Posts Tagged ‘AOL’

Userplane Not In A Good Shape?

July 12th, 2009

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That is what Robin Wauters at Techcrunch wrote about in a quite Valleywag-like headline. But going beyond the headline he seems to be right. Something is not right with Userplane. I cannot say i noted it because i get to see so much stuff that you only remember these things when looking for references to the new stuff you get to see.

(I know. weird way to point it out)

There are things i do note now when reflecting back to the last 12 months of Userplane when it comes to my following of the Widget space:

1.-I stopped seeing Ads for it

In blogs and even in AOL properties which is weird because when userplane was bought out and integrated to AOL. It was given quite the preferential treatment by what is known as “Platform A” that is the very spread and deep reaching AD platform/agency AOL got.

2.- Their last two major product updates didn’t heated up

The ones i covered here and here didn’t seemed to had gained any traction and i have never encountered a site using them. so i ignore where their found traction.

3.-Never understood their pricing

In my opinion, the pricing of userplane pro services was not well leveled and it also resulted very expensive compared to competing products that offered it cheaper and at similar quality.  so i think that is the most important point. maybe the prices were unrealistic and this was the major block for its adoption.

Then there is the AOL Shuffle

Robin reflects more in the Organizational Shuffle AOL is going through and while there is no doubt that got a lot to do. i don’t think that this is the fault of a CEO or of the top executives of AOL. The best theory is that AOL is placing more importance in Social Networking and Lifestreaming after acquiring Bebo and Socialthing.  This one is the most likely since we already had seen how AOL had made serious cuts  and changes to their Widget Strategy after what happened with the innovative YourMinis and Goowy Desktop. Userplace could easily be a victim of that focus shift or victim of its performance for AOL. that is something that only a direct statement by AOL or someone with good data can answer.

I still find Userplane a great Widget provider when it comes to the technology, looks and versatility of the widgets they offer. so i will go with the pricing not being low enough and the simple fact that the competition is brutal. more when they even have to compete with other products from the same company they represent.

Robin post got a lot of good nuggets and it makes for a good read so take a look to it.

Startups Smell Userplane Blood

Userplane

iLike playlist via Friend Connect

January 15th, 2009
social-playlist

Google Friend Connect is Google’s beginnings of a social infrastructure. Instead of a central location like Myspace or Facebook, Friend connect is spread to the far reaches of the net. In December, it opened to all Websites. That means that anyone with a Google, Yahoo, AIM, or OpenID username and password can sign in on any blog or site hosting a Friend Connect widget.

Friend Connect is also open to developers with the desire to design and build apps that integrate with Friend Connect.

Today, iLike (social music discovery service) announced a “social playlist” gadget utilizing the power of Google Friend Connect.

As the leader in social music discovery, we have used Google’s Friend Connect service to build a “social playlist” gadget, which launched today. This new feature empowers any Web site owner to add a playlist to his/her site. The social hook is that visitors to a participating Web site can “log in” (via Friend Connect) to edit these dynamic playlists by adding or deleting songs.

read entire iLike announcement.

Music has been a central theme in the social sphere since day one. People tend to adopt music related services rather quickly and I don’t think this will be any different. I do hope that the “Audio Police” leave this one alone…but if the recent news about “muting” copyrighted content on YouTube is any indication of future action, can we expect similar issues when the iLike gadget appears on 1 million blogs?

update: Upon further inspection I have noticed that the music is streamed through Rhapsody and they impose a “25 play” limit on non subscribers. (not sure if this is per song or plays per widget) This cripples the reach of this widget dramatically!

Look at the sidebar bottom for the iLike “Social Playlist” gadget widget

Userplane WebChat 2 Widget Now More Social

December 4th, 2008

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Userplane and Meebo have been competing with their Chat Widgets for months now and every single time that it looks like Meebo has made a good advance over Userplane. they usually get pwned by Userplane harder. this time around is no exception. just after Meebo recent Hearst Deal. it comes from Userplane that their WebChat 2 Widget will now be Social.

What does that mean?. it means you will be able to use it in the Top Social Networks. the ones first supported are MySpace, Facebook, Friendster, Hi5, Bebo, Ning and Flux. That pretty much cover the Top 5 Social Networks plus the Top Commercial Social Network and The Top Social Network Provider.

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This move will be a huge blow to Meebo`s Community IM party and now it will have to catch up to Userplane yet again.

The last updates to WebChat  2. are sure in need of a new look to the Widget. so i will get to that soon enough.

Userplane

JS-KIT partners with AOL Userplane for Widget Cross Promotion

November 4th, 2008

it is quite admirable how JS-KIT keeps on going and landing partnerships. this time was AOL Userplane that makes widget services like the Userplane Webchat and the so-so new Userplane Boards.

JS-KIT will be promoting Userplane Webchat and Userplane will promote JS-KIT Ratings

The rationale is simple in this case. userplane wants to keep Meebo at bay and JS-KIT needs to keep gaining volume so Disqus can never catch them and to be prepared for WordPress backed IntenseDebate. so this cross promotion makes perfect sense and should do some good for both parties.

Today we’re excited to announce a partnership with AOL’s Userplane division. This partnership sees the two companies achieve a combined reach of over 900,000 registered publishers.

Userplane is the world’s premier social software provider for online communities and one of the largest global social media ad networks. It will offer JS-Kit’s Ratings service through Userplane’s distribution channels. JS-Kit will add Userplane’s Webchat application to its product suite.

Khris Loux
CEO, JS-Kit

More here: JS-Kit extends its reach to 900,000 registered publishers

JS-KIT        Userplane

via TC

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