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View Full Version : The Missing Smartphone Application?

Jason Dunn
08-05-2003, 11:57 PM
Ok, it's time for a giant brainstorming session! What are some of the applications you'd like to see for your Smartphone? Throw reality outside the window for a second - what are some of the applications that you'd wish a developer would create? Yes, I know Doom 3 is on the list, but what else? Get creative, get innovative, and remember that in a brainstorming session there are no right or wrong answers - I don't want to see anyone else criticizing the ideas from someone else. I'd like you to focus specifically on software here, not on the hardware. Let's just assume that today's hardware is capable of running your dream application.I know several developers who will be monitoring this thread looking for ideas for their next application, so you just might see your idea turned into something great! Remember though that by posting your idea you're making it public domain and shouldn't expect to receive compensation for it. :wink:

08-06-2003, 12:48 AM
Photo manager.

Should let you:

- View thumbnails, with and without file names and size/date info
- Display single pics, optionally full-screen
- Oragnize in folders, delete, etc.
- Rotate, crop, resize, and save as new JPEG
- Resize megapixel images down to smaller sizes
- Upload photos to web albums and blogs using Nokia's HTTP-Upload spec and/or FTP.

08-06-2003, 01:06 AM
I don't have many international acquaintances, but I would think that an interpreter program that translated your conversations in real-time while talking on your mobile phone would be very big.

08-06-2003, 03:15 AM
This is a bit hard, and requires some thought, since there are already a lot of good programs out there for what is (at least in some parts of the world) a relatively new platform.

However, I would like to have a voice dialling application, since my SPV doesn't seem to have that (come on, my wife's plain jane Motorola has that!). Also, it sure would be nice if the speed dialling app in the Smartphone would actually display the number it is dialling - when you have several possible phone numbers for a single contact, it sure is hard to know what number you're dialing without actually opening the contact - and it is a pure guess if you have several numbers set on speed dial! (Was his cell on speed dial 4, or was that his office number?........)

However, something that would be nice would be the ability to automatically log calls to selected numbers - time, date, duration, etc, as well as allow for voice notes and text notes to be attached as well (handy to do during the call if you were using a BT headset - HINT, HINT!!!). Due to memory constraints (unless said data was actually saved to SD card, and just linked to contact), it would desired to do this only for designated numbers - I don't need this for my voice mail, or for my wife (at least mostly not), or my mom, etc - just business clients and suppliers, where I would like to maintain contact records. I would think this would be useful for any salesperson or project manager.

08-06-2003, 06:06 AM
A multi-player game that can be played in non-real-time over GPRS/SMS/1xBlah. Perfect for downtime between meetings and whatnot.

Oh, and a real Outlook Tasks app :oops:

Robert Levy
08-06-2003, 06:23 AM
However, something that would be nice would be the ability to automatically log calls to selected numbers - time, date, duration, etc

Smartphone 2002 already keeps extensive call logs (hopefully they will make an API for this so we can built better GUIs). You can access these by digging through the Call History program.

08-06-2003, 08:03 AM
MS Reader
Route Planner
Pocket Streets

08-06-2003, 10:14 AM
i would like to see a mapping applictaion, that i dont need to download maps over the net to see the area. but rather like pocket pc - pocket streets - save maps i want on the memory.

the application should be able to track my location using the cellphone track point (hos does it work?) and work as a GPS.


David Horn
08-06-2003, 10:54 AM
This thread seems eerily familiar.....

I'd like to be able to listen to Audible books on my SPV, now that I've managed to get the damned things to work on my iPAQ.

08-06-2003, 12:15 PM
1. Implement support for a combined SDIO bluetooth and memory card.
2. Route navigation software with voice feedback using a bluetooth GPRS device.

08-06-2003, 01:55 PM
Smartphone 2002 already keeps extensive call logs (hopefully they will make an API for this so we can built better GUIs). You can access these by digging through the Call History program.

Granted, I haven't played with the call history too much yet, so forgive me if this is something it does already (the Orange documentation seemed a bit weak in areas). Would it be too hard to set it up such that the call history would automatically link that history permanently to numbers that you designated, so that a permanent record was retained of when you called that person, for how long, and you had the ability to append text and voice notes to the same file, so that you had a cumulative history of your contact. In the event that you have a contact with multiple numbers (like most do these days), all of that call history should append to that contact, so you have a comprehensive record.

In my current position, I wouldn't really have a big need for this capability, but a sales manager for a company that I regularly do business with DOES keep these sorts of records - he can tell me the last time he called, how long we spoke, and what we talked about. For a busy sales manager, I could see this type of application on the smartphone being invaluable, especially if it offers syncronization with the desktop - even if it is just an Excel-type report, etc.

08-06-2003, 02:21 PM
Throw reality outside the window for a second - ... Let's just assume that today's hardware is capable of running your dream application.

Is it just me, or are most of these requests fairly tame? They sound like things that can be easily accomplished with a little bit of attention. Weren't we supposed to be stretching the limits in this thread? Where are the requests for an app that senses oncoming danger and warns you with an SMS message before you cross the street in front of a speeding bus? Or for those conspiracy theorists out there - one that records every conversation and discretely forwards it to Bill Gates' personal audio server to be shared amongst all those evil Microsoft employees? (j/k Neil) :wink:

To follow up my real-time translator app, I'll suggest an app that monitors vital signs via a bluetooth transciever attached to the chest of at-risk patients and alerts their doctor in case of any medical emergency.

08-06-2003, 02:35 PM

08-06-2003, 02:44 PM
Pocket Money
Pocket Streets
an FTP program
more homescreen plugins (weather, news, tasks...)

Out of the box? Hmmmm I dunno...
How about a Vindigo-esque like program that figures out which cell tower you are near as pulls appropriate local information accordingly. Maps, restaurant guide, hotels, emergency services, etc.???

I'm trying to thing of programs that are not only needed but also utilize the phone/gprs as well.

08-06-2003, 03:33 PM
A homescreen plugin that pulls selected information from the net on a periodic basis - example: stock quotes, sports scores, etc.

You'ld have to worry about customization, parsing, GPRS charges, etc., but in my mind this would be a killer Smartphone app.

When I demo the phone to people, this is the one potential feature that I always think would make people say "I need that".

08-06-2003, 03:43 PM

08-07-2003, 03:35 AM
*Money Manager
*Mileage manager
*Pocket Informant for Smartphones
*the home screen news that jctune suggests (great idea!)
*speech recognition app to add PIM data (i.e. new appointments, tasks and contacts)
*voicemail speech recognition app to list summaries of waiting voicemails
*wifi AP locator

These are things that I would use on a daily basis and pay money for...


08-07-2003, 04:52 PM
I just remembered that twopeaks softare (makers of flexwallet and traveller) also have a product out for the pocketpc that does something very similar to what I'm thinking for the smartphone - PDAAgent.

I'm e-mailing them about potential smartphone opportunities right now (as I'd also like them to port traveller over).

08-08-2003, 12:51 AM
Oh yeah - some of these suggestions definitely resonate. I don't use my Smartphone's calendar at all because I'm too used to the Pocket Informant style of display. Apparently Developer One has something up its sleeve in this respect though (thankyou John!!) .. A Money tracking program would also be ace, as would a weather home screen plugin and a decent backup program.

08-11-2003, 08:55 AM
Not so much a missing application but more of a missing feature:

An Outlook add-on for downloading mail via HTTP. We eventually got this for Outlook and then for the Pocket PC. So why can't we have this for the Smartphone :?:

I am a heavy hotmail user and this is currently my main email address although this will be changing in the future. I find it so frustrating that I cannot send/receive email from my hotmail account direct to/from my phone.

I refuse to pay for services that allow me to do this (IzyMail etc) as a simple port from the Pocket PC version is all thats needed. :cry:

To go this far and then miss out this feature seems well..........bizarre :!:

Other than this and missing Bluetooth the E100 simply rocks.

09-11-2003, 07:59 AM
A Series60 Emulator
An app that makes the phone truly fast
Games games and more games
More freeware software, whatever it is, just make it free! :D

09-11-2003, 03:12 PM
- A Terminal Server/RDP client
- A mapping program
- Vindigo
- Audible client
- A version of Hillcast's midcast client, with realtime news streaming

- How about a customized home screen which includes a news and/or stock ticker, updated in real time via GSM and/or GPRS?

11-14-2003, 05:52 PM
excellent idea:

caller id that works before you answer the call! then i might even buy one of these phones!!!

I'd be happy to provide the programmer with a free algorithm that would do this quicker than the built-in software on the samsung. Search algorithms are "Programming 101":

Even the least efficient algorithm succeeds in an average of O = x/2 and worst case of O = x where x is the number of phone numbers or contacts in the system and O is how many steps it takes for the CPU to find a pointer to the right contact entry. if x = 1000, and its a 200Mhz phone, shouldn't this still be fast enough to happen in near real time?

So a much better algorithm would be to index the phone numbers in a hash table (exclude area code if they cause hash collisions somehow-- I'd need a refresher on efficient algorithms) and therefore your search results would be more like O = 1 or O = 2. Try an array hash function like hash = numberfy(right(tel_num,7)) mod hashtable_size. set hashtable_size to be 200 but OS should automatically bump it up by 200 and rebuild the table every time # of contacts is within approximately 75% of the hashtable_size.

I hereby release this algorithm to the public domain if that hasn't happened yet. Someone please tell this to microsoft and/or samsung!

also, im sure there are better/worse/simpler algorithms but i must get back to my real job. :D :o

11-18-2003, 06:35 PM
Agreed on the non real-time game. It would be v. cool to play a game of chess w/ friends over several days over GPRS/SMS.

A built-in app to sync w/ Outlook Notes would be great although I plan to give SmartPhoneNotes a try.