As much as we love computing, the best technology is that which disappears. Most components of computing are an abstraction layer that stands between you and a given task or experience. That’s the case with layers of the typical consumer tech stack including operating systems, inputs, and apps.
It’s the latter that has spiraled out of control in the mobile era. This has led to app fatigue in these siloed packages that deliver us mobile experiences. It’s arguably not the best architecture, as there are lots of hoops that consumers have to jump through — again, an abstraction layer — to get to a given experience.
This is the area that Mobile Posse, the latest guest on Street Fight’s Heard on the Street podcast, is endeavoring to reform. The company’s Firstly Mobile platform replaces the app-heavy paradigm with a more curated, personal, and ‘appnostic’ front end to reduce the distance between users and quality content.
“There’s a tremendous amount of what we would call friction in the smartphone interface for media consumption,” Mobile Posse CMO Greg Wester told us. “So, in the simplest of terms, Firstly Mobile makes it easier, if it’s installed on the phone, for the content that you love and that I love to find me, as I use my phone throughout the day, without having to go and install and open a bunch of different apps.”
Mobile Posse does this by working directly with carriers to pre-install it on the phones they sell. This can resonate with carriers given that it equips them with differentiated software. It also helps them take back the steering wheel with respect to content and advertising — an ongoing initiative for carriers.
This technology can bring them beyond the “dumb pipe” designation they’re always trying to shake. It can also offer revenue diversification and retention. Mobile Posse shares ad revenue with carrier partners, meaning they can boost average revenue per user (ARPU) at low-risk and operational expense.
“At the highest level, it’s a suite of products to make it easier for you to find the content that you know and love,” Wester said. “In doing that, we serve our primary customers, which are the wireless carriers and OEMs, by making it easy for them to get into the media space because we do it in a turnkey fashion.”