By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Schaumburg, Ill. — Privately held fastmobile plans a May 1 launch of its hosted fast-chat push-to-talk (PTT) service in the U.S. Symbian-based GSM phones will be able to download an application that turns the phone into a walkie-talkie capable of communicating with any other Symbian GSM phone in the world. In the second half, the company plans to launch its app for BREW- and Java-equipped handsets operating on CDMA and GSM networks, enabling PTT service between GSM and CDMA networks. The service also allows for instant text, picture and SMS messaging between phones and between phones and PCs. The service lets users see whether a friend is online, stores messages until they're received by the recipient, and allows instant replays of a PTT message.
Palo Alto, CALIF. — Danger has developed a color-screen version of its GSM/GPRS hiptop device, but declined to offer details of the product, which it displayed at Wireless 2003. At the show, Danger announced an agreement with America Online to provide AOL members with wireless access to AOL Mail via the hiptop, which already supports AOL Instant Messenger service. E-mail is expected to be available later this spring through the device's browser. A "built-in" version of AOL e-mail access will be available on hiptop devices this summer. The phone/entertainment device, available through T-Mobile, features QWERTY keyboard, Internet access, PIM and camera accessory.
Los Angeles— Service supplier Telemac entered a deal with Samsung that will enable Telemac to offer future Samsung GSM phones with its prepaid service.
New York — Motorola and AT&T have developed separate programs enabling consumers to download ringtones, screensavers, and other digital content to personalize their cellular phone. From Motorola's hellomoto.com site, consumers can download a music-themed package consisting of a ringtone, screensaver and wallpaper based on a particular music group or artist. AT&T Wireless, meanwhile, has partnered with select content providers, including Disney, to offer prepaid downloadable-content cards. The cards contain a PIN that consumers use when they log onto the content provider's Web site to wirelessly download content to their phone. The cards are intended for consumers who lack a credit card or don't want to provide their credit card number over the Internet.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.