Culture

A CTIA preview

CTIA Wireless IT & Entertainment's fall show kicked off in Los Angeles with an event Monday that offered sneak peeks at new products that will be announced at the trade show. The event was organized by a PR firm called ShowStoppers. Here are four highlighted products:

Ready for some football?
Mobile game developer AirPlay showed off its latest interactive product that lets football fans play along with a game as it's happening. Here's how it works: Players click through a menu for each play and predict what they think will happen. If they're right they earn points. The game will be available on Sprint's network starting Tuesday.

CTIA

I'm not much of a football fan, but the concept sounds pretty cool. Unfortunately, Sprint's coverage is so bad inside the Wilshire Grand Hotel (go figure) that I couldn't really see how it works. But I did enjoy the Cheetos and candy bars.

Letting the phone ring twice
Openwave, a mobile mini-browser developer, offered a glimpse of its new Audio and Video Ringback Solution. Instead of just playing a song as a ring back, friends sporting a video-enabled phone can also be treated to a short clip of a music video when they get your call.

Openwave plans to formerly launch the new video ringback on Tuesday when the CTIA's fall show officially opens. The company's reps say it's in trials with at least one U.S. mobile operator, but so far are keeping mum on who exactly is testing it. They also wouldn't say which handsets will come ready with the new video ringback capability.

Unlike AirPlay, which tried to show off it's product but failed to really deliver because of the poor cell phone coverage, Openwave knew the cell phone coverage would stink, so they opted for a PC-based demo.

From console to telephone
The popular Capcom crime adventure game "Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney" originally developed for Nintendo consoles will soon be available on mobile phones.

Capcom booth reps said that the original console game has sold out and that people are spending big bucks on eBay for the game. Soon true fans will also be able to enjoy the crime adventure series on handsets as they try to help attorney Phoenix Wright unravel his latest courtroom drama. Players get to cross-examine witnesses to try to solve the crime.

Verizon Wireless and Cingular will likely get the game first sometime this fall, one of the PR reps said. Sprint and T-Mobile are expected to offer the game as well by the end of the first quarter 2007.

On-device portal
Handmark, a mobile phone application developer, showed off its on-device portal solution for the first time on Java-based Motorola phones, including the Razr, Slvr and Pebl. The company will officially announce the portal availability on Tuesday.

Handmark first announced its portal, which aggregates weather, news, 411-information services, etc., at the spring CTIA show in Las Vegas. At that point, the portal was supported on Palm's Treo smart phone. The Handmark portal will be available on all networks that carry the aforementioned Motorola phones, except Verizon Wireless, which does not use Java to develop web applications.