Archive for February, 2011

Smartphones To Be Smarter

BARCELONA, Spain — Cell phones are usually used to communicate with people far away. This year, they’ll get the ability to do the opposite: communicate with things that are close enough to touch.

It may not sound immediately useful, but phones will get some surprising capabilities with the addition of chips for so-called Near Field Communications, a wireless technology with a range intentionally limited to just a few inches.
The phones will be able to talk to payment terminals designed for “smart cards,” replacing credit and debit cards. They could be used as mass transit passes. You could tap two phones together to exchange contact information.
Or you could tap a “smart tag” on a poster, product or sticker to get your phone to do something, such as retrieving information from the Internet or placing a call to the product’s customer support line. Yankee Group analyst Nick Holland likens these tags to the links that take us from Web page to Web page, only now they’re in the real world.
Adding NFC is like adding a whole new capability on the level of GPS navigation or a camera, Holland said.
The industry has been talking about including NFC in phones for years, mainly to turn them into “electronic wallets.” Beyond a few trials, nothing much has happened, except in Japan and Hong Kong, where these systems have caught on for mass-transit ticketing.
But at the world’s largest cell-phone trade show, held last week in Barcelona, Spain, it was clear that the log-jam has loosened, in part because NFC chips are now cheaper. Millions of NFC-equipped phones will be in consumer hands in the U.S. and Europe before the end of the year.
Jim Balsillie, the co-CEO of BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd., said at the show that “many if not most” BlackBerrys will have NFC chips this year. Google Inc.’s Nexus S already has one, and the company’s latest Android software for that and other phones has NFC support. Nokia Corp., the world’s largest maker of phones, has committed to putting NFC chips in all its next-generation smart phones.
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Based on job postings at Apple Inc., there’s speculation the new iPhone model due this summer will have an NFC chip. Apple wouldn’t comment.
NFC turns the limitation of short-range communications into an advantage. When an NFC terminal senses an NFC-equipped phone, it knows that’s because the user is holding it right up close and wants to interact in some way — for instance, paying for a can of Coke.
That means a lot of the complexity that comes with establishing wireless links — like logging on to a Wi-Fi hotspot or “pairing” Bluetooth devices with each other — can be dispensed with. Tap and something happens; but your phone will probably still ask you if you really want that can of Coke.
The simplicity of NFC also lets it cut through the complications of existing mobile payment systems, which let you send money through an app or text message. These systems have been more popular in Europe.
It’s possible to upgrade some current phones with NFC chips. Small memory cards that are accepted by some phones can be given NFC capabilities. Both MasterCard and Visa are experimenting with “jackets” for the iPhone that have NFC chips, for instance.
But not all phones are compatible with these solutions, so the most likely way to get NFC into consumer’s hands is with new phones. Research firm Yankee Group estimates that there will be 151 million NFC-enabled phones in 2014, up from 834,000 in 2010.
The wide support from phone manufacturers comes after nearly a decade of much talk but little action. Bill Gajda, head of Visa Inc.’s push into mobile payments, said the NFC idea has faced “a series of chicken-and-egg problems.”
Phone makers didn’t want to include the chips in their phones if the wireless carriers didn’t want them.
Wireless carriers saw no use for the chips if merchants didn’t have terminals that accepted them. Merchants didn’t want to invest in terminals if there would be no phones to use them.
With phone makers and wireless carriers now supporting the idea, the hope is that stores will take the jump too, Gajda said.
Written by
PETER SVENSSON
AP Technology Writer

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Android Users Browse More Mobile Websites Than iPhone Users

­There are significant variations in between different operating systems in terms of mobile web activity, according to a study by GfK Network Intelligence Solution (GfK NIS). The research method analysed mobile behaviour via operators’ IP traffic.

GfK NIS is already installed in several European markets and during the autumn of 2010, GfK measured more than 20 million website visits in four European countries to discover that the intensity of web usage differs significantly between operating systems.

Android users were the most ‘web intensive’ with an average of 9.1 daily site visits per user, compared to iPhone (8.0), BlackBerry (5.7) and Symbian (5.2), the latter utilised more as a ‘feature’ phone as opposed to a ‘smart’ phone. GfK NIS also uncovered the variations in mobile usage in terms of handset screen size; <2″ displays saw an average of 2.8 site visits per day per user, whereas >4″ displays exhibit a marked increase, with 10.4 visits per day, per user.

“GfK NIS provides operators with an exclusive opportunity to monetize mobile web usage as it enables all stakeholders of the mobile internet access to unique information” explained Fredrik Hallberg, Managing Director at GfK Retail and Technology, responsible for GfK NIS. “GfK is linking usage information with the feature of the model, enabling insight and analysis on these areas that were previously unavailable.”

Social networking sites continue to dominate the mobile internet picture, with a 28% share of all site visits. The importance of Facebook for example depends heavily on the operating system utilised. For users with a Symbian operating system, Facebook accounts for 24% of all visits while elsewhere the significance is lower; iphone (17%), Blackberry (16%) and Android (13%). Similar variations can be found for other popular sites; Google for example is hardly used at all by users with Symbian phones.

The GfK NIS tool measures all websites visited using mobile internet regardless of the device; mobile phones, Smartphones, PC tablets and 3G Cards are all monitored and will be rolled out globally during 2011.
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Motorola ATRIX, Smartphone With Laptop Power

The Motorola ATRIX is the latest most powerful smartphone that the world has ever seen. It boasts its Dual-core 1GHz ARM Cortex-A9 proccessor that powers this laptop like touchscreen mobilephone. It costs pretty high but is it worth money?
Aside from having a fast CPU and having an Android OS v2.2 (Froyo), this smartphone also has features that you are going to love.

The Motorola ATRIX has a Quad Band network connectivity, certainly is enough to have good calls and keep having good signals. It has GSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800 and GSM 1900 plus HSDPA 850, 900, 1900 and 2100. Definitely and excellent phone to bring on a trip or even anywhere in the world.

It has SMS (Text Messaging) and MMS (Multimedia Messaging). It Predictive Text functionality to help you send messages fast when you really need it, its more useful for a touchscreen. You can also write and send an Email.

The Motorola ATRIX, like most Smarphones, is an excellent mobilephone for Internet browsing. It has highly advanced technologies that enables high speed data transfers. The phone has a video calling capability that has 3G HSDPA which boosts the performance of your video calls, smooth, fast and efficient. Browsing is a breeze as it has GPRS and EDGE, both are popular technologies that allows super fast Internet connections. Having an EDGE connectivity doesn’t need you to have a good signal when browsing the net, it is that great. The Motorola ATRIX is very favorable in coffee shops or restaurants or establishments with WiFi support as most of them offer these services for free.

The Camera for the Motorola ATRIX is just also great. It has 5 Megapixel Camera which is now a standard among mobilephones and smartphones. It has LED Flash, autofocus and image stabilization all these make the Motorola ATRIX a good mobilephone for taking pictures.

The Motorola ATRIX can last for an expected 264 Hours Standby or 8 hours continuous talk time. As you can observe, this mobilephone is efficient in its battery life use.

In conclusion, the Motorola ATRIX mobilephone is an excellent mobilephone. This will undoubtedly top the market easily and best cash back mobilephone deals isn’t that far away.
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