By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Helio, the EarthLink-SK Telecom joint venture, launched its thinnest slider to date and packed it with two new location-enabled search services previously unavailable through its MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) service.
The Mysto, retailing for $149 with a new service contract, is a 4.1-inch by 1.9-inch by 0.5-inch CDMA 1x EV-DO phone made by Samsung. The sapphire-blue phone joins three other models in the operator's line.
Mysto features the new GPS-based Tellme and Where applications as well as the operator's other GPS location-based services. Those services include Google Maps for mobile, Garmin's voice turn-by-turn navigation, geo-tagged Flickr and YouTube image uploads, and Buddy Beacon, which locates nearby friends who also have Helio phones.
Tellme is the first one-touch voice-search application available on a U.S. cellphone. Developed by a Microsoft subsidiary of the same name, Tellme lets users press a button and say a word to get local search results without typing in the search term. Tellme, available at $2.99/month, provides local listings that include phone numbers, maps, and turn-by-turn driving instructions.
Where, a widget, accesses a library of location-enabled applications such as local weather, a pub finder and events based on a user's location. The applications are free with select subscriber plans
Mysto also features a 2-megapixel camera, a mirror-like 2.2-inch display, 100MB of embedded memory, microSD slot, an HTML browser, playback of multiple audio and video formats, access to Helio's over-the-air music-download service, and touch-sensitive exterior controls with haptic feedback to provides tactile feedback.
Helio's youth-oriented service, targeted to 18- to 32-year-olds, operates on Sprint's network.
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