With a wide grin on his face, Lee Giles summed up MobiSNA, a new video networking device, in one simple sentence.
"Share your videos with your friends -- anywhere, anytime," Giles, a professor of information sciences and technology, said.
Giles referred to MobiSNA, which stands for Mobile Social Networking Application, as a blend of Facebook and YouTube. The new technology is split into four applications: video network, video chat, video blog and interest groups.
The technology would enable people to take videos and send them to other users or add them to a YouTube-like application where they could be searched and viewed by others.
Giles and Luke Zhang, assistant professor of information sciences and technology, have been developing MobiSNA since October, along with a team that includes Jung Hyun Kim (graduate-computer science and engineering), Liang Gou (graduate-information sciences and technology) and Hung-Hsuan Chen (graduate-computer science and engineering).
While Zhang demonstrated MobiSNA on a personal handheld computer, the pair described the prompt visual communication it would provide between coworkers in professional settings such as offices, news broadcasting stations, manufacturing buildings and hospitals.
"It'll enable them to respond better and more efficiently to emergencies and problems they could face," Giles said.
Giles and Zhang gave examples of ways to apply this networking to daily life, both professionally and leisurely. They joked about how MobiSNA could be a great tool for paparazzi or even for dating, and they laughed when Zhang jokingly called the technology "video Twitter" in reference to the social networking that would take place.
Some students showed interest in the social networking aspects of MobiSNA.
"If it's anything like Facebook, Twitter, anything to network with, people would like it," Lindsey Frey (senior-human development and family studies) said. "You get to see the person, you get to see their reactions."
Frey said she thinks the technology would be well-received by students because of the popularity of other social networks and the personal connection it would provide through being able to see each other's faces.
Eric Rotthoff (graduate-electrical engineering) said in the case of sending a small or important message to someone, he would still resort to text messaging rather than video networking, but he would use MobiSNA socially.
He said he would "take a video of something neat on the street" and send it to friends if he had technology like MobiSNA.
"It gives you access to what you've never had in a mobile setting," Zhang said.
The team displayed the product on March 31 in Las Vegas at the Alcatel-Lucent 4G Symposium. The team received interest from companies such as AT&T, Hewlett-Packard and Verizon, Giles said.
The team hopes to have its technology available for cellular phone use in the future and will have a demo for it in the fall.
"We're not looking at what we can do now, we're looking at what we can do in the future," Giles said, "and video is always fun."