aggregators v.s. operators – pros and cons

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Aggregators are an important channel to market. In some ways, because they reach more than one operator, they can have a wider reach than working with a single operator.

In simplest terms, an aggregator takes applications from more than one developers and distributes it to one or more operators.

I have been looking at aggregators for the next version of OpenGardens and I am discussing the pros and cons of working with an aggregator vs. working with multiple operators.

Conventional wisdom suggests that – an aggregator clearly serves some purpose. In some cases, the operator does not want to speak to developers directly. This means the developer is forced to go through an aggregator

Potentially, anyone could be an aggregator – for example in the games industry, some publishers are both developers and aggregators.

From what I have seen so far, an aggregator performs some or all of these functions

a) Distributing content to one or more operators

b) Distributing content from their own portal

c) Billing and invoicing

d) Packaging and bundling of applications

e) Sometimes testing etc

Even within the content space, most appear to cater for games only. Infospace, Digitalgridges and mforma seem to be content aggregators(perhaps more focussed on games) as opposed to application aggregators

Some companies like bango and end2end are aggregating applications and content

Questions I seek answers to are:

a) What do aggregators do other than the above?

b) Any recommended aggregators?

c) Pros and cons – aggregators vs. operators

d) Why are so many aggregators focussed on gaming?

e) Are there any good application aggregators?

f) Any experiences(good or bad) with aggregators?

Final word .. the whole aggregator model may be a red herring. With mobile search on the rise, I think that’s the way to go(but that’s another blog)!

Image source:

http://www.blytheco.com/images/misc_distribution.jpg

TV genius

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I had the pleasure of having dinner with Tom Weiss yesterday

(Vice President Key Service Introduction T-Mobile International).

One of the interesting applications he pointed out to me was tv genius .

In the mobile apps club, we are using this application as a gedankenexperiment – a thought experiment – on how we could market such an application off portal

Initial thoughts(collated from discussions in the club HERE are

a) currently it has SMS alerts. Could expand to video feeds

b) The concept is simple and useful. Perhaps we could get

sponsorship for it from the content people

c) A small ad from the advertisers with each message perhaps?

d) From Nick Ris

For me the obvious cash generator would be up sell of home tv package. i.e. you type in ‘Football’ and the results display shows that you can’t watch because you don’t have SKY etc such that you push users to your affiliate partners to get the better TV package..

e) Build up a community first and then expand on it

Mobile TV is a buzzword at the moment and so this app may have timed it right(but still needs to start as a simple SMS alert and grow a community in my view). Give me your ideas and I shall pass them on and refer you on the blog