I’m sitting here vaguely paying attention to American Idol and I’m amazed that they’re STILL using SMS voting (though they do have a phone option for non-AT&T subscribers). The more I think about this, the more I have realized what a poor medium SMS is in a situation like this. You have people who are absolutely GLUED to an event, and you’re offering them interaction in a way that totally appeals to them. However, the problem is that AT&T is only asking for a quick interaction that AT MOST nets them $.20 per person. They must not have very high hopes.
Why isn’t the voting done via a mobile website? Upon loading, there could be a drop-down list or some other method for casting your vote, but why does the interaction need to end there? Why not have a mobile website where visitors can learn more about the person they just voted for? Why not links to download the original track, as well as the ringtone version that’s invariably created?
Why hasn’t TapTu been tapped (unintentional) to provide music-related search? Why isn’t there an entire mobile portal? Instead of thinking outside the box, AT&T has simply settled for a ~2 min interaction with viewers, when they easily could have captured someone’s attention for at the least 5 min?