Why it’s a top app: A mobile phone craze that started in the U.K. and quickly spread to the U.S. A ringtone that became ubiquitous almost overnight. A memorable brand based on an annoying animal. Sound like Crazy Frog? Forget it, this could be onto something even bigger. When Welsh company Compound Security Systems unveiled their ultrasonic youth deterrent systems last year, no one expected that the 17-kilohertz technology would be pirated and repurposed – as a ringtone that is inaudible to adult ears. Compound Security caught on to the trend and tried to monetize the tone – first as the “Mosquitotone” and later as the “Official Mozzytone.” But it was too late; school kids on both sides of the pond were already designing, uploading and using their own versions of the pirated tone. As silly as it may seem, the Mozzytone does represent a shift in the industry – toward user-generated content – and cracks are already starting to show in the armor of the traditional ringtone sales model (revenues are down, for one). When you frame it in that light, it’s not hard to see (but maybe hard to hear) what all the buzz is about.
PublicationTop Mobile Applications Award 2006
Date28 September 2006