Smart at the Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona

Smart at the Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona

I love it when companies embrace technology.  There’s always room to grow and there’s always something to innovate.  One of the companies that I admire is Smart Communications as they continue to drive innovation and bring it to customers nationwide.

From February 27 to March 1, 2012, Smart is actually represented in the Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona, Spain.  Smart is set to demo the WAC applications that has the in-App billing feature.  If you remember, Smart was able to demo the Smart Netphone in last year’s event.  Look at us now, almost all Smart customers are using SmartNet and enjoying it!

I’m glad that Smart held a press briefing last night demonstrating the first few apps that participated in the effort in delivering a simple, safe and easy-to-use payment experience for customers.

Smart Presentation

This is through the Wholesale Applications Community (WAC), an open global alliance made up of leading communications companies like network operators,  device and network equipment manufacturers.  Smart Communications is part of the Board of Directors.  That explains why Smart is bringing in WAC’s payment API, a new technology which enables software developers to charge Smart mobile users directly through their prepaid or postpaid accounts.

WAC Board of Directors

WAC App looks like any other mobile application, but is written using web technologies.  WAC Apps can run on any smartphone (i.e., Android) for which a WAC runtime is available.  Smart highlighted applications created by Filipino developers.  I find them really inspiring.  And I believe in just a few weeks or months, when we see the first few Filipino-made WAC applications being successful, there’ll be more.  Of course, in the end, the customers get to win as things are becoming much easier and more convenient.

WAC apps

The common denominator in the applications as described below is the Payment API.  There is no more need for users to enter a credit card number, the user only needs to confirm purchase and it will be automatically charged on their phone bill.  The ease of use makes it the more exciting.

So without further ado, these are the applications that were showed to us during the press briefing:

  • FHM Philippines

The FHM Philippines application is something I’m sure every Filipino guy would love to have on their mobile phones.  Developed by Hand Interactive, Inc., the mobile app features a collection of the hottest celebrity covers of FHM magazine.

Other features include unpublished photos handpicked by FHM editorial team, write-ups per cover girl and most importantly in-app operator billing which allows users to download their favorite photo sets for Php 15 charged directly to their Smart mobile account.  Now, isn’t that too cool?

Now you guys can have your favorite celebrity sexy photos on your mobile phone.  Yes, I know you want them.  I still distinctly remember how guys drooled over the FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World show last year.  If that show was successful, I’m sure this app would.  Of course, the in-app operator billing feature will make it so much easier for you to own your favorite FHM photo covers.

FHM Philippines mobile application may be downloaded for free from the Android marketplace very soon.

  • iCare

Filipinos are known to be compassionate and helpful.  That is why I think iCare is a great mobile application.  It allows people not just in the Philippines but around the world to donate to Philippine Red Cross and other non-profit charitable organizations.

The capability to send monetary donations through your Smart mobile account makes it much easier to help!  As of the moment, the Philippine National Red Cross is the main beneficiary but soon iCare will expand to include other similar organizations.

I can’t wait for this mobile application to be available.  It always feels good to help people in need.

  • TopApp

I don’t recall anyone who doesn’t have any mobile phone.  Especially in the Philippines, everyone is just connected.  You can see companies (even non-telcos) hold contests that gives a chance to customers to win prepaid mobile loads.  So it just makes a lot of sense that people would want to have TopApp in their mobile phones.

TopApp is an application that allows users to send phone credits to a Smart prepaid user in the Philippines.  You can send prepaid load remotely with just a few clicks.  There are different denominations available: Php 30, Php 50, Php 100, Php 200, Php 300 and Php 500.  The sender then will be billed by his/her telecom provider.

Now, everything is just easy and convenient!  I’m in total awe!

  • Shoephoric

Shoephoric might not be for everyone.  As the name implies, Shoephoric is a mobile application for shoe lovers.  It enables people to share their shoe collection and discuss about them with other shoe lovers.

I believe ladies would love this application.  For guys, I’m not sure they will find this interesting.  If ever, I guess only 5% of the male population might download this app or use it.  The story is totally different with women though.  Like me, for example, I own more than 50 pairs of shoes!  I even have my own cabinet just for shoes at home.  So I’m sure when the mobile application comes out, I’ll be the one of the first to download.

What sets it apart is a feature called ‘Make Me Shoephoric’.  It’s a feature wherein your friends can help gift you your dream shoe by pitching in money using the in-app operator billing.  So if your friends have Smart mobile accounts, they can help fund the shoes you’ve always wanted.

The Shoephoric app will be available soon from the Android marketplace.

I was able to download TopApp so far.  I can’t wait to see the rest of the applications come out of Android Marketplace.  I’ll surely make good use of them and hopefully they’ll be free to download.

Kudos to Smart for another milestone!

Roch Signature

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