Orange working on ‘open’ contact management app

The public beta will be launched on 8 December and will go on for around a year. There is a three-year roadmap for development, although the direction the evolution takes will be heavily weighted towards user feedback, Orange said.

"[We wanted] to work out how we can make sense of this open communications environment and yet stay close to those who matter. We're calling it ON," said Corbett.

"What we mean by open is the stuff you put into ON is yours not ours."

At launch, it will support Android with an iPhone version expected early next year. Orange will then look towards other operating systems such as Symbian and Windows Mobile, according to Constanza.

"[We wanted ON] to be fundamentally gracious. Help me respect others and help others respect me,'" added Corbett.

"If you went to someone's office, you tend to knock on the door before walking in. If you go to somebody's house you ring the doorbell. Yet, if we're ring someone we just do it."

As for how ON will evolve longer term, Corbett is enthusiastically in the dark.

The important thing to remember here is there are just a whole bunch of things that we don't know," he said.

"There will be a level of experience for my parents that will be different to the experience of my son. And that will be different to the experience I have."

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.