380 Articles for '전체'

  1. 2008/04/07 Cyworld to launch a blog service
  2. 2008/04/07 Who are the hottest mobile startups in China?
  3. 2008/04/02 Samsung brings Second Life to mobile (1)
  4. 2008/04/02 Want to improve your interview skills? Use video chatting.
  5. 2008/04/01 April Fool's Day joke of a Korean web startup (1)
  6. 2008/03/28 Lunch 2.0 at Microsoft Korea (3)
  7. 2008/03/26 Koreans aged 19-24 have 78 Cyworld friends on average (3)
  8. 2008/03/24 A Korean microblogging service sees two of its users getting married (9)
  9. 2008/03/24 Founder of Korea's #2 portal steps down
  10. 2008/03/21 NHN ex-CEO's new service beta launches

Cyworld to launch a blog service

Web 2.0 | 2008/04/07 20:45 | Web 2.0 Asia
Cyworld is launching a blog service (link in Korean) - well, technically, they're not launching a new service, but changing the name of their existing Home2 service. With their "Cyworld Blog" initiative, Cyworld might add more features down the road, but at least for the time being, the change seems pretty cosmetic.

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What is Home 2? As the suffix "2" tells, Cyworld has made a longtime effort to bring forth an upgraded version of their popular yet aging (i.e. slow growth) minihompy service. As popular as minihompy service was, Cyworld knew that nothing can be popular forever and they had to come up with the new engine of growth.

So they put together a team of brilliant strategists (including Marc Canter of the US, it's widely known) and spent numerous hours on brainstorming sessions. The service that came out of that effort was Cyworld Home 2 (out in spring 2007) - which was essentially a blog service with some robust frontpage editing features (widgets, page addition, etc) and 1-chon (Cyworld's friend system).

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However, Home 2 service never really clicked with the Cyworld minihompy users. Minihompy users didn't perceive the more blog-like Home 2 service as the natural next step to their minihompies and therefore didn't rush to Home 2. The fact that Home 2 was packed with all the bells and whistles also meant the service didn't have a very clear focus. When introduced to Home 2, minihompy users were like, "ok, so why am I supposed to use this?"

So Home 2 was by and large a flop, but to make matters worse, the situation isn't all that rosy for the minihompy service either - it's under a double threat of a) decreasing traffic in its domestic Korean market and b) struggle in virtually all foreign markets it entered into.

Which is why the re-naming of Home 2 to Cyworld Blog seems to have come from desperation rather than from a well-devised strategy.

Cyworld is perhaps undergoing a textbook case of innovator's dilemma: Once great, now slowly aging. Massive self-reinvention effort in the name of Home 2 didn't exactly succeed. Again, if you were Cyworld CEO, what would you do? Certainly a nice brain-teaser.

Who are the hottest mobile startups in China?

Mobile | 2008/04/07 11:46 | Web 2.0 Asia
Tangos of China Web 2.0 Review introduces the winners of Mobile Monday Beijing peer awards, including Tokiva:
Tokiva is a mobile virtual network operator which provide convenient and low-cost communication service to global traveler. Tokiva addresses key communications necessities for global travelers: inexpensively phone calls around the world, accessing email and sharing with peers.

After installing its mobile client and log in, you can call any number. Tokiva calls the user back and immediately connects the user to the called party. It also integrated with IM, so you can add its IM bot to use the service without downloading its client.

The service was privately launched in September 2007, and entered public beta with over 700k registered users on January 2008.

You can check out the rest of the winners here.

Mobile Monday Beijing is being spearheaded by our friend Benjamin Joffe, whose consulting work has recently been introduced on Read/Write Web.

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TAG China, Mobile, Mobile Monday

Samsung brings Second Life to mobile

Mobile | 2008/04/02 19:34 | Web 2.0 Asia
Samsung Electronics introduced mobile Second Life and several other innovations at CTIA '08. Coverage here, and here.
With the Second Life client available on Samsung's mobile handsets, users can enjoy many services from the Second Life virtual world whenever and wherever. Unique features of the Second Life client on Samsung's mobile handsets include a mixed blogging platform that allows users to post their blog simultaneously in the real world and the virtual world of Second Life, and the Samsung Mixed Contact feature which allows users to have mixed world contact by communicating with avatar friends via voice or SMS. The Second Life client on Samsung's mobile handsets is compatible with Windows Mobile devices.

I like the concept of using mobile phone as a link between one's online (virtual) life and offline life - Imagine your real-world activities such as phone conversations or short messages being portrayed onto your virtual world.

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What's also very interesting is Samsung Life Diary, Samsung's answer to Nokia Lifeblog. I had been involved with this project when I was at Samsung - honestly I didn't know it was going to take this long for Samsung to launch Life Diary.

LifeDiary, developed by Samsung, allows users to compose a personal diary, which manages the user's photos and videos taken that day, the calls made, SMS messages sent, contacts and any specific appointments throughout the day.

I'm sure Samsung Life Diary changed a lot since last time I was involved in the project (Fall '06), but some features we were planning at the time included visualizing social graph based on frequency of mobile phone communications, quick mobile blogging with rich content generated on mobile phone, etc. I'll try to get some more information on Life Diary and write a follow up post.
TAG CTIA, Life Diary, Samsung, second Life

Want to improve your interview skills? Use video chatting.

Web 2.0 | 2008/04/02 19:23 | Web 2.0 Asia
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Nate On, an instant messenger service provided by SK Communications (who runs Cyworld and Nate.com), announced it will start a mock-up job interview service using video chat. (Source: ETNews - link in Korean)

Nate On instant messenger users can submit their English resume and undergo a mock-up interview with retired HR managers (who worked at global companies like GE and IBM), using Nate On's video chatting feature. Fees are roughly $23 per a 20-minute session.

They say pain killer, not vitamin, is a good business model. Job interviews are certain pain, especially for today's young Koreans who are very much concerned about job security.
TAG instant messenger, mockup interview, Nate On, SK Communications

April Fool's Day joke of a Korean web startup

Other | 2008/04/01 11:08 | Web 2.0 Asia
Wizard, a Korean widget and startpage company (Korea's Netvibes?), posted April Fool's joke on its company blog. The company made a (fake) announcement that they've been acquired by Google, and that their product is being integrated with iGoogle.

The funny part is, they also put up what they claimed was "a copy of M&A contract with Google", which is titled as "Slavery Contract".

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TAG April Fool's Day, , Wizard

Lunch 2.0 at Microsoft Korea

Web 2.0 | 2008/03/28 12:59 | Web 2.0 Asia
Yesterday, we had the fourth Lunch 2.0 at Microsoft Korea. Korea's "Web 2.0 gangs" were all gathered together. Lunch was great - Nice big fat burger and beef enchilada. Here are Flickr photos, courtesy of Suman Park of Me2day.

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It deceptively looks as though I'm trying to hit on a girl, which I'm not

Guess which company was appointed to host the next Lunch 2.0... It's ours! We should find a good venue, as our office is *just* a little bit smaller than NHN's. Thanks Microsoft Korea for hosting the event.
TAG Korea, Lunch 2.0

Koreans aged 19-24 have 78 Cyworld friends on average

Other | 2008/03/26 17:20 | Web 2.0 Asia
Korea Economy Newspaper (link in Korean) reports that, according to a newest research, Koreans aged from 19 to 24 are, on average, found to:
  • Have 78 Cyworld buddies ("Il-chon")
  • Have added 23 new Cyworld buddies over the last year
  • Have 79 instant messenger buddies
  • Be a member of 5 online clubs
How can you possibly manage the communication with 78 Cyworld buddies and 79 instant messenger buddies? Add to this 100+ phonebook entries and pouring amount of emails, and boy, is it hard to simply "keep in touch".

It's funny people work so hard, often checking emails at 2AM, to achieve their biggest dream: To become able to throw away their blackberries and get free from emails.
TAG cyworld, Korea
A couple who met through Me2day, Korea's Twitter, are apparently getting married. Feel lonely? Start Me2day-ing.

Now, here's the fun part. Me2day's community is so closely knit that the CEO of the company himself is working on singing for the wedding. Me2day's CEO, Suman Park, is the person playing the piano in the video embedded below. Kewl.

I call the approach Me2day is taking as a "Delicous way" - i.e. Start with small, core audience; Build something great for them; Let them play with it, build a cult-like community; Have the community grow, slowly but surely.

Me2day, just like Twitter, seems to follow the right path. The only concern I have is, compared to Twitter, Me2day's core users could be too small in numbers because the service is only offered in Korean. In fact, that's the same kind of limitation that works against our company as well. Which is why we should have "globalize or die" mentality.

Well, I don't know if couples using our blog service are getting married anytime soon, but I guess I and my team will have to keep practicing on some musical skills on our spare times - you know, just in case. :)
TAG globalization, me2day, Suman Park

Founder of Korea's #2 portal steps down

Other | 2008/03/24 23:26 | Web 2.0 Asia
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Mr. Jae-Woong Lee, the founder of Korea's #2 portal Daum, announced he will step down from presidency.

Lee, who still owns about 20% of Daum, was the president and CEO of Daum until about a year ago - but he had resigned from CEO position last September, and now he's no longer the president either.

What's interesting is the speculation that Lee's move might somehow be related to the acquisition rumors surrounding Daum. In the Korean stock market, Daum was the subject of various M&A rumors throughout the past two years.

The fact that Lee is no longer part of Daum's management team suggests the Daum M&A rumors might finally be coming true. So who's buying Daum, if someone does buy the company? We don't know yet - but whoever it might be, the acquirer must be a player that's very determined to compete against Naver, the "king of the hill".
TAG Daum, Jaewoong Lee

NHN ex-CEO's new service beta launches

Web 2.0 | 2008/03/21 12:38 | Web 2.0 Asia
As I reported earlier, it was rumored that the former CEO of NHN, Mr. Brian Kim, will enter the foray of blogging business. (NHN is the company behind Korea's #1 giant portal, Naver.) Mr. Kim's new company, Iwilab, is already up and running in the Bay Area.

But it turned out that Iwilab's new service isn't so much about blogging as it's about website asset clipping/sharing. (Confirmed by Mr Jun Hur of Iwilab.) So I guess it was a classic example of a traditional newspaper reporter hearing one thing and writing another, completely different thing - when will they "get it"?

The new service from Iwilab is called Buru.com. I don't know where that name comes from - perhaps "bookmark" + "guru"? Or the Korean way of pronouncing "Blue"? (just kidding - but couldn't help the speculation as the site is generally hued in blue).

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Buru.com is actually a very simple concept. It's a giant archive for anything you see on the web - web pages, photos, video files, etc. You can directly add items to your buru, or browse some else's saved items and copy those onto your buru. Social bookmark meets RSS reader meets Box.net, perhaps?

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The concept reminds me of a popular Korean service called "Nate Tong". Tong means "container" in Korean, and the service is provided by SK - the same company running the ever-famous Cyworld. Tong is quite popular in Korea, but the less desired side-effect is rampant copying of content among the users.

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Buru.com is currently in open beta, meaning you can register and take the service for a spin. Frankly, I'm a bit underwhelmed by the service. When you try something out, there are services that "bite", and there are those that don't - I think buru.com falls into the latter category, at least for the time being. (I still like you guys, don't take me wrong.)

But the amazing thing about web services is, of course, you can always improve things as you go on. Buru.com will get only better from this point on - and you should never underestimate someone who used to sit behind the wheel of the world's #5 search company.
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