A new service started by Bharti Airtel will allow any mobile phone user to access Facebook for just a rupee a day. The beauty of this service is that it works on virtually any GSM mobile phone, even if it is not internet-enabled.
This new service makes use of USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) service, which is a protocol used by GSM to communicate with service provider s computers. Those who have had mobile phones for over a decade, may remember that USSD had been in use in the form of WAP-over-SMS to access mobile internet in phones not supporting any form of internet connectivity.
Due to the limitations of the technology, the interactivity is also limited to status updates, “friend” requests and posting text on walls. While Facebook is the dominant social networking website globally, it is still in second place in India behind Google’s Orkut, which is still in leading comfortably. But Facebook is fast gaining popularity and moves like these may only serve to its advantage.
Currently, only Bharti Airtel offers a service such as this, but we may soon find other GSM service providers follow suit.
At first glance, LG’s new Watch Phone appears to simply be a high-end timepiece. The company used materials and stylistic elements found in watches from top manufacturers to ensure that people will be comfortable wearing it for any occasion. The Watch Phone has a curved tempered glass face, high quality metal casing and is a mere 13.9mm thick.
The Watch Phone is as technologically advanced as it is stylish. It is the first touch watch phone in the world to feature 7.2 Mbps 3G HSDPA compatibility, enabling high-speed data transmission and video phone calls using the built-in camera.
LG did not sacrifice functionality in favor of size and the Watch Phone is fully capable of sending text messages, making phone calls, and, of course, keeping accurate time. This is all achieved using the phone’s touchscreen interface on its 3.63cm (1.43-inch) screen and LG’s intuitive Flash Interface.
Voice recognition features, which can be used with or without a Bluetooth headset, make it easier to place calls and look up contacts. Text to Speech (TTS) reads text messages and other information out loud for even greater convenience. The phone also includes stereo Bluetooth and a built-in speaker for playing back music files. A large phonebook and scheduler help with organization.
Showing it’s serious about smartphones, Dell is reorganizing the company around its newest product.
Dell is forming a new communications business unit to be helmed by Ron Garriques, a former Motorola executive brought in to run Dell’s consumer business two years ago, Reuters first reported Friday. Dell officials confirmed that the consumer group will be folded into the small and medium business group run by Steve Felice.
Dell started selling its first smartphone at the end of November in China and Brazil only. The new unit run by Garriques will develop hardware and software for phones and other mobile Internet devices.
Dell has recently fallen even further behind its once-lofty perch as the world’s biggest producer of PCs. It is now No. 3 behind Hewlett-Packard and Acer, both of which offer consumers computers and smartphones. The company is, like most consumer hardware makers, increasingly moving to smaller mobile computers like smartphones and laptops as the desktop market has cratered.