• sprint

    Charlie Rose Interview with Sprint CEO, Dan Hesse

    I just had a chance to watch the Charlie Rose interview with Dan Hesse, Sprint's CEO. If you haven't watched this interview yet, you should. It provides an interesting look into Mr. Hesse's background, the wireless telecomm industry, and the foundation to Sprint's customer satisfaction strategy.

    You can watch the full interview here...

  • sms

    The Real Cost of SMS Messaging

    Time Magazine has an interesting article on their website this week. The article, titled "Guess What Texting Costs Your Wireless Provider?" dumps a bucket of cold water on wireless subscribers.

    According to the article, American teens have a combined average of 2,899 messages (sends and receives) a month; which I find a mind numbing number. SMS messaging, works over a cellular carrier's voice network, not the data networks that provide Internet access to smartphones like Apple's iPhone or Palm's Pre. Yankee Group analyst Christopher Collins states that because of the limiting nature of SMS messages, 160 characters at a maximum, the carriers have been able to route the traffic over the existing voice network infrastructure. "They cost the mobile carriers so little that you could argue that they're free," says Collins.

    Time's article also sites the work of University of Waterloo in Ontario professor Srinivasan Keshav.

    "He showed that the wireless channels contribute about a tenth of a cent to a carrier's cost, that accounting charges might be twice that and that other costs basically round to zero because texting requires so little of a mobile network's infrastructure. Summing up, Keshav found that a text message doesn't cost providers more than 0.3 cent."

    If SMS messaging costs carriers less than a penny to process, why are wireless customers paying on average $0.15 - 0.20 per message sent or received? That's what Wisconsin Democratic Senator Herbert Khol wants to know. Senator Kohl, "chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee's subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights, [and will be holding] hearings on the matter in June."

    You can read the full article on the Time Magazine website.

  • android,  google,  motorola,  t-mobile

    Impressions of the Motorola Cliq

    I wanted to get a better understanding of just what the new Motorola Cliq was all about. We know that is an Android phone, but there is a growing number of Android phones out there. What would make the Cliq unique in the rapidly expanding smartphone universe? To find out, I started reading what the newspapers had to say.

    In a Washington Post article about the Cliq, Motorola's co-CEO and head of mobile devices,Sanjay Jha, said:

    "I see this as a first step in a long journey where we develop the kind of products which are really relevant for consumers." "I think for Motorola to retain its tech edge and reputation for engineering, it really has to hit a home run - not necessary with this particular phone, but with its phones in the coming year, including this one."

    A noble goal to be sure, and one that provides Google Android fans with another major device manufacturer in the mobile phone market. But what does it really do; besides making phone calls that is? How will the Cliq be different from T-Mobile's other Android phone, the HTC Dream known as the G1? For the answer to that question, I turned to an article in the New York Times.

    "[The Cliq] is meant for young people obsessed with social networks. Instead of the traditional menu of features, the Cliq’s home screen is an ever-changing mosaic of e-mail, Twitter tweets and status updates, superimposed over photos of the people sending those messages."

    The key to all the magic of this phone is Motorola's Motoblur (video). Motoblur is essentially a technology that pulls data into your phone from multiple online sources such as your personal and corporate email account, Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and more. It is Motorola's answer to Palm's Synergy technology that first appeared earlier this year in the Palm Pre's webOS operating system.

    So now it makes sense. The Cliq is Motorola's and T-Mobile's social networking smartphone for teens and 20-somethings. While T-Mobile hasn't announced the price of the Cliq with a new subscription yet, the feeling from around the web is that the Cliq will run about $100. There is also talk of a more expensive version of the Cliq that is headed to Verizon Wireless later this year that will include additional features. That phone is expected to be available "for the holiday season."

  • verizon,  windows mobile

    HTC Touch Pro2 Available on Verizon

    Earlier today, Verizon Wireless issued a press release stating that together with HTC, the Touch Pro2 Windows Mobile powered smartphone will go on sale starting tomorrow.

    When we add Verizon to the mix, Apple, Palm, T-Mobile, and Big Red all announced or will begin selling new hardware this week!

    Verizon Wireless and HTC Corporation introduce the HTC Touch Pro2™, a global-capable smartphone designed for the busiest professionals and world travelers. The HTC Touch Pro2 features an extra-large 3.6-inch touch screen that tilts to an optimal viewing angle, an ergonomic slide-out QWERTY keyboard, and an advanced speakerphone with asymmetric speakers and advanced noise suppression to deliver customers a robust productivity experience. Created with the intuitive TouchFLO 3D user interface, data on the HTC Touch Pro2 can be easily accessed with just the touch of a finger.

    The Touch Pro2 will include the following key features:

    • High-speed connectivity over Verizon Wireless’ Mobile Broadband network (1x/EV-DO Revision A 800/1900 MHz)
    • Global connectivity to allow customers to access e-mail and data and use the phone for voice calling in more than 220 destinations (GSM/GPRS/EDGE 850/900/1800/1900 MHz WCDMA/HSPA 2100 MHz)
    • Wi-Fi capabilities (802.11 b/g)
    • 3.6 inch WVGA resolution (480 x 800) tilting touch screen
    • Advanced speakerphone with noise-cancelling technology
    • 3.2 megapixel auto-focus camera with video capture
    • Touch-sensitive zoom bar
    • Seamless connectivity with Microsoft® Exchange, Outlook and Office applications with Windows Mobile® 6.1 Professional
    • Bluetooth® 2.1 with EDR and A2DP stereo
    • Processor: Qualcomm MSM 7600A, 528 MHz
    • Memory: 512 MB ROM, 288 MB RAM
    • Dimensions: 4.57” x 2.33” x .68” (length x width x height)
    • Weight: 6.3 ounces (with standard battery)
    • Extended 1500 mAh battery for longer operation times
    • Up to 5.3 hours of talk time (CDMA) or up to 13.5 days of standby time (CDMA)

    Pricing and Availability

    Beginning Friday the HTC Touch Pro2 will be available for $199.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate with a new two-year customer agreement on a voice plan with an e-mail feature or e-mail plan. Customers will receive the rebate in the form of a debit card. Customers can order the HTC Touch Pro2 online at www.verizonwireless.com, in business sales channels and in Verizon Wireless Communications Stores.

    The full press release for the HTC Touch Pro2 can be read on the Verizon Wireless website.

  • android,  google,  motorola,  t-mobile

    Motorola CLIQ for T-Mobile Announced

    Not wanting to be left out of the "new product announcement party", Motorola joins Apple and Palm this week with the unveiling of T-Mobile's next Google Android powered smartphone.

    T-Mobile USA, Inc. today announced the upcoming availability of the Motorola CLIQ™ with MOTOBLUR™, the first Android-powered device from Motorola, Inc. (NYSE: MOT) and the first device to feature the innovative MOTOBLUR solution. The CLIQ will be available exclusively in the U.S. from T-Mobile later this fall.

    Developed by Motorola, MOTOBLUR is an innovative solution that manages and integrates communications – from work e-mail to social networking activity – on your CLIQ. Updates to contacts, posts, messages, photos and more are streamed together and synced from sources including Facebook®, Twitter™, MySpace®, Gmail™, and work and personal e-mail. MOTOBLUR automatically delivers these updates to the home screen in easy-to-view streams so there is no need to open and close different mobile applications to keep up with the latest content. A 3G-capable smartphone featuring a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a full touch-screen display, the CLIQ is designed to keep the conversation moving, enabling fast messaging on the fly and easy navigation through MOTOBLUR’s streams and widgets.

    Cole Brodman, chief technology and innovation officer with T-Mobile USA, jointly unveiled CLIQ with MOTOBLUR today with Sanjay Jha, co-CEO of Motorola and CEO of Motorola Mobile Devices, at GigaOM’s Mobilize 09 conference. 


    “T-Mobile’s highly social and always-connected customers have a natural affinity for mobile social networking, and we’re excited to feature the Motorola CLIQ with MOTOBLUR prominently in what’s shaping up to be our most innovative holiday product lineup ever,” Brodman said. “The CLIQ lives up to Motorola’s tradition of great design and quality, and to our history of working together to create products that enhance the lives and the relationships of our customers.”

    Availability

    Motorola CLIQ with MOTOBLUR will be available exclusively to T-Mobile customers later this fall in two colors — Titanium and Winter White. Pricing will be announced at a later date. Customers can visit http://www.t-mobile.com/cliq for more information.

    You can read today's full press release on the Motorola website.

  • apple,  itunes,  palm,  pre,  web os

    Apple iTunes 9.0 vs. Palm webOS Media Sync

    Yesterday, the world got it first look at Apple's new jukebox software, iTunes 9.0. Yesterday Pre owners also learned that the Apple/Palm cat and mouse game with iTunes and Media Sync is still very much alive and well.

    So, Pre owners, what are you going to do? Are you going to stick with iTunes 8.2.1 and Media Sync or are you going to make the jump to iTunes 9.0?

    After watching Apple's keynote presentation last night, and yes, Steve Jobs did take the stage, I've decided to make the jump to iTunes 9.0 and iPhone OS 3.1 for iPod touch. In my opinion, there where just too many cool new features in Apple's new software that I wasn't going to hold back.

    Take for example, the new sync features for iPod touch and iPhone. I welcome the expanded sync controls over what content lives on my Mac and on my iPod. It becomes super easy to make sure that I have some of my favorite movies (Iron Man) and TV shows (Looney Tunes, Mythbusters, Law & Order) always with me without having to keep marking them as new.

    I also like the new control of your applications for the iPod touch. I have some 60-70 apps on my touch and the newly redesigned applications tab will greatly help my quickly add new apps and reorganize the ones I already have.

    And let's not forget the new Home Sharing feature in iTunes 9.0. If you have more than one computer in your home, this is going to be a great feature to have. I'll be able to quickly keep my MacBook and Mac Pro iTunes libraries in sync so I always have all of my music with me when I'm at home or traveling for work and play.

    With brings me back to my Palm Pre and the Media Sync feature. I was really surprised when Palm announced the Media Sync feature and I quickly started syncing content to my Pre from iTunes. With iTunes 9.0, Apple has chosen to close the door to the webOS Media Sync feature. I'm sure Palm or someone from the webOS homebrew app community will figure out a way to re-enable native syncing with iTunes. The bottom line for me is that my iPod touch, combined with iTunes, still represents the best over all user experience for purchasing content, loading it on my device, and interacting with it on the go.

    So for now, the iPod wins, and iTunes 9.0 is on my MacBook. The good news is that I can still sync the Pre with my Mac Pro which I've left back at iTunes 8.2.1. Sure, I can't use the Home Sharing feature, but at least I can get my iTunes Plus tracks synced down to my Pre easily.

  • pixi,  sprint,  web os

    Palm Pixi webOS Smartphone Coming to Sprint


    Today, Palm announced their next webOS-powered smartphone, the Palm Pixi, for the Sprint wireless network.

    Palm, Inc. (NASDAQ: PALM) today introduced the Palm® Pixi™ phone for faster, more intuitive and personal communication in a compact and customizable design. With the instinctively useable Palm webOS™ platform, strikingly thin design, a visible full keyboard and fashionable personalization options, Palm Pixi lets you express yourself in amazingly useful ways. It’s scheduled to be available exclusively from Sprint in time for the holidays.

    “With Palm webOS, we’re creating a new, more intuitive smartphone experience defined by unmatched simplicity and usefulness,” said Jon Rubinstein, Palm chairman and chief executive officer. “Palm Pixi brings this unique experience to a broader range of people who want enhanced messaging and social networking in a design that lets them express their personal style.”

    “Palm Pixi continues Sprint’s leadership in providing useful and innovative devices on America’s most dependable 3G network,”(7) said Dan Hesse, chief executive officer at Sprint. “We are pleased to be the first carrier to bring this device to market and offer both devices in the growing Palm webOS family. Sprint’s Everything Data plans, which provide unrestricted access to the Internet, mobile content and applications, and our Ready Now retail experience make for a perfect combination with these new Palm products.”

    Palm Pixi Features

    • High-speed connectivity (EVDO Rev. A)
    • 2.63-inch multi-touch screen with a vibrant 18-bit color 320x400 resolution TFT display
    • Gesture area, which enables simple, intuitive gestures for navigation
    • Exposed QWERTY keyboard for fast messaging
    • Robust messaging support (IM, SMS and MMS capabilities), including Google Talk, AIM and Yahoo! IM
    • High-performance, desktop-class web browser
    • Integrated GPS
    • Multimedia options, including pictures, video playback and music, and featuring a 2-megapixel fixed-focus camera with LED flash, and a standard 3.5mm headset jack
    • Email, including Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) (for access to corporate Microsoft Exchange servers), as well as personal email support (Google push, Yahoo! push, POP3, IMAP)(9)
    • Bluetooth® 2.1 + EDR with A2DP stereo Bluetooth support
    • 8GB of internal user storage (~7GB user available)
    • USB mass storage mode
    • MicroUSB connector with USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
    • The first handset to launch with Qualcomm’s high-performance MSM7627™ chipset
    • Proximity sensor, which automatically disables the touch screen and turns off the display whenever you put the phone up to your ear
    • Light sensor, which dims the display if the ambient light is dark, such as at night or in a movie theater, to reduce power usage
    • Accelerometer, which automatically orients web pages and photos to your perspective
    • Ringer switch, which easily silences the device with one touch
    • Removable, rechargeable 1150 mAh battery
    • Dimensions: 55mm (W) x 111mm (L) x 10.85mm (D) [2.17 in. (W) x 4.37 in. (L) x 0.43 in. (D)]
    • Weight: 99.5 grams (3.51 ounces)
    • Sprint services, including Sprint TV® and Sprint Radio, Sprint Navigation, Sprint’s exclusive NFL Mobile Live and NASCAR Sprint Cup Mobile Live

    Pricing and Availability

    The Palm Pixi phone is scheduled to be available from Sprint in time for the holidays. Pricing for the phone, as well as the limited-edition Palm Pixi Artist Series covers, will be announced closer to availability. Customers who would like to register to receive additional information about Palm Pixi and be notified when it’s available can register at www.palm.com/pixi.

    Additionally, starting today, Palm and Sprint will be lowering the cost of the Palm Pre from $199 with a new two-year service agreement by $50 to $149 after an instant $150 rebate and a $100 mail-in rebate.

    The full Palm Pixi press release can be read on the Palm website.

  • pre,  sprint,  web os

    Spring Jumps the Gun on Palm webOS 1.2 Release Notes

    If there was any doubt that Palm is on the cusp of releasing webOS 1.2 for the Sprint Pre, PreThinking.com has posted Sprint's release notes for webOS 1.2.

    Based on the full release notes that PreThinking.com has on their website, if correct, Palm webOS 1.2 is shaping up to be a very feature rich update to further refine webOS and to fix some really annoying issues, like the Bluetooth car kit support.

    At the time of this writing, the webOS 1.2 update is still not available via the Pre's Updates application.

    Check out the full list of features, fixes, and enhancements on PreThinking.com.

    [Via PreThinking.com...]

  • apple,  rumors

    Rumor: iPod touch Shipments Delayed

    Bad news, iPod fans! If a recent article on AppleInsider is correct, new iPods could be delayed due to bad cameras - a feature long rumored to be in the next generation of Apple's music players.

    "A person with a strong track record in predicting Apple's upcoming product launches recently told AppleInsider that the iPod maker has experienced technical problems (bad parts) with the cameras modules. The person said that it was uncertain whether the new hardware, which has been widely expected to debut at Wednesday's "Only rock and roll" media-centric event, would make the cut for early September retail distribution."

    I doubt that this news will derail the Apple event scheduled to take place tomorrow. It can, however, put a damper on things. If Apple does unveil a new iPods with digital cameras, don't expect wide availability of the new devices for a few weeks.

    We'll have more from the Apple front after tomorrow's keynote.

    [Via AppleInsider.com...]

  • mozilla,  windows mobile

    Fennec Alpha 3 for Windows Mobile Released

    While reading the Mozilla blog, I learned that the Fennec Alpha 3 build has been released for Windows Mobile devices.

    "We’re very happy to announce the availability of Fennec Alpha 3 for Windows Mobile. There are lots of great features and fixes included in this release. You can find the release notes here and a cab installer here. Personally, I’m turning off my iPhone to switch to a Windows Mobile device with Fennec."

    Since the last release of Fennec for Windows Mobile, the Mozilla team has been working on improving the start up time for the mobile browser, they have improved panning, and they "now support a wider range of screen resolutions through the use of CSS media queries."

    Just keep in mind that this is still an alpha version of the software and it will have some rough edges.

    If you are not familiar with the Fennec project, you can learn more about it on the Mozilla website. If you are not familiar with fennec foxes (Fennec is the little brother of Firefox after all!), you can learn more about them from Wikipedia.

    Download Fennec Alpha 3 for Windows Mobile now...