Got a few minutes to kill? There are more ways to entertain yourself on your cell phone than rocking a tune.
Yahoo recently opened up Yahoo Go 3.0 beta, its complete mobile package of Yahoo services, to the users' imagination. The customizable mobile application is a stronghold for the usual Yahoo widgets, which can be removed and replaced on the rotating carousel that serves as the starting point for diving deeper into a topic. Users can add new widgets from the growing gallery of options, and add quick links to their favorite sites and services. (Get a taste in this video.)
There are plenty of mobile RSS readers to serve up headlines, but none we've seen so far matches the experience of Viigo's impressive RSS buffet. BlackBerry and Windows Mobile users start off with a list of suggested 'channels' and add new subscription feeds from popular sites and blogs manually or from a catalog. You can even forward feeds from an aggregator and track search terms. Check out this video for a complete run-down.
If you want to really rock out on your mobile phone, turn it into an electric guitar. Guitar Hero III Mobile hits all the right notes with a mobile version of the fast-paced console game by replacing frets with phone keys. Advanced fingers will get a workout with compound fretting combinations and a star power reward.
Launched in April at CTIA Wireless 2008 in Las Vegas, Sega's pack of mobile games serves up the timeless Sonic the Hedgehog and Super Monkey Ball, along with others. Old-school console games have long been resized and recoded for petite devices--remember Nintendo's uber-popular Game Boy?--so it shouldn't be surprising that gameplay with the spiky, Smurf-haired rodent is a faithful, engaging ride. Sega Mobile games are available through a variety of carriers for select handsets.
Cell phone video is still early in its lifecycle, but Avot mV is one good example of where it's headed. The streaming video service pulls in videos from all over the Web, not just YouTube (see slide 7), for its Web and WAP sites. Many users whose phones support streaming video will be able to try Avot mV by pointing the phone's browser to http://avot.tv. Windows Mobile users will be prompted to download a client. You'll find the complete list of compatible handsets here.
Like Avot, JuiceCaster lets users find videos generated by strangers from their mobile phones. What's more, anyone can create their own videos, photos, text, and audio clips on the spot to share on JuiceCaster and to post to a favorite social network profile. The service is available from any Internet-enabled phone at m.juicecaster.com, and as an application for select phone models. Version 6.0, rolling out first to T-Mobile customers, will auto-update Twitter, and will include an option to update your Facebook status with a note to check out the latest video or pic.
CellSpin, Utterz, and Trutap offer similar services for discovering public media and sharing your own.
Resistance is futile! In this case, it's a good thing. Google's gazillion mobile applications are available from the mobile Web, and also as downloadable applications for most Internet-enabled cell phones. Mobile Gmail is perfect for reading and composing mail in spare moments. Watching streaming videos with the WAP or downloadable YouTube application also fits the bill. Longer hauls are well-suited for reminiscing with Picasa photos or stretching your brain by looking up random search terms from Google Search. Xanadu lyrics, anyone?
Reading friends' Twitter updates and Facebook Wall posts is more entertaining than watching passengers' heads bob on a bus for 15 minutes. MySpace, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter all have 'm.' mobile WAP sites (m.myspace.com, and so forth) that offer cell phone users each social service's core functionality, if not some of the more appealing extras.
It is scientifically unproven that being stuck somewhere sours a mood, though years of commuting on public transportation strongly suggests it. Starting in April, I Can Has Cheezburger began offering levity through text messages, a daily update to an image of a cat that has been ungrammatically captioned on purpose for comic effect. To get started, text 'LOL' to 44566 and follow the link the the poster kitten of the day. Or, visit http://frengo.com/ichc/ from your mobile browser. If you're extra bored or unhappy, you can scroll through the LOLcats archives.