It seems a given that mobile social networking is going to be “the next big thing”, but squinting at tiny text is still a pain on today’s phones. To deal with this issue, Blabnote, a British startup that is currently in private beta, has created what may be the world’s first “vocal social network.”
To login to the network, you simply call Blabnote from your phone, which uses caller ID to match you to your profile. From there, you can vocally enter any number of commands. For example, if I wanted to create a group for TechCrunch fans, I might say, “Create Group called ‘Team TechCrunch'”. Members can be added by saying, “add Mike and Mark”, and you can send messages to group members in a similar fashion.
Blabnote has no shortage of obstacles to overcome, to put it mildly. For one, the entire system is going to rely on voice recognition, which isn’t exactly a perfected technology. Imagine creating a very personal voice message and sending it to an ex-girlfriend on accident – the setup is ripe for disaster. And should you get sick of talking (and listening), you’re out of luck: there is no web management interface, though Blabnote says it will provide an API for third parties.
Blabnote could be a useful organization and notification tool for established groups, like soccer teams or clubs. But if it aspires to become a large social network, this company is going to be teetering perilously close to the DeadPool.