Synchronica Mobile Messaging Update

Synchronica makes push email software for a very wide variety of mobile phones. The software is sold to service providers and includes closely related data like calendar and address items.

The company's 2008 revenue was 60% up on 2007, to about $6.1M. Synchronica is focusing on working with major VARs/integrators who sell to service providers, to develop them as a channel. This appears to be working well. Part of the growth is due to acquisition.

Synchronica appears to be executing reasonably well. So why aren't its revenues higher? In the enterprise space, this could be explained by competition from Microsoft's ActiveSync and RIM's proprietary synchronization. But Synchronica also serves feature and basic phones, which represent 90% of the market and aren't affected by ActiveSync and RIM. Despite a long sales cycle, you would have thought Synchronica revenues would be higher by now.

Several possible reasons come to mind:

  • The very long cycle from initial sales to customer-driven revenues, which occurs when a vendor sells to carriers and income is proportional to actual adoption.
  • The core capability is based on SyncML. This looked promising at one time, but has been losing popularity among carriers.
  • Many capabilities of smartphones will migrate to feature and then basic phones. This encourages synchronization to be done the way it is on smartphones: i.e., using ActiveSync and RIM's protocol.

... David Ferris

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