Mobile Tech News — Social Networking, MSN Mobile, A6 Times, and More

by Reads (12,782)

Jaiku Social Phonebook Brings Social Networking to S60 Phones’ Contacts

2007 has been declared the year for mobile social networking to take off, and one area that has seen a good deal of attention has been in the area of managing contacts. Jaiku has recently released a "social phonebook" application for S60 smartphones that takes the user’s contacts and adds presence, location, and availability information to the normal static listings.

Jaiku Mobile works in a similar familiar fashion to normal phonebooks, but then adds these features: sharing of the user’s availability based on their ring profile; sharing of the user’s location via A-GPS; sharing of the user’s calendar events (such as "busy" when the calendar indicates the user is in a meeting); and the sharing of contact card information via Bluetooth when near other mobile devices with Jaiku installed.

Currently Jaiku Mobile only works with Symbian S60 2nd and 3rd edition phones, but a Java version is to come soon. There is not yet any word on availability for Windows Mobile and Garnet OS (Palm OS) devices.

Jaiku is free; however, there may be service charges for data usage. For more information and to download, visit the Jaiku Mobile web site.


MSN Mobile Beta Released

In the earlier days of the Internet, portal pages and applications were the main way that people got around. This seems to be making a comeback in the recent release of MSN Mobile Beta for connected Windows Mobile and some non-smartphone devices.

MSN Mobile is a one stop launching pad into the various MSN services, all enabled for use on a mobile device. Some of the services available through MSN Mobile include FoxSports, MSN Mail (email), MSNBC News, Weather, and MSN Local.

Compatible mobile devices for this portal can be found by going to and inserting the correct information for the user’s phone. MSN Mobile beta is a free service, however there may be charges for using mobile data .


A6 Times Update Supports Podcasts

One of the fastest growing areas for mobile software has been in the area of newsreaders. A6 Times is one such application that has taken the approach of emulating the newspaper look and feel, while delivering RSS and other syndicated web content formats.

In its latest release, A6 Times has fixed several issues, addressed performance concerns, and enabled the ability to listen to podcasts through the A6 Times newsreader.

Other new features in the latest release include ability to control what content/images are downloaded, ability to send an article via email, improved bookmarking features, and a new media manager for podcasts and enclosures.

It is available for Windows Mobile Pocket PCs and Smartphones. It requires the .NET Compact Framework 2.0 to be installed.

A6 Times (trial version, purchase for $19.95) can be downloaded from the Alien6 web site.


Inexpensive Upgrades to TextMaker and PlanMaker 2006

For many users, the built-in Office applications on Windows Mobile devices are not enough to get by with document creation and editing. These users have usually sought out the applications TextMaker (word processing) and PlanMaker (spreadsheet) from SoftMaker, as they offer much more functionality than Office Mobile.

SoftMaker recently announced lower-priced individual upgrades for TextMaker 2006 and PlanMaker 2006 for Pocket PCs, lowering the entry barrier for owners of older SoftMaker versions. These new upgrade packages can be purchased for $19.95 or 19.95 Euro each

For more information on TextMaker and PlanMaker for Windows Mobile devices, and to upgrade or try these programs, visit the SoftMaker web site.




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