w:::: MMS Memo ::::
Watching the evolution of MMS camera phones and the Symbian OS for the purpose of Moblogging.



Blogroll Me!


Technorati Profile

wBuy my BlogShares!:
Listed on BlogShares


-- HOME --

This page is powered by Blogger. Why isn't yours?
wSaturday, August 23, 2003

Chinese mobile subscribers near 240 million [from ZDNet UK]

"Upwardly mobile China added nearly five million new cellphone users in July, taking its total to 239.45 million people, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

The world's largest mobile market by users has added another 33.45 million users in the first seven months of 2003, it said late on Tuesday, citing statistics from the Ministry of Information Industry. It had 234.5 million mobile users by the end of June, the ministry had said."

posted by James at 10:54 AM


Ubiquitous online gaming is a revolution

I've just been playing chess on my Nokia 3650. But instead of playing 'against the computer' I was playing a real person, in Italy. I'm sure he didn't realise that I was wiping an Irish mist from my eyes as I made my breafast and it didn't matter. He may have been crusing down the Tiber for all I knew.

GPRS Chess is still a little rough around the edges, as you'd expect from a beta version (0.71B), but its good enough that you can appreciate the amazing opportunity for ubiquitous online gaming. With a PC I'm stuck to playing at a desk. With a GambeBoy I can only play against the microprocessor. With a Symbian/J2ME mobile phone I can play anyone anywhere and that's revolutionary.

And its exactly why the Nokia N-Gage will be a huge success!

posted by James at 10:31 AM


Motorola launches first Linux smartphone [from The Register]

"Motorola yesterday launched its first Linux-based smartphone into the Far Eastern market.

Announced last February, the A760 uses Linux as a core operating system, on top of which Java provides a multimedia application framework. Software that ships with the device includes a PDA-style personal information management suite, a video player, music player, an instant messaging tool and more."

Read The Register article for more detail.

posted by James at 8:42 AM

wFriday, August 22, 2003

The Bluetooth Blues [from infoSync World]

"After years of waiting, Bluetooth devices are finally on the market in significant numbers. But Larry Garfield isn't convinced that it's living up to expectations,..."

I'm not surprised, because Larry wants a dumb phone. Can you believe that? He wants a dumb phone!

"Not a smartphone, a dumb phone. It should have number and dialing buttons, it should have phone configuration features (and an easy-access vibrate mode switch), it should have a small emergency address book, a digital data connection, and a Bluetooth connection. That's it."

Well I've got a very smart phone Larry, it's called a Nokia 3650. And I find it extremely convenient to walk up to my PC after a day of capturing photos and simply whip the phone out of my pocket, hit a few buttons and shortly thereafter see the photos on my PC hard-drive. It's terrific and I love bluetooth. You need to get yourself a smart phone (not a Smartphone though!).

posted by James at 10:11 PM


Symbian: the Other Handheld OS [from Techdirt Wireless]

Yes, it's funny to see Symbian being referred to as 'The Other Handheld OS isn't it. But's that what Techdirt chose to label it when throwing in their two cents as regards the recently announced results -

"Aside from the strategic importance, the Symbian OS is highly functional, and winning customers around the world, and in Europe in particular."

You're damn right it is. Much more so than that other handheld OS,..... what's it called again..... ;-)

posted by James at 11:39 AM

wThursday, August 21, 2003

Symbian Kicking Ass

Russell Beattie does a better job of analysing the figures than I could be bothered to do and concludes that Symbian is doing great -

"2.68 million Symbian devices sold in the first six months of 2003. But with royalties of only £10.2 million, they need to sell more than double this number of phones they are a viable independant operation, if you take into account that they lost £15 million in the same time period. With the numbers everyone's predicting, it looks like they'll be able to do this easily within the year."

But then he throws a small spanner in the works by adding the following reservation regarding the view from the developer's side -

"But here's my opinion about the main problem with Symbian right now: Developer support. Go to Palm's dev site or go to MSDN and you can see how a real develper community is developed and encouraged. Symbian right now is spread among the different manufacturers. I'm sure someone from Symbian will read this (Hi David!) so here's my concrete advice: Symbian needs to organize this development, create a dev.symbian.com website which acts as a neutral clearinghouse for all development issues. Whether you're working on a Nokia or a SonyEricsson, as a developer, I need to know there's one place I can get real support. Right now developing with the Symbian is an obscure art. Hell even finding information about the intricacies of a Symbian phone is many times impossible."

C'mon Symbian, listen to the guy.

posted by James at 2:47 PM

wWednesday, August 20, 2003

First MMS soap [picturephoning.com]:

"Holland, the country who brought to television the first 'Big Brother' reality show in 1999, is now innovating with the first soap by MMS, Jong-Zuid. It's sort of a 'photo romantic' (at least that what they used to be called in the Netherlands, 'roman photos' in French), a story involving love and romance told through pictures and read by adolescent girls.

What's interesting is that Jong-Zuid actually has famous Dutch TV-soap actors starring in it. Viewers can either follow the episodes on the website or sign up for updates on their cell phone where they receive several times a day, pictures and a short text underneath describing a situation. See the demo online - in Dutch, but you'll get the message!"

Just what MMS was made for. Can't wait to get start getting Corrie like this ;-)

posted by James at 9:50 PM


Pogo still a go-go [infoSync World]

Remember the Pogo, that weird Danger Sidekick wannabe? [Aside: or did the Pogo precede the Sidekick?]. Well its back! Only now it's called the nVoy Communicator. And despite my sarcastic introduction it actually does look like quite a capable reference design:

"Software-wise, the Pogo is capable of acecssing content stored in a range of industry standards formats such as J2ME, MP3, MIDI and HTML, of which the latter is also used to configure the downloadable user interface skins of the device. Messaging is also an area of emphasis, as the nVoy e100 supports SMS, MMS, e-mail with attachments and instant messaging, coupled with various means of notification such as vibrating alert, polyphonic ring tones and a colour LED. Other functionality includes a photo album; a web browser; contact, task and appointment management; taking notes; music playback; games and voice dialing."

It'll be interesting to follow and see if it get's anywhere during this incarnation.

posted by James at 6:42 PM


Nokia increases gaming power [from BBC News]

Today's news that Nokia is acquiring key software from Japan's Sega really took me by surprise:

Nokia has announced it will acquire Sega's multiplayer online games assets, a computer server technology at the core of networked game play.

"This transaction will give Nokia full end-to-end capabilities - the device, the games and the back-end technology to support multiplayer gaming," said Ilkka Raiskinen, senior vice president of Nokia's entertainment and media business unit.

Analysts said the acquisition, although financially immaterial, demonstrated Nokia's commitment to making sophisticated gaming a priority for its new phone designs."

I wonder if this news will put a sock in the mouth of all the N-Gage doomsayers out there (as excellently documented by the Mobitopians).

posted by James at 6:26 PM


Consumers Snap Up 55 Million Camera Phones [via NewsFactorNetwork]

'Analyst firm ARC Group said that growth in the UK will come from existing mobile phone users trading in their handsets for more feature-rich models.

The situation is a complete turnaround from a few years ago when the emphasis was on the first-time buyer.

David McQueen, ARC's senior consultant and author of the Future Mobile Handsets 2003-2008 report, explained that 15 per cent of handsets sold worldwide feature built-in cameras or camera accessories.

"Tempted by innovative design features, such as rotational cameras and swivel screens, along with the advent of multimedia messaging , colour displays and polyphonic ring tones, we'll see many consumers upgrading their mobile phones this Christmas," he said.'

posted by James at 8:20 AM

wTuesday, August 19, 2003

Living through someone else's eyes

Howard Rheingold is a smart guy and he's got a smart website but I think that a Joe Bloggs by the name of Diego Salinas out smarts him at his own game. From Wired News:

"'This is a sign of things to come more so than a watershed event,' said Howard Rheingold, author of Smart Mobs: The Next Social Revolution. 'The (moblog) coverage [of the blackout] didn't give me much better than what I could get on television.'

Rheingold, however, predicts that once camera phones are comparable in resolution to stand-alone digital cameras and can stream video, moblogs will start to get interesting. 'Of course, what you do get the day after a major event in blogs that you are not going to get on the networks are very extensive first-person descriptions of what their day was like,' he said. 'You would have thousands of eyewitness accounts.'

As for the amateur photographers doing the posting, they have proof they lived history, Salinas said. 'All of my friends (who saw the pictures) wrote and wanted to know all about it,' Salinas said. 'They couldn't believe something like that could happen. They said, 'I'm glad you took the pictures.'' 'It was the wonderment of it all. They could live through my eyes.' "

Tut tut Howard, you're making the same mistake as Xeni Jardin. Mr. Salinas understands it better - it's the ability to live through the eyes of another that makes moblogging so amazing, not the quality of vision.

posted by James at 9:38 PM


Smartphones will kill off PDAs - IDC [via The Register]

"By the end of this year, the plain, vanilla PDA market will have shrunk by nearly ten per cent. Instead, users are demanding 'converged' devices, says a survey by research company IDC."

I'm not surprised. 3 years ago when I worked in my last company I was over the moon to be given a shiny sleek Palm V for work and personal use. I can't say I didn't like it but when I compare it to my Nokia 3650 it really isn't in the same league. Wireless connectivity makes all the difference and simple software can seem so powerful when it can connect to the millions of computers and services on the internet.

posted by James at 8:43 PM


One million picture messages in one month [from infoSync World]

"Verizon Wireless recently shared numbers showing its customers shared more than one million picture messages in less than 30 days since the launch of the service on July 8, 2003. Crediting the success of picture messaging to the manner in which phones on the Verizon Wireless network approach this task, Verizon Wireless said subscribers to its network can send picture messages to any phone number on its network or any e-mail address. Users can also add text and audio to a message, and also upload pictures to an online photo album."

posted by James at 3:29 PM

wMonday, August 18, 2003

Online services must specialise for mobile

Tom Hume makes some excellent points when he takes usability expert Jacob Nielsen to task for his blinkered view of WAP and mobile technologies in general:

"Now if only he'd stop seeing WAP as an a priori failure, and notice that modern WAP browsers do a lot of what he's asking for: simple navigation of selective goal-driven content and services on a deck-of-cards size screen.

I also note that he (quite understandably) has a view of mobile which is very prevalent in the US: that mobile devices are an adjunct to desktop PCs (which explains the popularity of PDAs like the Palm and PocketPC, sold on their synchronisation and access to desktop files). Whilst over here in Yurp, mobile ownership dwarfs internet access and we see popular services on phones which have no integration with PCs (SMS is a success despite the existence of email, for example)."

posted by James at 7:27 PM


J2ME MIDP based RSS reader (for mobiles)

I'm in 7th heaven! I've finally found an RSS reader for my Nokia 3650 called mReader and written by Marke Allanson.

I've tried PeekAndPick but it didn't work on my phone. However, mReader works extreemely well. Marke admits that it's far from prefect but hey, it's only version 1.0 and he's working on improvements. What matters is that I've now got a way to track and digest information from my favourite resources, from anywhere. Woooohooooo :)

posted by James at 6:24 PM


Lara Goes Mobile [from GameFaction]

"Lara Croft's latest Tomb Raider adventure could put her in front of hundreds of millions of new players, thanks to mobile games studio IOMO and video games publisher Eidos.

A new game for mobile phones, entitled Tomb Raider: The Osiris Codex, will be released in the US and Europe. It will be available through soon to be announced network operators and will feature heavily in their Autumn marketing campaigns. The game will be released in three parts, starting with Episode 1, The Osiris Codex which will be available in the Autumn.

The game has been created for the latest generation of Java-enabled phones with colour screens including the Sharp GX10, Sharp GX20, Nokia 3650, Nokia 7650, Nokia 7210, Nokia 6200 and Motorola T720."

Cool. I'm not much of a gamer but Lara on my 3650 could change all that ;)

posted by James at 1:16 PM


Gen Next camphones r coming [from The Economic Times]

"Integration with a phone means one will almost, always carry it around unlike a standalone digital camera. And unlike a digicam, a camera phone allows one to shoot and share it immediately. And that’s where lies camera phone’s biggest USP. Onset of faster data delivery technologies such as GPRS (general packet radio service) and multimedia messaging is also fuelling the mania for camera capability further."

posted by James at 1:07 PM

wSunday, August 17, 2003

Vodafone nears Japan sell-off [from BBC NEWS]

"Vodafone will this week sell its Japanese fixed-line telephone business to US investment fund Ripplewood Holdings for 260bn yen (£1.4bn), reports say.

Vodafone, the world's largest mobile phone firm, owns about two-thirds of Japan Telecom, which includes the mobile service J-phone and the fixed-line business."

Well don't you just learn something new every darn day. I must admit I never knew that Vodafone had a fixed line business. Hmmm.

posted by James at 9:00 PM