MuseStorm bring their Widget Agency approach to the iPhone and look to the future.

May 23rd, 2008 by Avatar X Leave a reply »

musestorm logo

When i say “Widget Agency” as a way to refer to musestorm is because they are exactly that in terms to widgets because they build or let you build and the take care of everything from there. right now. in the already changed landscape of widgets. yo could say musestorm is a part sprout, gigya and clearspring rolled into one.

And they want you author your own iphone “app” (as Apple calls them). that we know are no more than focused mobile websites. because there are already good ways to make a iphone formatted site and the best comes from Mofuse. but mofuse is more of a enabler in principle and a dedicated enabler second. MuseStorm want you to let you author your own iphone sites, but have them with a Widget twist so they can be Widgetized Mobile Sites.

And they are doing that for free, something remarkable but logical because they obviously want to look for mindshare right now. something they have been struggling because of the arrival of new competitors like gigya and now sprout that have generated quite a lot of hype for themselves.

Even then, free is free and that should suffice to most to at least take a look at what they are offering.

Now i let run the official MuseStorm Press Release that they kindly have facilitated me and continue the commentary and demos after it:

 

Musestorm opens the iphone marketing world with first-ever iphone Widget creation, Distribution and Analytics Tools

Marketers and advertisers can quickly and easily build Web applications

for unique, engaging campaigns that reach iPhone users

SUNNYVALE, Calif.—June XX, 2008—MuseStorm (www.musestorm.com), the professional platform for widgets and social applications, announced today that it has extended the MuseStorm Engagement Platform to offer support for the iPhone. Companies that have been waiting for a fast, cost-effective and measurable way to create Web applications for delivery through a Web browser to iPhones can now do so thanks to the extended capabilities of the MuseStorm Engagement Platform.

The MuseStorm Engagement platform – the first widget platform to support the development of true Facebook applications – is the easiest and fastest way to create widgets and social applications that can be distributed across a variety of platforms, including Web, desktop, Facebook, Bebo, and now iPhone. MuseStorm’s Widget Studio is the only widget-building platform that enables marketers, agencies and entertainment companies to build widgets for deployment on a regular page and then morph them into the proper format for Facebook, Bebo, and now iPhone. MuseStorm saves companies time and developer resources as well; even non-technical people can learn to build widgets using the MuseStorm Engagement Platform in as little as 30 minutes, and with about the same technical capabilities required to create a PowerPoint presentation.

Marketers and agencies that build and run campaigns on the MuseStorm platform will be able to see and analyze user engagement far beyond number of click-throughs or impressions, thanks to MuseStorm’s first-of-its-kind analytic capabilities. MuseStorm’s easy-to-understand dashboard format lets its customers keep 24 x 7 watch over their widgets’ performance, with metrics that give them unique insight in to their audience. From details such as which specific components of the widget were viewed (and how many times), to how many people posted the widget on their MySpace page to seeing which users stopped a video and then completed viewing it, MuseStorm clients reap the benefits of these detailed metrics capabilities built into the Engagement Platform.

IPhone applications built on the MuseStorm Engagement Platform are Web applications, not files they must download through Apple or elsewhere. When iPhone users receive a widget built on the MuseStorm platform, they simply download an icon onto their phone, touch it, and are taken to a Web site that is specially formatted to meet the iPhone look and feel. In related news, MuseStorm announced it plans to support native iPhone applications by Q308.

“Over the past three years, MuseStorm has paid close attention to what our customers want, and they want to reach audiences where ever they are on the Web – and Nielsen and others are telling us they’re six to 12 times more likely to be on the Web and viewing video with their iPhones,” said Ori Soen, co-founder and chief executive officer of MuseStorm. “With the installed base of iPhone users expected to reach 13 million by year’s end, we’re giving them the least time- and resource-consuming and most direct route to reach this key audience who use their phones to connect to the Internet more than any other mobile device. “

iPhone MuseStorm Demo

So no one is left wondering how  MuseStorm works in the iphone, they got a demo to show and it plays slidshow of the widgetized site inside a iPhone Widget (fitting)..

As it can be seen in the demo it looks really good. as good as pretty much 90% of all professionally made websites for iPhone but without having to work or pay much for it and with way better analytics.

and that is the whole point. to show not only the easy access to having a widgetized mobile website but having all the analytics to manage it too.

Updated Engagement Platform Video Tour

This is a video that  got delayed a month ago when musestorm updated their engagement platform. now it is obvious that it got delayed because they didn`t had iPhone Widget Studio support ready or were not ready to announce it.. i will go with a bit of both reasons.

In this video, you can see how easy it really is to create a widget using Widget Studio and also how easy is to port it depending where you are using it.

Widget Studio benefits are stated as:

*Combine multiple media (video, audio, photos, RSS feeds, and static text) as you like it— into your widget to optimize audience engagement
*Modify your widget’s content on the fly at any time—to keep your content fresh, hone your message, or respond to audience interaction
*Drag-and-drop sophisticated interactive features—chats, comments, polls, and user-generated content, without any custom programming
*Easily morph your widget into a true Facebook application or Bebo application
Complete control over widget content, functionality, and distribution
*Optimize your user’s experience with pixel-level control; specify dimensions, skin, menus, colors, and fonts

Another good points on MuseStorm were left behind as a comment by Ori Soen (CEO of Musestorm)  last month when they first updated the engagement platform:

1. The MuseStorm production studio allows users to create full-featured Flash widgets and social apps (including Facebook and Bebo). Unlike Gigya, ClearSpring and WidgetBox who provide a WRAPPER that allows developers to get their app on Facebook or Bebo (but it’s still a Flash widget), apps created on our platform are true FBML (Facebook) or SNML (Bebo). That means these apps can access the friend list, newsfeed and more! The MuseStorm Engagement Platform is really the first platform to allow rapid creation of social apps without programming.
2. We’ve launched Bebo support now, and have had support for Facebook since end of 2007. There is no “grand master plan” behind it :)
3. The most powerful module of our platform is the multi-publishing capability – you can create a Web widget (Flash) and convert it with a click of a button into a Facebook app, then into Bebo, Yahoo desktop widgets and more. This allows you to create apps that naturally fit within your end-user’s environment. We all know it’s not a one-size-fit-all situation.
4. Tomorrow (Wed) you’ll be able to see a video tour of the platform and understand the power – check it out

Those are important points because it shows how committed they are to High Spread (they call it  Intelligent delivery) and the quality of it. and that is also where the future of musestorm updates points.

In the Widget studio you can already see the showed options in the  3 mediums they are covering:

Web

Support for MySpace, Hi5 and Orkut (i would add Friendster, iGoogle and Windows Live to that Ori) for specific tailored porting.

Desktop

Windows (xp-vista) and Google Desktop

Mobile

No doubt the most ambitious support is this area because you can see flash lite, java an even nokia widsets widgets support.

Concluding….

Musestorm raised the game and it should be enough to play against the recent Clearspring Update that aims to fight not only to musestorm but everyone in the widgetsphere.

I would also like to see if musestorm will give support for Silverlight Mobile and support for Opera Open Widgets later on  this year. i am most curious about Silverlight Mobile because is just about to launch into mobiles this summer in Windows Mobile and Nokia High end phones.

Now the ball is the court of the rest of the Big players. now we only need to wait for Widgetbox , Gigya and SpringWidgets response to  all this new development in the widget market.

Whatever happens. i will sure remember may as the month that changed Boosted the prospects of the widget market yet again.

MuseStorm

5 comments

  1. Fbgigs says:

    honestly, would like to hear your take from a cost/benefit perspective. I know its difficult to comparitively review these platforms, but who are they really geared towards?

    No one I know wants to use utilities like sprout which try to cannibalize good development, it offends larger clients and agencies and puts a really impersonal message out there.

    MuseStorm is very interesting in terms of self publishing (tested beta 2 days ago) for those who are just testing the waters, in very short campaigns — really lacks scalability due to limits of their platform.

    Maybe this is a fundamental platform argument..

    Keep up the commentary, love reading the blogs.

    http://facebookgigs.com

  2. Avatar says:

    @fbgigs:

    Hi there, and thanks for a truly good comment, i moderated your last because they were detected as spamments at firsts. but this one did made it and i saw you got some meaty bits in your comment.

    In terms of costs-benefits:

    the harder part is to determine to what end and at what level of developmnet. so it would to compare and then separate the layers of the kind of widget and the kind of development/management in consideration related to them.

    i think the widget market now got quite blazing hot. and i have decided to do some Widget interviews soon because of that. i will start from the top 10 in widget market and will go down from there. so keep reading.

  3. Thanks for the thoughtful write up, Avatar. As for the comment regarding scalability … I find that interesting. Our customers – most of whom are medium and large agencies, brand marketers, and entertainment companies, tell us that they reason they are standardizing on MuseStorm and its engagement platform is precisely because building each widget by hand for each platform (the web, Facebook, OpenSocial, Bebo, up and coming social networks like Hi5 never mind mobile platforms such as iPhone) is not a model that scales for them. Most sophisticated clients are well past the point where they can build a widget for one social network and declare victory. The goal is to reach the target demographic where they spend their time which means multiple social networks and mobile devices for that matter are the norm, not the exception.

    Avatar is exactly right when he points out that these are exciting times for widget companies. Customers tell us that they particularly like the fact that we provide analytics and drag-and-drop components as core parts of the platform. Yes, they could build these things themselves, but why? We save them time and money, allowing them to focus their attention on the more creative aspects of the campaign.

    As with any new technology, there is always a trade off … between doing it “your way” and having to build everything from scratch or fitting what you are doing into the constraints of a platform that does the majority of heavy lifting for you. But our clients tell us that the benefits far outweigh the very modest costs – that there is nothing they cannot do using our platform and approach.

  4. Avatar says:

    @Marcia Kadanoff: thanks and i love to get feedback and answer even if they come covered in PR talk 😉

    thanks for stopping by. i will keep watching then. 🙂

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