For most of us, our cell phones are a whole lot more than just something we make a call from. We use them as alarm clocks, as portable GPS, as our MP3 player, as a Twitter device, as a way to surf or update our Facebook page, as an e-reader or document editor – the list goes on. Because of this, and the constantly improving cell phone technology, Americans change cell phones a lot.
Smuggled cell phones inside prisons are becoming an epidemic in the United States, particularly in California where eleven thousand cell phones were seized from prisoners last year. Cell phones have been used to arrange attacks and extortions, and while cell phone jammers have been touted as a solution, they have the less than useful side effect of also jamming official emergency communications.
Cell phones are becoming essential items for catching criminals due to their own carelessness. Last week a man accused of killing his wife had the charge against him upgraded to first degree murder after it was found that in the process of committing the crime, he had accidentally sent a voicemail message to his wife’s cell phone which recorded the entire incident. Now a burglar has been arrested by police after accidentally dropping his old cell phone at the scene of the crime.
Film buffs obsessed with the 3D gimmick might soon be able to get their fix via their cellular phones. Researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich-Hertz-Institut, HH1, which is situated in the city of Berlin in Germany, have invented a new compression technique for films in high definition which enables them to be combined with the new cell phone radio standard LTE-advanced, creating what has been termed as Multiview Video Coding, which could allow film fans to watch 3D movies on their cell phones.
The Strongsville Youth Commission (SYC) in Cleveland in the United States is big on recycling, particularly when it comes to recycling cell phones and other electrical goods. Katherine Nykiel, the leader of the Youth Commission, says that SYC members are passionate about the issue and about keeping such products out of landfills, and have formed a subgroup of the SYC, known as “Lean, Mean and Going Green”. The subgroup has itself recently joined forces with the city of Strongsville, Strongville’s Arborist Jennifer Milbrandt, and the RET 3 – a non profit organization devoted to recycling old cell phones and other electrical goods – to raise the issue’s profile with the local community, beginning with a “Recycle Your Electronics” event which was held on the fifteenth of last month at Strongville’s City Service Centre.
The tenth of April will see the staging of the third annual EarthDay@Loudoun Family Festival, which is being mounted by the Broadlands Wildlife Habitat Committee and held at Clyde’s Willow Farm in Broadlands, VA. This year’s event, which aims to promote responsible trash disposal and the recycling of electrical goods such as old cell phones, even has corporate sponsorship from the likes of REHAU, Patriot Disposal and Verizon.
Nokia has stunned the cell phone industry by teaming up with Microsoft, agreeing to switch its current smart-phone software in favor of Windows Phone 7. The move was greeted with shock and dismay by many, resulting in Nokia’s stock falling by fourteen percent on Friday, but Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who took over the company in September in what was seen as a way of “shaking things up” for the firm, has made no apologies for the decision, noting that Nokia is set to earn billions of dollars from Microsoft in return for using their cell phone software system. “This is something I don’t think was completely explained,” Elop says in response to some of the criticisms of the decision.
On Friday, Nokia announced that it has teamed up Microsoft to make Windows Phone 7 the default OS for Nokia smartphones.
I read an article this morning on Bloomberg saying that Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, is reported to have sent a memo to staff warning that the company was on the edge of crisis. Engadget is cited as having broken the story, so I headed over there to learn more. I found a bit more information, as well as a copy of the memo. It’s quite lengthy, but it starts by telling a story about a man who was working on an oil platform in the North Sea when an explosion caused the platform to go up in flames. The man decided to jump. I think Nokia may be deciding to jump as well; although I am not sure to where.
Cell phones are helping to breach the gap in terms of access to the internet between whites and ethnic groups such as African Americans and Latinos in the United States, according to a new study. The report from the Pew Hispanic Centre, suggests that Hispanics and African Americans are much more likely to access the internet from cell phones rather than from home computers, indicating that cell phones are helping to beat the “digital divide” in internet access, as it has been termed. The difference remains telling, however, with only two thirds of adult Hispanics and African Americans using the internet in 2010, as opposed to seventy five percent of Caucasians, but the gap is narrowing thanks cell phones.