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Mobile Google

Cool Tech

March 28, 2005 10:56 PM PST

This weekend went live explaining all the mobile search features available at google. Ars has an article about it here. From the article it looks like there is controversy brewing since it reformats pages and possibly strips out ads, and 'could' add its own. I'm going to stay out of that debate. It do think it is pretty cool that it proxies sites and reformats them to fit on a small screen. I all ready use skweezer on my pocketPc to do something similar for those 'difficult' sites. This type of reformatting is pretty much required for smart phones due to the limited resolution.
I'm going to play with it a bit through out the week and see what I think. You can play with the search site here if you want to see what it does.
It goes without saying that Paul won't be able to comment on this. Blink once if you use it, twice if you don't.

Comments (5)
John, March 28, 2005 11:10 PM:

Google SMS:>

Ok this is very cool. A while back we were talking about just sending queries for info to a server via email and getting the results mailed back. This is just the mobile extension of that idea. Just send a simple query to an SMS address and get the answer back. An example of a query is: 'pizza 98004'. And you get back pizza places in the 98004 zip.

J, March 31, 2005 10:18 AM:

I think the lack of responses to this may be indicative that even this tech crowd really doensn't use cell phones or mobile data that much. We're probably at the computer too much as it is!

My feeling on mobile data is that until the walled garden is removed and the carriers lose their stranglehold on device and application capabilities, this space won't be that interesting. That's really a topic for another post, but I'm afraid it would become too much of a rant.

Paul, March 31, 2005 11:07 AM:

J: Thos are sort of my thoughts too. The SMS search thing is really cool, but even typing the word "pizza" or "coffee" on a cell phone is too painful to be something that I'd do.

I bought the unlimited data plan from cingular for my SmartPhone 2002 cell, and I hardly use it. Far too slow, never mind how limited a cell phone browser is. The phone companies really are standing in the way of true innovation in this space.

I hope that Apple enters the handset space. Then we'd see some designs that don't suck.

J, March 31, 2005 11:54 AM:

Yeah, see that's the attitude I talked about in my Ajax article. There's no reason any of the phone vendors couldn't come out with a sweet phone. (Sony, Samsung, Nokia...) Paul, I'm not saying you're wrong about Apple, but why isn't any one else doing anything! We need to work at each of these companies for a month. LOL.

Paul, March 31, 2005 02:53 PM:

There is no *technical* reason that phone vendors couldn't make a sweet phone, in much the same way that there is no technical reason why PC vendors *couldn't* make a PC or music player that doesn't suck. They just don't.

If Apple designed the handset, it would rock because real design is their thing. Other vendors just ship features crammed into a box.

Even if Apple built a phone, the problem would still exist that the services, which are controlled by the phone companies, would suck. Since Apple can't control the end-to-end experience the way they do with iTunes / Music store / iPod, they have no motivation to make a phone.

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