Imagine going to Starbucks having already ordered your drink from your iPhone?
Engadget reports on an application for the iPhone which allows you to place an order for a drink so it’s ready when you get there.
Quickorder, as you can probably imagine, would enable iPod touch users to swing by their local Starbucks, order up their favorite drink and avoid a good deal of that always questionable human interaction.
Just demonstrates how useful/useless an application for a mobile device can be.
If you can order coffee, there must be ways in which you can use similar technologies for learning.
BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones blogs about the five big stories form the Mobile Phone Congress in Barcelona.
Looking back on the teeming madness that is the mobile phone industry’s annual shindig, there was no one headline-grabbing story, but plenty of pointers to the road ahead. I’ve picked five things that were big in Barcelona.
Macrumors reports on how the fact that it is so much easier to use the internet on the iPhone that this is encouraging more people to access the internet on their iPhone.
Indeed, it appears that iPhone owners are using the internet many times more than their non-iPhone counterparts. Google revealed that there are 50 times more searches originating from the iPhone than any other mobile handset. The discrepancy was so great that Google initially thought it was a mistake. This finding has also been reported by O2 who found that 60% of U.K. iPhone users are sending or receiving more than 25 MB of data a month.
For the MoLeNET Podcasting event I decided it might be useful to have a 2GB Micro SD card for my personal LG Viewty mobile phone.
Now I know I can buy one for about £4 from Amazon but I wanted a card for the event and didn’t have the time to wait for Amazon to deliver, so popped to Cribbs Causeway near Bristol on the way home from work to get one.
Now I know that there was no way I was going to get one for £4 off the high street retailers, so I was willing to pay up to about £12 for one, thinking I am getting ripped off, but at least I will have the card in time.
Now what I couldn’t believe was how much some high street retailers can get away with charging.
O2 was the “cheapest” place at £19, but generally most of the other mobile phone stores were charging £30 and one store, Zavvi had the nerve to be charging £40!
Guess who went without and is now going to go to Amazon.
Excellent blog article on though Twitter is winning the battle in the numbers game, Jaiku will win the war once Android starts shipping.
What if Google where to build Jaiku into Android as the standard phone Address Book? As soon as Android devices started to ship, Jaiku (whatever form it takes in the future) would gain hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of users rapidly.
Personally I much prefer Jaiku over Twitter, the RSS and the comments allow for me a much deeper richer experience, more importantly as well it allows for interactivity much more easily than Twitter. This for me is why Jaiku has more potential for e-learning than Twitter.
However, ever since Google bought Jaiku, sign-ups have been restricted, let me know if you want an invite, and there have been quite a few 504 errors with Jaiku slow and unresponsive at times.
Hopefully with a day off tomorrow for Jaiku (what am I going to do) Jaiku will get even better and more reliable.
Follow me on Jaiku, though as you might expect I am also on Twitter.
One of the key issues with any mobile device is text entry, even if all you are entering is a URL.
People seem to be able to use a mobile phone keypad for SMS messages, but more often then not we are talking about phone numbers (easy) and text speech (u no wot i mn). Using any kind of mobile phone keypad for entering an e-mail address or an internet address (URL) can be fraught with difficulty and complexity.
Using a variety of mobile devices recently I have encountered a variety of interesting solutions to the problem of entering text.
I (and the Guardian) weren’t too enamored with the keypad of the Sony VAIO UX1XN but compared to some it’s lovely and really easy to use.
The split keyboard of the Q1 Ultra is in my opinion almost unuseable in comparison, though the tablet entry is much better than the UX1XN – could that be down to the bigger 7″ screen I wonder? The buttons are very small and it’s easy to hit the wrong key.
One of the problems I have with a lot of UMPC devices is when using Tablet PC text entry and handwriting recognition. Whereas most (full size) tablets use a tablet pen and a screen, the UMPC devices use a stylus touch entry.
What this does mean is that if you touch any other part of the screen as you write with a stylus, then that touch counts as a click and your handwriting goes all over the place. With a tablet pen, the screen only responds to the pen, which is nice until you lose the pen (they can be expensive to replace).
After much usage, I have to say I much prefer to use a tablet pen over a stylus.
Text entry on the PSP is to be brutally honest only something you want to do only on the rare occasion. I find the mobile phone type entry somewhat comple, more so if you need to enter numbers at all.
Using the keyboard on the iPod touch (and I guess the iPhone as well) is an interesting experience. It certainly works much better than the dialkeys available on some UMPCs, but again it is all to easy to hit the wrong key as you type something in.
Overall entering text on any mobile device is fraught with difficulty and complexity and the more you use a device the more familar you get with it, the easier it gets and quicker you become.
However if you are using mobile devices with a group who only use the device rarely, then you should consider alternatives to text entry directly onto the mobile device otherwise you may find that your learners start to hate the device rather than use the device for learning.
Use the device where it has strengths such as audio and video, and use other tools such as pen and paper or a computer with a full size keyboard when you want the learner to create a lot of text.
This means that learning scenarios need to be designed to avoid excessive text entry onto a mobile device, and often that means that traditional learning scenarios will not translate easily and simply to a PSP for example.
Think about replacing text entry with an audio or a video recording – the UX1XN and Q1 Ultra both have cameras and microphones which can be used for that, you can also get a camera and microphone for the PSP as well.
It is not essential or necessary for the learner to complete a learning scenario solely on a mobile device, let them use other tools to complete the learning activity, the mobile device should be just the one component that helps build the activity.
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