Tagged With mobile webapps

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Twitter has fixed one of the more annoying glitches in its mobile site, adding access to replies (messages preceded by an @ symbol and your Twitter name). While there are dozens of alternate Twitter clients available, the basic mobile site is still useful, and this is a sensible (if overdue) enhancement.

Twitter Mobile

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Our recent discussion of mobile banking sites for the iPhone highlighted the fact that many people can't access their banking applications on their mobile device, whatever flavour. However, the situation may be set to improve. A recent survey by Sybase 365 suggests that a third of global banks already offer some mobile banking features, and a similar number expect to do so over the next year. That's partly driven by consumer demand: almost a quarter of customers surveyed said they would switch banks to get access to a mobile net banking service. Are you able to access your bank on your mobile phone, and is that a useful feature? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.

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Westpac recently started promoting the ability to access its online banking applications via the iPhone. However, as both Westpac's site and a story at AustralianIT by Andrew Colley point out, this isn't a full-blown iPhone application, but a standard mobile app which can work within the iPhone's Safari browser. That's not necessarily a bad thing. Despite the hype, iPhones aren't yet anything like the dominant mobile device on the market, so building a site that works on multiple devices makes sense. It also helps reduce download volumes, an area where iPhone owners can be a bit lax. Do you think more iPhone-specific sites need to be built, or has Westpac taken the right approach? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Westpac's iPhone folly?

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Photo sharing site Flickr just activated an iPhone-scaled version of the site for anyone visiting the site with a mobile Safari browser. The menus are optimised to put the most-accessed activities—photo stream browsing, "Explore" mode, and recent comment activity—right up front, and your upload-by-email address is placed in the "More" section. Best of all, Flickr's site pre-loads many of the iPhone-scaled thumbnails you're checking out, so flipping between pictures often doesn't require any kind of refresh. No slideshows for now, given the lack of Flash on the iPhone, but the site's a nice alternative to pinching and pulling gigantic photos on the standard site.

Flickr Mobile

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Coder Mike Brittain has put together a super-clean site for iPhone, Blackberry, Opera Mini, and other mobile browsers that lets you quickly click two languages to translate words or phrases between and then do it. The site supports 11 languages at the moment, and you can easily bookmark a language pairing for quick access while travelling. Those without data connections should try Google's SMS translation service.

Mobile Translator

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Google's offline-enabling project Gears released a version for Windows Mobile 5 and 6 devices last night, and mobile web apps like online document editor Zoho Writer and money manager Buxfer have already thrown their hats into the not-always-mobile ring. It looks like documents are read-only in Zoho at this point, but, like its desktop brother, Zoho Writer Mobile will likely upgrade to full online/offline sync soon. Similarly, Buxfer lets you check account balances and see transactions, but not make any account changes. It's a nice start, however, and more mobile apps, and functionality, are likely to follow. Visit gears.google.com from your Windows Mobile 5 or 6 device to install Gears.

Shifting Google Gears to mobile

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Web site Wirenode turns any web site with an RSS feed into a mobile-friendly version of that site, perfect for browsing sites on your mobile device when they don't have a mobile-friendly interface. "Mobilizing" any site with an RSS feed is a breeze, and when you're done you'll end up with something like this mobilised version of Lifehacker. You can also use Wirenode to create your own mobile sites from scratch, though I'm not sure how much use most of us would get from that (maybe a start page with links to your favorite stuff?). Of course, you can also mobilize individual pages with RSS feeds with Google Reader style if you prefer the GReader layout but you're not already using Google Reader mobile.

Wirenode

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US-centric: At its most basic level, webapp Jott is a voice to text transcription service: you call Jott, leave a message, and Jott transcribes it and emails you or your contacts the text. That alone can capture the big idea that pops into your head on the drive to the office, but Jott can do a whole lot more than send you email. With Jott's built-in links and tools that capitalise on its email-sending abilities, it can give nearly any personal organization system a go-anywhere, add-anything boost. Today we've got a quick primer on how to turn your phone into a ubiquitous capture tool that zaps info into all your favorite organisation apps by voice.

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Social money management webapp Wesabe has just added a mobile interface, eliminating the memory gap between purchases and spending records. Along with entering in purchases and withdrawals, Wesabe Mobile lets you see your recent transactions and balances from your cell phone, PDA or Blackberry—a helpful willpower tool for anyone trying to break a once-a-day Starbucks habit (or Tim Hortons, for you northerners). Those with SSL-enabled mobile browsers and an existing Wesabe account can head to m.wesabe.com.

Introducing Wesabe Mobile

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Google quietly added mobile functionality to its Notebook web clipping tool recently, giving phone browsers some of the functionality of Notebook and its recent Bookmarks integration. The mobile version lets users add notes to a "Mobile Notes" notebook and browse their existing bookmarks and notes. That's about it, unfortunately—no adding of bookmarks or labels, note editing, or searching from the smaller screen. But for devotees of the Notebook—and those using it to Get Things Done—it's a nice tool to have on the go. Like most mobile Google webapps, Google Notebook requires an XHTML-compliant browser that also allows SSL traffic.

Google Notebook Mobile