Vodafone to standardise mobile phone software

“Vodafone unveiled plans on Monday to become the first mobile operator to standardise the software on its handsets, striking a deal with Microsoft and saying it will work with just two other software providers.Vodafone said it planned to slash the number of operating systems it would develop applications for in the next five years to just three, supporting just Microsoft Windows Mobile, Symbian/S60 and Linux in the future.With little standardisation in the mobile software world, applications such as e-mail, instant messaging and music players currently have to be written in an array of different software languages to enable them to work on different handsets.The duplication of the software writers’ work makes developing new applications costly and time consuming for operators.Microsoft Mobile and Embedded Devices senior vice president Pieter Knook told Reuters other operators were planning similar reductions in scale.”Vodafone is the first to go into this direction, but there are others doing similar things and we will be talking about them in due course,” Knook said in a telephone interview.Vodafone gave no financial details of the deal but said it hoped the move would speed up and streamline the development of new applications as well as leading to convergence between mobile devices and computers.”By focussing on these three core terminal platforms, Vodafone expects to be able to reap the benefits of a range of efficiencies such as reduced handset development costs, as well as the quicker and more cost effective roll out of new services,” said Jens Schulte-Bockum, Vodafone’s head of terminals.”This initiative aims to ensure that we do not have to create a different set of software to provide services on a wide range of platforms,” he added.” via today.reuters.co.uk

UMTS/HSDPA enabled PPC Phone launched by Cingular

Cingular Wireless business customers are now on the wireless fast track with today’s introduction of the first UMTS/ HSDPA-enabled PDA in North America – the Cingular 8525 Pocket PC. The Cingular 8525 gives customers access to a variety of corporate data and applications – and personal e-mail and a wide range of entertainment capabilities – at wireless broadband speeds on a popular form factor. Adding to the power of the Cingular 8525 is its operating system – Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 with Direct Push Technology – which allows users to retrieve their information in the familiar environment found on most desktop computers.“The Cingular 8525 Pocket PC breaks new ground in wireless broadband connectivity in North America,” said Kent Mathy, president Cingular Wireless’ B2B organization, the Business Markets Group. “Not only is the Cingular 8525 the first UMTS/HSDPA-enabled PDA to launch on the continent, it is the only PDA or Smartphone on the American market today to give users wireless 3G capabilities both in the U.S. and in dozens of countries abroad. That translates into a tremendous advantage for the business customer in this global economy.”“Windows Mobile is about helping people navigate through work and life on the go in the same way they do at the office or at home,” said Pieter Knook, senior vice president, Mobile and Embedded Devices Division, Microsoft Corp. “On Cingular’s HSDPA network, the 8525 will empower people to use the key features of our platform simultaneously, like talking on the phone while at the same time downloading and reviewing documents, surfing the web or using one of thousands of applications available today.”Global StandardCingular’s UMTS/ HSDPA-enabled BroadbandConnect service is based on the global standard and natural 3G evolutionary path for GSM providers. BroadbandConnect is currently available in the U.S. in 134 markets (with populations of more than 100,000 surrounding more than 50 major metropolitan cities. The company said it will continue to expand coverage to additional markets in and around major metropolitan cities in the coming months. Internationally, there are currently 142 UMTS networks in 61 countries and 72 HSDPA networks.BroadbandConnect provides average downlink data speeds between 400-700Kbps (kilobits per second) with bursts to more than a Mbps (megabit per second) and uplink speeds to 384Kbps. When traveling outside the BroadbandConnect coverage area, the Cingular 8525 seamlessly enables service on Cingular’s EDGE (Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution) network, available in more than 13,000 cities and towns and in areas along more than 40,000 miles of highways. Windows Mobile 5.0 PoweredAdding to the Cingular 8525’s power is support of the Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system. This gives Cingular 8525 users access to mobile versions of many of the familiar Microsoft features found on their desktops, such as mobile versions of Windows Media Player, Internet Explorer and Outlook. Users can easily move through the Windows Mobile 5.0 environment thanks the Cingular 8525’s multiple device navigation capabilities – a new scroll-wheel feature, four-way navigation button and touch-screen stylus.Additionally, the Cingular 8525 includes the Messaging and Security Feature Pack for Windows Mobile 5.0, providing users with the benefit of Direct Push Technology. This means that e-mail, calendar, tasks and contacts are always-up-to-date making it very easy for users to stay on top of their jobs and connected to the people they care about. The feature pack also provides advanced security features, including remote device wipe, remotely enforced IT policy and S/MIME support.Complete ToolBuilt by a leading manufacturer of Windows Mobile devices, HTC, the Cingular 8525 represents one of the most complete wireless communications tools available today. In addition to connectivity to Cingular’s UMTS/HSDPA-based BroadbandConnect service, the Cingular 8525 provides users with seamless access to integrated Wi-Fi ( 802.11 b and g), Bluetooth 2.0, and infrared.The Cingular 8525 Pocket PC is the perfect wireless device for the power business user both during work-time and downtime. Corporate users can have their company e-mail pushed to their Pocket PC in real-time with Microsoft Direct Push or Good Mobile Messaging wireless e-mail solutions. Thanks to the combination of BroadbandConnect and Windows Mobile 5.0, they can quickly open and edit large Word and Excel documents and view PowerPoint, PDF and photo attachments. People can also get their personal e-mail pushed to the device using the popular Cingular Xpress Mail service. The Cingular 8525’s QWERTY, backlit “slider” keyboard makes creating or replying to a message an easy experience.Supercharged AccessBeyond e-mail, the Cingular 8525 will allow companies to extend even more of their business processes into a mobile environment. The supercharged, 3G-based Pocket PC will give customers fast access to dozens of industry-specific applications, including those in the areas of field service, sales, financial services, government, real estate and healthcare, as well as several security-focused solutions. The Cingular 8525, with its Wi-Fi capabilities, will provide those in healthcare and pharmaceutical sales with a particular advantage because they can continue to have access to mission critical information in hospitals and medical clinics that have deployed wireless local area networks for their on-campus communications.In addition, the Cingular 8525 will debut with the company’s first generally available, location-based solution – TeleNav GPS Navigator™ from TeleNav, Inc. With TeleNav GPS Navigator, Cingular 8525 users now can get turn-by-turn voice and on-screen directions directly on their device for use when driving or walking.*Thanks to the Cingular 8525’s UMTS/HSDPA backbone, Cingular business and consumer users have the ability to perform voice and data functions simultaneously when using the device. For example, Cingular customers can use the device as a wireless broadband modem tethered to their PC to download e-mail or other information, or surf the Web and simultaneously make or receive a mobile phone call. No other 3G wireless provider in the U.S. can provide that capability.The Cingular 8525’s value extends beyond work activities. During a break in the day or after business hours, users can relax by listening to their favorite music on Windows Media Player 10 Mobile using wired or Bluetooth-enabled stereo headsets, or enjoy video clips courtesy of MobiTV. The Cingular 8525 also comes equipped with a 2-megapixel digital camera and video recorder for sharper photos and video.** With an optional 1GB Micro-SD card, customers can store about 250 songs, more than 1,000 games or over 2,000 standard resolution photos.Pricing and AvailabilityThe Cingular 8525 Pocket PC will be available exclusively from Cingular for as low as $399.99 beginning Thursday, November 16, in Cingular retail stores nationwide, select national retailers, www.cingular.com, and through Cingular’s B2B direct sales team. For more information, please go to www.cingular.com/8525.Read a nice review here:

Phone Technician Review for Palm OS

“Due to the comprehensive nature of the application and time constraints for performing this review, I focused on the three aspects of the app that I felt would provide me with the greatest benefit; MP3 ringtones, the in-call volume booster, and disabling alarms during calls.Phone Technician Review – Palm SoftwareI did spend some brief time using all of the other features and they all worked as expected. I showed the “easy” conference-calling feature to an older, tech-phobic colleague who has consulted me on more than on one occasion in regards to establishing a 3-way call on his cell phone. He claims that Phone Technician’s 3-way feature is the “best damn cell phone invention ever”.I already use Pocket Tunes for all of my MP3-playing needs but I did sample the built-in MP3 player for a few tunes. Audio quality was average but this is a BAREBONES, track-by-track player. No detailed track information, no real interface to speak of, and no provision to fast forward or skip through multiple songs. It is worth noting that the audio continues playing after the LCD turns off so take care to pay attention to this to keep your battery from running down.” Read this nice review here: