks cool!

Alright, thanks for being with us this week. Be sure to check out the twice daily updates on mobile trends for business here every day or subscribe to the RSS feed for instant updates on your mobile device!

-Tom Parish, lead curator – Enterprise Mobility news

East Coast Mobile Scenes

by Tim Gasper

In an effort to continue expanding our coverage of different mobile entrepreneurship ecosystems across the country, we’re proud to announce the launch of four new mind maps. They range from New England to the Mid-Atlantic, with representations for New York City, Boston, Washington DC, and Philadelphia.

They are hosted using the MindMeister app (which you can install from the iTunes link at end of this article) and have been shared out as Wikimaps.

So, besides welcoming you to reference them in conversations with colleagues, we also encourage you  to sign up for a MindMeister account, download the app, and contribute your knowledge to any one of the maps, if you are a local of informed observer.

Here are a few quick highlights for each:

New York City

New York has long been known to be a hub for creative agencies, digital advertising, and media, but it’s now also a thriving mobile startup environment. Companies include popular social apps Foursquare, GroupMe,and Hashable, a bevy of hot funding sources such as Union Square Ventures and Betaworks, and mobile thought leaders like Dennis Crowley and PercentMobile’s David Harper.

Boston

Boston has always been known as a startup hub throughout the past two decades and beyond. Its mobile scene is no exception, with highlights including social location game SCVNGR, mobile analytics startupLocalytics, and city guide company WHERE, which was recently purchased in a successful exit to Groupon.

Washington DC

Despite being at the doorstep of the Federal Government, DC’s startup scene expands far beyond the government sphere. Mobile players include health and exercise app Nexercise, ad & recommendations platform AppTap, and popular mobile app providers LivingSocial and CareerBuilder.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia’s DreamIt Ventures is both a reflection of the expanding Philly startup scene, and a spark that is driving its growth in Mobile and many other areas. A strong Mobile Monday organization, led by mobile thought leader JP Finnell, serves as a hub for it’s many leading companies in enterprise mobility, mCommerce, mobile search and beyond.

Look for more maps coming this summer – contact us, if you would like to sponsor a map!