Friday the last I attended the WhyMCA Mobile Developer Conference 2010. It has been a really big event if you consider that the idea has been created and developed in few months: the start has been given by Alfredo Morresi, my colleague at Funambol (www.funambol.com) when he posted the proposal for "Mobile development, an event I'd like to an I'll try to realize" - in his (italian) blog.
Here are my few impressions:
- The event was greatly organized: the WhyMCA staff did a really great work in order all things to go fine there beginning from the quality of the discussed arguments. I definitely must say it has been a "WOW" experience.
- The numbers talk about 250 persons involved, also not italian people; the event was attended, of course by developers, but also by sales and courious users. This is important as the spread of mobile technology in Italy is a little complicated to be explained, but it is anchored to the billing model that carriers created during the latest years: just to understand SMS is always king feature for a SIM data plan as italian users prefer to send SMS than other way of communication such as push email and voice in general. Finally I think that many users just don't use internet data plans just because the capabilities of their devices.
- A lot of speech were about the emerging Android platform and iPhone latest architecture development. A room was quite entirely reserved for the Android platform discussion and I think this is good. Win Mobile 7 was presented personally by a Microsoft representative at the beginning of the conference and also RIM sent an italian sales representative to talk about the BlackBerry cloud services. Technologies like HTML 5 and flash were covered.
- Many Speakers (like me) were not technology gurus: I mean that the topic of their speech is out of their work field and they did it for passion. In my case I talked about Augmented Reality (see next bullet) but in the latest 4 years I've always been developing synchronization mobile clients and API for Funambol. In other words I think the whole event was "Passion Driven" both for the speakers and the attendees.
- I'm not surprised that Augmented reality is so a really hot topic also in Italy: I personally presented a speech that was intended to show how simply an Augmented Reality Application can be created using the android SDK (if anyone's interested, please take a look at my slide here). A parallel discussion track was related to the iPhone technology and the speech was realized by Stefano Zingarini and Lucio Riccardi (I directly worked with them previously to solve some Blackberry signature issues but I personally met them at the event).
In general I think it the WhyMCA Mobile Developer Conference 2010 was one of the most interesting event I've ever attended and I hope there could be more and more like that in italy.