Saturday, January 19, 2008

Feeback and trends from LeWeb 3, Dec.2007 edition

LeWeb3 event succeded for 2 days to make Paris the wordwide capital of the Web 2.0 trends.
Orange sponsored the event, and it has been a great opportunity to demonstrate the services (Pikeo, Soundtribes, BubbleTop, Whose Game as well as the Orange Island in Second Life) through a nicely set booth. In addition, i participated to the Start-Up Contest jury. Beyond the winners (Goojet #1, PlyMedia #2, #3, Erepublik and SplitGames both as #4), i noticed the following trends.
Definitely convergence again between Web and Mobile. Through Goojet of course which allows easy and fast creation of widget application on the web and transfer to the mobile. I still prefer though the 'mob-it' approach from NPTV we are supporting in the 'Orange Start-Up Program (OSUP)' since it enables web contents to be sent to a much broader existing handset base thanks to a Java based application approach. Also a convergence going from mobile to web with Zyb allowing you to transfer your phone contacts, your 'real' friends meaning your friends in real life, back to the web to start developing a social network dynamics on top of your real friends and not the opposite way i.e. trying to end up becoming real friends with virtual ones collected over time from your different web communities and social network services .
Still the confirmation of video as the emerging 2.0 format. In addition to the presence of Seesmic, Loic Lemeur's new start-up, interesting to note that PlyMedia was given the #2 position for its platform allowing publishers to add multi-function layers on top of a video content such as text, or ads or even interactivity through IM or Chats elements. I was also pleased to meet again Netineo (not part of the competition) who developed a great Live TV platform. Not mentioning the presence of among the sponsors and exhibitors.
The virtual words and 3D platforms were also very much present. Both Erepublik and SpiltGames came in the top 5 of the contest thus enhancing the importance of games as a key market place. On our side WhoseGame got some good feedback on the booth. I am also looking forward to follow in 2008 what SongSong, member of the OSUP, and its new team, headed by Nicolas Gaume as CEO, will launch in the area of community based virtual universes. Finally with a different approach to Second Life (go and visit our Orange Island), the start-up Yoowalk presented a great way to 'Walk around the Web' in a 3D city where I, my avatar, walks along or inside the YouTube or Myspace buildings and therefore meet also people (visitors of the site at this moment) and then goes back home to further personalize its house with different contents appearing on the walls such as videos for instance.
Overall it was still quite striking that a majority of the 30 start-ups pitches were poorly presented. Presentation skills are still an issue and most of the jury members recognized that the entrepreneurs are not preparing this exercice well enough. It is probably not yet obvious to the young CEOs to choose between the Demo and sales driven approach or the 10 questions flow requested by the jury in an exhaustive and well ordered manner. The presenter has to face a different set of audiences with different expectations, the other visitors at the conference, its pairs and sometimes competitors, the VCs, the possible corporate and business partners and the jury, often made of a mix of the formers. There is definitely room for improvement in this area.
Regarding feedback, we were quite pleased to see that BubbleTop is more and more mentioned versus Netvibes by some bloggers who analyzed and compared the evolution of both products.
On the conference side I was very impressed by the presentation from JP Rangaswami, CIO Global Services at BT which describes the challenges and opportunities for existing corporations and their current organizations to welcome and embrace the next generation of workers who will be super 'trained' with these news ways of communicating, collaborating and sharing. Definitely to me one of the key dimension of what Web 3.0 might mean i.e. how this Web 2.0 wave will impact the Enterprise and which companies will create competitive advantage out of it while others will suffer from it ?

No comments: