Amazon Web Services Meetup- London

I received this in an email today, in case anyone is interested in learning more about Amazon's services in Europe:

Amazon Web Services Technology
Evangelist for Europe Simone Brunozzi and Cohesive co-founder Alexis
Richardson will be hosting the next AWS Meetup in London on Cloud
Computing and AWS, with details on S3, EC2, CloudFront and the other services!

Details of this free evening event are as follows:

When: Wednesday
4th February, 6.30pm
start – as usual afterwards we will go to the Crown for drinks and further
discussion
Where:
Skills Matter, 1 Sekforde St, Clerkewell, London EC1R 0BE

Format:
Simone and Alexis will each speak for 20-25 minutes and there will be time
for some Q&A after that.

For more details about the event and speakers
please visit http://skillsmatter.com/event/cloud-grid/amazon-web-services-meetup

Registration is open and places are filling fast so register now at http://skillsmatter.com/event/cloud-grid/amazon-web-services-meetup

Ireland Venture Capital/Startup Events

Continuing with the Startup Events theme, I thought I’d start posting what I’m seeing around Europe. Conor over at Argolon gave me the low-down on what’s happening on the green isle:

Dublin has traditionally been the mobile dev centre here (Movidia, Newbay, Xiam, Puca, S3, Rococo etc etc) and I think that is still the case. Scattered around the country you have start-ups like Cubic Telecom and YouGetItBack in Cork, VoiceSage in Limerick, Nubiq in Waterford. We’re only just dipping our toes into mobile/wireless etc in LouderVoice with SMS reviews/customer feedback. Medium term aim is full LBS functionality along the lines of Socialight or Whrrl.

We had the big success with DemoBar last autumn and there was supposed to be a follow-up in January but it hasn’t happened yet. TechLudd is a new monthly meetup but it is mainly concerned with the web (and techies). The OpenCoffees in Cork, Limerick, Waterford, Galway, Belfast and Dublin are still pretty small (we average 15 or so in Cork) but particularly strong mobile presence in Limerick. They are also kicking off a BarCamp there pretty soon. Web2Ireland is still probably the best place to keep an eye on for events. The TechLudd guys have also recently started http://irelandstartupevents.com/ which looks good. Finally, Mobile Monday Dublin seems to be a bit quiet at the minute (http://www.momodublin.com/)

I found out via irelandstartupevents.com about the upcoming Adobe Air developer day here in London (too late, now full)…

What other resources/upcoming events should the budding europreneur know about? Post any thoughts in the comments…

(+ I’m planning a trip to Denmark in the near future- anything I should be sure to catch?)

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
Chinwag
Mashup events
Mobile Monday
Geek Dinner
Second Chance Tuesday

Conferences:
FOWA
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.

Symbian Smartphoneshow

I heard from DoCoMo, Vodafone and Nokia this morning (but Sling Media stole the show in the early afternoon).

I wanted to highlight a few key points that jumped out at me:

Smartphones represent LESS than 10% of the market in every western country except Italy

Smartphones are primarily used by males, over 35 earning circa six figures (except Italy).

Smartphone use is going from “snacks” to “utilities” (no mention of Italy)

Wow.

The smartphone show as really packed- and they’re all rushing for sub 10% market? Obviously, this is going to grow and obviously more services are going to become available, but today’s conference has really reinforced how risky it is to be making early stage investments in the mobile application space (unless there’s a solid web tie-in?). You definitely want to be selling the shovels, not digging for the gold…

Some of Tim O’Reilly’s Address Book 2.0 thoughts came out, but on balance, I was pretty disapointed with what I heard… hopefully FOM will be much better.