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Web applications for iPod Touch and iPhone are now released by Google, which include search, gmail, calendar, docs, etc. I tried them a little and now the home page is already bookmarked as my portal site. It works fast!!! I even found it works faster than the apps installed in iPod. Amazing!
It works so well that I even think an iPod can go well without apps installed, which might have been the original plan by Apple though. With a browser that works, most of the things can be done. In the near future, graphic and motion apps will be available. Even fonts won’t have to be installed in your PC.
By the way, my commuter train now throws a campaign that allows us to use free WiFi for as long as we want once a day. It’s only for iPod Touch users. (There’s no iPhone in Japan yet.) With that service, I don’t have to buy a newspaper or magazine to read on a train: I can read them on the net. (Sometimes I have to pay some money to be a member to have a full view of the contents, of course.) Also, I can deal with Word and Excel documents, move the data and send them by email. With a small device, I can WORK on a train. I can also read the blogs I have to check.
I believe this is already a business that someone started, but I hope there’s an office to rent, which is equipped with a PC with a browser and a WiFi connection. You can choose a scanner, printer or fax as an option, and the fees depend on the hours or days you rent and the office size (from one for 1 person). Renting a cool office for yourself costs a lot, so there will be lots of people who want to rent a beautiful office where we even think they want to invite someone. How about an office like a Starbucks? I’ve seen many people talking to their customers or affiliates in a Starbucks store. Soundproof walls should be installed so that we won’t have to worry someone will hear our talks. And this is what I want: you can order a coffee from your PC and a clerk will serve you. The fee is automatically added, so it’s easily done. Or, there can be a bar counter where you can pour your coffee for yourself for free.
How about having a website where you can customize your cup of Starbucks coffee as you like (hopefully intuitively with lots of visual aids) on your PC, mobile or PDA and SEND it to your favorite Starbucks store? You just go to the store and tell your number given in the website, and the clerk says “OK, you pre-ordered ‘Grande Add shot Caramel Light Whip Caramel Sauce Mocha Sauce White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino’, right?” instead of your saying it. In the website, you see other customers’ choices, suggestions, tips for your choice, rankings, etc. Some of those are already realized in the Japanese Starbucks website, but I believe they can add some Amazon-like features to it. It’s wiin-win-win situation for you, Starbucks and other customers.