Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Panel @PhoneSense 2010: Business Aspects of PhoneSensing

Andrew Campbell has invited me to organize a Panel about Business Aspects of PhoneSensing at the PhoneSense Workshop held in conjunction with Sensys 2010 in Zurich (slides).
I invited Roman Bleichenbacher (codecheck), Samuel Mueller (MiraSense), Michael Wehrmeyer (Mammut Sport group) and Juha Laurila (Nokia Research Center Lausanne) to join the panel which took place in the lovely forest house of ETH Zurich.

First of all, there was a strong consensus among the panelists that contextual relevance of services is an important asset mobile users are highly appreciating. Furthermore, it became pretty obvious that most commercial services today are only presenting information selected based on sensor-input, e.g. location. The actual collection of data from users, as largely discussed as participatory and opportunistic sensing is not taking place yet. Thus, terms of privacy and ownership of data are just not relevant yet.
Additionally, the most used sensors today is still the camera: be it for barcode-reading or augmented reality applications.

The expectations of the panelists from the researchers were: development of open sensor data sharing platforms, more accurate mobile augmented reality frameworks, and a better understanding of how mobile applications are actually being used as part of daily routines and tasks, how users select apps, and to which apps they actually return. It also remained unclear whether the current trend of walling services into apps will prevail, or whether mobile websites are coming back as soon as sensing can be integrated, e.g. HTML5.

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