Still exchanging business cards on a daily basis? Surely there’s a better way in this modern age of web communications. There is, in fact there are many better ways than exchanging small pieces of card, but the latest (and possibly greatest) development in this area is a new service called Hello My Name is e.
What is E?
There’s no better description of the service than on their own site:
“E is a service that integrates all your existing social services into an Eâ€¢ID, which you can share with anyone in the real world. To exchange Eâ€¢ID’s, you just need an internet-enabled mobile phone like an iPhone or Blackberry. When you exchange your Eâ€¢ID’s, E makes sure your contacts get added to your other social services like Netlog, Twitter, Last.fm, Soocial, automatically.”
So, essentially, you sign up for E, get an Eâ€¢ID (a simple 5 digit code), and when you meet someone you want to get to know better, you exchange Eâ€¢IDs by typing each other’s into your web enabled phones.
Very simple, very convenient. At this point, you may be thinking – WAIT! I can already do this with existing services such as Dropcard. The cool thing about E is that it automatically adds the contact’s details to all available services, so will instantly be following them on Twitter, and checking how compatible their music taste is with Last.fm.
There is also a hardware component, to make things even easier, called E Connector.
“Connector is a device designed specifically for the E service. Connector allows you to add somebody to E, and all integrated services, in one simple gesture: Press two Connectors together and youâ€™ve exchanged Eâ€¢ID’s. Itâ€™s that simple.”
Very Apple-esque in it’s simplicity (and design). Nonetheless, I like it, and if enough people start joining the service, this could really take off. However, that is the crux of this concept – unless it gains mainstream appeal, they are going to struggle to survive.
I really hope this concept does well – it would be great to see it develop with more services (Facebook, are you listening?) and gain mainstream use. If I were working at E right now, though, I would be worried. What if Apple were to simply put this feature into a firmware update for the iPhone? Same with Blackberry. Touch two iPhones together, exchange vCards, add to all services on there. Sure there wouldn’t be this level of cross compatibility, but if it ended up in the iPhone, it could turn out that other companies would follow to support the standard that Apple would set.
All together, it looks like a great service. I’ve signed up for the beta and can’t wait to try it out.