eBay talks about a contextual future for its mobile efforts; update on our book “Age of Context”

eBay sells billions of dollars of things on mobile. Cars. Boats. Jewelry. Clothes. Gadgets. And more. Here Steve Yankovich, VP of mobile and platform at eBay, tells me how eBay is competing with Amazon. What the trends on mobile are.

eBay’s new eBay Now app lets you have things delivered from stores in San Francisco too. Will eBay expand this offering to other cities? I bet it will and Steve gives his insights there.

Finally, Shel Israel and Robert Scoble are working on a book about contextual software and Steve talks about how eBay is using contextual data to help purchasers in the future. Think of what eBay would do with Google’s wearable computers, coming next year, called “Project Glass.”

Try out eBay on your mobile.


Speaking of context, you might know that I’m writing a book titled “the Age of Context” with Shel Israel, author at Forbes. We’ve been doing lots of interviews lately. Some of them below. We’ve visited Oakley, Qualcomm, JBL, Autodesk. At LeWeb I interviewed CEOs of Gnip (they have one of the only firehose licenses from Twitter) and the CMO of Salesforce. On Monday we’re visiting Facebook, along with talking to a bunch of startups. Tons more work to come.

We have made some progress on getting the book funded but we need some more help. We have one corporate sponsor, but they don’t want to be the only one funding the book. So, we need someone who can help us sell companies on a sponsorship (we want to do this book right, which means tons of travel, lots of interviews, and then putting a great product together with editors, designers, etc).

One of the best books I’ve ever seen is the Human Face of Big Data. That had several corporate sponsors. Why corporate sponsors? Because selling books simply doesn’t pay for the production of them anymore. At least not if you are only going to sell a few tens of thousands of copies. Hey, not everyone can be Tim Ferriss. 🙂

If you are interested, contact me at scobleizer@gmail.com.

That said, we have a pretty good idea of where the book is going now, thanks to these first big interviews, and we are aiming at finishing it by the end of summer, 2013, and having it available to purchase by Christmas of next year.

Here’s some of the interviews we’ve done so far, with many more to come. We’d love your help, too! Let us know if you are seeing anything contextual happening. What’s that?

When you mix:

1. Sensors.
2. Wearable computers.
3. Big data and post-SQL databases.
4. Social networks.
5. Location data.

all together to make highly personalized services or products.

Oakley’s AirWave ski goggles with heads up display and contextual future:

Basis sensor for health monitoring.

Qualcomm’s augmented reality team:

Qualcomm’s healthcare team is seeing context and mobile:

Qualcomm’s President of Internet Services about Qualcomm’s vision of mobile’s future:

Foodspotting and Delectable CEOs talking about the mobile first world:

Vintank’s CEO talks to me about a contextual future (they provide 1.1 million tweets a day to wine industry):

Foursquare’s head of growth and analytics on contextual future:

MC Hammer (famous musician and entrepreneur) gives his tips for entrepreneurs as we head into a contextual future:

AOL’s CEO talks to me about AOL’s future in age of context:

Nest’s CEO (and guy who headed iPhone effort at Apple) talks to me about contextual future:

Geeking out with CEO of Apigee about contextual future:

Discussion with Maluuba’s CEO (contextual app for Android):

Discussion of future of customer service in contextual world with Harry Max (co-founder of wine.com):

Discussion of contextual customer service with CEO of SOcialAppsHQ:

Discussion of contextual social world with CMO of Salesforce:

Discussion of social streams in contextual world with CEO of Gnip at LeWeb:

Autodesk CTO on future in contextual world: