Archives for October 2005
October 31, 2005
Beginning today through November 9, Verizon Wireless is holding a HopeLine Online Phone Auction.' Proceeds from the auction will support national domestic violence prevention, education and awareness programs across the country.
Not only will the winning bidders receive an autographed item from their favorite celebrity, but they will also win one of the hottest new phones available to Verizon Wireless customers, the Samsung SCH-n330 or the Motorola E815."
[via Press Release]
"The mobile service, which is an extension of Topshop's existing in-store style advice service, has been developed by luxury and lifestyle interactive marketing specialist Skywire.
The mobile technology enables Topshop customers to interact with the retailer's style advisers. Using their mobile phones, the fashion conscious can book appointments with advisers, receive advice, reserve items and receive picture messages of recommended clothing."
Nokia today introduced the Nokia Local Content Channel Solution, CoolZone, that is a Bluetooth based end-to-end solution for distributing digital content to consumers' phones in retail locations.
With CoolZone, retailers like music stores, phone shops and cinemas, can offer promotional or paid content, such as mobile games, wallpapers, videos and music, to consumers in their stores.
"For consumers, CoolZone is a new and easy way to get rich mobile content and information. Every time the consumer visits a store, which has CoolZone service, she or he can easily browse, preview and buy the latest content to his or her phone. When using the service for the first time, the consumer downloads a retailer branded application to the phone in the retail location based on instructions provided in the store. The payment for the downloaded content is done either over the counter using vouchers or using premium text messages".
A Korean company has come up with a pepper spray gunshaped like cell phone.
"Just pull off the antenna and press the button after holding the handset in the correct position and you will have sprayed the attacker with the spray. Additionally the user can also set the device to emit a loud ringing panic alarm to get help".
New Delhi police were sifting through mobile telephone call records on Monday in their hunt for those behind the deadly blasts at New Delhi’s markets and investigating claims by a little-known Islamic militant group that it staged the carnage.
"We are going through calls originating from 18 cellular towers at the three blast sites because we believe the attacks were coordinated with the help of mobile phones," said a police joint commissioner, who did not want to be named.
According to the Townsville Bulletin, Australia's soaring divorce rate has led to a generation of girls who have "discovered their inner bitch" and who make life hell for their victims - using text messages and e-mail to intimidate and victimize.
"Psychologist Michael Carr-Greg told a conference in Melbourne yesterday female bullying was a largely unresearched phenomenon that was out of control in the nation's schools.
"Some of these girls are the queen of mean," Dr Carr-Gregg said.
And while male bullies tended to use their physical strength to intimidate others, female bullies had become adept at using SMS and email to victimise others.
Dr Carr-Gregg - who recently learned of an incident in which a girl was made to eat a pie filled with dog-food - said schools needed to introduce programs to tackle the problem.
"There is really nowhere some of these kids can hide," Dr Carr-Gregg said. "They can be emailed at home or texted wherever they may be. What's disturbing is that we are getting reports that girls are bullying at younger and younger ages."
Fears that text messaging may have ruined the ability of teenagers to write properly have been shown to be unfounded after a two-year study revealed that youngsters are more literate than ever before, reports the Times Online.
"The most comprehensive comparison made of exam papers of the past 25 years has discovered that the writing ability of 16-year-olds has never been higher.
The quality of writing has also improved, said Alf Massey, head of evaluation and validation at Cambridge Assessment, the department of Cambridge University that carried out the study.
The two-year study found that today’s teenagers are using far more complex sentence structures, a wider vocabulary and a more accurate use of capital letters, punctuation and spelling.
The study used samples from thousands of English language examinations sat by 16-year-olds in 1980, 1993, 1994 and 2004."
Other positive studies:
But the general concensus until now, on cell phones and students' reading/writing skills, has so far been mostly negative:
Students at a Scottish university are to have their lecture notes sent to their mobile phones in a pioneering bid to replace paper handouts in classes, reports Scotsman News.
"Dr Ayse Goker, from the school of computing at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen, is planning to run a trial of the system in her lectures next year.
The system, called AmbieSense, uses hi-tech chips in lecture rooms that are capable of beaming information to mobile phones nearby.
If successful, the project could spell the end of the traditional image of students moving between lectures weighed down with piles of paper notes. Instead students will be able to download handouts, timetables and other work on to their phones.
AmbieSense was developed in a Europe-wide project to provide intelligent interactive tools in different environments.
The system has already been piloted in Seville and Oslo Airport to give useful information to tourists. The AmbieSense chips were able to beam pages from the Lonely Planet guide to people as they visited key tourist spots."
GAYmobile is the name of a new mobile-network provider that is targeting homosexual subscribers in Denmark.
GAYmobile is offering services that are gay all the way and 25% of the profit will be channeled back to the gay community via a special fund called GAYtrust, according to the CEO Thomas Bilgram who is also the head of Copenhagen Pride.
GAYmobile's service line - called HOMOBILE - might soon be offering a wireless dating service as well as subtle ringtones that indicate the users sexual preferences. Until then, GAYmobile suggests that subsribers use songs like "I am what I am" or anything by ABBA as ringtone.
[via Guerilla Innovation]
October 30, 2005
The first ever vote by mobile phone has passed off without any major hitches in the Swiss town of Bülach. Swissinfo report.
"Officials said 445 citizens of Bülach - or 11.6 per cent - used the text messaging system, while another 25.7 per cent voted over the internet in a local poll on Sunday.
The ballot is part of a series of trials in several regions of the country to introduce e-voting nationwide.
Citizens were asked to decide on a proposal to introduce a 30kmh speed restriction for vehicles. Two thirds of voters rejected the plan."
Related post: - Swiss Bulach citizens to vote by SMS on speed limits
ChannelNewsAsia reports that 'O' Level students in Singapore, suffering from examination stress, can now turn to an SMS buddy for some relief.
"This is just one of many e-services organised by trained counsellors to help students beat the exam heat, a nationwide project by a group of professional counsellors to help those taking their "O's".
Students can get tips on exam preparations online at www.students.org.sg/olevel, or sign up for an SMS service to receive help and motivation when they are stressed.
They can also e-mail a team of professional social workers about their problems at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About 75 percent of them have signed up for the SMS Broadcast service.
Korean mobile telecom operators are increasingly turning to markets abroad now the domestic market is saturated, reports Digital Chosunilbo.
"The nation’s largest mobile operator SK Telecom already made a foray into the U.S. market, forging an alliance with U.S. operator EarthLink early this year and KTF has decided to tap other markets including China, India and Latin America and will focus on wireless Internet and roaming services."
October 29, 2005
Something to look forward to, the mobile "Munster's Pinball" game to be released in time for Halloween.
"Developped by In-Fusio, "The Munsters Pinball" will be available for a wide range of popular mobile phones at operators worldwide."
[via Dave's :paq]
Australians can send thanks, online or by SMS on Australia's third annual Thank You Day, November 7. It's a national campaign designed for thanking any doctor, nurse or medical researcher and give encouragement to those people who are hidden from the public eye." [via Entertainment News]
"All the messages will be forwarded to the men and women in the research fields. Vitally, the data will also be passed on to political leaders in an attempt to underline the importance of funding for medical research."
Simply strap the collar around your dog's neck, and as long as the built-in receiver can pull in both GPS and GSM signals, you can call the collar from anywhere in the world and get texted back with its exact location (or view a map on a smartphone).
The Church of Txt Confessions allows mobile users to bear their souls by text messaging in their sins - and Web viewers to read them online. It's not endorsed by any church, the catholic church still stand by it's .
"Simply send the word "confess" in a text message to the number 44222 to begin your confession and start down the path to forgiveness." [via Darla Mack]
-- Virging mobile users confess their sins Virgin Mobile Bites features a service called ‘Sin to Win’, in which customers are invited to send in their sins in order to relieve themselves of a guilty secret, and to be in with a chance to win prizes for the best confessions.
Samsung Electronics, has launched their ladies-exclusive E530 mobile phone in the Middle East.
"The phone, which comes packed with rich features such as a fragrance/aromatherapy guide, calorie counter and shopping list, aims to be the ultimate fashion accessory for women seeking the perfect mix of image and style".
October 28, 2005
Textually.org's short survey is online for just another few days. Many thanks for taking just a few minutes of your time to answer it's questions - if you haven't already. They are designed to help this blog better understand it's readers, and what they're interested in. All information gathered is strictly confidential. The purpose of this is to improve textually.org, and to better target potential advertisers and sponsors.
According to Moco News and Netimperative,, Mobile network O2 has formed a partnership with publisher Condé Nasht to bring British Vogue to UK mobile users as part of its “Style” channel, a new lifestyle channel on O2’s Active portal which is targeted at women.
“The service offers updated news on catwalk looks and fashion trends while offering backstage pictures and show videos…Mobile Vogue also offers tips on what to buy and downloadable Vogue covers and images as wallpapers.”
Abigail Chisman, editor-in-chief of Condé Nast Interactive, said: “What’s really exciting is that with 600 of the best bags, shoes, clothes and bars on your phone, you can walk down the high street already knowing what you want to buy – and all the stockists and phone numbers you’ll ever need are already in your hand.”
In their final English exam yesterday Year 12 students were asked to compare an SMS message, "how r u pls 4giv me I luv u xoxoxo O:-)", with a famous Keats love letter, "You fear, sometimes, I do not love you so much as you wish". [via The Weekend Australian]
" And the 46,000 Victorian students who sat the three-hour VCE exam were also asked to analyse a Dilbert cartoon on the modern dilemma of email and write a letter to the editor of Woolworths magazine Australian Good Taste.
... Monash English lecturer Baden Eunson described the paper as part of the "multi-literacy" approach. "These are actually very interesting issues about communication and technology but the reality is that the students don't have the ability to express themselves with maximum fluency."
Korean mobile phones have topped a U.S. consumer satisfaction survey in design, function and durability. The annual J.D. Power and Associates survey announced Thursday saw LG Electronics come first overall and Samsung Electronics third.
The study measured the satisfaction of some 17,000 customers who owned their handset for more than two years in five categories: design, operation, features, durability, and battery function.
The world’s largest and second-largest mobile phone makers Nokia and Motorola lagged behind, gaining only a mediocre 91 and 96 points, below the average mark of 97.
Who came in second? The article doesn't say
Researchers have developed a (desk) phone that rings as loud as an electric drill to help you hear in noisy workplaces, reports India's New Kerala.
"The 83 decibels phone* (Noisyphone) rings as loud as an electric drill and is very effective in noisy workplaces. Researchers said that the ear-splitting ring is twice the level of a normal phone.
This apart, the phone also has a bright red flashing light that alerts users to an incoming call. The caller’s voice is also louder than on normal phones.
The makers of the Noisyphone have claimed that elderly people, who may be hard of hearing, will now never miss another call and can enjoy an audible conversation more comfortably, reports The Mirror.
The phone has already been a big hit abroad. British distributor Noisyphones unveiled it in the UK this week. "
*An 83 decibel noise level, according to Science Blog - NASA is comparable to the noise heard by a person operating a lawn mower or food blender".
Wireless Engineering has introduced a Bluetooth dongle ‘XTOOTH’ on the Korean market, offering stereo sound to Samsung and LG handsets.
[via AVING News.Network ]
Behind the veil of a state dominated media, packed with official lines on the problems facing the southern African country which leave no room for lighthearted tales, Zimbabwe's urban population is resorting to the Internet and short message services via mobile phones to spread some laughter. Reuters reports.
"At least once a day, a mobile phone user is likely to receive a humorous SMS, ranging from a dirty joke to a tickle over the lives of Zimbabwe's rulers."
Revenge for bad cell service! Let your pooch chew on this one, "Grrrizon" Plush Toy with a squeaky thing inside.
Mobile messaging revenue in the USA increased by 106% in 2004 and is expected to continue to grow strongly over the next five years from its current low base, according to a new report, The US Mobile Market: trends and forecasts 2005-2010, published by Analysys
"In 2004, mobile data accounted for just 4.8% of operators’ total mobile services revenue in the USA, compared to 15.9% in Western Europe and 22.0% in Japan. A key reason for this was the relatively low usage by US subscribers of SMS and other messaging services.
In 2004, according to Analysys estimates, the average US subscriber increased usage of SMS by 50%.
... By 2008, mobile messaging alone will account for 10% (USD16.4 billion) of operators’ total mobile services revenue". [via net4now.com]
Another cell phone shaped high rise, spotted on The Gadget Blog.
The Herald Sun reports that "millionaire mobile phone salesman "Crazy" John Ilhan has unveiled his radical design for a $40 million 120m highris tower in the shape of a phone.
Mr Ilhan, who put forward his "phone tower" plan earlier this year, hopes his distinctive building will become a Melbourne landmark".
Related: More cell phone monuments from around the world.
File under good news. Federal law enforcement attempts to use cell phones as tracking devices were rebuked twice this month by lower court judges, who say the government cannot get real time tracking information on citizens without showing probable cause. Wired reports.
.. ""This is a true victory for privacy in the digital age, where nearly any mobile communications device you use might be converted into a tracking device," Bankston said in a statement. "Judges are starting to realize that when it comes to surveillance issues, the DOJ has been pulling the wool over their eyes for far too long."
Read also related article in The Washington Post.
October 27, 2005
To post a message send a text to: 07929 461727. Messages are limited to 144 characters in length.
The intention for the project is to encourage members of the public to find a new use for these signs, which usually carry mundane but important traffic and road safety information. Instead the VMS will carry text messages, which by their nature are often deeply personal.
Stefhan Caddick is a visual artist based in Wales. His work is often multidisciplinary, encompassing visual art, new media and elements of performance." [via may you live in interesting times]
Tool for Armchair Activists is a machine for remote protest. It can be strapped to lampposts next institutional buildings in front of which many protests occur.
Thanks to its embedded mobile telecommunication device, the machine is able to receive incoming sms messages and speak them out loud through its megaphones, thus allowing the armchair activist to shout out its rants and protests in the comfort of his sitting room.
Programming and electronic development: Moritz Waldemeyer.
reBlogged from WMMNA