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...for Android, BlackBerry, iPhone, Palm, Symbian & WM. So much of this week's news has ... Smartphone News forum

  1. #1
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    Smartphone Add-ons Of The Week 07-08-09

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    ...for Android, BlackBerry, iPhone, Palm, Symbian & WM.

    So much of this week's news has been focusing on the rapidly growing number of smartphone devices being released this summer. Every time I think I have my next device picked out then news or rumors about something just a tad bit newer, better, prettier becomes big news and makes me rethink my decision. But amidst the distractions of alluring new devices have been some great new add-ons including new apps(some of them a long time coming), updated apps, and accessories.

    Android Smartphones


    One of the best things about Android is that it's open source and that makes it easier for developers to create a variety of widgets to enable users to customize their device. As a BlackBerry user, if I want to change how things display on my device I must downoad a theme. But somehow there is always something not quite perfect, something I would love to change. I would like the idea of being able to customize bits and pieces as I find them. For those who prefer the iPhone like message count badges on their icons vs. Android's banner display there is a new free widget called SMS Unread Count.

    [via cnet] "
    Yet, Android and the iPhone differ in the way they display unread application notifications. Android places new alerts in the systemwide notification bar while the iPhone places a notification directly over the specific app. Both systems work well, but some might prefer the iPhone's system. Only messaging and dialer icons are available in the current release of SMS Unread Count, but support should be expanded over time. The developer Kanok Gems has already released several updates that added new functions. In the future, I would like to see support for Gmail, Email, Market, and other default icons. "


    BlackBerry Smartphones

    This week's highighted app for BlackBerry is one that has made many bloggers cheer this week. WordPress has finally heard their cries and WordPress for BlackBerry beta has been released this week. Check out this WordPress page for more details on the beta, a video that shows off some of the features, get the download, and links to their forums to discuss bugs and suggestions. Here are a few of the details you need to know before you start:
    The app is for WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress version 2.5.1 or newer, This app should work with any of the new BlackBerry devices such as the 8700, Pearl, Curve, Bold, and Storm, BlackBerry OS requirements are OS 4.2.1 or newer,For self-hosted WordPress sites, please make sure you have XML-RPC enabled. To confirm, it’s a simple check box in your dashboard under Settings -> Writing [image via BerryReview]


    Apple iPhone


    It seems like with the count for apps in the iTunes App Store having climbed to over 55,000 that the apps command all the attention...but I saw an interesting accessory coming out for the iPhone that will be great with the new video recording capabilities. Shaun on PDA-247 posted about a new mic for the iPhone that claims to get 10x better audio reception than the built in mic. The Flexible Mini Capsule Microphone from Brando is inexpensive, only $14.

    "I
    t enables you to record better sound quality. Instead of receiving sound from the iPhone speaker at the bottom, your iPhone can receive sound from any direction. It is especially useful while shooting video as the microphone and the camera can be pointed to the same direction. Bend and turn the microphone to the desired direction to focus sound source." It is available for pre-order now and will begin shipping at the end of the month.



    Palm Smartphones

    [size=1][size=2]Once again we seem to have gone through yet another week with no new apps for the Palm Pre but this week we got news of some that are on the way. The Pre comes with the DataViz Doc View application which allows simply for viewing of documents but no editing. The DataViz has confirmed that they are working on a version of Documents To Go that will work with the new Palm webOS. This will bring editing for Word, PowerPoint, and Excel documents. You can sign up to be notified when more details are available.

    On the fun side of things, via IntoMobile, PopCap games has announced that they are working on developing for webOS and Android. This will bring some great games to the Pre and Android users. I have some of their mobile games on my iPod Touch and they translate very well to mobile touchscreen devices. Peggle, Bejeweled 2 and Bookworm are some of my favorites. So hopefully soon I will be able to write about what's here and not just about the good things to come!

    Nokia Smartphones

    Nokia has released a new version of Ovi Maps that has added some cool new features. "The latest version of Ovi Maps application for your device is enhanced through additional features and services, opening up a new world of possibilities with better maps than ever before: high resolution satellite and terrain maps – both in 2D and 3D views – 3D landmarks for over 200 cities, rotation, tilting, night view, and fly-overs and fly-throughs. Ovi Maps on the device offers also enriched POI information by Lonely Planet, Michelin and Wcities, as well as a weather service that provides 24 hour and 5-day forecasts. Walk from one place to another using WALK, our pedestrian navigation with routing optimized for those on foot, providing better orientation in a city or outdoors. Or use DRIVE, our fully fledged car navigation with enhanced safety and real-time traffic information such as safety cameras and speed limits, lane assistance and localized road information like signposts, providing the largest service coverage in the world." Check out the Nokia Press Bulletin Board for more info and the download link.



    Window's Mobile Smartphones

    AIM 2.0 beta for Windows Mobile has been released with some great new features. This will work on phones running Windows Mobile 5 and 6 including the HTC Touch, Motorola Q, and most Palm Treos. What's new in AIM for Windows Mobile 2.0:
    • Lifestream! This is big. Keep tabs on what's going on with your buddies. We've added a convenient "Lifestream" tab to the Buddy List. There is so much to check out:
      • Get AIM activities like status updates.
      • Got friends on other networks? Add your Facebook or Twitter services and never miss an update. Start syncing to your accounts by going to lifestream.aim.com and update your settings.
      • You can add your YouTube or Delicious accounts too.
      • Leave a comment, like an item. Obviously, if your friends don't have the beta they won't know about the Lifestream so if you want to try out commenting back and forth with someone make sure they have the beta too.
      • Read comments made by your friends. Obviously, if your friends don't have the beta, they won't know about the Lifestream. Comments can be made on the desktop AIM beta client or at lifestream.aim.com.

    • Me tab. The "Me" tab is a companion to the Lifestream that lets you know when people leave you comments or "like" your updates.
    • Minor bug fixes. Minor bug fixes and performance improvements.

    Check out more at AOL Beta Central



    OK so the lateness of hour this week in posting this is because of an application I have been beta testing this week. This is this weeks extra, it's a hot new update to Bellshare's BerryBuzz. The developers have been hard at work adding some highly requested features to this application. For those who have never used BerryBuzz, it is an application that allows you to add custom color LED notifications for your various native messaging apps. This newest beta which has been in private beta but is approaching public release has added so many new features. A few of these include BBM and facebook support, scheduling and reminders, custom colors, disco mode and much more. You can even vary the length of the LED pauses and flashes. I consider this to be a must have app for any BlackBerry user. They are not accepting any new beta testers at the moment, but you can check out this thread for more details and links to the beta discussion thread on the Bellshare forums to see the full change log.
    Twitter? My Apps List

    Current SmartPhone: Motorola DROID Rooted, Running Project Elite v4

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    This is a great "add-on" post this week! I REALLY enjoy the content and even more, your well thought out comments add so much to the information.

    Reading your early comments re: trying to decide what device is next for you, I was wondering if you'll upgrade to Tour or really decide to step out of the BB box this time and go another way. There ARE some non-BB temptations now and coming soon.

    I've been too little involved in the BerryBuzz beta test but I agree with your assessment of the improvements - they're great and really make that application a must for the BB user.

    I've only just read through your basic post - now to go back and look more in depth at the info you posted this week.

    Thanks once again for taking the time to put this together. It's a good collection of smartphone info.
    For every complex problem there is a solution, that is simple, neat, .....and wrong! (H. L. Mencken) jblackfish(at)pinstack(dot)com

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    The iPhone mic add on listed above is really suppose to be a great little device. I listened to Pod Cast where it was used and compared and the sound was outstanding. A definite must have for those who use the recorder in that fashion.

    The quality was amazing.

    Edit* Heck visit the web site and listen for yourself.
    ..

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    Great post AZ A good app I just recently come across for BlackBerry devices I'd highlight is BBScanner:
    http://ota.bbscanner.com - OTA Link

    Its a pretty cool program that streams Police, Fire, Ambulance radio scanners for those that are interested in it. They have plenty of channels too, of course one of the most popular one's the NYPD. That didn't surprise me at all. Check it out and see what you think!
    ~via smartphone mobile.pinstack.com~

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    Thanks Lonnie, I will have to check it out, if it works well I'll have to tell my dad, he loves listening to the scanners, he may want it for his pearl.
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    Current SmartPhone: Motorola DROID Rooted, Running Project Elite v4

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    Its a really cool program. I've checked out the NYPD a few times and the NYFD and its really cool to listen too. Edmonton has a similar service, called Edmonton Fire Radio, which allows you you to listen to a live broadcast of fire/ambulance calls. Check out if you like here: http://72.20.6.90:9100/live.ogg.m3u
    ~via smartphone mobile.pinstack.com~

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    I like the iPhone add on. Too bad my 3g doesn't have video recording.
    ~via smartphone mobile.pinstack.com~

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    Thanks azstar, for the great info. You obviously spend a lot of time and thought on these weekly posts, and it is much appreciated.
    ~via smartphone mobile.pinstack.com~

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