London Venture Capital Events

A comment was posted earlier in the week asking what events are relevant for new arrivals in London looking to get involved in the venture/start-up comunity. I was looking for the same in 2004 and posted a short list in 2005. Here’s a revised short list of VC-related events in and around London, no particular order:

Regular events:
Internet People (no link)
Open Coffee
City Zone
Mashup events
Mobile Monday
Geek Dinner
Second Chance Tuesday

Symbian Smartphone show
Paid Content UK events
Library House events

Mike Butcher over at TechCrunch UK tends to post lists of upcoming events on a regular basis. Latest list here.

Any events I’ve left off, feel free to add them in the comments section.

World Mobile Conference- The Year of the Browser

The number one thing that jumped out at me during the conference was Google’s report that there are 50x more searches originating from the iPhone than any other mobile handset.

Just to put that in perspective there are 4 million iPhones in the wild compared to 3 billion other mobile devices. This goes hand in hand with O2’s report that 60% of U.K. iPhone users are sending or receiving more than 25 MB of data a month- which is unheard of on other handsets.

Android was only available on a few booths- AMD, Qualcomm, etc. From the demo I saw, it’s clear that Android will offer iPhone-like touchscreen functionality along with a tightly bundled suite of Google Apps and browser. It’s important to highlight that Android is using WebKit- the same as Safari on the iPhone (and Mac OS X desktop).

Opera was demoing their latest 9.5 release- showing off Opera Desktop, Opera Mini, Opera Mobile and Opera Wii. They’ve created a browser for many, many other non-handset devices (Wii, Airplanes, Archos, etc.) They allow users to sync their profile, bookmarks, widgets, etc across all devices. (This is the exact same functionality that Apple should be offering.)

I didn’t see Mozilla, but Firefox is coming soon.

Great browsers, combined with device specific site optimization (e.g. iPhone) or server-side optimization (e.g. Novarra) mean 2008 could finally be the Year of the Browser on mobiles.

Qualcomm Ventures Europe

I joined the Qualcomm Ventures Europe team earlier this month. Qualcomm, Inc (NASDAQ: QCOM) announced their European fund last May, in addition to Qualcomm Ventures in the US, China and India.

I’ll be focusing on European startups (both early and later stage) in the following sectors: mobile application/platform software developers, handset components, network infrastructure and core technologies (semiconductor, battery, plastic electronics, etc.).

As a consequence, you’ll see a shift towards these sectors in the blogging content. As always, if you’re working in an area I’m actively investing into or blogging about, don’t hesitate to drop me a line.