Storm's a-Brewin'

Storms a-Brewin-MusestormWhy wait for your agency geeks down in the techie cubicles to finish fiddling with the new iPhone Software Development Kit for stand-alone applications? You could drag and drop your way to making iPhone widgets for your clients in a few minutes.

The same MuseStorm Widget Studio that builds and tracks traveling applications for Facebook and Bebo now supports the iPhone. Marketers pull video, text and images into their design and push it out in various formats. "Just save it as 'iPhone' and we can repurpose a Flash widget into an iPhone Web app," says MuseStorm CEO Ori Soen. The company already works with entertainment brands like CBS Mobile for its "Danny Bonaduce, Life Coach" widget, as well as Microsoft/Universal McCann (Halo 3) and Def Jam Records ("Bob Marley") for their viral Web widgets.

Unlike the newly introduced native iPhone apps, which Apple alone redistributes to customers, MuseStorm's widgets are direct-to-consumer open Web applications. "You can now very quickly reach out to iPhone users in a focused manner with audio, video, text, photos and running polls," Soen says. MuseStorm's engine can track user interaction with different widget components so developers can optimize the design for all users in real time.

With 85 percent of its users accessing the Web remotely, "the iPhone changed the game on mobile," Soen says. Until larger screens can run a more user-friendly interface like this or Flash Lite and Google's upcoming Android, marketers continue to withhold their budgets from mobile. "Our clients are not going to bother developing for devices that are not on par with the iPhone," Soen says. "They don't provide the return on investment and it isn't worth their time."
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