It was opening day at CTIA today and no one was fooling around. I have to say this show is a lot easier to deal with than CES; much more manageable and less crowded. You could actually get a chance to check out the products at the booths and lunch in the press room didn't vanish at 11:45.

Speaking of the press room I ran into a Becky Waring, an old colleague who has a degree from MIT and has been writing a lot recently for PC World. She just finished a roundup of new wireless routers due to be published soon. One thing she told me that I wasn't aware of is how WiFi networks can interfere with each other. It's common these days to see a dozen or more networks right in the vicinity of your home or apartment. According to Becky, you're connectivity may degrade due to other networks using the same spectrum.

From the large number of implementations on many phones it seems like Windows Mobile is gaining momentum. Today they announced a new version of Windows Mobile (6.1). It's is a fairly minor upgrade that includes things like one-step Bluetooth setup and a bigger clock font to allow display of seconds. Apparently user research revealed people are using their cell phones to time soft boiled eggs (no fooling). Microsoft also announced a new version of Mobile Explorer that trumps the iPhone with support for Flash along with support for their new Silverlight platform.

There were cool new cell phones everywhere you looked. LG had a nice looking phone in a watch (900 Euros) . Their new Viewty phone has a 5 MP camera, 120 fps video recording, and image stabilization.

Motorola showed their phones which frankly left me somewhat underwhelmed. The Moto Q 9 is Moto's smart phone hope, the MotoRokr is a hip camera/music phone with a cool scroll wheel, and the Razr2 is still thin, glitzy, and cool.

Samsung's booth had an impressive, mind boggling number of cell phones. They have cell phones in every size, shape, and color. They showed their new Soul phone with the novel OLED contextual navigation display and the Alias which twists around like a Rubik's Cube and turns into a qwerty based terminal phone or a flip phone. I have to say it's small and clever. Samsung's Juke phone was also pretty cool. It looks more like an MP3 player but looks, feels, and supposedly sounds pretty good.

The Navteq booth had lots of interesting geo applications. I especially liked a 3D realtime map that shows you moving through an aerial map as you drive along. The company is 3D Vu.






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