Sunday, December 4, 2011

We need people in New Orleans on Iphones

This is a Mob4Hire project - We have more than 50,000 registered testers who are paid to help us test everything mobile.

We need 150 people who live in New Orleans to participate in this test. ( only a few spots left - Hurry! )

Information you provide to us is considered private and confidential (we don't share our contact information).

You can get a $50 gift certificate* if you qualify and complete this test.

Stil interested? To qualify for testing you must:

1. Live in New Orleans
2. Own an iPhone and be activated with a carrier
3. Be able to open the app that will supplied to you for a week
4. Fill out an online survey (15 -20 minutes) Please register, below, if you qualify.

Go here to register REGISTER HERE!!!

And you can also refer your friends for one of two $100 in gift certificates*

Given to the two people who refer the most friends who complete the test. To qualify for referral bonus: Send your friends' email address to (please, let them know we'll be contacting them) *

To see the list of store you can use your gift certificates go to: gift certificate list
* Required

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Featured Mobster - Ben Moore


Meet Ben Moore; Featured Mobster.
Q: When did you join Mob4Hire?
December 2009

Q: What kind of handset(s) do you have?
My current "daily driver" is an HTC G2 on T-Mobile, I also have a Blackberry Bold 9780 on hand for business/personal use and for training. Gotta keep up on as many mobile platforms as possible these days. There is also a Blackberry Tour 9630, and Curve that can frequently be found hiding on my desk. I'm a big believer in the Android platform and Blackberry still commands enough business users that it's also a must have. Picking up an iPhone and a Windows Phone 7 is on my list of to do's.

Q: What's your favorite app?
Tough question! I probably have 80 apps installed on my G2, but the one that I would be the most distraught without would have to be Launcher Pro. Aside from being a fantastic third party launcher, the inclusion of additional widgets (most notably the calendar widget) come together to give HTC's SENSE a run for it's money. This is a well thought out, well executed, and extremely functional system tool for Android users, and it's only $2.99.

Q: Why did you join Mob4Hire?
I've been beta testing applications (mostly games and occasionally business productivity software) for twelve or thirteen years now. Never in a professional, paid capacity, but as an avid fan and tinkerer who likes to see things first and try to contribute to their commercial release being as positive and bug free as possible. Mob4Hire allowed me to expand into mobile platform testing and offered compensation for my time! A real win win, especially if you ask my wife. It's much much easier to justify playing with a phone for hours and having a small mountain of handsets on your desk if you're generating at least some income!

Q: How many individual handset / carrier tests have you done?
By my count, I have completed 12 tests

Q: How many projects have you completed? What's your favorite one?
I have participated in six or seven specific projects. My favorite, to date, has probably been the LMI project. It was a mountain of work to be sure, but the aspects that I enjoyed the most was working with both the Mob4Hire team and the developer to really flush out some of the details of the testing and preparing the results in a meaningful package. Most tests are very straight forward, use this application, fill out this questionnaire and then you're done. The LMI test felt like there was a higher level of input and interaction with the testers which was very welcome.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Mob4hire and Crowdsortium

Mob4hire has been the leader in the crowd sourcing mobile space for a while and it is time we gave something back to the industry. Mob4hire just hit 55,000 Mobsters and we are now in 154 countries (not many left) on 354 different carrier/network operators.

We are very thankful to our Mobsters and to the developers and brands that have given us a chance.

So we would humbly like to thank.....

Crowdsortium is a great organization that helps out crowd sourcing companies by organizing people together and solving some very interesting problems.
Such as
• What crowd sourcing model should we use?
• How do we handle intellectual property rights?
• How do we logistically manage international participants?
• How do we fairly reward participants for their work?
• What are the benefits of monetary versus non-monetary rewards?
• Should the crowd be anonymous or individually identified with their real names?

Crowdsourcing businesses tend to share the same problems. The Crowdsortium is designed to use the very mechanism the industry is built upon – crowd sourcing – to solve these problems. Applying the collective wisdom of our experiences benefits all members. Currently there are more than 75 members of the Crowdsortium. Members contribute new thoughts, ideas and solutions that benefit every part of the ecosystem, helping it to continuously evolve and grow.

We salute them! We honour them! Being a member now , we salute ourselves.

Go Crowdsortium!!!

Help us spread the word and we could win a great opportunity to participate in CrowdConf 2011! Please retweet this with the tag @crowdsortium

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Mob4Hire’s Crowd Flies Continental’s Android App and it’s a winner!

CALGARY, July 27, 2011 Mob4Hire’s usability product, MobExperience has given Continental Airline’s android application a thorough review and it’s a winner! That is no surprise for the best-rated airline app in North America. Attributing the success of the mobile app to their straight-forward mobile strategy approach, Jeff Ulrich, Sr. Manager, Emerging Technology at United Airlines, states “Before developing the mobile app, we spent time really understanding the customers’ needs and looking at what the app needed to do to be successful. Commenting on the development process, Ulrich shares the team’s secrets for its app success – develop on your strengths and seek assistance for the rest: “We developed what we know best, the airline business, and we sought expertise for areas like mapping, that were not our core.”

Asked what MobExperience brings to the already successful development practice, Ulrich replies, “We think we set the bar for airline applications but we were curious about a couple things, and there’s always room for improvement. We thought there were a few areas that would benefit from having real user feedback from MobExperience, pointing us to areas for focus. This will definitely help our team.”

Many brands have focused their testing efforts on functionality, but it is equally important to ensure good usability and customer experience, which is what MobExperience brings to the table. Its advisors, like Bob Hayes, PhD, ensure Mob4Hire provides excellence in mobile application quality assurance. “We developed methodology to diagnose the mobile user experience to improve user loyalty to the app and brand. We adopted the RAPID loyalty approach so brand managers can assess the mobile app’s impact on different types of user loyalty.”

Meanwhile, Mob4Hire knows that the process of field-testing any app can be difficult, and for Continental’s android app there was no room for error: “We used live data, creating mock flights to give testers a chance to use live features like check-in and seat selection” Sarah Paprocki, Senior Staff Rep, Emerging Technology Applications.

To ensure that the testing went smoothly, Mob4Hire uses its professional services team to ensure high quality results. “With a crowd of over 53,000 Mobsters around the world, we can recruit for our customers specific needs.” Bruce Chrumka, Vice President, Professional Services.

United and Continental merged and the team continues to lead: “We just launched the integrated United application on iPhone and plan to do the same for android.” Ulrich

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Mob4Hire CTO John Carpenter hosts Mobile User Experience panel at Nokia Developer Day in Barcelona

During the largest global mobile event of the year at MWC Barcelona, the buzz regarding the Microsoft / Nokia agreement is palpable, bringing yet another significant shift to the mobile industry.

Mob4Hire CTO, John Carpenter, hosted a lively panel discussion at Nokia Developer Day on Day 1 of the conference: "Why is my app getting rated 2 stars" with panelists Marek Pawlowski, founder of MEX ( in London, Carin Campanario (Freelance Flash Developer), Vassili Philippov (SPB Software), Vladimir Savchenkop (SoundMotion) and Peter Lindgren, CEO of Visiarc.

Special thanks to Thibaut Rouffineau, VP Developer Relationships, WIPJam who helped put the Nokia Developer Day together, and made the panel a great success!

Whatever the platform (and Mob4Hire can help you with user experience research on ALL of them!), the fundamentals of mobile development remain. Designing a great mobile user experience is at a feverish pitch in the industry as companies vie for users attention. As Mikael Hed, CEO of Rovia (makes of the uber-popular "Angry Birds" game) said during his breakout session at MWC, "Apps need to be optimized for the end user. That is very, very important. That is our drive, always thinking about the end user and what gives value for them. We make a "buck off them" because that is a natural side-effect of doing our job well."

Stephen King, Laura Sullivan and John are at MWC Barcelona all week. Join them at the Canadian Pavilion, Booth 2A97, Hall 2.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Innovators Poynt, Mob4Hire and Momentem Discuss Closing the Gap on the Mobile App Ecosystem at MWC

For Immediate Release: Calgary, Canada and Barcelona, Spain — February 14, 2011

The App marketplace has become a competitive stage for developers, content producers and App store market place operators. Closing the gap on the App ecosystem are three Canadian companies who are leading the way in building sustainable business models in pursuit of creating a “Best in Breed” App experiences for a growing customer base. Poynt, Mob4hire and Momentem all based in Calgary, Canada are a driving force in Canada’s Emerging Technology landscape.

For the full press release, see:

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Motorola Features John Carpenter (Mob4Hire CTO) on Motodev Developer Network

Mob4Hire CTO, John Carpenter, sat down with the Motodev team and shared his thoughts on development, best practices, quality apps, location development and Android tools

Mob4Hire is a Motorola Motodev partner ... when we presented at a Developer Network summit in fall of 2009, they were announcing their first Android handsets and showing off the first look at their development tools. This marked a turning point for Motorola in the mobile space, who had seen their fortunes sliding since their success with the last of the great feature phones, the Razr.

What a difference a year and half makes! Motorola has embraced Android across many great handsets, has seen success with Verizon with the first Droid ever released (plus many subsequent models), have created a great ecosystem for developers to be successful with Android development as well as global app distribution, and now are poised to release their new Xoom tablet which debuted at CES; the first with Android 3.0 (Honeycomb).

Motorola Mobile = Great partner, great devices, great tools, great developer ecosystem and support.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Mob4Hire Top Ten 2011 Mobile Predictions

Last week, we posted our “2010 report card” on how well we did with last year's predictions.

Now, let’s turn our attention to 2011. Our customers (mobile developers, product and brand managers, ad agencies, telecoms, handset manufacturers) are taking advantage of Mob4Hire’s mobile usability testing and market research services to make sure they lead the world in the mobile revolution. So, with that in mind, we put our rose-colored glasses on, and identified these top 10 opportunities / challenges that will effect our customers the most in 2011.

The Platform Race is Far From Over.

We don’t know if it’s wishful thinking or what, but there are lots of people out there saying, “The race is over, and the two winners are Apple iOS and Google Android.” No way! We’re in km 2 of a 42 km marathon which will unfold over the next 5 to 10 years, and there’s still lots to happen in the other platform camps such as RIM, Nokia, and Microsoft.

Android will continue to fragment, but this fact alone won't cause the platform success to slow down ... as long as Android phones are aggressively sold to hosts of mobile users as they were in 2010, developers will still flock to the platform.

According to Vision Mobile (see chart below), there are 13 mobile platforms of note (but of course, this doesn't include tablets, TVs or other devices, nor does it include Carrier specific platforms/API's or middleware like Flash which causes further platform confusion):

The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth.

I've been a software developer for 25 years, both as a coder and a brander. One thing is absolutely certain in 2011 … the need to develop excellent mobile experiences in the face of rapid change and fragmentation is more important than ever!

If you check out CNN's top tech trends of 2010, seven out of ten require those who CREATE a mobile experience.

So, the importance of people who CREATE apps, mobile websites, mobile ad campaigns is enormous. There is a GREAT deal of $$$ invested and at stake. The tsunami of change that mobile has brought will make many companies no longer viable, so developer attention is crucial to growth. A quick visit to the Computer Museum in Mountainview will show you a graveyard of computers from the PC Wars of the '80s and '90s: Atari, Kaypro, Commodore (Vic20, 64, Pet, Amiga), Amstrad, Tandy (TRS-80), Sinclair, Coleco Adam. All went the way of the Dodo bird because people who CREATE software experiences did not support the platforms.

This is, of course, why we're seeing such increased activity for developer networks and developer events. Everyone is trying to get the attention of developers, and there's just not enough good developers for everyone.

App Stores Will Continue to Explode

According to, there are currently over 100 app stores worldwide. We expect this number to be 200 next year at this time. Who will start these new app stores?

- There's over 800 Carriers in the world. Only about 30 have app stores so far. The GREAT thing that carriers have that handset manufacturers don't is the direct client relationship. Carriers who figure out how to leverage that relationship (with API's for example) will have very successful app stores.

- Online retailers ... any company who sells software on the web, and most that sell lotsa other stuff will need to be in the mobile app store game.

- Enterprises and those who serve enterprises as mobile becomes part of corporate IT integration strategies

The Cost Of Developing Mobile Experiences Will Increase Significantly

See prediction # 2. There's not enough developers for every platform to succeed. There's not enough GOOD developers to make every single app drop-dead fantastic. The complexity of creating apps across multiple-platforms is increasing. More is expected from apps. It will be much harder to have a hit with just 3 guys in a basement doing development. More integration (with carriers and enterprises) will be expected. Mobile programming consulting firms are in high-demand.

All of this points to a good thing for the mobile development community, who will finally start seeing industry salaries on par with their web and cloud development cousins.

If you are a mobile programming consultant, raise your prices!

The number of Ad Networks will explode

With the success of mobile marketing in 2010, and more importantly, with the multi-billion dollar advertising opportunity in front of us, we will see many, many companies getting into mobile marketing and ad networks.

Telecoms, with the billing relationship with all the customers, are in the best position to deliver targeted advertising since they already "KNOW THE CUSTOMER." Handset manufacturers and others are at a disadvantage, as collecting information may infringe on the privacy of the users, and thus may end up being restricted. We'll expect to see many carrier-specific ad networks pop-up this year.

Savvy app creators have started creating their own ad networks; Poynt, for example, uses a proprietary ad engine to serve ads to it's over 5M (and growing rapidly) users.

For ad agencies and brands, this is a good thing because it gives more reach and inventory.

For mobile developers, this means more opportunity to make money IF the app networks figure out how to share significant %'s of revenue with them. iAd gives developers 60% of the revenue from advertising ... in Mob4Hire's humble opinion, this revenue share should be in the 70% to 80% range, just as it is in revenue share for apps.

Microsoft Regains Share

Just like we said last year, never, ever count Microsoft out. Their release of Windows 7 last year was the come-back-kid story of 2010 technology. We think the same thing is happening in Windows Phone, although it's still too early to tell since they delivered later than we expected in 2010.

What we DO know for sure, is that:
- Both Windows 7 and Windows Phone have been received well.

- Microsoft has legions of developers already using their tools and developing for their platforms. See prediction #2.

- Microsoft has XBox to leverage in both the living room (as an XBox gaming controller / interface, as your house's remote control), and in the sales channel.

Despite this technological re-boot, success of Windows is dependent on their hardware partner relationship, who all seem to have lined up to support it (for now, anyway). So, things look ok for Microsoft, but they don't have a lot of margin for error ... they'll need to execute flawlessly.

Brands will embrace mobile for advertising and engagement

There have been dozens, if not hundreds, of brand success stories. Brands are now asking themselves, "what % of traffic to my site is from mobile" and are being shocked by the answer.

The good brands will reach to engage users, and drive an integrated strategy across mobile apps, SMS messages, QR Codes, mobile websites, mobile banner ads and traditional forms of advertising such as print, TV and web.

Retail "Bricks and Mortar" companies will CELEBRATE mobile as a way to bring people back into the stores with GPS locators, coupons, and geo-locate games and social networks.

RIM and NOKIA Dance the Dance of Disruption

RIM and NOKIA are arguably the biggest of handset and O/S manufacturers that are threatened by the new wave of mobile.

Just like Microsoft, don't count either of these guys out.

Despite “pundits” who argue that "Blackberry's aren’t even a smartphone," RIM continues to post good numbers quarter after quarter. They’ve made good progress on their touch-screen form factors while maintaining the BB keyboard and feel everyone loves. They’ve got a good tablet strategy (love tethering!), although getting to market sooner rather than later would be a good thing for RIM (we predict it will be later .. maybe even the fall) ... they'll need to figure out how to make the Playbook (editors note: shoulda been called the "Blackbook"!) more than BBMessenger and email, which means developer support. They’ve shown good direction on their platform and developer tools, but still make things pretty difficult to release apps ... that's why we only see about 10,000 apps available on Blackberry App World. They'll need to figure that out.

And, while they are weakening a bit in their dominant enterprise space, their secure data back-end is a killer-app feature for large companies who just won’t look at anything else. Oh, and by the way, they have over 500 network operator partners around the world. However, because RIM makes it harder than others to deal with from an app developer point of view, and because it’s not open, RIM will never be #1 in this space. But, they'll continue to enjoy a great ride.

NOKIA? One of the guys at Mob4Hire suggests that Nokia will embrace Windows Phone as a primary operating system ... he even went so far as to suggest that the two companies will merge. Others of us think that Nokia will embrace Android; but then again, Meego is simply a Linux O/S, so that wouldn't make sense. Because Nokia will want end to end O/S and Hardware, the Meego strategy is the most apparent ... i.e. status quo. This means continued loss of market share UNLESS!!!!

Unless they are able to deliver a great Meego experience for an inexpensive hardware footprint. Europe is key to their strategy, and the quicker they get to having a smartphone experience on a featurephone (a.k.a. "dumbphone") price the better off they'll be in sustaining their position. This will spill over into their success in Africa and Asia. And, since Android is so cheap, it will be very interesting to see who gets this vital competitive edge. If they don't get this right, NOKIA is in for a lot more pain as marketshare will dwindle in the dumpphone space just as it has in the smartphone space for the last couple of years.

Finally, like RIM, NOKIA has been successful because they know the value of a good Telecom relationship, who again, in the end, has the billing relationship with the customer. This will create great leverage for them moving forward, but only if they can block the new kids in their strong markets.

Enterprise embraces mobile as a productivity tool, not just for communications

As Mob4Hire buddy, Tomi Ahonen, has said many times ... mobile phones are good for 5 minute tasks (vs. 50 minute tasks on the computer like doing spreadsheets). In the enterprise, thousands of five minute tasks are killing the productivity of corporation managers ... imagine being able to approve expenses, vacations and review metrics on the train on the way home. The Velocity platform from Kryos is a great example of the way enterprises can easily implement enterprise tools and metrics on mobile.

Many people have a "work" cell phone and a "life" cell phone (which is typically nicer!). Corporations will do a better job at figuring out how to leverage the "life" cell phone, reduce complexity and improve productivity.

For Telecoms, we see them getting involved in enterprise apps and solutions, and be able to deliver end-to-end solutions that not only include hardware and network connectivity, but also software productivity.

Look for RIM to provide BETTER tools to enterprises for this integration, or risk losing more ground in their coveted Fortune 500 space. Also, Microsoft should do well in this space, due to their big developer base already doing tons of corporate work.

HP & DELL try, but stumble in the mobile and tablet space

It has been argued that there is a commoditization of handsets and tablets coming. What separates one high-end smartphone from the other, especially if their both running the latest version of Android? Being able to order custom phones and tablets is something that Dell should be pursuing aggressively, but they seem to be happy to be just a channel for selling other manufacturer's phones.

Poor HP buys Palm last year, and finds out that they don't know what to do with Palm either. We predict HP will use Palm patents rather than Palm technology to extract value out of mobile ecosystem. Like Oracle with Sun patents, HP has to be reviewing the many, many Palm patents looking for both the opportunity and timing to join in. This has got to be the only strategy that the executive suite is pondering, since NOTHING has really been announced or produced out of the combination of products and technology. “Let’s BUY webOS and then IGNORE it for our devices in favor of Windows 7.” Ok … well, maybe we’ll see an HP Slate with webOS on it this year, but HP is certainly taking it’s time with it.


Mobile Acquisitions Will Accelerate

Large companies and brands will look around and say "WOW, this mobile thing got very huge, very quickly, and we don't have a strategy!" ... acquisitions will accelerate as mobile development companies become attractive not only for their technology and traction, but also because great mobile teams are hard to put together and it's faster / easier to buy them.


That's it for this year!

Good wealth, health and prosperity to all in 2011.


Stephen King, CEO
Mob4Hire Inc.