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Windows Live Search Mobile: Activate your voice box!

The past month has seen Windows Live services gathering force. At the CTIA conference (coverage) in late October, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer demonstrated a new feature in Windows Live Search for Mobile: voice-activated search (see interview with CNET News.com.) This past week, CNET editor Elsa Wenzel reviewed Microsoft’s …

 
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T-Mobile Sidekick Slide available now; better e-mail on the way

T-Mobile Sidekick Slide

T-Mobile Sidekick Slide

(Credit: Corinne Schulze/CNET Networks)

If you prefer to slide instead of swivel, then you’ll be happy to hear that the T-Mobile Sidekick Slide is now available for purchase online and in select retail stores for $199.99 with a two-year contract. In addition to this …

 
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Verizon's BlackBerry Pearl available in stores Nov. 8

RIM BlackBerry Pearl 8130

RIM BlackBerry Pearl 8130

(Credit: Verizon Wireless)

For those Verizon Wireless customers who have been waiting for the RIM BlackBerry Pearl 8130, the time is here. The pretty little Pearl is available now for purchase online and will be in stores nationwide on November 8 for $149.99 with a …

 
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How will Android affect the other mobile operating systems?

Android(Credit: Open Handset Alliance)

Like a number of my colleagues here at CNET, I had my ear pressed to the phone yesterday morning as the members of the Open Handset Alliance (OHA), including Google, Motorola, and HTC, revealed their plans for Android, a new open platform for mobile devices. I’…

 
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Google unveils cell phone software and alliance

Google’s cell phone strategy took shape Monday with the announcement of a new open software platform and an alliance of wireless heavyweights that will help form the development community for the planned phones.

Google has long been rumored to be working on software for cell phones that would integrate its applications. On Friday, CNET News.com reported that Google’s plans went beyond simply developing software and instead included a whole consortium of companies working to develop an open platform cell phone application.

“Today’s announcement is more ambitious than any single ‘Google Phone’ that the press has been speculating about over the past few weeks,” Google Chairman and CEO Eric Schmidt said in a statement. “Our vision is that the powerful platform we’re unveiling will power thousands of different phone models.”

Google is officially unveiling Android, the new mobile phone software, during a press conference Monday morning. Thirty-four companies have said they will join the Open Handset Alliance, a multinational alliance that will work on developing applications on the Android platform. Members of the alliance include mobile handset makers HTC and Motorola, U.S. operator, T-Mobile, and chip maker Qualcomm.

The Android platform consists of an operating system, middleware, a user-friendly interface and applications. Consumers should expect the first phones based on Android to be available in the second half of 2008, Google said in a press release.

The Android software stack is expected to provide handset makers and wireless operators an open platform they can use to develop new and innovative applications. The new software will compete directly with smartphone software from other companies like Apple, Microsoft, Nokia, Palm and Research in Motion. Unlike some of these mobile operating systems, Android will not be tied to a specific device. Instead, the software will be able to work on a broad array of devices from handset makes such as Motorola, HTC, Samsung, and LG just to name a few.

The idea is that through the developer’s alliance, handset makers and cell phone operators will be able to develop more user-friendly services and devices that help bring more of the Internet functionality onto mobile devices. And because of this open model, the companies involved also hope that by scaling the development, advanced functionality will be able to hit the market for less expensive mobile devices that will have more compelling and rich Internet services with more user-friendly interfaces.

“Our participation in the Open Handset Alliance and integration of the Android platform in the second half of 2008 enables us to expand our device portfolio into a new category of connected mobile phones that will change the complexion of the mobile industry and re-create user expectations of the mobile phone experience.” Peter Chou, CEO of HTC said in a statement.

Companies in the alliance plan on releasing an access software development kit next week.

Read on for the official Google press release.

 
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Unsightly Sidekick has Swarovski disease

(Credit: Crystal Icing)

For every elegant phone design it seems that there are hundreds of bad ones. If you have any doubt, just take a look at the prolific work of Crystal Icing.

Just as it did with the iPhone a few months ago, this bling service has victimized T-Mobile’…

 
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The $10.5 million BlackBerry: island included

(Credit: Uberphones)

While we’re not in the habit of praising marketing campaigns, this one from Sprint and RIM at least shows that some people are trying things beyond such cliches as mystery ads and countdown commercials. In pushing the BlackBerry 8830 World Edition smartphone, the two companies are advertising “…


 
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AT&T scores Motorola Q9h Global

Motorola Q9h Global

Motorola Q9h Global

(Credit: Corinne Schulze/CNET Networks)

OK, it only took a year and a half, but I suppose better late than never. Tonight, AT&T and Motorola finally took the wraps off the Motorola Q9h Global, a long overdue GSM version of the Motorola Q. The quad-band Windows Mobile 6

 
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LG's phone concept, complete with alien powers

(Credit: LG)

Everyone seems to be jumping into touchscreens after the huge success of the iPhone, as seen in the HTC Touch and Nokia’s Series60 touchscreen version. And now it seems that LG’s in on it too.

The picture here shows a concept design of the LG Touch, …

 
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Put Orion and his belt in your pocket with Starry Night mobile

Can’t find Scheat? Starry Night’s mobile app’s got you covered.

If you’re one of those folks anxiously waiting for Google to release a mobile version of the sky layer they’ve got in Google Earth, you’re partially in luck, because there’s a comparable service …

 
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Dashwire: Manage your cell phone on the Web

It takes a second to realize that what you see on Dashwire.com’s cool gray interface is content from your mobile phone. That’s probably because you’re not used to reading it so easily.

Dashwire logo

There on Dashwire’s spacious Internet dashboard are your photos and videos, contacts, bookmarks, …

 
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T-Mobile Shadow steps out into the limelight

T-Mobile Shadow

T-Mobile Shadow

(Credit: T-Mobile)

Have you ever found yourself in this quandary? You walk into your cell phone carrier’s store, looking to purchase your first smartphone but you’re too old to get a device like the T-Mobile Sidekick and yet, you’re not really ready for a full-featured …

 
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