Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Nokia Introduces S60 Widgets

Nokia announced that it will include widget support in S60 3rd Edition Feature Pack 2, which means that users will be able to further personalize their mobile Internet experience and customize which content appears on their handsets, such as live weather updates.

This opens up exciting possibilities for Web developers to create innovative applications and services for mobile devices. Web technologies help and promote the rapid development of applications for mobile. Developers can now leverage the same skills, technologies, and tools used for creating Web pages to develop widgets for mobile devices.

S60 on Symbian OS, will be complemented with Web Run-Time, a Web application development environment, enabling the development of widgets and integrated Web applications for mobile devices with familiar standards-based Web technologies, such as Ajax, JavaScript, CSS and HTML.

S60, the popular smartphone platform is the first to add the full HTML browsing experience to millions of S60 mobile devices is now also the first mobile phone platform to give a this functionality which allows the developers to create new innovative widgets and also migrate existing widgets from the desktop to S60 with minimal effort.

"Mobility will change the Internet as people are able to access and create information specific to place, time and context," said Tero Ojanperä, Chief Technology Officer, Nokia. "Widgets are an important milestone in this development. Introducing widget support for S60, much of the innovation seen on the Internet today is being brought to the mobile space for the benefit of the millions of S60 mobile device users".

Press Release

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Nokia, Samsung to Cooperate on For Mobile TV Interoperability

Handset makers Samsung and Nokia announced their plans to collaborate on mobile TV interoperability among their respective DVB-H-enabled devices and the open standards-based Nokia network services system. Samsung and Nokia will work together to develop open OMA BCAST standard-based solutions targeted for operators deploying multi-vendor mobile TV services and trials.
The deployment of mobile TV services will offer new business opportunities for companies across the value chain, including content and broadcast companies, mobile service providers, infrastructure and handset manufacturers, and technology providers. The availability of interoperable DVB-H enabled devices and services is a key factor in further opening up the market.
Nokia warmly welcomes the collaboration in accelerating the adoption of DVB-H based mobile TV services to the market. We see that the OMA BCAST standard is essential in launching mobile TV services on a global scale," says Harri Mannisto, Director, Multimedia, Nokia. "Further, the well-defined service and content protection profiles within the OMA BCAST standard such as the already now available OMA DRM, provides the ideal path towards standardized solutions enabling a coherent and open market for successful worldwide mobile TV deployments."
Within DVB-H technology, Samsung has already commercialized handsets based on the CBMS OSF standard, and will develop the OMA BCAST standard-based mobile TV handset," said Samsung senior VP Kwang Suk Hyun in a prepared statement. "Its inclusion in our product portfolios will enhance our customers' flexibility in choosing suitable standards based on their business models."

DVB-H is an effective technology for deploying broadcast mobile TV among the many digital technologies available to deliver mobile TV services. DVB-H technology offers high service level quality, low battery consumption and offers the end-user the ability to simultaneously receive broadcasts while using other mobile services such as telephony and internet access on their device.

In parallel to supporting mobile operators launching mobile TV services based on existing technologies in their networks, Samsung and Nokia are both active in ongoing standardization and technology development to optimize the broadcast mobile TV experience. The companies will work on interoperability efforts using the open OMA standard while continuing to participate in industry-wide interoperability efforts within the related standardization bodies.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Palm Announces New Linux Based Mobile Platform

Treo-maker Palm's CEO Ed Colligan officially announced that it will deliver a new Linux and open source based mobile computing platform combined with Palm OS Garnet technology on new products later this year.

Colligan said that the company has been working on this new OS for several years and it has no plans to license it out to other handset makers. Palm still plans to use Garnet OS (Palm OS) and Windows Mobile in its Treo line of phones, but it plans to use its right to the Garnet OS (Palm OS) source code to evolve the current Palm OS into the just announced Linux-based one, which is also rumored to make use of Opera's mobile browser.

Colligan highlighted and stressed a few points about the new platform. He continually stressed the importance of the user experience citing the ability to have an instant on, highly portable device with great battery life. Other highlights included greater hardware flexibility and the ability to handle simultaneous voice and data, two key ares which have hampered the traditional Palm OS in recent years.
The Analyst presentation concluded without any technical or developer details revealed about the new Linux based platform. Many questions remain to be answered as to what the official name will be, what Linux technologies are included, how Palm OS Garnet compatibility will be handled and what the development environment will be composed of. Colligan ended the Q&A session stating that the Linux based platform will be a integral "core technology" for Palm for the foreseeable future.

But certainly it is a good move by Palm and let wait and watch for the progress.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Google Launches 800GOOG411 - A Voice Search Service

Google launched a new product called Goog-411 into Google Labs - a free telephone based information service that could replace toll 411 calls. This is a free voice-based directory search service that can recognize speech and read results over the phone or return them in an SMS.

This new service can be accessed by dialing 1-800-GOOG-411. The service is completely automated and there is no way to talk to a human for additional or clarifying information. You tell it your city and state, and then ask for a specific business or business category. In my tests the product was excellent. Although the voice recognition was only working at about 70% efficiency, I just said “back” and retried when it didn’t understand what I said. Results are spoken back or text messaged back to you, and you are automatically put through to the phone number requested.

GOOG-411 is using Google’s normal local business information available on Google Maps and elsewhere. Businesses that want to add or correct data can do so here.

The product competes head on with Jingle Networks, which has taken 6% market share in the U.S. 411 business over the last year. AT&T is also experimenting with free 411 calls. None of these products come anywhere close to as good as TellMe’s rich client business information tool for mobile phones, but few phones support TellMe at this time (TellMe was recently acquired by Microsoft).
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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Digg for Mobile DiggRiver is Updated

Digg has updated the mobile version which is called DiggRiver is updated. Though DiggRiver is online for quite sometime, it was passive. You could read whatever is there on the home page but you couldn't digg your favorites.
With this update you could do that also. The diggriver is very conveniently designed for access from the limited size mobile displays. The stories are easy to read and the digg buttons placed on the left side of the story are very easy to use.

The about page on diggriver says:

"This site is a streamlined version of Digg, a community-driven news site where users submit the stories and vote for what they like best. Whether on the train, in line at the grocery store, or in a boring meeting, you can now read the news on your Palm mobile device, Blackberry, or Web-enabled smart phone.

We've added the ability for previously registered users to Digg stories and will continue to add more features in the future. If you don't have a Digg account, go to digg.com to register using a desktop Web browser.

Note that sites we link to may not be optimized for mobile browsers."

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Study: Consumers still wary of mobile ads

A new study from Forrester Research poses the titular question "Is the U.S. Ready for Mobile Marketing?" and while the results indicate the answer is a tentative "Yes," 79 percent of the sample group finds the idea of handset marketing annoying and only 3 percent say they trust ads delivered via mobile device.
"We've grown up with this view of the TV commercial interrupting our favorite program," Forrester analyst and report co-author Christine Spivey Overby said in an interview with AdAge. "There's this ad-equals-interruption mindset that we have, and when you think about something as personal as the mobile phone that you hold in your hand and carry in your pocket, the idea of a marketer interrupting you while you have the phone, that's an idea that consumers hate." According to the Forrester report, text messaging coupons and short codes remain the most consumer-friendly mode of mobile advertising, but are also far less immersive than ad-sponsored games and other more interactive content. Forrester's basic recommendations to mobile marketers: Keep the message brief and measure consumer response, target campaigns to the demographics most likely to respond, and adopt a mindset of value.

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