Top downloads of 2007

This is that time of the year where the “top”, the “best”, the “worst” lists start coming out. In keeping with the spirit of things i thought i might as well put up one here as well. Mine ofcourse matters 😛

The list i agreed with most was the one by download.com.  Here is it , in no particular order.

Flock : The social networking browser.Stay in touch without visiting a 100 sites!

Camtasia Studio 5 : A heavy duty recording studio.

Miro : A player which can subscribe and download vodcasts and managing saved media.

Pidgin : A common platform for multi chat clients. The “trillion” of 2007?

Launchy : Faster access to application through the use of hot keys.

OpenOffice : Well, a pretty decent option against MS.

Simplifymedia : Streamlining and highly organized medium for sharing music.

Crossloop :  A free tool allowing you to give relative access of your system to someone.

Audacity :  Multiplatform, open source audio editor.

Digital Editions : One of the best (?) tools for e-books?

Read the full article at download .com

Interview with Fabrice Grinda -Co CEO – Olx Inc

I had written an article on online classifieds and the industry in general , about a week or so ago and was delighted to note that one of the visitors who had left some feedback was Fabrice Grinda , the Co CEO of Olx Inc, one of the largest classifieds site network in existence today.

Fabrice was kind enough to accept a request for a brief email interview which is published below.

What according to you is classifieds?

Classifieds are a form of (usually text based) advertising that allows individuals and companies to solicit sales for products and services. They appear online and offline and can be free or paid for. Traditionally they have been print ads in newspapers, but are now moving online to specialized sites like Monster or general sites like OLX

Reasons which prompted you to set up a classifieds site?

I left my previous company, Zingy (www.zingy.com) in November 2005. As I started looking for business ideas, I notice the tremendous value that Craigslist was bringing to consumers in the US market. It was bringing classifieds to the masses by allowing everyone to find roommates, baby sitters, couches, etc. for free. I also noticed that outside of the US the classifieds markets were still dominated by the newspapers who charged an arm and a leg to post.

It struck me that there was a tremendous opportunity to bring free classifieds to the rest of the world and thus provide a great public service to local communities. We took the basic concept from Craigslist – simple, local, free – and improved upon it and localized it for each country.

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Airtel’s 8 Mbps plans Dissapoint

I knew about this a week or so before it actually rolled out into the market and was talking with one of my IT guys and both of us were very kicked about the speed, more so since we are both heavy on downloading.

But more disappointment’s than excitement post the launch. While the speeds are excellent what tends to really play foul are the download limits assigned. The cheapest 8Mbps plan is priced at 2222/- per month. Take a look at the excel below where i compare it to the 256 plan i have currently.

plan.jpg

Key Things to Note

1. The GB Limit will be reached in 2.4 minutes approximately.

2. 8Gb is equal to roughly only 12 movies.

3. If you were to keep downloading for another 2.2 minutes post crossing the limit i.e another 8GB ,the additional charges which would apply would be 0.90 Paise x 8000 MB = 7200 Rupees.

4. Cost per movie is 202 rupees which is more than what original VCD’s would cost.

So all kudos to Airtel to launch such plans but they need a more competitive pricing policy. Maybe come up with top up options which would allow users to make their plans unlimited. For someone like me, and a lot many more in India where downloading is a big activity these plans tend not to appeal eventually.

Incidentally, i would also request everyone reading this to please visit the Airtel site and look at the current broadband packages. Airtel appears to be deleting a lot of the previous options which were available, if yours is one that does not appear to be there but you are still getting a net connection, they might have put you on a different plan on their own. As illogical as it may sound , Airtel’s customer care executives made it very clear that the company was under no obligation to inform customers of plan changes. I mentioned this earlier as well on a post here.

Update as on 27th Dec 2007

I got my calculations wrong. Its not 12 seconds but 12 minutes for a 700 MB file. Please key in the update while going through the above chart. Not that it makes a big difference for me. Instead of reaching the limit in 2.4 minutes , it will now be about 2.5 Hrs.

Exchange4Media – A website or….

Been to exchange4media.com lately? The once pivotal pillar of media websites and information dissemination on the Internet , and now closer in appearance to what the regurgitated slop of the Indian advertising world would possibly like..

The buzz word in the market is Usability, visitor and traffic experience. Simply having content simply does not cut it, the presented format holds an equal weight in the initiatives which would go towards a satisfactory customer experience. One would assume that a site so closely associate with the industry would be , if not in the front, then definitely as a front runner in establishing new standards within our fraternity.

Here’s a screenshot of their homepage. Yes People..it is, believe it or not, a homepage and not a parking page , or a “Find the content and win prizes” game. All the circles in red and black are advertisements…i.e 11 ad’s in just the first scroll.

e4mhp.jpg

Here’s a screengrab of one of their story pages. I have made 2 red lines indicating where the content is so that you guys dont have to go through the multiple zooming ranges i had to go through to find it.

e4mstory.jpg

I am totally for agency faqs as of this point, although it appears that they have started filling up their page as well, but the overall “noise” of the site is far far less, which in turn might be indicative of reasons as to why agencyfaqs is a more visited site than E4m but no need to take my word for it… feel free to go to E4M…just have a good book handy while its loading!

Online Shoe Shopping – An Industry Analysis Attempt

Alootechie’s write up prompted me into penning down a few thoughts on this model, something which i had been planning to do for a while.Lets take a look at the industry first before getting into the hurdles, advantages and taking up bigshoebazaar.com to review as well.

Figures for India are not easy to find but one can choose to draw safe inferences from what is happening in other parts of the world , and what appears to be happening is a usage rise.

In 2002 , online footwear sales were pegged at 958 million USD, while the total apparel sales stood at 4.4 Billion USD. Last year it was at 2 .5 billion and the apparel overall was at 9 billion. The increase for 2007 , for footwear, is predicted to be in the region of 20%. which would then translate into a very cool 3 Billion USD or so. If we were to use percentages derived from the US market then we would get :-

spends2.jpg

 

In case its not clear, all i have done is deduced the % of apparel and further to footwear in the US markets from the total eCOM business and applied them in the Indian scenario. IAMAI pegs the total eCOM for India at 2300 crores.

This would put the Online footwear market at 50 crores, which is not bad, especially when one considers that

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