Smartr Contacts: How mobile enabled them to reinvent the concept and relevancy of a contact – with Michael Albers

How does mobile change the way we connect and stay in contact with people? The paradigm of the “contact manager” or “personal information system” is being changed by the context and connectedness of mobile devices and one company is reinventing this information layer that ties us all together.

The company is Xobni (something I’ve been using since they were in beta many years ago), the product is Smartr Contacts (JUST released for iPhone) and the expert is Michael Albers – VP of Product Development and the man whose task it was to get this latest release into the AppStore.

Michael details the process they went through to re-imagine contacts in a mobile context, the impact of the cloud on their business, the trials and triumphs of developing an app that extends an existing brand and how they remained constant and true to the other platforms already deployed and in use.

This is an episode I truly enjoyed – mostly because I use the product and have watched them grow from their first product for Outlook. Michael doesn’t hold back on the experience of ideation, creation and deploying a mobile app.


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About Michael Albers
Michael AlbersMichael Albers is VP of Product Management, focusing on the strategy, execution and delivery of Xobni’s product offerings, platform and time to market. His day-to-day primary product focus is ensuring the growth and development of the Xobni mobile, web, cloud and platform products are realized. Michael has extensive search, platform, mobile, social product and deep technical experience.

He worked at Yahoo! managing web search products, multimedia search, social search product integration into web search, led a innovative wiki product and managed the International Search Operations for several years. Prior to Yahoo!, Michael worked at Inktomi as the Product Lead for search technology, managing the OEM partner needs, and was at Netscape where he was product specialist across the suite of Netscape web server products. Just prior to joining Xobni, Michael built a workforce crowd sourcing platform at LiveOps.

Michael originally is from The Netherlands, enjoys gadgets & product design. On the weekend likes to spend time with his wife & son, cycling and if time permits tinker on his classic 1967 Fiat 500.

Editor’s Note: Xobni is a sponsor of at the time of this article’s publication.

About the author

Rob Woodbridge

I'm Rob, the founder of and I've spent 14 years immersed in the mobile and pervasive computing world. During this great time I've helped some of the most innovative companies grow their business through mobile. If you are in need of a mobile business advisor or coach, connect with me here to get things rolling.

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