The Smart phone is this newest must have item. Everyone has to have a Smart phone in fact the major cellular phone companies are turning them out a very rapid pace. So what makes that phone so “smart”? Well first off lets discuss the non smart phone or “feature phone” as they are called. These phones a made to make and receive calls and most have SMS text messaging capabilities and some even have the option of running some low tech apps. So this phone will let you run some general apps on a couple of industry platforms such as Java ME, or Java Micro Edition or on the BREW (Binary run time environment for Wireless) platform. The benefit to these platforms is that they handle almost all of the feature phones out there.
This means that when a person or company decides to release a new program for your feature phone they don’t have to write the program specifically for your phone or your network. They can write one general program and it will work over the entire platform. The BREW platform is most known for its products that allow your phones to send pictures to your contacts and also it let you play some of the low level games available on the feature phone.
Now the Smart phone on the other hand has its own full Operating system designed to run on a mobile device. It is more like a micro computer then a cell phone. The Smart phones do several things for you the user. It will allow you do more complex computing with your phone also allows for more features and more fun Apps. The problem with this is that the designers of the Apps now have to design those programs specifically for each Smart phone platform. So if your Smart phone runs Nokia’s Symbian OS or the new Android OS from Google then your apps have to be tailored to work with that OS and that means more apps to be written and also sometimes limited use depending on what OS your phone operates on.
So now let’s discuss the Apps themselves. Apps is just the abbreviation for Applications. This can refer to any kind of program that runs on your phone computer or other electronic device. What makes it a little different is how you get them. On your phone when you want a new App for your Smart phone you have to go to your specific phones app engine to get them. So let’s say you have an Apple Iphone you have to go to the Apple App Store to get new and different apps for that phone. If you have an Android phone then you get your apps from the Android market. Of course these apps are usually written different then the applications you use on your computer but they are still all lumped into one big category.
So now that we have figured out what the heck apps are let’s talk about a few specific apps that are making in the news around the web. Fist off there is YELP. Again different apps for different Smart phones that allow you to use YELP on your Mobile Device. Yelp is a site that combines Business function with Mobility. When you’re out on the town and you decide you want to check out a new place to eat. You can grab that Smart phone and use the YELP app to find some Customer Reviews, maybe some acquire a Coupon code to save you a couple bucks off your meal. This Real Time type of reporting will help a potential customer gather information on these local businesses and make a choice on the fly about where to go!
Also as always there is competition. Some users have said the app Google maps also give you reviews and other information as well as map directions to certain restaurants when you search for them. Now also I should point out that in most cases the YELP app is a paid app. You must pay for a subscription for the app.
So now I am seeing (for the blackberry at least) a new way called “lifeinpocket” which is a Free app and also give reviews but as an added bonus if you wish is Voice guided Navigation to the destination if you want to go there after reading the reviews. Now all of that being said YELP does not only deal with restaurants. It also allows you to write reviews on other Local Companies and Services and search their reviews by other Yelp addicts! . From Restaurants to Cell phone repair services YELP seems to cover them all. So even though there might be some issues I do believe that this might become a heated competition in the near future so it might be something to check out the next time you’re out to investigate a business.
Now another newer concept in the mobile app world is Foursquare. What this app has done is combined several proven concepts into one new idea. They have merged the aspects of Social networking, App gaming and the most important feature I think is Customer rewards. These together make a pretty intriguing app. Business owners that want to create a Foursquare account can offer certain specials to customers that reach preset goals within the app. You reach these goals by ” Checking in ” with said business on Foursquare so many times while in their venue. So if you would for instance check in with Bear Heart Baking Company in York, PA ten times over a one week period you might reach a goal and gain a prize whether it be through the App or from Bear Heart Baking itself. Now this is a fairly new concept, but I think it has Great potential. Most of us on line can about the Addictiveness of App gaming. Just ask this guy! I do think FourSquare will be a great way to reach more Customers on the go!
So that was a look at a couple of major apps available on the Smart phone. So now let’s discus several major Smart phone players. One Summer 2010 Smart phone is the Blackberry Bold 9650, with this phone you can do a lot. Send text messages, take pictures, with it 3.2 mega pixel camera, record voice memos, Wi fi and WAP internet browsing. With a 3.2in TFT LCD full color display and about 300min of talk time out of its Li-Ion battery all and all not a bad phone.
So now we can move on to the Apple Iphone. With the new innovations in the design of the Apple Iphone 4 it is slimmer and sleeker than ever before combine that with the 5 mega pixel photo/video camera and an LED flash, plus all the other interesting features. Like its screen side camera used for self portraits or to make video calls, A dual mic setup to help cancel out unwanted noise and for use with the video calling feature, a 3.5in widescreen touch display, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, safari web browser, and up to 360 min of talk time when on a 3g network, and even long if on a 2g network. This phone is a marvel of modern technology
So now that these Smart phone’s are being dropped into our laps with tons of new features and ways to get stuff done who will be the most affected. I am making my assumption that today’s youth will fully embrace this new technology and drive to unseen heights. The youth of today are getting more and more involved in technology do to the fact that it makes their lives easier not to mention the fact that all of their friends are doing it. Also it has been shown in the past the younger a person is the more adaptable to something new they are. In this case that seems to be true even more than usual. I know sever people in their forties that still can’t get the hang of the Personal Computer or their old out dated Cell phones but yet I have yet to meet a person under 25 that can’t tell you all about their new favorite Smart phone.
The companies producing these phones realize this and that is why the smartphones are focusing on media playback and Social Networking Apps a lot now as well trying to draw in that target demo. These Smart phones will eventually take over our daily communications entirely. We won’t even need the home computer anymore it will all be in our pocket. The comparison has already been made by some that say today’s Smart phones are the equivalent of a computer from back in 2000. And the popularity of these Mobile devices is growing twice as fast as the PC boom!! Who knows what they will come up with in another two years or so? Well your guess is as good as mine on that so let’s keep our eyes open and try to keep up with these new devices as much as possible so we don’t get left behind.
Please leave you comments about which phone you have and if you Love it or Hate or if It’s just a Phone !!