Qik, is a mobile-based live video streaming service which allows you to use your mobile phone to video stream, record and interact with viewers on the Internet.
From the NY Times:
"Still keeping in touch with friends by texting? How old-fashioned. Some early adopters of technology are now using their mobile phones to send not typed words or photographs, but live video broadcasts."
Qik for the iPhone, from Kevin Rose, a Digg.com founder.
Questions and answers on Twitter about Qik (pronounced ‘quick’):
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allergynotes: Qik cell phone client works fine with my Windows Mobile pone (MotoQ). Very easy to use but the video quality is mediocre. Will check Seesmicdokidok: @AllergyNotes My opinion:qik is a nice paparazzi type service good to stream life events like disasters,parties,somebody drunk,the cat.
allergynotes: Any health workers using Qik http://qik.com/ for professional or educational purposes? Supports my phone, trying to figure out its best use. 7 days ago · Reply · View Tweet
My experience with Qik
Qik.com supports my Windows Mobile phone (MotoQ 9c with Sprint) and I installed the client last week. The software is simple and works seamlessly. The videos are uploaded directly to your Qik.com account, and you can set all of them to be private by default.
Currently, I am using Qik only to record short video notes with ideas, reminders, etc. I am considering recording and streaming some conference talks and lectures in the future.
How physicians can use Qik
The potential uses of Qik for physicians and other health workers are myriad and some suggestions are listed below:
1. A physician will be able to record videos to answer questions or address medical news with nothing more than a cell phone. The NY Times gives an example: "Representative John Culberson, Republican of Texas, notifies his 3,000 or so Twitter followers when he is about to stream a video with his Nokia N95, so they can watch it live or later — at, for instance, Qik. “I can talk directly to my constituents in real time without any filter,” Mr. Culberson said."
2. Videos of clinical signs/injury can be streamed directly for second opinion.
3. Medical students can record videos of lectures and conferences.
4. Video blogging -- post videos instead of writing blog posts.
5. Take notes and reminders.
Many of the uses listed above have limitations brought either by the video quality of Qik, the price of data plans for mobile phones, or HIPAA and other privacy laws.
Qik points out that it is “advisable to have an Unlimited Data Plan from your service provider as video streaming can consume considerable amount of bandwidth.”
I am not aware of any substantial use of Qik for professional purposes or medical education by health workers. Enrico of Mexico Med Student and Dr. Anonymous have used Ustream during and after Dr. Anonymous' radio show but they streamed video from desktop/laptop webcams rather than cell phones.
Alternatives to Qik
Several services allow users to stream video from their cell phones but neither of them supports that many phones as Qik or is as easy to use:
- Seesmic is a video startup by the French enterpreneiur Loïc Le Meur which aims to be Twitter of video conversation. Seesmic supports only a limited number of mobile phones, mostly Nokia devices. Its Windows Mobile client (beta) works only with touch screen cell phones.
- Kyte seems to be the most established mobile video service currently but it also supports only limited array of cell phones.
If you, or any other health workers, are using Qik or other "stream video from your phone" services for professional or educational purposes, please leave a comment below.
Bhaskar Roy, Co-Founder of Qik comment on Qik's applications in everyday life.
About Qik (pronounced ‘quick’). Qik, Inc.
Real-time streaming video from cell phones. Network World, Inc.
Capturing the Moment (and More) via Cellphone Video. NYTimes.
Mobile Livecasting Faces Off: Qik vs Kyte vs Flixwagon. TechCrunch.
Mobile Video Streaming: Why QIK Is So Great. Luigi Canali De Rossi.
Seesmic Launches Mobile Cell Phone Video - Exclusive CEO Demo.
Qik at CrunchBase.