“Mobile Guru” Tomi Ahonen gives his speech at the PICNIC 09 – he is a bit mental and makes quite a few points that I don’t agree with. It kinda feels like he is out of touch with what’s going on, it’s the difference between just talking about mobile and actually working in mobile. I think I might start doing these speeches, looks like a good earner, all you need is a few slides with acronyms.

Tomi thinks the next big thing is MMS, not NFC, not Android, not location, not coupons, not ad-funded handsets. This is based on the BMW MMS campaign in Germany which made $45 million in revenue by targeting customers who had purchased a car in the summer, prompting them to buy winter tires. Fantastic campaign but this is the exception rather than the rule, advertisers still aren’t getting involved with MMS. Why? Because operators still charge too much bloody money per message, even at bulk rates, and this scares them off.

Unless it miraculously comes down to the cost of SMS I don’t see MMS advertising being ‘the next big thing’, especially on the back of one campaign.

Other points:

  • Tomi says you can’t have a Augmented Reality browser on a laptop – why not? My laptop has a webcam built-in, Layar could easily exist for laptops and netbooks.
  • He confuses the popularity of peer to peer SMS with advertising SMS. These are not the same. Yes SMS is addictive, but not when it’s from advertisers.
  • The bit where he pretends to spit on the floor showing his dislike for location based services compared with measuring movement is just daft.

Add all that with a few sexist comments and it makes for interesting viewing. The stuff about mobile in developing countries is worth listening to.