Shazam – Come On, You’re Impressed Too!!

I got an iPhone last year. Didn’t think I would ever “go Apple” for anything. Grew up in the insurance industry so I was used to and happy with IBM computing, including laptops. Later I got a Nokia and “hello, love!” Palm was my device of choice for contacts, calendar, notes and such. Happy as the proverbial clam.

Then a year ago, my Motorola cell died. What to do? I really appreciated Motorola’s form factors and designs. I looked around and increasingly more of my colleagues were getting iPhones. And I was already on AT&T and wanted to stay on AT&T (spent a little bit of time at Bell Labs before divestiture… the thrill of working at Bell Labs was as palpable for me as when I was fortunate to get to Arthur D. Little in the late 1980’s.)

So, I got an iPhone. And one of the ‘apps’ I heard about was Shazam. Sounded too much like science fiction: you launch the app, make sure the iPhone can hear the music and within 15 seconds (or 10 seconds depending on how you set it up), it analyzes the sounds and then tells you what the song is, the artist, and even enables you to buy it on iTunes?

Really? Of course, you all know the answer is YES. OMG as the younger generation might remark. OMG.

Pattern recognition. Not of numbers in a document or table but of sound waves (which are probably decomposed to numbers of a sort). And that is really magic.

Now, it doesn’t work for all music and it certainly doesn’t work for classical music (no, I don’t mean music from the 1950’s or the 1960’s). But most of the time, it recognizes the music.

So, what’s the Shazam application equivalent for insurance? Well, it’s the beginning of my weekend and I’m logging off for the next few days.

You tell me what equivalent applications the insurance industry could use.

Published in: on November 13, 2009 at 5:41 pm  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. The Shazam application equivalent for Insurance would be for a company to build a robust infrastructure for Real-time Data Mining. This should have the capability to analyze the information coming in real-time and based on life-event changes (like marriage, child-birth, death etc) will suggest appropriate products to the customer. These may pop-up in the form of alerts in front of the Customer Service Rep who is servicing the customer.

  2. We have a number of apps in the works and have high hopes for what the iPhone can bring to loss control and claims management.

    Here are some ideas that we are not working on:


    Weekly WC tool box topics, and attendee sign in/sign out – automate the documentation of these necessary meetings


    Property inspection photos that could be delivered with date, time, and gps location information – ideally bundled with other products that provide property valuation estimates


    Wouldnt it be terrific to have all ISO forms available at any time to review by form number/form name?

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