Wireless Wonders

No news, just comment about mobile phones and services, from a veteran practitioner...3G, GPRS, WAP, Bluetooth, WiFi, etc...

Monday, April 11, 2005

My latest pic on your phone...idea #45/100...

In the world of SIP-based telephony, the initial connection ("invite") to participate in a call can include a reference to an external resource via a URI. This can be used, for example, to fetch a photo of the calling party.

On the other hand, with the powerful open API of the photo-organising site Flickr, the URI could be a link into their photo database. In theory, any photo could be extracted from the database, according to however the caller wants to announce themselves.

One possibility is simply to send the latest addition to the caller's Flickr album. If you're calling a friend or family member, this might be a fun way to share images.

This might be a trivial example, but, just as Flickr users find all kinds of imaginative ways to share images, then I'm confident that merging images with calls won't pose any obstacle to their creativity.

This type of application demonstrates the possibilities in a world of open APIs and open connectivity. What I have just proposed would not take long to implement and is a real possibility. In the world of closed telecoms platforms and fenced services (unlike Flickr), such ideas would be for the likes of telecom engineers to implement (which they wouldn't do).

What excites me is the variations of possibilities. Making calls, or otherwise connecting, will become a highly personalised and customised experience, no longer bound by the shackles of unimaginative uniformity police (bean counters) who have ruled the roost for too long.

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