Posts Tagged: ‘smartphone’

I was surprised to hear the news today: HP is discontinuing the development of webOS devices. Back at CES 2009, I thought webOS had a real chance at making a big splash in the smartphone market. I wasn’t alone. The new operating system from Palm looked flashy and responsive. Granted, most of us couldn’t get our hands on the Palm Pre at the show — Palm was very protective of its new smartphone. But the buzz was strong and it looked like Palm had a shot of competing against the iPhone and Android platforms.

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While we marvel over the latest smartphones, video game consoles and computers, engineers are hard at work designing the next generation of computing devices. One area of focus is in flexible computers. We’ve seen examples of this in wearable technology, in which conductive thread carries signals through fabric. You may one day wear clothing that serves as a computing device. Another application is the OLED screen — the organic light emitting diode allows for some creative engineering. Using the right plastics and and metallic foils, engineers can build flexible OLED displays that can wrap around corners or roll into a tube. And then there’s the Paperphone.

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I ran into a post by Jennifer Van Grove at Mashable the other day that piqued my interest. Van Grove wrote about an application by Spotlight Mobile called Meridian. It gives iPhone users a way to get their bearings, like many other navigational apps. But it doesn’t just tell you how to get to the store or attraction, it shows you where you’re going inside the building.

Obviously, this isn’t nearly as necessary when you’re going to the convenience store (now why did they have to move the pretzels? How will I ever find them?), but for larger buildings, I think it could be very useful. According to Spotlight’s Web site, the company is working to partner with organizations that want to help customers and patrons navigate large areas. The app just launched and has only one location to choose from. As it happens, it’s my favorite bookstore on the planet, Powell’s City of Books in Portland, Ore.

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Last week Hewlett-Packard held a press conference to announce how the company would be using the WebOS operating system it acquired when it picked up Palm last year. HP said it would be releasing new phones and tablets with the OS on them, a move that doesn’t really seem so surprising given the positive things the media were saying about WebOS upon its debut.

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Social networking site Facebook hosted a mobile event today. I followed along with Jessica Dolcourt, Josh Lowensohn and Caroline McCarthy, who hosted CNET’s live blog. I also tuned in to the live feed on FacebookLive.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg started off the event. Of the 500-million-plus members, apparently 200 million or so are using the site on a mobile platform. Zuckerberg discussed the iPhone and Android applications.

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Your home gets broken into and your PC is stolen. Or you go to use the restroom and, when you get back your laptop is missing. Or you leave your phone on the train, never to be seen again. Is there anything you can do to recover a stolen gadget? There are several for-pay services […]

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Today in New York City, Research in Motion (RIM) announced the newest member of its smartphone family, the BlackBerry Torch. CNET was on hand for the event, and I was following along with the live blog. Many people were anticipating this new device, partly because it’s running a new version of RIM’s operating system, BlackBerry 6. RIM Vice President of User Experience Don Lindsay said despite having a new look and feel, the interface shouldn’t be unfamiliar to BlackBerry veterans.

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There’s lots of smartphone stuff going on these days. We’ll go chronologically. On Thursday, Apple’s set to announce its iPhone OS 4.0. There aren’t many details yet, though of course, that hasn’t stopped anyone from speculating. That’s fueled by Apple’s announcement Monday, described by CNET’s Erica Ogg as an HTML e-mail message inviting reporters to see what the future of the iPhone OS will look like.

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Over the weekend I spotted a headline that caught my attention. Apparently Sony is ready to launch a whole new slate of handheld devices aimed at helping them regain market share the company has lost to its competitors. Daisuke Wakabayashi and Yukari Iwatani Kane wrote about the company’s plans for The Wall Street Journal.

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This walk-thru of the Nexus One user interface demonstrates what Android 2.1 looks like on the Nexus One – and also shows that the phone is very real: The specs are also now available and they are impressive – a fast processor (1GHz Snapdragon) and a large screen (3.7 inches, 854 x 480 pixels): – […]

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