Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I Need Answers Dammit! – January 30, 2008

I found this new mobile service called Mosio. In a nutshell, it’s a platform that allows you to ask questions via text message, and get “people powered” information back via text message from the Mosio community.

It’s a brilliant idea, because you get instant personalized recommendations by users of Mosio. Those users are probably cool because either you invited some of them, or they are technonerds like you*.

The real benefit is that instead of using Yelp or something else to get a recommendation on where to take a friend for a drink, you can blast a text message to Mosio, and someone will answer you based on your specific criteria (e.g. location/mood/etc). Also, as a Mosio user, you have the option to answer questions via a messenger service (AIM, GoogleTalk, etc) or on the Mosio website known as the “Questionairium”.

Here’s how Mosio describes it;

  • You invite people to your Qniverse (question universe)
  • When you're mobile and they're online, they help answer your questions.
  • When you're online and they're mobile, you help answer theirs.

To test it out, I tried asking “What is the best dive bar in San Francisco?”

This is what I got in return (as posted on the Questionairium):

They offer some other peripheral services/apps such as find places, get reminders, get a message from Chuck Norris, get taxi phone numbers, and get content from 3rd party places (e..g The Onion) sent to your phone.

Mosio also partnered up with Twitter (yucka mucka) so you can ask questions that way too. Apparently you can also use Jott to ask questions verbally, if you’re that lazy.

Overall, I’m pleased with the service, however, I’m, unsure if this is scalable. Mosio relies on the community to answer questions, and if the community becomes overwhelmed by questions it may no longer remain relevant. Also, Mosio has to figure out how to ensure that your questions are only thrown out to people inside your community/local, and I’m not sure how they are going to promise this.

* I tried to verify the “coolness” of the community by asking if people in SF had done the No Pants 2K8 mission, and the response was either “yes” or “I wish I had known about it”. In addition to this, I think that the bars that were recommended to me were an indication that the community knows what it’s talking about.

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