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|| News Item: Posted 2000-02-23

Road Warrior: The Next Generation of Cell Phones
By Mongo

Photo by
Since that WIMP, Capt. Ron has allegedly retired to Canada to do some flyfishing (do you know how F**King cold it is in Canada this time of year!!!) I had to go to this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas to check out the latest and greatest in electronics.

Thinking about signing up for one of those One-Rate plans?

Ever wonder why all of a sudden there are all sorts of screaming deals on cell phones and bundled minutes?

It's partly because of the new crop of "Smart Phones" that will be flooding the market in the next 6 months.

Photo by

You're looking at the future.

The next generation of cell phones.

Somebody finally got smart and combined a PDA (personal digital assistant) with a cell phone! Yeah, yeah I know, Nokia had something similar in a 007 movie a few years ago, and Motorola has a PDA style device that clips onto the back of their STARTAC series phones, BUT this baby uses the PALM OS. An interface that many of you are already familiar with. (especially if you're a hip, trendy and cool PIB) (pony tail in black) If you're not hip, cool and trendy, here's a list of features that make this product so appealing for "ROAD WARRIORS"

*Humongus, Big ass, and I mean large, easy-to-read display.

*Dial direct from the Address Book just by tapping the entry.

*CDMA technology, and a HotSync(r) cradle, enables one-step backup for data exchange with your desktop computer.

*Built in software like Date Book, Address Book, pdQmail(tm), and pdQbrowser(tm) helps you stay in touch and organized when you're on the road.

*Input data using Graffiti(r) power-writing software, or use the on-screen keyboard, or you can type on your desktop computer keyboard and then synchronize it to your pdQ smartphone.

*Store thousands of names, addresses, appointments, and e-mails for easy and organized reference whenever you need them.

*Infrared technology (changes channels on Hangook TV's) and lets you "beam" business cards, important address book data, and other applications to fellow pdQ smartphones or Palm III(tm) organizers. (BTW IR technology will die a lonely death at the hands of
"Bluetooth" technology within 12 months)

*Backlight illuminates your viewing screen in dim-light conditions.

*Headset jack allows you to use the wired headset for hands-free communication. (no more microwaves cooking your brain)

*Multiple dialing options let you make calls using the keypad on the front of the pdQ smartphone, the speed dial option for quick connections, or the "tap 'n' dial" feature for direct calling from the Address Book.

*The Dialer provides an on-screen keypad when your phone is flipped open with keys large enough to tap with your fingers.

*The Speed Dial application lets you instantly connect to 99 of your most frequently dialed phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and Web sites.

For those of you not so enamored with the PALM OS, Ericsson showed a preproduction prototype phone with a HDTV aspect ratio display

The wide aspect ratio screen makes reading email a breeze and the interface is quite intuitive.

It will support "Bluetooth" accessories. What the hell is bluetooth? you may be asking. It's basically a low power wireless LAN (local area network) The chip is smaller than your pinky nail and can fitted into many consumer appliances.

*Data and Voice access points

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Bluetooth facilitates real-time voice and data transmissions. The technology makes it possible to connect any portable and stationary communication device as easily as switching on the lights.

You can, for instance, surf the Internet and send e-mails on your portable PC or notebook regardless of whether you are wirelessly connected through a mobile phone or through a wire-bound connection (PSTN, ISDN, LAN, xDSL).

*Cable replacement

Bluetooth eliminates the need for numerous, often proprietary, cable attachments for connection of practically any kind of communication device. For example, with the current wave of paranoia about cell phones causing brain tumors, lots of folks are buying "hands free" headsets to distance themselves from the antenna. The problem is that you now have a wire dangling from your ear, which gets caught on everything. With bluetooth, there is no need for a wired connection. With a chip in the earpiece and one in the phone, you can keep the phone in a pocket or purse while gabbing away.

Connections are instant and they are maintained even when devices are not within line of sight. The range of each radio is approximately 10 meters, but it can be extended to around 100 meters with an optional amplifier.

*Ad hoc networking

A device equipped with a Bluetooth radio establishes instant connection to another Bluetooth radio as soon as it comes into range.

Since Bluetooth supports both point-to-point and point-to-multipoint connections, several piconets can be established and linked together ad hoc.

Is your head swimming yet? Wait until you see the COLOR screen phones that let you surf the net!!!

I could tell you all sorts of cool stuff about this baby but then I'd have to kill you.

(Mongo, the self-proclaimed "Travel Guru to the Stars", is based in California. When he's not leading tourists on his famous "OJ Tour" teaches classes at a local university entitled "The Films of Mel Brooks".)

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