IT Briefcase Exclusive Interview: The Cloud and Mobile App Relationship with Miko Matsumura, KiiOctober 31, 2012 1 Comment
Mobile Apps and Cloud Computing, by nature, work hand in hand. As they evolve and change, they have an inevitable impact on one another.
In the below interview, Miko Matsumura from Kii Corporation defines the relationship between mobile and cloud, and outlines key benefits that MBaaS (Mobile Backend as a Service) can offer organizations today.
- Q. How do you see Mobile Applications and Cloud Computing as evolving together and changing IT as we know it?
A. Mobile App Developers are the “perfect dance partner” for the Cloud. We went through a cycle in IT where Enterprises were seeking to “service enable” their architecture and to provide standard interfaces to all Enterprise IT resources. This was called Service-Oriented-Architecture (SOA). One of the biggest problems at the time was that there wasn’t enough motivation for organizations to do all the hard work of rearchitecting their infrastructure for web and multichannel initiatives.
So along comes mobile. I just got back from Gartner IT Expo and to paraphrase Gartner Analyst Tom Austin, “Mobile Changes Everything”. The big issue about mobile is twofold, one is the absolutely insane worldwide adoption of mobile computing technology. The industry is dropping 1.5 Billion new devices a year onto a plant that only has 7 Billion humans on it. And in developed countries like the US, over half of devices sold are “smart” devices backed by OS platforms like Android and Apple’s IOS.
So the second issue is the transformational capabilities of these devices–soon the majority of web traffic will come from mobile devices–but the devices are so much bigger than just the web. Sensors of every imaginable type will be populating these devices, coupled with 1.2 million smartphone apps across Android and Apple IOS alone. So the devices will have incredible power to reach into every possible human behavioral scenario, and instead of being (like the web) restricted to just reading and thinking, mobile will be about doing. That’s what’s missing in many analyses about the mobile space, which is that mobile users are all doing things, breathing, cooking, shopping, exercising, buying, evaluating, filming, hiking and yes, even browsing and reading. As such the device becomes not a gateway to the world consumer market, but the consumer market itself.
- Q. What key benefits can MBaaS (Mobile Backend as a Service) offer organizations that are trying to decrease work hours spent on server programming?
A. Well, this is where the most dramatic improvements can be felt, but it’s not the most important thing to understand about MBaaS.
The reason why there are Developer Evangelists is… people have “enlightenment” experiences with technology… and we feel that developers who try MBaaS will feel this enlightenment. The fact that what used to take months now takes minutes is a HUGE experience.
But I wanted to assert that decreasing work time is NOT the main point of MBaaS. The main value of MBaaS is to create user continuity, community, relationship and service out of your app. Apps can build that themselves at great cost, risk and the expense of time-to-market… but with MBaaS, you can transform your app into a service channel to the user in minutes and by retaining the relationship to the user gives you control over your destiny.
The only caveat is that you have to be very careful who your MBaaS provider is, so Vendor Viability becomes the chief concern when choosing an MBaaS provider. If you MBaaS provider goes out of business or is acquired, it can completely nullify the original goals of self-determination.
- Q. How can Kii Cloud facilitate this for businesses today?
A. Kii Cloud MBaaS is open for public beta…any developer can go to http://developer.kii.com and make themselves a free account. Use of the service is free during beta and there will always be a free tier of service. We encourage anyone to come try our service.
If you find our service to be a quick and powerful way to add cloud to your mobile app, we can discuss our other services including Venture Capital and Distribution Partnerships.
- Q. How does Kii Partners, a program for Smartphone App promotion and distribution, help app makers gain promotional opportunities within the mobile industry?
A. We created an app catalog that showcases the work of our app partners. We regularly meet with advertising and monetization partners as well as distribution and promotion partners for apps. We share the catalog with them and they pick out apps to work with.
- Q. Can you give us a few examples of businesses that have had success with Kii Partners?
A. Sure, we have had distribution success with ASTRO File Manager in Asia through several partners, ASTRO is now tracking at over 35M downloads, and also with KeepSafe, which is tracking at over 5M downloads. We also distributed an app called Servo Search which was preloaded on over 8M devices and counting.
- Q. What is the overall message you personally would like to portray about the products and services Kii has to offer today?
A. MBaaS is an exciting and disruptive way to add cloud services to mobile apps. Kii Cloud is one of the industry’s leading MBaaS providers with over 25M end users served and backed by the profitable and rapidly growing Kii Corporation. Mobile App developers are welcomed to try our developer portal for free at http://developer.kii.com
Miko Matsumura is Senior Vice President of Platform Marketing & Developer Relations at Kii Corporation. Kii provides a Mobile Backend-as-a-Service (MBaaS) that serves the largest phone carriers and leading app makers on Android and iOS platforms. Kii Cloud serves over 25 million users and drives over $250M in industry revenues.
Miko’s career spans over 15 years of entrepreneurial technology leadership, having built and led technology platform marketing and product organizations across a wide range of software organizations from startup to billion-dollar levels. Miko is based in silicon valley and has created shareholder value through buying and selling many companies. He is a Limited Partner with Focus Ventures, a VC firm with over a half billion dollars under management.
Prior to his current role, Matsumura served as Vice President and Chief Strategist at Software AG, where he played a key role in the M&A team that drove Software AG from under a half billion to over one billion dollars in annual revenue through acquisitions. He joined Software AG through their acquisition of webMethods, where he served as Vice President of SOA Product Marketing. He joined webMethods through their acquisition of Infravio where he served as Vice President of Worldwide Marketing.
Previously, he was Chief Java Evangelist for the Java Platform at Sun Microsystems.CLOUD DATA, Fresh Ink, Inside the Briefcase, MOBILE DATA