Why am I not surprised to read in The Korea Times that the Korean government is planning to set up an online app store? One reason is an incident I vividly remember that occurred sometime last year. My wife and I were waiting at a bus stop to catch the airport bus on one of our trips to the United States. Right in front of us, a policeman stopped a black sedan that had made an illegal U-turn a few hundred yards up the street. However, instead of pulling out a pad of paper to issue a ticket, the policeman punched some numbers into his mobile phone and showed it to the driver. Within a few minutes the whole process of issuing a traffic ticket was finished, with absolutely no uncertainty about the identity of the driver and other relevant details.
In certain respects, South Korea is leading the world in e-government. The Korea Times article reports that the government is now looking to set up a government "app store" to improve the distribution of public information such as weather forecasts, traffic updates and job openings. An official from the Ministry of Public Administration said that the plan is to launch the app store as an internet site and then expand it to mobile platforms. By allowing the public access to and use of public information the private sector will be given the means to create more value-added services.
It will be most interesting to see how the government's plans work out.
Saturday, February 27, 2010
Back in December of last year, shortly after I had purchased my Apple iPhone 3GS, I wrote a post talking about capacitive versus resistive touch screens. The capacitive touch screens, led by the iPhone are the ones most prized by consumers because of their speed and responsiveness.
Not surprisingly, the market for touch-screen mobile phones is projected to expand rapidly over the next several years. A recent study by Displaybank (click to see a full size version of the accompanying graphic) suggests that one in four mobile phones will be touch-screen models by 2013. I expect that most of these will be capacitive. As the processor speed of these phones increases, along with improvements in the touch technology, they will give users a sense of wielding the power to instantly retrieve and manipulate vast amounts of information with simple taps, swipes and other gestures of the thumb and fingers. These are indeed handheld computers, empowered by GPS, digital compass, other sensors and most importantly, high speed internet access.