Too many apps stop digital transformation? Piffle.


CIOs say there are too many apps, according to a CapGemini survey. It’s getting in the way of digital transformation they – or the people asking the leading questions say.


There are too few, more like.

I’ll invoke digital pioneer Stewart Brand once again

Software is an extension of the nervous system.

Buyer beware.

If our machines are there to help us think, the last thing you want is everyone thinking in the same way, with the same tools. You just end up scaling flaws and narrow thinking and myopia along with all the efficiencies of scale.

You need standards and interoperability and APIs and all that. But too many apps? That’s just complexity-denial, wishing away diversity for the sake of a neat-looking IT infrastructure.

More people using more apps, that sounds like a company where digital transformation is really taking hold. A plurality of software, not a mechanised monoculture.



Images credit – Quickmeme / Amadeus

First impressions of the Nokia Lumia 920

Lumia copying

Last week I got a brand new Nokia Lumia 920 and I thought I would share the experience so far here.

For the sake of context and transparency and context, my company, Brilliant Noise, is working with Nokia on marketing around the Lumia and business. That said, this is my personal blog and these are my own impressions.

This is not, then, a completely unbiased review (there’s some links to some more impartial reviews at the end of this post). That said, if I really didn’t like it what I would do is stay quiet – as I want to share my experiences, it’s fair to say I am pretty positive.

These devices called smartphones are now so much a part of how we live that a review of the hardware alone (there’s a very good one on The Verge) just aren’t enough to understand what they are like. You need to live with the devices.

Working with Nokia on some projects connected to the Lumia, I definitely needed to not just play with a device, but commit to using it all of the time. For everything. 

No top Facebook apps from brands either…

Just as you won’t see a “viral video” from a brand in the blockbuster list for this genre, you won’t find any apps from brands in the top Facebook apps list.

As Dirk at News from the Herd notes, it’s about certain kinds of useful when it comes to hitting the sweetspot with Facebook users:

1- Produce addictive but simple to use games that don’t force ad messaging down users throats

2 – Give them a way to organise their lives, and/ or:

3 – Provide them with mildly competitive ‘social comparison’ tools vs their friends.

As Inside Facebook noted, the recent redesign of Facebook shook up the developer leaderboard, bringing the likes of LivingSocial to the fore.

Interesting to see Causes in the top 5 apps out there on Facebook. Reminds me of the excellent Brita “Filter for Good” campaign in the US, to reduce the amount of bottled water being consumed. The Facebook app and the Facebook group for this were just a couple of the parts of the approach.


The brand benefit is direct in this case – but it is a brand behaving like a movement, and benefitting (in terms of awareness) from helping people acknowledge, pass on a call to action around an issue, without having to commit to a great deal of effort. If they want to talk about it more, get involved more they can and Brita will give them a little more data and tools to do so (if they’re smart, which they seem to be).

Dirk asks if brands can ever win in Facebook:

It will be interesting to see if brands manage to make much head-way here, or whether it really is a case of as P&G’s head of interactive said last year, you can’t monetise a space where someone is breaking up with his girlfriend.

It’s a nice, pithy, provocative question. But monetising, advertising, interupting, branding up these spaces are far from the only option for brands. I think that as more brands develop their social web literacy we’ll see them feel more at ease with spaces like Facebook, find their legitimate, useful places in them.

I’m not sure if they will ever be blockbuster app hits that make it to the Appdata leaderboard. I think that should probably not be an objective for a brand. That “big is best” attitude is another one of those hangovers from channel thinking.

: : You can keep an eye on who is winning on Facebook by apps and developers at AppData.