Direct Line Blog

The iPhone Cometh

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As an early adopter of the iPhone (my lovely wife gave me one for Christmas last year) I am slightly jealous of all the folks zipping around on their new, faster 3G models. However, my jealousy is tempered by the new iPhone apps, which work even on my now outdated model.

I wrote about widgets a few weeks back, and most of the apps are not too dissimilar from widgets — both are small applications with streamlined function.

I'm very interested in seeing how marketers leverage this new development. The free app Twitterrific integrates advertisements into the Twitter stream using the Deck Network. Will Facebook or the New York Times integrate ads into their free applications? Or, will third parties release portals that trade increased functionality for ad placement? There's also the chance for brands to create promotional applications that can be dynamically updated with new deals, as with widgets.

Another interesting development is the series of e-books available for download. These are mostly older books in the public domain. Though it is unlikely that this will compete too readily with the Amazon Kindle, which has many more (and recent) books available to read, it does convert the iPhone into another portal for the e-book channel — and one wonders if the Kindle itself may add communication capability in the future.
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