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View Full Version : Mobile Operators Are Innovating (and Cashing In) With MMS

Eric Lin
07-10-2003, 08:05 PM
<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/59/31639.html' target='_blank'>http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/59/31639.html</a><br /><br /></div>Two interesting new applications for MMS have recently launched in Europe. Both are on the O2 network first. One, called <a href="http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/59/31639.html">Pocket This</a> is just an MMS application per se. About 300 desktop websites have been enabled with Pocket This buttons. When a user clicks on one, content from the page is sent to a phone as an SMS, MMS, or a link to a WAP site depending on the sort of information. Some of the most popular links are MMS from the National Gallery. Users often send these MMS to themselves and then forward them on to friends at family at appropriate times.<br /><br />The Second MMS service, well hmmm. It's a <a href="http://www.ppcw.net/index.php?itemid=1394">picture to postcard service</a>. You send an MMS including a photo, some text and a mailing address and eventually the recipient will get an analog postcard in the post. I'm not quite sure why you'd do since you've already composed an MMS you might as well send to the recipient, but I guess if he doesn't have an MMS capable handset, this is a good alternative.<br /><br />About a year ago, I was participating in a forum where one of the members just would not stop talking about MMS. He was very concerned about the lack of native support for it on the Smartphone. At the time Microsoft had two responses. 1: why would you send an MMS when you can send an email (often for less money in data charges)? 2: Operators are more than welcome to add on MMS clients.<br /><br />At the time I didn't understand what the big deal was, but now after some experience with both MMS and email on the Smartphone, and after seeing these two novel MMS uses, I'm beginning to understand what the big deal was. I think the biggest deal with MMS is that like SMS, it's instantaneous. When you send someone an email, you have to wait until that person retrieves mail before the thought or experience is shared. (Yes, unless they have a Blackberry or some similar system, but most people do not.) With a camera phone and MMS, you can take a spur of the moment snapshot and get it to the recipient immediately. The only problem I can see is that like in the early days of SMS, it's not always possible to send messages between phones on different networks.<br /><br />Where does the Smartphone fit in? That's a good question. Orange includes an MMS client on the SPV, but I'm not sure if it's included on all the Smartphones being sold throughout the world. To make matters worse, the one on the SPV is not very user friendly. What about you? Do you send MMS from your Smartphone? Do you use the EZOS client or some other application?

07-10-2003, 10:53 PM
Oh, I wasn't aware that MMS wasn't part of the core Smartphone functionality. I have an SPV, but have never sent an MMS (though I've been meaning to try it out). One of the problems with MMS is that you don't know whether the person you're sending it to has an MMS-capable phone or not. I think the way it works in Australia is if they don't have an MMS capable phone then that person just gets a text message with an internet link so they can look the message up online. Though as more and more handsets, even the lower end ones, are incoporating MMS this is not so much of a problem anymore.

It appears that my network (Vodafone) allows for sending MMSes to another of the other major carriers, though I'm not sure it's the same for them (as in they may not be able to reply back to me with an MMS). And it's a 0.75 AUD flat charge per message. What are the MMS charges like elsewhere?

07-11-2003, 10:07 PM
What does MMS stand for?

Janak Parekh
07-12-2003, 07:56 AM
What does MMS stand for?
Multimedia Messaging Service. It's, in essence, next-gen SMS that lets you send rich data. The way MMS works "under the hood" is that when an MMS is sent, the recipient's phone is sent a brief SMS saying "go get the MMS!" whereupon, after having prompted the recipient, the phone establishes a GPRS connection and downloads the message. This way, MMS doesn't suffer from the length and content limitations of SMS. It is fast becoming a popular way to send pictures via phones.


07-14-2003, 08:40 PM
I know a lot of people who don't even know what SMS means (I didn't 9 months ago--the U.S. is slow in this sort of thing), let alone MMS. I suggest when you use an acronym you also include what it stands for on first usage.

07-21-2003, 10:05 PM
Or do some homework. www.whatis.com is typically a helpful site. :D