James Mayes

Posts Tagged ‘Smartphone’

Blog: Twitter vs Foursquare – just a local micro-trend?

In Facebook, Foursquare, Mobile, Recruitment, Social Media, Social Recruiting, Start-ups, Twitter on March 17, 2012 at 9:53 am

I wrote recently about visualising FourSquare check-ins after I watched adoption of the platform skyrocket during SXSW. When I wrote that, I wanted to follow up with some micro-level observations on usage – and throw it out for wider validation. There are trends I’ve noticed which, if mirrored in your lives, have significant implications for recruiters and technologists alike. FourSquare isn’t the whole focus here, but certainly the catalyst for the thoughts.

First up – the scene.  I live in a small British town, not an urban metropolis.A handful of streets, close and friendly community, mixture of age groups, a very strong group of parents with school-age children (teenage and not-quite-teenage). A year ago, almost all were using Facebook. Some were absent, but amongst those I know well, adoption probably exceeded 80%.

Six months ago, a shift became apparent. The younger generation started hitting Twitter.  Mostly the chatter was around the music scene, but I noted a rise in smartphone around the same time. It was also evident that a few had unfriended parents in recent months on Facebook, so maybe that played a part. PLEASE, let me know what you see in your communities, I’d appreciate the feedback whether it validates or disproves! If this is borne out in the wider market, it certainly has implications for any recruitment campaign around the entry/graduate level of the market. I’d also note that while there’s been some adoption by adults, it’s been much less so. That segment still far more Facebook focussed. The teenagers are still active on Facebook, but to a lesser degree than a year ago.

FourSquare logoThe catalyst for this post remains FourSquare though. Over the last few months, a number of the parents have jumped on there. Im keen to understand why, and whether this is a wider thing. FourSquare was huge at SXSW, but that’s mecca for geeks, so makes perfect sense. The parties, the promotions, the networking, the discovery.

My area has minimal specials on there, so the recent adoption isn’t for money-saving reasons. If the kids aren’t there, it’s not for keeping track of them. It’s a fairly regular community, not a heavily digital selection, so that’s not it. Yes, there’s been an increase in smart phone adoption – but that delivers all kinds of opportunities, not just FourSquare. Certainly, there’s a focus and an interest around the mayorships – the gamification aspect is really driving engagement, no question.

Regardless – if you wanted to target this group, FourSquare’d be a great option right now – so clearly, I want to understand if this is a more widespread trend. If so, FourSquare and recruitment are only just getting acquainted…

Blog: Android mobile app testing at #srconf

In Community, Conference, Gadgets, Mobile, Social Media, Social Recruiting, Start-ups, Twitter on June 24, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Social Ties App

You might recall I had early access this year to an app called Social Ties.  It was in private alpha test at the time, and I had a little fun with it at #TruLondon.  Well, it’s moved on.  It’s now in public Beta for Android phones – and I believe an iPhone version isn’t far behind. I plan on giving it another run out at the Social Recruiting Conference next week – and you’re welcome to join me.

The app is designed to pick up attendees of a conference, then combine the public details of you and others in the room to make recommendations based on social information. It also provides you with a groovy little cheat sheet – the Bio from their Twitter account, conversation key words, recent tweets….

Currently, it picks up delegates from the Lanyrd event platform – go here to register on Lanyrd for #SRConf – you can use a Twitter account to sign in. I know a number of other hook-ups are in the pipeline too, including FourSquare and #hashtag recognition.

If you have an Android phone and want to try it out, the download installation file is here, or available from their home page. The event will appear listed in the app a couple of days before the event.

Don’t be surprised if I come and introduce myself, already appearing to know a little about you!

Blog: Going off-grid

In Gadgets, Mobile, Personal, Personal Development, Social Media, Social Recruiting, Twitter on June 2, 2011 at 11:36 am

Regular Twitter followers will be aware of a phone incident a while back. It relegated me to using a Nokia handset from 2003 for a few weeks. I’m now fully back on the grid, and giving the new device a test run by writing most of this post on the touchscreen keyboard, on my way to meetings in town (I added the image & links on the netbook).

The best nokia everSo to the off-grid experience. I thought it might be worth reflecting a little. What stood out, what I missed, etc.

First up, I found it actually improved concentration and time management. You see, I’d got in to the habit of responding to emails on the fly, in the quiet moments between other things. This feels like great use of time, but I’ve subsequently started to realise that if I respond to a batch of mails in one session, I’m more focussed; I think it shows in the things I write. Maybe email should stay that way?

I missed Twitter, hugely. For me, there are numerous aspects and benefits to using Twitter, many of which are perfectly available through the desktop experience. Likewise, Twitter has some SMS functionality, so I was able to do certain things. The major thing I missed though, was what Benjamin Ellis calls “the watercooler“. The ability to dip in and out of the stream, in precisely those same moments where I now think maybe email is to be avoided. So glad to have that back, it’s impossible to accurately value the serendipity effect!

I’d forgotten how long a phone could run, if it’s ONLY being used as a phone. Most people I speak to charge smartphones once, often twice, a day. Travel back to 2003, I could charge that device on Sunday and have it run all week! I’m sure battery technology has improved since 2003, so this difference in operating time must relate to big screens, WiFi & GPS use, high-powered processors, etc.

Finally (when I relaxed into it) I loved the freedom. I’m highly active on numerous social platforms and the time-travel back to a less connected period was truly enlightening. At first uncomfortable and feeling out of touch, I gradually began to enjoy the absence of a device, platforms and virtual people wanting constant attention.

So now I’m back. Fully hooked into the matrix once more. I’ll be sticking with my smartphone for sure (and damn if this new one isn’t seriously impressive!) but I’ll be trying to keep some of the above in mind.

It may not be life-changing, but it’s certainly been enlightening.

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