Trolltech offers Phone edition of Qtopia/Linux platform
Trolltech, maker of the Linux-based Qtopia system for handheld and embedded computers, is now creating a version of their platform intended for use on Linux-based smartphones. The new system offers support for both Touchscreen and non-touchscreen phones, dialing and messenging applications, and various screen resolutions. What it does not offer is guaranteed compatibility with existing Qtopia applications such as those for the Sharp Zaurus. Definite numbers aren’t available yet, but it appears that most or all of these applications would need to be specifically ported to the new Qt phone edition.
Tapwave Zodiac now shipping
Users in various forums have been reporting over the past few days that they’re recieving order confirmations for their Tapwave Zodiac orders, and now the company has made it official. Shipments are moving somewhat slowly, however, so currently only the first couple days of pre-orders are being shipped, with the rest of the orders to be fulfilled on a first-come, first served basis.
Microsoft Voice Command for Windows Mobile
Microsoft has debuted a new application to interface with a PocketPC using spoken words. The application allows you to control Calender, Media Player, Contacts, the PocketPC Phone interface, and the PocketPC application laucher, all via voice commands, with the PocketPC speaking back to you when information is needed. While no voice training is neccessary, the program does require Windows Mobile 2003 and 7 MB of RAM.
I can’t say I’m very impressed–I have some experience with voice-control software, and even when it works flawlessly it just doesn’t seem that useful. It may be novel, but after that wears off the traditional user interface is much faster and more comfortable, and has the added benefit that you don’t look like a schizophrenic who is talking to themselves–that will remain the domain of cell phones. While I can envision some situations where talking to your PocketPC would be useful, I can’t see there being enough of a market to make this float.