NMokia created a web browser for its Series 60 smartphones about a year ago. The browswer was based on opensource technology in order “to save cost”, according to Nokia.

Now, Nokia had released the code for their browser under a BSD-Style licence for everyone to use. Nokia officially say that they want to reduce the diversity in mobile internet software-but if you ask me personally, this is just a move to get cheap mainstream media attention.

Because, um, Series 60 is like no other platform. It has no touchscreen support and has a very proprietary API that no other OS can emulate. So, the released code will probably never ever be ported to other platforms, and will remain only on Series 60, which is-if we all recall correctly-property ok Nokia. So, any developer fixing a bug in the released code is basically doing Nokia’s job without receiving a salary from them!

The availabiolity of a good web browser is what makes a mopbile platform stand or fall IMHO. The Palm OS would be much farther by now if PalmSource had backported their Web Browser 3.0 from Cobalt to Garnet, or if the Minimo porting project started a bit of time ago would have succeeded.

To cut a long story short. Cool. Another sourceforge project. But I don’t really care!

Get the news release here:
http://www.pcworld.com/resource/article/0,aid,125867,pg,1,RSS,RSS,00.asp

Shaun McGill’s Treo 650 army was off to Palm for a repair. His eplacement device was a HTC machine, so we basically have the shootout Palm OS vs Windows Mobile here.

Overall, the Treo 650 wins the fight, but it gets pretty close at the end. Get the full scoop(with comments) here:
http://www.clieuk.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?threadid=6243

Aperently, more and more companies are starting to jump the converged devices train! Nintendo recently announced the DS lite, and now they follow it up with the announcement of a Opera card. The card will cost 32$ and will be sold only in Japan as of now.

Also, a card has been announced that will allow Nintendo DS users to watch TV with their machines. Language assistants,.. also are announced, but there isn’t really too much information about them yet.

http://www.leadingthecharge.com/stories/news-00146063.html

In addition, Engadget got an interview with a Nintendo executive. He talks a bit about the new Revolution console, about how the GameBoy Micro sells pretty well and will stay on sale, about how they ran out of stock in Japan,.. . The interview is a bit long, but makes a nice read:
http://www.engadget.com/2006/02/20/the-engadget-interview-reggie-fils-aime-executive-vice-preside/

Last but not least, here is an image of a still packed-up Nintendo DS lite:
http://www.engadget.com/2006/02/21/ds-lite-japanese-caught-all-dolled-up-in-packaging/

Loads of news for all Nintendo freaks reading TamsPalm(all others stay calm..more stuff is on the way). What do you think?

Some of you can still remember the editorial on how the PalmOS is ideal for use in digital cameras. In case you didn’t, here is a link to it:
http://tamspalm.blogspot.com/2005/01/palm-powered-camera.html
Anyways, Archos apperently reads TamsPalm :-) , and thus they launched their Gmini 402 Camcorder portable media player. The most outstanding feature is the integrated 1.3 megapixel camera. The machine still lacks a touchscreen though, and apperently can’t multitask or send email. However, it supports Mophun games-so, the device can somehow be programmed after all!

I am not sure what to say about this box. It doesn’t endanger the LifeDrive IMHO, as it doesnt have a touchscreen and is a clean media player(the LifeDrive is more of a convergence device). However, it shows that Archos knows what to do, and adding a touchscreen is not an act requiring too much skill!

What do you think?

Read more over at CNET’s:
http://reviews.cnet.com/Archos_Gmini_402_Camcorder_20GB/4505-6499_7-31595017.html?tag=sub

Recently, TDG announced that it expects Symbian Series to be number three in the handset market by 2010. The top places would be taken up by Microsoft and-um-an undefined form of Linux. Immediately, all kinds of Symbian people began to shriek about how this was impossible. I personally believe that this is entirely possible for Series 60.

Most “smartphone” users dont even realize what IOS their phone runs on. Symbian Series 60 got big because the old proprietary operation systems used by various handset manufacturers didnt quite make the jumpo to support the features one demands from new handsets(for example, compare a Siemens SX1 and one of the latest Siemens RTOS incarnations). Manufacturers use Symbian for one simple reason: it saves their coder gangs time.

Now, imagine what would happen if there would be a free Linux derivate that was as easy to adapt as Series 60, could do everything S60 did, and um as already said was free?

What would hold manufacturers in the Symbian camp? The regular user will not note any difference, he wont really care either as his ringtoines and images work on both boxen. The loosers would be the technicians(as always): those who bought/developed Series 60 apps and now need to port them…

For a long time there was a browser on Palm devices called Blazer. Contrary to the name, it was not very fast. Sometime in the last couple years, Palm did something smart. They licensed the Netfront core from Access to use for their browser. Then came something we did not expect. People loaded up the browsers on the new devices, and they were not that much faster. In fact, they looked just like the old browsers. Something must have been wrong! Anyone who had had one of the newer Clies has seen Netfront, and knows what it can do; how fast it is. This was not Netfront. In alot of ways they were right. Palm took the Netfront core, and added and tweaked it to give people the “Blazer experience”. Palm, we have to tell you, the Blazer experience is not that great. For these reasons, I am making a move, and trying to get something started. I will call it the “Straight Netfront Petition”. All I ask of Palm is that they give us Netfront. Access now owns PalmSource, and so they certainly have the resources to make a great Palm version of Netfront. They have no excuses, only angry customers.

Palm, you have to compete against Windows Mobile. Im sorry to say that I think Blazer is just about at the level of IE on Windows Mobile. They arent your competition. People dont compare your browser to the worst browser on another platform. You are competing against Opera and Mozilla, who both have very impressive offerings, not to mention Netfront on WM which is lightyears ahead of Blazer. All we ask is that you give us something a little better. Something that we know you can deliver, but just aren’t. Give your customers something back. We are sticking around because we expect this much from you. Dont show us we are wrong.

To “sign” the petition, click this link and sign up!

Palm Addict is currently running a poll for the best Palm sites/blogs/forums on the web. TamsPalm is currently in third place in the blog category. This is where you come in, because we all know we should be in first! Please vote here! Hurry, since you only have the rest of 2005 to vote! Thanks!
Zur Zeit läuft bei Palm Addict eine Abstimmung über die besten Palm Seiten/Blogs/Foren im Internet. TamsPalm ist im Moment auf dem dritten Platz in der Blog-Kategorie. Hier kommen Sie ins Spiel, denn wir alle wissen wer der erste sein sollte! Bitte stimmen Sie ab! Beeilen Sie sich, Sie haben nur noch den Rest des alten Jahres Zeit! Danke!

The GP2x is a linux powered gaming console-we covered it here a few weeks ago.

Anyways, MacMegasite just got access to a GP2X and already has first impressions online-find them here:

http://www.macmegasite.com/node/2632-GP2X first impressions

Most of you probably already read Sagio’s report-the Windows Mobile Treo will be accompanied by a PalmOS cousin. Immediately, the PIC went bonkers…. and forgot Mike Cane’s editorial about operating systems(act of shameless self promotion: and my answer).

Indeed, I would not really wonder if the Windows Mobile and PalmOS powered handhelds would share the same planar. Actually, nowadays, with all three/four major handheld platforms running on the very same architecture, discussions about the OS are pointless. All the developer/licencee needs to do is get a Platform Builder for the OS he desires-burn the bin file into a ROM and the party is started.

Because of the extremely small effort involved, the idea of Palm releasing a Windows Mobile or even Linux handheld is not as far-fetched as some think. The R&D costs would be about zero for sure. In fact, it is very possible that a few prototypes of a Treo running Symbian exist. Other (reliable, ex-employee) sources rumored that Tapwave had Linux running on Zodiacs shortly before close-up. Actually, we could even see a few determined users porting Windows CE over to one of the old PalmOS handhelds with true RAM-I beleive that NVFS limits interoperatibility quite a bit.

If we continue to think along this track, we will soon see that Palm’s devices for WinCE and Palm OS probably will be very similar and may even appear simultaneously. Why should the wheel be reinvented?

What do you think?

Face it, ipods are considered cool. They are hyped and way to expensive for what they offer IMHO. Up to now, people who heard this could easily flame the person who issued this statement-but thanks to Evan Light, we now know more about the cost Apple pays for manufacturing an ipod 30GB.

He links to an article by a hardware analyst in his excellent blog:
http://gadgetfetish.blogspot.com/2005/10/dr-jobslove-or-how-cuppertino-company.html

If you follow over to his web site, you will see that the ipod mentioned above costs Apple about 144$ to produce, leaving a nice 50% margin. Then add in the revenue made in the iTunes music store.
I beleive that it now is fairly obvious that ipods are overpriced-what do you think?

When Apple first deployed its ipod vending machines(Gizmondo has the scoop and images), most people believed that this would not be specially useful because the ipods simply didn’t contain any music and also weren’t charged. Vodafone now follows suite and sells pre-paid cell phones in another vending machine.
Vodafone’s idea is a steep forward, as the phones can immediately be used out of the box. There is cash on the card, you have a number, you just need to charge the phone a bit(if it isn’t already charged like my T630i was) and go. It definitely is a good choice for people who want to steer away from high roaming costs IMHO.

Anyways, there is one company I really miss here: Palm. Palm-lets ignore their sometimes horrid device quality and customer care for now-has everything it needs to power such a shop. It has cheap, simple-to-use handhelds that can be sold easily-and it has NVFS technology. Due to NVFS, the handhelds could survive longer in the vending machines as they needed less current to stay active. The “shelf life” would be limited by the batteries self discharge rate, which is pretty low. If such a handheld is packed up with DocumentsToGo, VersaMail, Blazer and a few games/apps in thr NVFS area, it can be used right out of the box just like a cell phone can.

This would IMHO appeal to many users and would be a very effective way to sell the “low-end” boxen. I don’t mean LifeDrives and Tungsten X’s here, but rather a Tungsten E2, a Z22, a Z31 and such stuff. As long as the device isn’t DOA when you take it out of the machine, it may lead to a satisfied customer(simplifies impulse buying). Palm would become independent of the expensive human-operated stores, and thus could reach even “remote areas” with their handhelds. Usually, people are OS loyal-so if someone once has a PalmOS handheld, there is a high chance that he will stick to it. So, PalmSource could maybe make a buck and some market share here as well-buy a bunch of Palms, and offer it to the manufacturer of the ipod vending machines,…. .

Do you think this is a good idea?

A Symbian powered phone side to side with a Sony Erriccson IOS powered oneWhenever people discuss OS market shares, they usually state that Symbian Series 60 owns the smartphone market. This is true at the first glance-but if you think about how Series 60 phones are used, it quickly becomes void:
Series 60 is mostly used as proprietary OS replacement for dumb phones
Face it, people. My SX1 is damn cool-but I never use any of its features except phone and camera. Many of my friends own Symbian Series 60 powered phones and dont even know what they run. They do install the occasional app or game-but none of them uses the machine as a supplement to their PC or notebook.
A stock T68i ran on some kind of Erricson IOS that was extended to do java and 16bit color later on-it could do almost everything Series 60 does now. Thus, the main benefit this OS offers to handset makers is a faster time to market. Instead of developing your own dumb phone OS, you license it from Symbian.
Sony Erricson owns part of the Symbian corporation-and most of their touchscreen-less boxen don’t run on Symbian. They actually run on the very IOS that powered the T68. Sagem behaves similar… . Ridiculously, the IOS powered phones don’t exhibit mayor deficiencies when compared to a Series 60 phone!

Now, these dumb phones are sold to users. These users don’t realize what they are running. They don’t buy the phone for its OS, but rather for price and integrated features.

So, to cut a long story short. Series 60 has an insane market share if you define market share only via the amount of devices sold. If you look at the user community, however, you will soon realize that most Series 60 users don’t consider their devices as smartphones! Thus, many of the devices sold don’t contribute to the 3 party developers.

What do you think? Is the market share justified?

This is all speculation. I don’t have access to apple insider data or anything! This is just, I repeat just, a bunch of thoughts emerging in my brain-feel free to comment your point of view

Recently, a cool user modded his ipod nano so that it would use a harddisk. Ownage! Ownage, yes, but who is the one who actually benefits from this. Users: maybe. A nice MAX727 can fix most power-related problems, and a 200GB ipod. Manufacturer? Definitely!

Generating publicity for a product is difficult, as it costs money and requires loads of know-how. Newspaper ads can be clearly identified as such and are ignored by most readers. Same thing is valid for banner ads and TV commercials. However, product hacks and other such stuff are usually not connected to the manufacturer of the device. They generate loads of buzz that nobody associates with the PR department of the company!

Thus, such buzz is extremely effective! Hundreds of sites will link to the page that has the hack, and most of those reviews will also link to the manufacturer(something we did not do, note that please). The effect of this is immediately visible: the product gets loads of attention AND the manufacturers web site gets a huge Pagerank boost. Last but not least, the hack might also get into the editorial content of newspapers-a place where it is very difficult to get in by waving $$$.

So, the manufacturer of a gadget has huge benefits from having his product “hacked” or “owned”. Implementing such a hacking possibility is not difficult (if it really gets hard, use a few jumpers/resistors like Palm did with the V) for the OEM, and leaking data out to the public is also relatively easy due to the anonymous nature of an internet cafe! What do you think?

Some people love ipods soo much that they even mod their hardware. A pretty sick mod is the harddisk-enabled ipod nano!
http://uncyclopedia.org/wiki/Ipod_Nano_200gb_Instructions/Page_1

This is really bonkers. the ipod nano is attached top the harddisk-and it actually works well without needing to update the firmware. The main problems are that you void your warranty, thatr the player becomes difficult to carry and-last but not least-that the battery life decreases to about 6 minutes! One desirable mod!

Anyways, tune back tomorrow for an analysis of whom such hacks benefit! Will you mod your Nano?

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