At this point, the cat is pretty well out of the bag. According to multiplesources, Microsoft's press event on Monday will be the launch event for the long-rumored Project Pink mobile phones. These phones will not be running the upcoming Windows Phone 7, but will instead be messaging phones aimed at text-happy teens. By all accounts, the price will be low to lure in this group.
The Pink phones will basically be the updated version of the Sidekick. Microsoft acquired Sidekick maker Danger two years ago. Several months ago the Sidekick servers experienced a serious failure resulting in loss of data. Given the damage done to the Sidekick brand, we'd be surprised if Microsoft chose to actually call these phones "Sidekicks".
Thus far, we've seen two prototypes leaked, both made by Sharp. The first is internally called the Turtle, and is a portrait QWERTY slider. The second, and more mysterious, is often called the Pure. This handset is a landscape slider. The way Microsoft frames these devices, expected to launch on the Verizon network, will be interesting. Redmond runs the risk of overextending themselves in the midst of a mobile reboot. Do you think there's still room in the market for an inexpensive Sidekick-style messaging phone?
Wilt Chamberlain holds the record for most points scored in a professional basketball game, Tom Brady and Randy Moss set an NFL single-season record in 2007 for most touchdown passes between a passer and a receiver (23), Joe DiMaggios's 56-game hitting streak may never be broken, and 27-year-old Pedro Matias just set a new Guinness World Record for texting by typing a 264-character text in one-second shy of two minutes.
Lest your sarcasm meter is busted, we don't really believe Matias belongs in the same echelon as some of the world's greatest athletes, but with nimble thumbs (and probably very little face-to-face interaction) Matias was able to hone his text messaging skills and shatter the previous record by 23 seconds.
"I did practice a lot and I always thought that this was my thing. For me, to have a record in the Guinness is a great thing," an elated Matias said after the event.
The feat came during the LG Mobile World Cup Championship (yup, such a thing exists) at Gotham Hall in New York City. And while we don't want to take anything away from Matias' accomplishment, it should be noted that he used a QWERTY phone. That'sprobably the same that was used to set the previous record, and while we could look it up, let's be honest, does anyone really care? We didn't think so.
As for the actual Cup Championship, the team from Korea won the $100,000 prize, while USA came in second and took home $20,000.
In a legal back-and-forth between the Ontario Police Department in California and Sergeant Jeff Quon, the overarching privacy issues concerning technology have come into full view (once again).
Sgt. Jeff Quon sued the Ontario Police Department after his texting transcripts were read by his lieutenant. While the messages were sent to/from a department-issued pager (yep, pager), Sgt. Quon claims his fourth amendment rights were violated by the department.
A three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals ruled in favor of Sgt. Quon saying that the lieutenant had made an informal policy change to view transcripts on accounts who didn’t pay their overage fees. In viewing Sgt. Quon’s transcripts, he violated his own policy and thus violated Sgt. Quon’s constitutional rights.
To take a step further, the Ontario Police Department petitioned the Supreme Court requesting the case to be overturned on the precedent that the lieutenant had no authority to overturn the department policy that all privacy is relinquished when using department equipment, including pagers.
Most companies force employees to sign IT Privacy restriction documents waiving all rights on company owned equipment. Do you think your privacy is violated if an IT guy snoops around your employer-issued computer?
OMG! Have u herd da newz? T-Mobile subscribers spend more time mashing their thumbs on tiny keys ferociously text messaging their contacts and updating their Facebook profiles than any other mobile customers, T-Mobile boasts.
"Our users are sending 600 messages per user per month on average. And, a lot of the users on our higher-end smartphones update their status on social networks a couple times a week," said Cole Brodman, T-Mobile USA's CTO.
Brodman said much of the activity can be attributed to Android users, who now have both the G1 and newer myTouch 3G to play with, as well as access to around 10,000 applications through the Android Market. In order to support these high-tech phones, a growing list of apps, and an active userbase, T-Mobile said it plans to update its 3G network to HSPA 7.2 by the end of the year, followed by another upgrade to HSPA 21 by next year.
"OMG, u have chlamydia, sry!!!" We assume the National Health Service in London Borough of Hounslow would use proper grammar, but the gist of the message might still be the same. That is, if you take advantage of the London primary care trust's new online service.
Hounslow residents between the age of 16 and 24 who fear they might have chlamydia can request a free self-test kit, and then request that the results be sent back via text message.
"We are not expecting that volume of people to respond and the texting service is not being automated," said a spokesperson for the trust. "Someone will be responsible for answering and receiving the texts."
So far the text message service is only available for chlamydia testing. But if it proves to be popular option for text-addicted teens and young adults, we could see this expanding, not only to other types of testing, but also to other hospitals.
Hit the jump and tell us if you could see yourself opting for text-message test results.
Your data means a lot to you, and Lenovo is looking to add one more layer of security to it with their latest concoction – a remote disable that you activate using a text message. The system, called Lenovo Constant Secure Remote Disable will be rolling out as early as 2009.
The remote disable allows anyone with a lost or stolen laptop to simply send a text message that will completely lock down the computer. According to Stacy Cannady, Lenovo’s Product Manager of Security, the computer waits to be turned on by the would-be thief, then locks itself down and uses this time to encrypt the hard drive. Once the machine is recovered all it takes is a “resurrection” password to completely unlock the whole thing.
According to Cannady, “The limitation here is that you have to have a WAN card in the PC and you must be paying a data plan for it. If that is true, when someone steals the PC, you can whip out your cell phone and send a message to your PC, wherever it is, and when the PC gets that message, it will shutoff at that moment. The only way to get it back is to type in the resurrection code.”
Now, let’s just hope that once this technology comes full circle to the Twitter using public, they don’t get the two mixed up!
It just so happens that text messaging isn’t the soulless form of communication that we’d all thought. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Jeffery Hancock of Cornell University has recently run an experiment on using only text messaging as a form of communication to convey feelings, and the results might surprise you.
The study consisted of 44 pairs of participants, all using only text messaging as means of communication for 20 minutes with the goal of finding out as much about their partner as possible. They were also asked to talk about something that was stressing them out. To help promote communication, one member from each pair watched either a scene from Sophie’s Choice (where a mother in Auschwitz is forced to choose which of her two children would be put to death) or a clip that simply involved small talk.
The results came out with astonishingly high accuracy. They showed that every participant was able to accurately convey their partner’s state of mind, mood and felt a real connection with them. Those teamed up with the watchers of Sophie’s Choice were also notably saddened after the chat.
So as it turns out, texting is a very viable form of communication. It allows us more time to formulate an answer to whomever we’re speaking with, and to be more honest with them than they might be over the phone or email.
California residents are already banned from holding cell phones while driving, and starting January 1, 2009, sunny state motorists will officially be disallowed to text message while driving. A first violation will result in a $20 fine, with each subsequent offense costing $50.
"Banning electronic text messaging while driving will keep drivers' hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road, making our roadways a safer place for all Californians," said California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
It remains to be seen how much effect the new ban will have on text messaging motorists, but it should come as no surprise if a high number tickets get written. According to Tom Marshall, a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol, there have already been 19,753 citations issued for holding cell phones since the law went into effect on July 1, 2008, less than three months ago.
There's no stopping it folks, the text messaging revolution is here and it's sweeping the nation from the pre-teen crowd all the way up to the potential presidency. Don't believe it? Let's have a look at the evidence.
Morgan Pozgar, a 13-year-old girl from Claysburg, Pennsylvania, wins last year's text messaging championship and takes home a $25,000 purse for for typing Supercalifragilisticexpialidoucious! Even though the sound of it is something quite atrocious in just 42 seconds. To become the champion, little Miss Pozgar estimates she sent 8,000 text messages a month in preparation for the contest.
Democratic candidate Barack Obama and his team have set up a website where you can register to receive a text announcing Obama's choice for a VP running mate the moment it becomes official (and it won't be Hillary).
Republican candidate John McCain has accused his rival of being too much of a celebrity and not enough of a political leader, but could this latest move be a way to gain supporters among the tech savvy crowd? Post your thoughts below.