BARCELONA, Spain – How would you describe Red Bull: Quiet, ho-hum – just a little bit ordinary?
No, we didn’t think so. World Champion Formula One racing driver Sebastian Vettel appeared via video at Mobile World Congress to introduce a new partnership between Nokia and Red Bull that promises content which could fire the concept of “everyday adventure” up into the stratosphere.
“The Red Bull partnership is fantastic because it’s very much aligned with the our target audience,” said Marco Argenti, Senior Vice President of Developer Experience & Marketplace, who hosted the Nokia Developer Forum where new key partnerships were announced.
“We share the same theme of adventure, and this content is really going to deliver something unique that brings together the elements where Nokia already excels – like location and outdoor adventure, augmented reality, and sharing experiences with your friends.”
Nokia executives have already experienced some of the Red Bull spirit during negotiations– the company owns an Apache helicopter that sits on the tarmac near company headquarters in Salzburg, Austria.
Red Bull agree it’s a good match. Alexander Koppel, Chief Commercial Officer at Red Bull Media House said, “Nokia shares our passion for innovation and for challenging a current status quo. We will use this partnership to innovate and transform technology capabilities into new and valuable possibilities for our customer, developing new forms of customer engagement and interaction.”
If skydiving, girl racing, or stunt riding isn’t your thing, Argenti also announced a new Nokia partnership with Voddler, the leading next-generation video-on-demand (VOD) service. A ‘Voddler Lumia’ streaming app will recreate ‘movie nights’, Argenti said, where you can settle down with some popcorn and watch the latest blockbuster with your friends anywhere in the world – laughing in the same places, or saving and sharing your favourite moments.
Voddler currently has a catalogue for more than 5,000 movies and agreements with all the major Hollywood giants.
“I really, really, really love movies,” said Voddler CEO Marcus Bäcklund, “and this partnership with Nokia is a big link in connecting online and mobile entertainment.”
Also on the theme of video was a new announcement from Vimeo. The company announced the forthcoming launch of a new concept app on the new Nokia 808 PureView. Users can browse while playing videos, just like on the Vimeo site. Vimeo members can “like” videos; access their Feed, Watch Later queue, and previously liked videos. Other features include the ability to comment on videos; add videos to their Watch Later queue; and browse and watch all the videos on Vimeo. In addition to the PureView concept, a new Vimeo app is available today on Nokia Lumia devices, and coming soon to Symbian smartphones and the Nokia N9.
Building on a year of momentum which saw the number of apps published daily in Windows Phone Marketplace skyrocket by 300%, Argenti also announced new partnerships with Michelin, The Weather Channel and Groupon.
Symbian users will be able to find, and read about, any of the 40,000 Michelin rated restaurants with a new NFC location-based app. In addition, Michelin will also launch multi-language travel apps for both Nokia Lumia and Series 40 devices.
The new Nokia Lumia app from The Weather Channel provides hourly, 36 hour and tenday forecasts with full-screen interactive maps, and sharing on Facebook and email.
Nokia is planning to integrate Groupon deals into Nokia Maps, and leverage location information from Nokia Drive and Nokia Transport, so that people can find local deals in the places they go to most often, or plan to visit. Merchants will benefit from this partnership too by offering location targeted deals to people who are planning to be in their area.
The purpose of the Nokia Developer booth and developer day wasn’t just about apps though, Argenti stressed. Nokia has provided developers with an easily accessible business development tools.
“If there’s one message that I want people to come away with it’s that we want developers to be able to increase their revenues and run as a business.”
In-app purchase revenue tools for Series 40 and Qt enable developers to generate new, incremental revenues by leveraging Nokia’s expanded operator billing integrations.
And, crucially, Nokia has joined forces with Kraft Foods to create the Kraft Foods Nokia Mobile Innovation Lab.
Kraft Vice President, Bonin Bough, said the purpose of the partnership was to “push the envelope of technology to connect with consumers in new ways, beyond just apps.”
Bonin added that the world’s second largest food company would use featured brands like Oreo, Toblerone and Philadelphia Cream Cheese, to “leverage Nokia and Microsoft’s cross-platform ecosystem” for the benefit of consumers.
Nokia’s first partnership with a food company is exciting and interesting, Marco Argenti explained, because of the new and unique opportunities it offers to developers.
“Imagine a developer, like Soundtracker, which has developed a great app where you can see what other people are listening to. How can we help them grow their audience?”
Nokia’s partnership with Kraft could bring together these kind of developers with branded products: “So you might have the Oreo-branded music listening experience, which would be free for consumers, advertised on the product itself, and giving developers access to new audiences – and revenue – they’ve never had.”