It may not be one of the big four cell phone carriers, but Alltel continues to surprise us. Today the company launched a new product called Celltop that will allow Alltel customers a new way to organize content on their phone. Celltop puts interactive, changeable windows or "cells" on your phone's display that provide shortcuts to a variety of features, including your call log and message in-box. The idea is to let you scan such information without having to press several buttons. It looks sort of cool, as we tend to like anything that makes a gadget easier to use.
Each cell, which takes up half of the display, sits on top of the phone's existing applications. Besides your call log and message in-box, eight other cells will be available at launch, including weather (customizable by city); news reports; stock quotes; your ringtones folder; and scores for basketball, football, and baseball. Rodeo is the quirkiest cell of them all, but there may just be a market.
You'll be able to personalize your Celltop by choosing which cells you want on your phone, they order in which they appear, and their color. What's more, open-source fans will be pleased that Celltop is open to the developer community for new and unique cells.
As for availability, Alltel isn't going to make you wait--though some of you may have to. The free service will debut today on the Samsung U520. New U520s will come integrated with Celltop, but existing handset owners can get it via a download. Alltel says they plan on bringing Celltop to all of the carrier's phones eventually. Stay tuned for a full review.