All posts tagged ‘smartphone’

by SarahMarch 22, 2010

Nokia Crowdsources Mobile Phone Design


Nokia has launched a project called Design by Community that is crowdsourcing design ideas for a new smartphone device. Hosted on the Nokia Conversations blog, the company is collecting feedback about different phone characteristics.

When the user has selected their optimal configuration, they can click a "submit" button to send their choices to Nokia. The company will tabulate the results and use the information to design the new device concept. There will be several rounds during which a separate set of parameters will be put up for voting.

This project will be an interesting way for Nokia to learn about what design features people truly want from their smartphones. Collected insights will help the company produce a phone with desired features, and will determine if community-driven design is an effective method.

[via ars technica]

by CalebNovember 9, 2009

Mobile's Evolving Lexicon: Smartphone or App Phone?

app phone

According to Wikipedia, a smartphone is a mobile phone that offers functionality like a PC, and has its own OS. That or a device that supports email use and Internet connectivity. In actuality, there is no real solid definition for a smartphone. It seems the word has outgrown its meaning, which is why David Pogue suggests we rethink what we call these powerful mobile computers. What seems to differentiate our iPhones and Droids from phones of the past is their thriving app markets, and thus the proposal for a new name: app phone. We think it has a nice ring to it, anyone have a better idea?

[via nytimes]

by Janice ChowNovember 8, 2009

Five Approaches to Mobile Technology in the Classroom

5 Ways How Mobile Phones Are Used (or not) In the Classroom

There has been much talk about how effective mobile devices are in a classroom setting. Since the start of 2009, industry experts have been spreading the word that smartphones should play a role in the classroom. From developing mobile educational software to testing its usage in the classroom, here is how this trend is received around the world.

  • The Mobile Learning Environment is an educational tool used to turn smartphones into personal computers. Currently implemented in two Texas classrooms, it includes programs that let students map concepts, animate their drawings, surf relevant parts of the Internet and integrate their lessons and assignments. It also includes mini versions of Microsoft Word and Excel.
  • Digital Millennial conducted a study of four North Carolina schools in low-income neighborhoods, where 9th and 10th-grade math students were given smartphones by HTC. The devices operated Microsoft’s Windows Mobile software and special programs to help students with algebra studies. The students used the phones to record, share, and discuss their work, including posting videos on a private networking site. The study found that students with smartphones performed 25 percent better on the final algebra exam at the end of the school year, than did students without the smartphones in similar classes.
  • The Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Campaign of North Carolina created The Birds and the Bees Text Line, a center that sends instant text messages to sex-related questions posed by teenagers. As epidemiologists claim sex education in the classroom is often ineffective, the program was created as a solution to provide teens with advice from a faceless, non-judgmental expert.
  • Beginning March 2009, the government of Tajikistan banned the use of mobile phones in all educational facilities in the country, including schools and universities, to both students and teachers. Perhaps this was a response to the overwhelming impact of protesters who used Twitter to share with the world and speak out against the happenings on war in Iran.
  • As we mentioned previously, Purdue students are experimenting with a social "backchannel" platform, called Hotseat, that integrates Twitter, Facebook, and SMS text messaging to make comments in real-time during class. It's being pilot tested in two courses. Professor Sugato Chakravarty, whose personal finance course is one of the pilot tests, said, “I’m seeing students interact more with the course and ask relevant questions.”Implementing smartphones in classrooms is the next step in tomorrow's technology.

Smartphones have already become our dominant communication device. Decades ago educators were skeptical at how the PC would play a role in education. This generation of millenials' conversations will accelerate faster than ever. It is up to instructors and educators to navigate these budding conversations to mature levels of thinking and questioning, as higher education aims to do.

Janice Momoko Chow is a freelance strategist and writer in New York City.  She writes Momoko Mashups, a blog about ideas and inspiration for tomorrow.

by Janice ChowOctober 22, 2009

How Smartphone Apps Are Pushing Forward A Car 2.0

Recently we discussed how the auto industry could soon implement a network technology that will improve the way we use our automobiles. Already on the market are cell phone and Wi-Fi networks that aid in a completely hands-free communication.

The automotive industry is ready for the kind of apps that have revolutionized the mobile space over the last year, according to a report released from iSuppli. The appeal for app technology while in-car makes sense. Drivers could use such offerings for navigation purposes or locating reference points, such as a dealership for repairs, while passengers can play video games or access a social network.  According to Earth2Tech, a handful of automakers, like BMW, Nissan, Ford, GM, and Honda, have developed specific services using an iPhone app. WSJ calls it “the coolest way to pay” where consumers of the Mercedes Benz app use it to make a car payment, view their accounts, and find out how much they have left to pay on the car.


As smartphone app users are increasingly connected, we can also soon expect a host of other services with platforms cross-fertilizing with TV, portable music players, and gaming devices. For example, BMW recently unveiled a new app store that enables delivery of services directly to the vehicle or via a PC. At last month’s Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany, Nokia presented a smartphone integrated into the car’s dashboard computer system, and Parrot talked of plans to build an Android-based device that offers a complete implementation of smartphone features to the automobile.

We are at the early stages of planning for a fully connected automobile experience and automakers cleverly innovating for the future. If watching the road ought to be the most important thing on our mind, we will see how these additions enhance or distract our driving experience.

by MBSeptember 18, 2009

News to Us: Palm Drops WinMo, Google Ad Exchange, Federation of Studios and More

mobile bing double click palm pre
  • Palm Kills WinMo as Pre Loses Momentum | GigaOm
    Trying to stay afloat in the smartphone market, Palm is ditching Windows Mobile and placing its bets on its own webOS. Windows Mobile has been losing market share, this move ends their five year long relationship.
  • Memo to StartUps: Stick to solving problems | eConsultancy
    Techcrunch's Sarah Lacy contends that start-ups should seek to change the world. Patricio Robles offers a strong counterpoint that good entrepreneurs are problem-solvers, not megalomaniacs, and successful innovations often start with modest goals.
  • Google's DoubleClick Launches New Marketplace For Display Ads | TechCrunch
    Google's new Ad Exchange creates an open, real-time marketplace making it easier for online publishers, ad networks, and agencies to buy and sell display advertising space. The system includes real-time allocation, greater control over where a display ad appears, new payment system and a revamped user interface.
by MBAugust 17, 2009

News to Us: Mobile Moms, User-Controlled Advertising, Pico Projectors and More


Modern Power Moms Flock to Smartphones [CNET]
Smartphones are quickly finding their way into the hands and purses of "power moms," who are buying them to leverage all kinds of digital applications to stay organized and to connect with their families, friends, and social networks. They're also using these Internet-enabled devices to get things done like paying the bills, ordering groceries, downloading coupons, and hunting for ideas for the next family vacation.

Mobile Advertising More Personal In 2020 [Online Media Daily]
A report by OgilvyOne and Acision speculates that the mobile advertising landscape in 2020 will be user-controlled--people will be choosing what kind of ads and products will be authorized to reach out to them and that those ads will reflect consumer's lifestyles, desires, and needs.

Where Is Wireless Innovation Occurring If Not At The Carrier? [mocoNews]
It can be argues that mobile innovation is not coming from carriers, despite their central role in the market.

Is Apple Shooting For The Cloud? [Technomix]
Apple is building a huge data center in North Carolina, five times bigger than their current one, speculated to manage Apple's cloud computing ambitions.

Make An App That Uses NYC Municipal Data [NY Convergence]
NYC is looking for developers to create mobile apps that leverage the potential of municipal data. The apps will be available to NYC residents and will hopefully cut certain costs for the city.

New Worries About Children With Cellphones [NYTimes]
Parents have to be on top of how their kids are using cellphones and educate them on everything from purchasing via off-deck services to texting at the dinner table.

Radio, Cell Phones to Help US in Afghanistan? [Press TV]
The State Department is creating a special unit in Afghanistan to use mobile and radio to fight the information war with the Taliban.

Downloads From All App Stores Will Reach 6.67 Billion in 2014 [IntoMobile]
A statistical projection by Frost & Sullivan estimates that total downloads from all app stores (Apple, Windows, Android, Palm, and Symbian) will reach 6.67 billion by the year 2014.

50 Inch Mobile Screens Coming Soon [Mobile Industry Review]
Pico projector technology will (soon?) be integrated into mobile phones, making screen size limitations obsolete.

by MBAugust 13, 2009

News to Us: Nearby Now, Yellix, Mobile UI Revolution, Nokia's Grand Plans and More


Wallet of the future? Your mobile phone [CNN]
In Asia, your mobile lets you make payments, access the subway, control your TV, and even open your front door. While some wonder if the technology will translate to the U.S., others think that mobile payments will take off here within five years. The article also goes over the low to high tech ways to pay, including RFID, barcodes and SMS.

Facebook Grew Twice As Fast As Twitter In July [TechCrunch]
Between April and July, Facebook grew 30% in unique U.S. visitors, while Twitter only grew 25%, an increase that could be attributed to the launch of  their “Everyone Button".  This gave Facebook members who didn’t have public profiles (i.e. most people) the option to share items in their stream with everyone else on Facebook on an item-by-item basis. Not only did this drive more people to Facebook, but it also increased the time spent on the site.

Yellix Dials in to Mobile Social Networking [Kelsey Group Blogs]
There is a lot of potential to leverage the phone's address book as the ultimate social network. To this end, Yelix has released an app for Android phones that automatically shows Facebook picture and status when receiving a call from a friend.

User Interface IS the Holy Grail [Wireless Week]
The user interface on a mobile phone is of the utmost importance, and its future lies in cloud computing. The cloud will lead to increasingly sophisticated applications, which in turn will offer the end user a higher degree of personalization.

As Ad Spending Declines, Magazines Move to Mobile [GigaOM]
Nearby Now seeks to move magazine advertising to mobile phones. The digital shopping service app lets users find and reserve products they’re looking for in local brick-and-mortar stores, as well as directing users to web sites to purchase products online.

“Leaf” Phone Runs On Solar Power, Doubles As Wristwatch [PSFK]
The Leaf is a cellphone that runs on solar power and is made of flexible material that enables it to double as a wristwatch. Lower-end phones might end up being simple, small, and eco-friendly.

Made-For-Mobile Comics: The Future of Pulp? [CNN]
To follow its audience, the comic industry has been slowly but surely offering paid content on the mobile screen, a move the print industry seems to have come to terms with.

Nokia Rocks the World: The Phone King's Plan to Redefine Its Business [Fast Company]
Nokia is evolving from a hardware company into a content provider, with grand plans to become the biggest entertainment media network in the world. Can they do it? "Look at the real world: It's not about people in the high end," says one Gartner analyst. "The real world is people in the middle, and Nokia owns that world in terms of numbers. They may not own mindshare, but they certainly have a lot to work with."

Xbox Gaming Platform May Soon Span Web, Console, Mobile [Ars Technica]
A recent job posting from Microsoft suggests that they are looking to bring the Xbox Live, Windows Mobile, and other similar properties closer together. More specifically, there's talk of a "casual and social gaming platform" that would be available across platforms and devices.

Augmented Reality Game Plus Facebook Equals Gaming for the Future? [Technomix]
Zugara's “Cannonballz” game uses the motion capture technology from their Webcam Shopper to “appear” in the gameplay. In this case, they are dodging cannonballs while trying desperately to save their friends (which are imported via a Facebook Connect integration) and accumulate points. Once their game is over, people can share their scores and the game by uploading it to their Facebook stream.

In Terms of Mobile Data Traffic, a Month in 2014 Will be More Than Whole 2008 [IntoMobile]
ABI Research has found that mobile data usage is going to increase so much that by 2014 there will be more data transfers in a one month than in all of 2008.

Cell Phone Sales Declined 6% in Q2 2009, Smartphone Sales Grew 27%
[Unwired View]
Research from Gartner points to the decline of cell phone sales in general, while smarphone sales have gone up 27%. The demand for "more than just a phone" is high.

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