Originally marketed as an “always on” social network, Velvet Puffin (VP) has transformed into a novel Instant Messaging/Social Network hybrid that bridges the gap between the desktop and the web browser. Although there is still an option to download VP’s mobile or desktop client, VP Quick Launch gives you the option of having VP’s full social networking/IM capabilities from your desktop while your browser is closed. There is no significant gain to downloading the desktop client unless you prefer to access VP without first opening a browser. The Quick Launch is quite successful at blending the web and desktop by allowing you to sort through your networks’ pictures, videos, blogs, polls and anything else. The VP IM client aggregates Yahoo, GTalk, AIM, MSN, and ICQ and stays open even after you close your browser. Video sites such as YouTube, Google Video and Metacafe can also be accessed directly from the desktop. Such innovative technology could be used to simplify IPTV platforms such as joost and Bablegum which both would gain much added value without a required download.
|Launch Date||July 25, 2007|
|Closed Date||February, 2008|
Velvet Puffin Mobile runs on any wireless data service and on any java capable phone. There is a download required for this service but it is quite comprehensive for a mobile social network product. VP mobile runs a regular phone IM client which like its computer application aggregates your contacts from AIM, ICQ, MSN, GTalk and Yahoo Messenger. VP mobile also has a few extra features that can’t be found many other places. Users can view their photos and other media on their profile, but can also add new photos and videos (taken on their phone) directly to their profile. Helio phones allow their users to update MySpace profiles with new multimedia, but VP can be accessed from any phone, of course with a download. Additionally, VP mobile has “global search” which allows users to search the VP network for specific tags attached to any media as well as video from YouTube, Google Video and Metacafe. Videos from these sites are immediately transcoded to play on your phone even if the service itself is not set up to play videos on a mobile device. This feature is truly unique and may inspire new trends in the mobile media area.