Almira Labs Blog

Growing market for Feature Phone Services

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It’s in an undisputed fact that smartphones have done a huge step forward in the evolution of the telecommunication sector with bigger screens and fully featured, easy-to-use Web browsers. This initiated a developer wave providing a wide range of useful applications with engage their user much more than the ordinary phone call and SMS usage of simpler phones.

But keeping in mind that the largest share of phone devices worldwide is hold still by feature phones with around 80%, this ratio doesn’t reflect itself in the application market. Besides OVUM recent study reflects that by 2016 feature phones share will still be higher than the smartphones one (63% feature phones, 37% smartphones).

The giant Facebook is one of the players within the industry that has already got aware of this fact and has recently launched their app for feature phones that is accessible to more than 2.500 phone models of 19 operators worldwide. With this app Facebook users can view and upload photos, view news feeds and their inbox, find friends and view profiles with their feature phone.

Since feature phones will probably always lag behind smartphones in terms of Web browser usability, adapted apps are probably the best way to deliver a richer and more user-friendly experience. Especially services developed in Java are the best option to enlarge the market for feature phone services given the fact that this open programming language run on any operational system of any mobile provider.

By improving distribution programmes and platforms for these services, Ovum predicts that the turnover of this market will almost double to US$1 billion by 2016.

Almira Labs service portfolio provides a wide catalogue of services for all mobile devices, both smart- and feature phones. Our special value added mobile services, developed with Java, are based on voice usage and on top don’t require no internet access or a program download in the moment of use. That is how we can provide to companies or end user an even more enriched way of communication.

For more information about our B2B & B2C solutions visit: www.almiralabs.com.

Mobile phone as livesavers in developing countries

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The drought in Somalia, the worst in the last 60 years, which currently dominates the media coverage is only another sad example of how fragile political systems, corruption and war can destruct entire countries, but not only economically, but also to a degree where poverty changes in hunger, illness and death.

Therefore one of new high interest themes within non-profit organizations (NGOs) is “Mobile Diagnostics” nowadays – especially against the background of their limited resources in money, medical experts and access to the affected area. In African rural areas, for example, one hospital might cover 1,800 km – too extensive to be covered by only a handful of health care workers. Simple mobile phones can be an efficient tool to provide at least an effective health consultation from a distance.

To mention an auspicious initiative in this context is HOPEPHONES.org. Their objective is to activate as many people in Western countries to donate their old mobile phones and send those as specific technological support to initiate more and more mobile health projects in developing countries. According to HopePhones, alone in the United Stated 500.000 mobile phones are discarded every day – with only 1% of all these disposed mobiles each year, 50 million people in developing countries could get an immediate access to their health worker.

But also other research initiatives do a great job to improve the medical diagnostics in poor countries. Professor Ayodan Ozcan from the University of California found a way to turn an ordinary mobile phone in an actual medical device. He developed a portable microscope attachable to nearly any mobile which allows microanalysis of blood, bodily fluids and water samples. With only some drops of blood on a microscope slide patterns of red blood cells or bacteria can be compared immediately with images in a database to detect TB, malaria, certain STDs, HIV and other diseases. One time in mass production Ozcan predicts the cost per microscope will be only $10 to $15.

If you want to donate your mobile phone, contact www.hopephones.org

For more inside about Professor’s Ozcan work, click here:

Emotional Regulation through Voice Messaging

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According to the Spanish Institute of Statistics (INE, 2010) more than 60% of Spanish teenagers at the age of 12 years already possess their first mobile phone. Till the age of 15 years this number raises further up to 92%.

Against the background of this early adoption of the youth to mobile technology, it is interesting to know if the emotional status of teenager can be affected by their mobile usage.

Therefore O3 Wellbeing in collaboration with Almira Labs and Madrid’s University “Complutense” set up an experimental study to figure out if in particular voice messages might have a positive effect on the emotional regulation of teenagers and consequently benefit their academic results.

During a 3 month period a group of girls and boys in high school age (13-15 years) were equally split in both, a control and experimental group. A pre-post questionnaire were designed to measure their emotional status before and after the reception of a program with 24 different voice messages in which guidelines for emotional self-regulation, attention training and time management were given to the participants of the experimental group only.

Every message was sent randomly several times a week to every participant of the experimental group via VoiceCast, a special corporate service developed by Almira Labs, which allows to preset contacts list and send single voice messages to the mobile phone of its members.

Motivational voice messages via mobile phones have a strong influence on emotional regulation and academic record

As a result of the continuous voice message exposure over these 3 months the experimental group lowered in comparison the control group significantly the overall level of negative emotions in all 5 tested categories – depression, anxiety, helplessness, irritability and impaired thoughts. Furthermore a positive correlation of the number of received messages and the improvement of the emotional status were discovered.

The program had also a positive effect on academic results. The experimental group achieved better records while participating in this experiment. Overall results lead to the conclusion that instructive voice message impacts positively on students’ emotional self-regulation.

Altogether these results already provide a deeper insight of the growing importance of mobile technology in the education and healthcare sector. In this regard Almira Labs offers several cutting-edge solutions for companies and final clients to implement mobile technology to improve traditional healthcare services.
For more insides about the study, click here.

For more information about AlmiraLabs’ VoiceCast get in contact with us: info@almiralabs.com