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I’ve always loved computer games. My Apple II screen had burn marks in it from Olympic Decathlon, Choplifter, Castle Wolfenstein, and Ultima. Recently, I’ve become addicted to several of Zynga’s games online, especially Mafia Wars (I’m level 52 – friend me on Facebook and join my Mafia) and Scramble (I think I’m better than I actually am so it’s endlessly frustrating.)
Zynga’s been cranking on their iPhone apps so most of my Scramble action is now on the iPhone. However, last night Zynga released Mafia Wars on the iPhone and it has immediately moved to third place on my “things to do on my iPhone other than email and call Amy.”
I got a note from Fred Wilson this morning that he’d beat me to the punch on posting about Mafia Wars on the iPhone. Yeah Fred – whatever – you are on the east coast and I’m on the west coast today so time was on your side. Help me neutralize the threat of Fred’s dominance in Mafia Wars by joining my iPhone Mafia – my player ID is 1901 3272 26 – recruit me for your Mafia (I’m level 5 on the iPhone already.)
While you might be interested in a
ego vanity iPhone app like the Brad Feld iPhone app, you are probably a lot more interested in an iPhone app for your business. NewsGator has become an expert at building these and has developed a superb framework for branded iPhone apps.
On March 31st they are having a Webinar titled Gain Revenue & Readership with Branded iPhone Apps – Reed Business Case Study Webinar. Walker Fenton from NewsGator and Brien Tate (Reed Business’ CTO) will walk through what they’ve done around the Variety iPhone app including:
- The differences between iPhone Apps and web applications
- The benefits of making your content available via an iPhone App
- How to monetize your iPhone App
- How to publicize your iPhone App
- An iPhone App case study featuring Reed Business/Variety.com
NewsGator has learned a huge amount about building, deploying, monetizing, and publicizing iPhone apps. Attend the webinar to find out more for yourself.
In case you don’t get enough of me, you can now download the Brad Feld iPhone app. Or – from your iPhone – just do an App Store search on Brad Feld. As a result of the Brad Feld iPhone app you can easily get the blogs from Feld Thoughts, Ask the VC, Foundry Group, Amy Batchelor, and Stan Feld all in one nifty app on your iPhone.
While my ego is satiated, at least for a few days, the really cool thing to me is how this came together. When the iPhone first came out, Brent Simmons created an iPhone version of NetNewsWire which was dynamite. He iterated quickly on this and realized that it could be the core of an iPhone app business built on top of the NewsGator / NetNewsWire framework. This has resulted in a new product for NewsGator – the NewsGator iPhone App Framework.
They needed a “test app” to harden the framework and I quickly volunteered (ah – the special privileges of a nerdy early investor.) The result is the Brad Feld iPhone app, but more importantly a deep iPhone app dev framework. Brent – who continues to do an amazing job on everything he touches – talks about the why and how along with announcing the deployment of a real iPhone app for Variety (vs just his cheesy
investor beta tester.)
Today’s Washington Post article titled Staff Finds White House in the Technological Dark Ages was no big surprise. However, while I was taking a shower (in a hotel in the Houston suburbs of all places) it occurred to me that this presents an incredible marketing opportunity for Apple.
If I were king of Apple (or say, a board member with deep White House ties), I’d be on the phone with “the appropriate person” with the offer of “a Mac on every desk in the White House along with an iPhone for every White House staffer.” I’m sure there is some law that prevents Apple from giving this away from free so I’d offer it “at cost” just to Mac-enable the White House.
You can’t buy better PR than “Apple computerizes the Obama Administration, displacing ancient PCs running Windows XP.” Plus, the leader of the free world then would carry around an iPhone and a MacBook.
In addition, I see an executive order coming that completely changes the stupid, archaic, and limiting rules about archiving communications within the White House. This is a regular excuse that is used to explain why it’s “hard” to use things like Blackberries if you are president. Baloney – there are plenty of straightforward approaches that solve for whatever you want to do. It’s not like someone archived all of Rumsfeld’s Snowflakes (or maybe someone did – if so – egads.)
While we are at it, did anyone notice that Apple reported record revenues and profits in the quarter ending 12/27/08? Yeah, I guess you did but it’s worth repeating the numbers since all we’ve been hearing is bailouts and losses. These are quarterly numbers. Revenue: $10.17 billion. Net Income: $1.61 billion. These numbers are lower than reality because of the bullshit GAAP rules that force accounting for the iPhone to be reported ratably over the life of the iPhone contract. If you actually accounted for this in a way that made sense, Revenue would be $11.8 billion and Net Income would be $2.3 billion. As every good MBA knows, the key rule is to “follow the cash” which increased by $3.6 billion in the quarter. It’s worth saying again – $3.6 billion. Wowza. Well done Apple.