Archives for January 2007

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January 31, 2007

Buddy Check Voice Service for People Living Alone

BuddyCheckService helps seniors that live alone keep their independence.

It uses ASR speech technology to enable overtaxed family caregivers to monitor loved ones on a regular basis, and are alerted by text message or call on their mobile phone if there is an emergency.

It is an active type service so it notifies family and friends if they are not responsive or need immediate help.

emily | 3:37 PM | permalink

Boxwave's Screen Puff screen cleaner for your cell phone

screenpuff_colors_lg-thumb-1.jpg screenpuff_cleaning_lg.jpg

A cell phone charm that's a screen puff cleaner too. From Boxwave. Comes in a wide range of colors.

[via Shiny Shiny]

emily | 1:37 PM | permalink

Philips' New Longer Battery Life Phones

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"Philips's three new Xenium 9@9 cell phone series offer longer talk time of up to 10 hours and stand by times of up to 40 days.

This far exceeds the recent Motofone F3's claims of 8 hours of talk time and 12 days of stand-by", according to Tech2.com India

emily | 1:29 PM | permalink

Grabbing Older Consumers via Cellphone

MK-AI267_ADVERT_20070130195224.gif The WSJ reports that marketers trying to reach older people are dipping their toes in the mobile marketing waters.

"The latest to take the plunge is Hearst's Redbook magazine, whose average reader is a woman in her mid-30s to mid-40s. In coming weeks, Redbook is launching a cellphone sweepstakes game. Redbook readers can bid on a year's worth of movie tickets by sending text messages from their cellphones. The bidder with the lowest offer unmatched by anyone else wins.

Redbook hopes the sweepstakes games will boost its profile with its readers -- and provide a new source of ad revenue, through the sale of sponsorships for the sweepstakes.

The magazine's venture highlights how a growing number of marketers and media outlets are experimenting with mobile media.

Still in its early stage of development in the U.S., cellphone advertising has been held back by advertiser concerns about alienating consumers. More than three-quarters of consumers are turned off by the idea of ads on their phones, and only 3% said they trust text ads, according to a recent Forrester Research survey."

emily | 1:14 PM | permalink

Chinese Cellphone comes with built-in anti-theft features

tianyu-b832.jpg A new chinese handset, The Tianyu B832, comes with built-in anti-theft features. GearFuse Uberphones via Uberphones.

"If a thief steals your phone and replaces your SIM with his, the B832 will automatically send an SMS of the new number to your old number, so make sure you get a replacement SIM card from your operator ASAP.

In addition, when the phone is connected to any network, it can be locked remotely from a computer. These security features should be implemented in all cellphones, and not only the B832."

Other anti-cell phone-theft phones:

-- Theft Tracking CDMA Phone

-- Samsung Hero - anti theft phone

-- Anti-theft phone service

--"Free cells = less crime"

--SMS, a new weapon used by the police

emily | 9:16 AM | permalink

January 30, 2007

PHONE-HOLDING BRACKET LEAVES HANDS FREE

med_phone_holder.jpg

A blast from the past from Modern Mechanix.

"Acrobatic skill in holding the receiver between shoulder and chin when telephoning, in an effort to free both hands for something else, is no longer necessary if a receiver-holding attachment is fitted to your phone.

The new appliance is merely a bracket that bolts to the phone back of the transmitter and holds the receiver at the proper elevatiou and angle for convenient use. Slipping back a latch releases the hook and opens the line. When the call is completed, pressing down the hook automatically- locks it shut. The holder attaches in place of the rivet found behind the transmitter.

The device should prove particularly welcome when it is necessary to “hold the wire” for a considerable time. "

emily | 6:59 PM | permalink

Short Survey - last chance

I think Federated Media needs a few more answers to close the textually.org survey. Many thanks for filling it out here, if you haven't already. Much appreciated.

emily | 6:22 PM | permalink

Brits ashamed of their ringtone

girldlance.jpg 80 percent of Brits are ashamed of their ringtone according to new research released today which confirms that 97% judge a persons personality based on their choice of ringtone. mad4mobilephones reports.

"Most Brits change their ringtone several times per year, the average is 3.4 times and people spend 37.5 minutes making a ringtone decision.

90% of people in the UK have been criticized for having a bad ringtone. Users often feel embarrassed when their phone rings and some are even criticised for having a boring, manufacturer setting, ringtone.

mad4mobilephones lists some common ringtone personality traits; fashion victim, movie buff, uber cool, introvert or too much time on your hands?... Which one are you?

Related "you are your ringtone" articles:

-- What Does Your Ringtone Say About You?

-- Are ringtones an extension of your negative side?

-- What kind of person sets their phone solely on vibrate mode?

-- What your ringtone says about you

-- Ringtones can reveal more about yourself that you might think

-- Ringtones: The new currency of cool

emily | 6:21 PM | permalink

LG's new "secretary phone" with "tools for businessmen"

20070130103319357.jpg LG has just launched a mobile phone secretary, LG-SV260, with "tools and features for businessmen", including:

-- "Motiquette", short for mobile+ etiquette, keeps callers informed of when they are calling you during a meeting or appointment through SMS messaging.

-- Voice note can records portions of meetings for later playback.

-- Voice secretary reads aloud text message and today’s schedules for you

-- A special magnifying feature enlarges schedules and notes for the elderly. You can adjust the size of the font as you like.

Other features added to the SV260 include 1.3 MP camera, mp3 capabilities, an electronic dictionary with built in pronunciation aide, among other standards."

mad4mobiles and GearFuse via Aving.net

emily | 3:26 PM | permalink

Two-thirds of Brits Use Just 4 Functions on their Phones

TEXTING%202.jpg 53% of Brits feel that modern technology has now become too complicated and could turn their back on technology, according to the latest report from PayPal reports Cellular News. The age old problem of setting a video recorder still exists for one in three Brits, even though they have been in the mainstream for 27 years .

"Although mobile phones are now ubiquitous, yet many remain baffled by their features. The majority, almost two thirds (61%), use only four features on their mobile phone - calls, text messages, alarm clock and camera - while two fifths don't even know if their mobile phone has a camera function."

emily | 10:02 AM | permalink

Personal Porter: Luggage tracking by SMS


SplashPageV2-Merged_03.png Personal Porter is an Australia company offering travellers a global door-to-door luggage delivery service with real-time tracking via SMS. [via Travel Blackboard]

Launched last week in Sydney, it aims to reduce queues at check-in and move passengers quicker through airports.

At Sydney International Airport alone, 2 bags are lost averagely each morning and 9,000 items are mishandled in three months. Preventing this is the issue addressed by this new innovation.

How does Personal Porter work ?

1. Confirm your on-line booking details, which include the pick-up & delivery address information, the items of luggage that you require delivering and print off the documentation that Personal Porter produces for you.

2. Pack your bags just as if you would if you were taking your luggage to the airport and securely attach the documentation.

3. Personal Porter representatives will then pickup your luggage a few days before your own departure date.

4. It is now Personal Porter's commitment to ensure that your luggage is delivered securely and reliably to the destination you have requested.

emily | 8:02 AM | permalink

SMS Poll against crime brings in 400,000 responses

Several hundred thousand South Africans have spoken out on crime via SMS, and the majority feel that it is plain out of control. South Africa News 24 reports.

"The SMS poll was launched on on Tim Modise's TV show . By early Monday, 400 000 SMS messages had been sent, said the company that provides the service.

They say it's the biggest poll of its kind so far. Even London-based South Africans responded.

Viewers are asked each Monday evening to give their views on the subject under discussion on the show.

On Monday last week, viewers were asked to send an SMS if they thought crime was out of control in South Africa. Only those who agreed were to respond. "

emily | 7:40 AM | permalink

January 29, 2007

New Sharp Phone with a range of Pantone colors to chose from

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A new Sharp Phone model (812SH ) in a range of 20 Pantone colors to choose from.

[Wireless Watch Japan via The Mobile Weblog]

emily | 4:25 PM | permalink

Judge issues $5 fine to anyone who's ringtone goes off in his courtroom

A judge in Montana is fed up with mobile phones ringing in his courtroom and has done something about it, reports HTLounge.

"Judge Jeffrey Sherlock, of the Lewis and Clark County Courthouse in Helena, Montana., has announced that he will immediately issue a $5 fine to anyone whose mobile goes off during one of his trials.

During a recent trial, the judge collected US$25 from perpetrators.

Sherlock, who is in his mid-50s, said some of the worst offenders were people his own age, who should know better."

emily | 2:52 PM | permalink

PartyStrands links real and virtual world partying

partystrandsred.gif USA Today writes up partyStrands - "which gives people a new way to use their cellphones to interact with nightclub entertainment systems and each other.

By sending a text message with their favorite recording artist, they immediately begin to influence the music selection as the club's DJ or computer-based sound system works the newcomer's chosen singers into the mix. Each user's "party name" appears on video monitors around the bar, along with an avatar icon and, if they choose, an Internet link to their personal MySpace or Facebook page."

Previously: - Influencing a music festival by SMS

emily | 2:37 PM | permalink

Why your brain can't cope with driving and talking on the phone

_42507377_mobilephone203.jpg US researchers from Vanderbilt University have discovered a likely reason why people find it hard to do two things at once. The BBC reports.

"A "bottleneck" occurs in the brain when people attempt to carry out two simultaneous tasks, the research shows. The study found the brain slows down when attempting a second task less than 300 milliseconds after the first.

The findings, published in Neuron, support the case for a complete ban on the use of mobile phones when driving, the team said.

emily | 1:20 PM | permalink

January 28, 2007

Cell phone liquid-damage indicators not always accurate

asset_small This is something I didn't know. Cell phone makers began installing liquid-damage indicators inside phones several years ago to give retailers a quick way to check for water damage. Once the disks change color, most wireless companies won't honor their one-year repair warranties.

But The Boston Globe reports that "consumers with relatively new cell phones -- in one case a phone right out of the box -- say sensors inside the devices appear to be incorrectly registering water damage, voiding the warranties.

The consumers all insist they haven't dropped their phones in water or left them out in the rain, yet the tiny liquid-damage indicators inside their phones have changed color, indicating damage.

Independent phone retailers and repair people say a phone doesn't have to be dropped in a toilet or a sink to sustain water damage. They say liquid-damage indicators may also change color if exposed to sweat, steam , extreme humidity, or condensation resulting from an abrupt change in temperature.

"It doesn't take much to get these things to change colors," said Chip Braeutigan , service manager at Cell Teks in San Antonio, which repairs damaged cell phones."

emily | 10:22 AM | permalink

Office Devices Modified to Make Employees Look Good

showalice.jpg Designer Alice Wang has modified devices used in a typical office environment (computers, cell phones, printers, earphones) to make employees faced with peer pressure, look good and create a good impression. [via we-make-money-not-art.com]

-- The popular mobile is meant to make a worker look popular. By beeping at regular intervals, it makes people who are listening believe that text messages are coming in.

-- The fast typing keyboard is for slow typers - so no one notices.

-- The positive printer generates positive rumors about an employee. It filters his/her e-mail box and prints out all positive messages automatically.

-- The double sided headphone is for people who are not sure of their music taste and worry they will be judged by the (wrong) kind of music they listen to. The headphone has two tracks and plays one track inwards and one track outwards with different music simultaneously.

See work in progress here.

emily | 9:21 AM | permalink

Florida Retiree Wins $31,000 Cell Phone Bill Fight

A Florida retiree has won a two-month battle with a cell phone company over bills for about $31,000 in calls from Nicaragua he said he never made. WYFF4 reports.

The 77-year-old former bank executive said his bill is normally about $150 and he said he hasn't been to Nicaragua.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported that Oliver DeSofi complained he was defrauded, but Cingular Wireless disagreed and tried to collect. Cingular canceled DeSofi's account, saying its fraud department didn't find any problems with the account.

The company has now changed its mind and said it's researching how the issue was handled".

Related:- UK Gran, 66, gets £600 bill for mobile phone she's never used

emily | 9:10 AM | permalink

Cell phones vital in developing world

capt.02bed7c644e045a7be3614f37f67be31.cell_phone_revolution_xml102.jpg Wireless communication is helping fuel Vietnam's rapid growth — and transforming dozens of other developing nations from the ground up, reports the AP.

"... Research shows that greater cell phone use can drive economic growth in emerging economies. Based on market research in China, India and the Philippines, consulting firm McKinsey & Co. found that raising wireless penetration by 10 percentage points can lead to an increase in gross domestic product of about 0.5 percent, or around $12 billion for an economy the size of China.

"There's enormous entrepreneurship and creativity worldwide, and through mobile phones you're providing people with the tools — rather than aid — to earn a living," says Leonard Waverman, a London Business School professor. In a separate study of 92 countries, Waverman had findings similar to McKinsey's report.

By bouncing signals off base stations, relay towers and satellites instead of over copper wires strung to villages and homes, cell phones can hurdle mountains. Mobile phones are not hampered by illiteracy — which is a barrier to computer use — giving millions new opportunities to exchange information, make money and conduct business."

emily | 9:03 AM | permalink

January 27, 2007

Virtual world on mobile phones

miniworld.gif Finnish company Sulake (well known for their Habbo Hotelplatform) recently released Mini Friday, a Habbo-like virtual world that runs on mobile phones. [via Pasta and Vinegar]

Mini Friday is a small research project on virtual worlds on mobile phones. We are trying to find out if real-time virtual worlds make sense on mobile devices.

emily | 6:04 PM | permalink

Motorola and Ferrari launches limited edition RAZRmaxx V6 Ferrari Challenge

370754601_71412cf3ae_o.jpg Motorola has launched a special limited edition RAZRmaxx V6 mobile phone in collaboration with luxury automaker Ferrari. TechWhack reports.

"Motorola said that this mobile phone RAZRmaxx V6 Ferrari Challenge is basically a 3G phone with HSDPA high-speed data download technology.

It features the famed Ferrari logo on the outer body and comes loaded with Ferrari related digital material. The company added that the phone will come with a “hand-made carry case in Ferrari-red leather and should retail for approximately $636."

Other Ferrari Phone:

-- Vodafone's limited edition Ferrari branded cellphone - The 902 Ferrari Limited Edition was produced in partnership with Sharp in 2005.

Other sports' car related cell phones:

-- Vodafone launch McLaren Mercedes inspired mobile phones

-- Sportscar-looking cell phone integrates alco test

-- Nokia 8800 Aston Martin Special Edition

-- Vodafone has launched a Ferrari branded cellphone

-- LG's Sports Car Mobile Phone with Vroom Vroom Ringtone

-- Aston Martin branded cell phone -

-- Siemens Grand Prix cell phone -

And, well, not exactly a racing phone but more of a roadster:

-- Keitai Vyuun! or Mobile Phone Zoom! This is one of the stranger features to come along, stick-on, wind-up wheels for your mobile phone.

And related links to Enginetones

emily | 5:44 PM | permalink

Taxis Top Mobile Search Queries

mobilePeopleLogo.gif According to Mobilepeople’s data the overall number of mobile searches conducted during 2006 grew ten fold on the previous year.

The data also revealed the top mobile search categories before and during the festive period. These included in order of popularity:

1. Taxis
2. Takeaways
3. Restaurants
4. Supermarkets
5. Consumer electronics

The most popular brands searched on before Christmas were IKEA and TOYS R US.

Among the top 20 searches were also banks and financial institutions, hotels, garage services, car parts, hairdressers, medical services, shoe retailers, cinemas, furniture outlets, toy retailers, department stores, pubs and coffee shops.

... Europeans are also turning their attention to the search capabilities of their mobile phones when looking for new careers.

The findings of Mobilepeople’s ‘Mobile Search Trends 2006’ study showed that a six per cent of all mobile searches were for jobs and recruitment consultants just before Christmas 2006.cording to a recent report from mobilePeople, a leading mobile search firm.

[via 3G]

emily | 3:59 PM | permalink

Bluetooth Campaign Targets Theatregoers

avenue_q_bluetooth_story.jpg Square Group has revealed the results of an experiment it has been running with Bluecasting at the Noel Coward Theatre in London. Mobile Marketing Magazine reports.

"The company installed a Bluetooth transmitter from Alterwave in the theatre. When someone with an active Bluetooth device walks past the transmitter, it sends out a message offering them a free video clip from the puppet show, 'Avenue Q', which is playing at the theatre.

In the first seven days of the experiment, says Square Group, 9,595 active Bluetooth devices were detected and sent messages. Of these, 703 people accepted the offer of the video download – an average of 87 people each day."

emily | 3:54 PM | permalink

U.K. Tabloid Editor Sentenced to 4 Months in Prison

nofwh.gif The former royal editor at the U.K. tabloid the News of the World, Clive Goodman, was sentenced to four months in prison for plotting to tap into the telephone messages of aides to Britain's royal family, including Prince Charles and his sons. Bloomberg reports.

" ... Police began investigating the case when staff at Prince Charles's official residence raised concerns about security breaches, after the News of the World published a story containing private information about Prince William.

... Royal staff members first became suspicious after the News of the World, England's best-selling Sunday tabloid, published an article about Prince William's knee injury in 2005, according to U.K. police. The newspaper subsequently printed a short item containing private details about a planned meeting between the prince and ITV news correspondent Tom Bradby.

Security and anti-terrorism officers widened their probe after learning that the mobile phones of other public figures and celebrities may also have been targeted. "

Related: - Reporter admits tapping royal phones

emily | 12:05 PM | permalink

January 26, 2007

GPS Sneakers Send SMS to Parents if kids go off limites

gtxshoes.jpg

GTX GPS Xplorer Smart Sneakers keep track of your kids and if they wander beyond a delimited area, a GPS signal activates a text message alert to the parents phone.

[via Gizmodo]

emily | 8:04 AM | permalink

January 25, 2007

Mega Plotter, an interactive installation

megaplotter.jpg The Mega Plotter is is an interactive installation by Mads Wahlberg.

The installation consists of a 5×7 metre large canvas. An X-Y-moveable system with industrial paint spray guns with the colours red, green, blue and yellow were mounted in front of the canvas.

The X-Y-movable system was computer and mobile phone-controlled. By dialling a particular phone number, visitors at the Danish musical festival, Skanderborg Festival, were able to control the plotter with the keyboard of their mobile phones.

By pressing the star, zero or pound keys, users could choose between the different colours of paint. By pressing the 2, 4, 6, and 8 keys they were able to control the movement of the plotter horizontally and vertically, and by pressing the 1, 3, 7, and 9 keys they were able to control the movement diagonally, creating imaginative drawings.

The installation has been set up two times at the Skanderborg Festival, in 2005.

[via Digital Experience]

emily | 6:48 PM | permalink

Mobile phones DO fry your brains

glioma.gif Mobile phones DO fry your brains, according to The Inquirer.

"According to a leak on a study to be published later this year in the International Journal of Cancer people who regularly used mobiles for 10 years and more were up to 40 per cent more likely to develop nervous system tumours - gliomas - on the side of their head where they hold their phones.

... A recent Finnish study by the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority found that people who had used a mobile for 10 years or more were 39 per cent more likely to sprout a glioma on the side of their head they held their phone.

emily | 4:50 PM | permalink

Listen to Podcasts on Your Phone

Earkive lets you listen to podcasts it has aggregated by dialing your cell phone. Simply tap 1.646.401.0940 and a four-digit podcast ID.

No downloading, no transferring, no cables, no hassle, reports MIT Advertising Lab.

emily | 4:20 PM | permalink

Driving while Calling/Texting. Teenagers don't get the message

teenagedriving.gif A new study says teenagers cell phones and their noisy friends -- combined with their lack of driving experience -- add up to a deadly mix that causes thousands of fatal crashes a year. Traffic accidents are now the number one killer of America's teens. AP reports.

"... More than 90 percent of high school students who were surveyed reported teens driving while text-messaging or driving with passengers who are just "acting wild.

Teens do seem to be getting the word about not drinking and driving. But today's study says that message should be expanded to include distractions."

"Cell phone and driving dont mix" campaigns aimed at teenagers are not nearly widespread enough. The message should be hammered. Who will step up?, wireless operators, cell phone manufacturers, government bodies in charge of road safety.

Studies show as early as 1997 that being on a cell phone while driving is a dangerous distraction.

The Victorian government launched "an awarness campaign in 2004. Check it out!

Related:

-- Cellphone talkers as bad as drunk drivers: study - People who talk on cellphones while driving, even using "hands-free" devices, are as impaired as drunk drivers, researchers said in June 2006.

-- Young Drivers More At Risk With Phone - A 2003 study by University of Utah researchers found it was more dangerous to use a cell phone behind the wheel than it was to drive drunk.

-- Lab findings suggest reason cell phones and driving don't mix - The reason talking on a cell phone makes drivers less safe may be that the brain can't simultaneously give full attention to both the visual task of driving and the auditory task of listening, a 2005 study by a Johns Hopkins University psychologist suggests.

-- Talk, talk, drive, talk - A 1997 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that drivers talking on a cell phone (hand-held or hands-free) were four times more likely to have an accident than other motorists.

emily | 4:10 PM | permalink

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