Got a Qik Second?

image Ok, I have to admit that I was intrigued about the raucous on the floor of the House of Reps today, and the fact that they moved away from uStream today opting for Qik and Twitter… however, it did NOT intrigue me to look to investigate Qik…

Now that said, I did have a Twitter exchange with Steve Dembo (Teach42) regarding geocaching that then led to something startling involving Qik.  Steve owns the Nokia N95 (a phone that I have been demoing from WOM World / Nokia for the last week and a half) and he has been using it for geocaching.  So at the end of the day when he said that he might look stream his bike ride home, I assumed that somehow he was going to be uStreaming his voyage…

Then a few minutes later I received a tweet from him that he was streaming live so I grabbed my Motorola Q Global (as I was driving – well I WAS stopped at a light) and launched Skyfire my new favorite mobile browser and jumped to his uStream page and he was not there… I checked the link I received through TinyTwitter (my mobile Twitter client) and it referenced www.qik.com.

Since I was rolling by now, I put my phone aside, but when I got home, I checked TinyTwitter again, and Mark Wagner had tweeted that Steve was live with 42 people watching his stream.  imageI bounced out to Qik and followed Steve most of the way home via Qik and his Nokia N95.  He was even talking about the brewings at Capitol Hill.  This was really cool!  Oh and Steve, I am proud of your for being "biking attired" helmet and all! Now this was truly the MOBILE web!

So, I now wanted to know more about Qik and how I might be able to get it on my phone.  As I mentioned, for the next week I still have a Nokia N95, and I will have my Motorola Q Global until my contract ends in November and I decide there is something else out there I need to have. I didn't know if it would even work on my Q.  Well it does!

Qik is a streaming video service that leverages the cellular networks around the world.  While it WILL work on a 2G network, it is MUCH better when you are running on a 3G connection.  Now Qik is still in open Beta, and a number of their FAQ, About etc. pages return server error apology notices, but they DO list a phone number to CALL them if you have questions… how's that for service.  Also, Qik has contracted with www.getsatisfaction.com a web service support forum where both company employees and other users provide support and information to people needing help.  Qik has 6 employees working with Qik users to help folks out… which is pretty interesting seeing as how twitter, flock, mozilla, and… GOOGLE… have either 6 or 7 employees monitoring their services and supporting users via www.getsatisfaction.com. The best way I found out information was simply to "sign up".  Below is a list of cell phones that are currently supported by Qik:

What phones do we support?

In Beta

    * Motorola Q9c
    * Motorola Q9h (my Q Global)
    * Nokia 3250
    * Nokia 5320 XpressMusic
    * Nokia 5500
    * Nokia 5700 XpressMusic
    * Nokia 6110 Navigator
    * Nokia 6120 Classic
    * Nokia 6121 Classic
    * Nokia 6124 Classic
    * Nokia 6210 Navigator
    * Nokia 6220 Classic
    * Nokia 6290
    * Nokia E50
    * Nokia E51
    * Nokia E61i
    * Nokia E65
    * Nokia E66
    * Nokia E70
    * Nokia E71
    * Nokia E90
    * Nokia N71
    * Nokia N73
    * Nokia N75
    * Nokia N76
    * Nokia N77
    * Nokia N78
    * Nokia N80
    * Nokia N81
    * Nokia N81 8GB
    * Nokia N82
    * Nokia N91
    * Nokia N91 8GB
    * Nokia N92
    * Nokia N93
    * Nokia N93i
    * Nokia N95
    * Nokia N95 8GB
    * Nokia N95-3 NAM
    * Nokia N96
    * Samsung SGH-I600
    * Samsung Blackjack II

In Alpha

    * iPhone 2G

Coming Soon

    * iPhone 3G
    * HTC Shift
    * HTC Touch
    * HTC Touch Diamond
    * HTC TyTN II

They seem to love Nokia… or is it that Nokia is really moving their phones into the digital space big time?!

So, set up my account and within 1 minute I was streaming via my cellphone.  to Setup, you simple enter your cellular phone number and then Qik sends you an SMS with information about downloading the client.  Once the client is installed, you run Qik for the first time, and when i
t makes the connection to the Qik servers, your browser automatically advances to the next step of setting up a username and other information and finalizes your account.  While this was all pretty easy, it was not all that intuitive to do… (leave everything alone and let the service take care of itself)… but that is what you need to do.  You might run into something that I did.  While it took my username, it would not allow me to enter a password… I simply needed to click the "forgot password" link and Qik reset it and provided the information via SMS.

Here is my first video:

http://qik.com//player.swf?streamname=cf91102db0fa492aa9c76e930bb0d305&vid=147655&playback=false&polling=false&user=vanishingpoint&userlock=tru&currentUserName=anonymous

Now, the video that I shot was actually about 4 minutes streamed, but I had a "Delay of 2:30" on my phone when shooting.  Unfortunately, I did not know what this meant at the time, so when I closed the application, I actually deleted most of the stream BEFORE it was sent up to the servers.  There are a couple of quality settings I have since learned that will help with that, but I also now know that when you are done streaming, you simple need to let any Qik delay lapse and say "upload complete" before you close out the application on your phone.  I plan on streaming more to test, but I can see potential HUGE applications in the educational environment. 

Now before I start throwing out ideas, I would like to hear from you… in what ways do you feel that Qik might be able to be used by students and teachers to impact instruction and authentic learning?

~Scott

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