28 Jan 2013

All about Demo Night...

Demo Night proved as popular as ever, despite the weather's best attempts to keep people away!

Firstly, our thanks to our event partners ICT KTN . Huge thanks to the demoers and all of those who applied to demo, to our volunteers and to Lauren Maffeo (from AppBeat) for helping with this blog post.  We also want to thank Gerlinde Gniewosz (CEO Founder, Ko-su.com  and Simon Frost (CTO at Six3) for updating us on their progress since demoing last at last year's Demo Night event.   And of course, we thank our wonderful community, who never fail to help the demoers with both supportive and constructive observations at the event and also tweeting using our hashtag #momolo.

Our our brave and wonderful demoers this time around were as follows:

Blue Badge Style – Fiona Jarvis & Kishan Gupta @bluebadgestyle - Guide for the Discerning Less Able
Boss Level – Nick Brown @boss_level - a massively multi-player, multi-platform HTML5 game
Connecthings – Damaris Homo @Connecthings - AdTag platform - allows cities to manage networks of contactless tags (NFC tags & QR codes)
Critical Arc – Glenn Farrant @criticalarc - SafeZone - securing and making safe large open environments
Decibel Technology – Ben Harris @DecibelTech - Mobile Analytics Software
Dennis Publishing – Paul Cooper @dmfcoops - Men's Fitness UK iPad App
Trevor Goldberg of Globo Plc
Globo Plc – Trevor Goldberg @Globoplc - GO!Enterprise - Enterprise mobility
Trademob – Adrienne Gauldie @adriennegauldie - Tech that optimises mobile app advertising for your KPIs
Vyclone – Holly Clarke @vyclone - Social Video Platform
We Choose Fun – Marc Sallent @wechoosefun - Audio Snaps - an app that allows people to take a picture and at the same time record the sound around them
Animal Systems -  Geraint Jones @animalsystems - Chirp, a new platform that lets people share content with sound

Here are a few themes that our volunteer blogger Lauren picked out to give you a flavour of the range that we saw:

1) Multi-Platform is a Must

From iOS to Kindle Fire ... Blue Badge is a good example, with their App now available in Google Play, iTunes for both iPhone and iPad and Blackberry World.  Paul Cooper of Dennis Publishing described their in-house approach to publishing titles like "Men's Health" which they describe as a C.O.P.E. method (Create Once, Publish Everywhere) - "a scalable approach to cross-platform publishing for content to reach everyone".

2) The Importance of Security

More than one app focused on security of some kind. Critical Arc’s SafeZone app addresses "security and safety in large open areas like universities," defining safe zones around areas of threat. Universities are their target market, but following a question about privacy laws, they confirmed that their whereabouts will only be tracked should they open the app. By contrast, service personnel handling time-sensitive scenarios will be consistently tracked to build real-time situational awareness and communicate with fellow responders.

Similarly, Trademob "takes on the mobile frontier,” seeking to alleviate the 22% of accidental and 18% of fraudulent clicks that yield low conversion rates for websites. Their app detects click fraud by analysing site marketing performance, then blacklisting guilty publishers. Apps are often about fun; these seek to fill market gaps by solving security concerns both on and offline.

3) “Rich Experience” Apps

Decibel take the stage
With more than 700,000 live apps available for iOS and Android, having fully original ideas is hard - perhaps there is something around richer experiences - as we saw with Vyclone, which lets users sync, co-create and edit multiple videos of a shared event.  Audio Snaps from We Choose Fun were also going along the same sort of route - they  let you capture pictures alongside sound.  Great question from the audience prompted the point further: “I’m gonna ask the obvious question - why not just use video?”  Presenter Marc Sallent replied "Video tells a story. A picture captures a moment. Add sound, and it will be richer.”  Their demo which featured stills of waterfalls and children alongside corresponding sound, was indeed captivating.

Dan Appelquist blogged about his highlights on the BlueVia blog:

"...HTML5 gaming start-up Boss Level – writing cool browser-based games.

Social mobile video start-up Vyclone live-demoed their application for capturing video from multiple sources and editing it in the cloud at near-real-time. The app is specifically aimed at festivals and events.

Animal Systems presented their innovative new app, Chirp.io, that shares data between handsets using audio – think of it as an audio version of a QR-Code.

One interesting presenter, Barcelona-based We Choose Fun presented an prototype application for combining still image photography with sound capture. Although not immediately intuitive, the result was really interesting – for instance, capturing a street scene along with the ambient noise that goes along with it, creates a new way to experience that scene. The app also apparently combines the audio and image into the same jpeg file. Could it be the next Instagram? The app isn’t live yet but I hope they put it out there because I’d love to experiment with it.

We also heard from two of the companies that presented at last year’s demo night, e-learning company KO-SU  and WAYRA UK Academy  member messaging app Six3 about their continued success. Mobile Monday Demo nights are a great example of the innovation happening in the community right now and I can’t wait for the next one..."

We agree with you Dan, neither can we!