March 5th, 2008

MIXr: First mobile social networking app with Silverlight touchscreen UI

MIXr Mood Switcher

Today, Portland-based StepChange Group took the stage at MIX08 to demonstrate a groundbreaking new application: the world’s first gesture-driven, Microsoft-Silverlight powered user interface on a mobile device.

The data-driven touchscreen interface, dubbed MIXr, runs in the Microsoft Windows Mobile 6 environment, and was a proof-of-concept to showcase the functionality of these cutting edge development environments for the MIX audience.

“It was lots of fun—though nerve-wracking—to have our team sharing the stage with Ray Ozzie and Scott Guthrie,” said StepChange’s Kevin Tate.

Aside from the Portland angle, why is this newsworthy?

In my opinion, the release of the MIXr application is important for two specific reasons.

First, it proves the viability of Silverlight as an environment for delivering rich mobile applications. And, on a day when the use of these types of technologies in the mobile environment is being rejected by a major player, that’s a pretty big win.

Second, it gives us a glimpse into the future of social networking.

Unlike many of today’s “social networks on mobile devices,” the MIXr application, developed by StepChange in partnership with San Francisco’s Stimulant, demonstrates how the future of social networking may transition to your mobile device.

In other words, this isn’t a “m.” mobile view into an existing social network application; it is the social network application:

[MIXr] uses real-time user updates to track the mood and status of clubs and venues—and helps friends to connect and coordinate with one another during a night out.

It aggregates user ratings, such as a venue’s mood, line length, and music, and uses interactive data visualization to make it easy to figure out what’s hot and what’s not.

“Rich mobile applications are going to quickly change the way we use the Web everyday,” said Tate. “We’re focused on creating applications that leverage the powerful advantages of location, personalization and communication that the mobile environment provides – and have chosen Silverlight as our platform because of its portability and performance.”

For more information on MIXr and developing rich mobile applications using Silverlight, see Stimulant’s post on the MIXr release and StepChange’s announcement on the MIX08 Keynote.

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6 Responses to “MIXr: First mobile social networking app with Silverlight touchscreen UI”

  1. metafluence says:

    It’s also a big deal because of the Silverlight deal with Nokia’s Symbian OS. Symbian has the largest installed user base in the mobile world. (I can feel @grigs and @harrisja wanting to chime in with refining insights)

  2. Gary says:

    Bet that was fun to see.

  3. This is pretty friggin cool….it is definatly the future.

  4. [...] MIXr: First mobile social networking app with Silverlight touchscreen UI So it looks like a local startup here in Portland has released a slick little touch screen app that users Silverlight.  [check out Silicon Florist for the rest o’ the story] [...]

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  6. Hi, I found this blog article while searching for help with Microsoft Silverlight. I’ve recently switched browsers from Opera to Mozilla Firefox 3.1. Just recently I seem to have a problem with loading websites that have Microsoft Silverlight. Everytime I browse website that requires Microsoft Silverlight, my computer freezes and I get a “npctrl.dll” error. I cannot seem to find out how to fix the problem. Any aid getting Microsoft Silverlight to function is greatly appreciated! Thanks

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