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Tag Archives: cell-phone

Nokia Patents Self-Charging Phone, Won’t Work For Lazy People


By Evan Ackerman

At the end of last month, Nokia filed a patent for a “piezoelectric kinetic energy harvester” for mobile phones. If they get it to work, it will enable mobile phones to charge themselves. Brillliant! Why didn’t I think of that?

I’ll tell you why I didn’t think of that. It’s because a “piezoelectric kinetic energy harvester” works by generating electricity from crystals which are compressed by movement. So, the catch is (of course there’s a catch), you have to be moving for the phone to charge. As in, not sedentary in front of the computer. This means that people like me will have dead cell phones 99% of the time, with the remaining 1% of uptime due to bedroom to bathroom transitions plus trips to the fridge. Maybe I’ll just strap it to my cat and bust out the laser pointer for a few hours, that should do the trick.

Cat or no cat, it’s always good to see big companies trying to innovate when it comes to green energy and infinite phone calls. Or at least, it’s good to see them take the first tentative steps in the form of a patent.

[ Nokia Patent ] VIA [ New Scientist ]

SIMFi Turns 3G Into WiFi, Makes Too Much Sense To Ever Happen

wifi_simBy Evan Ackerman

WiFi? In my SIM card? It’s more likely than you think, if Sagem Orga’s SIMFi SIM card ever becomes a commercial reality, which it won’t, because it’s awesome and wireless providers aren’t. Eye-Fi showed us that you can stuff all kinds of useful things into absurdly small packages, and Sagem Orga has managed to cram a full blown WiFi router into a SIM card about the size of a hiccup. Somehow, the card taps into your phone’s data network and makes it accessible to any WiFi device:

“The new generation USIM card “SIMFi” can be inserted in any type of classic handset to act as a universal and interoperable HSPA/Wi-Fi router for any device.”

What’s that you say? I can just stick this in my phone and give internet to my laptop? Why, that would make my life so much better and more convenient and sunshine and rainbows and I won’t have to worry about forking over another sixty bucks a month so that I can check email on my phone and my laptop!

Aaaand this is why the only way we’re going to see one of these SIMFi cards is through some kind of severely restricted and ludicrously expensive carrier program. Yes, we can’t have nice things because when somebody invents one, our wireless carriers take them out back and beat them with a money brick.

I hope I’m wrong and that AT&T lets me buy a SIMFi for a realistic one time cost and stick it in my iPhone, but they won’t. We’ll let you know how many of your firstborn children you need to sell to get one of these if it ever becomes available.

[ Sagem Orga ] VIA [ SlashGear ]

Invisible Bluetooth Earpiece Will Get Lost In Your Brain


By Evan Ackerman

There’s an inverse relationship between the size of a Bluetooth headset and the amount of annoyingness it can be responsible for, which makes this “Invisible Bluetooth Earpiece” by definition the most annoying thing in existence. But if you’re wearing this, you won’t care, because you’ll be too busy playing spy. The earpiece comes with a transmitter that hangs on a cord around your neck, and attached to the transmitter is a cable with a button at the end. Pushing the button sends a beep to your handler, which enables you to send back information without having to say anything (which would be a dead giveaway, obviously).

If you have any sense, right about you’ve probably started wondering just how you get this thing out of your ear. It’s easy! Just slap the included super strong magnet to the side of your head, and it sucks that puppy right out. Sounds foolproof. The whole kit is yours for $200 from SkyMall.

[ SkyMall ] VIA [ RGS ]

National Geographic Teams Up with Cellular Abroad for Travel Phone


By Shane McGlaun

Despite the swine flu, there are still lots of people who have to travel internationally for business or even for fun. I can understand, I wouldn’t let some pork disease keep me from working or going on that vacation to Italy.

An even bigger problem for travelers than swine flu is the fact that most of our mobile phones won’t work in other countries. National Geographic has teamed up with a company called Cellular Abroad to offer a new travel phone called the Duet. The phone can be pared with a pre-paid international SIM card from National Geographic or another international SIM the user already has.

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SolCHAT Hands-Free System Recharges Via Solar Power


By Chris Scott Barr

Having a hands-free kit in your car can make a huge difference when talking on the phone and driving. Not only does it free up both hands for steering (and shifting), but I’ve noticed that I pay more attention to the road when using one. Unfortunately such a device doesn’t do you much good if it dies. That’s why the SolCHAT was created.
This particular hands-free kit gets it juice from the sun’s rays. Since you situate it on the windshield of your car, you’re very likely to get a pretty good charge throughout the day. Of course if your car sits in a garage or covered parking space, it might not do as well. Otherwise, you should be good. The SolCHAT features an audio Caller ID function as well as DSP echo cancellation. You can pick one of these up for right around $100.

[ SkyMall ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

Motorola Adds Three ROKR Handsets to Line

This post is syndicated with permission from

Motorola has been unable to duplicate the success it had several years ago with its RAZR handset. Motorola is looking to regain some of its glory and its latest attempt to separate the mobile phone user from their cash is three new ROKR handsets.

The coolest one of the trio is the ROKR EM30. This phone uses Motorola’s ModeShift technology to illuminate the keyboard. When the phone is in music mode the keypad with controls for music are red. When the phone is in talk mode, the handset keys are blue. The EM30 also features a FM receiver built-in with RDS 4 technology for identifying the song and artists being played. The EM30 is also compatible with Windows Media Player 11 and has a 3.5mm headphone jack built-in.

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Stephen King’s Short Story “N.” Coming to Small Screen

This post is syndicated with permission from

Stephen King is an undisputed literary master in many circles and one of the bestselling authors in the world and let’s face it the dude is a bit weird to boot. I remember my first exposure to his work when I was a kid with the original film “The Shining” with Jack Nicholson. That movie scared the hell lout of me, as it would with most 7 year old kids. Over the years I have found that most movies based on King’s work aren’t nearly as good as the early stuff. King also tries all sorts of formats for his work from theatrical movies, to serial novels, to magazines and even TV shows.

King is now looking to conquer one of the last mediums for his work around, the small screen of your PC or cell phone. King has teamed up with Scribner, Simon & Schuster Digital, Marvel entertainment, and CBS Mobile for a comic book style adaptation of a original and previously unpublished short story called “N.”. The story will be in the form of serialized video clips each 2 minutes long. The first segment of the series will debut July 28 and new segments will be offered 5 days per week until August 29.

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Cell Phone SIM Card Spy Can Read Deleted Text Messages

Cell Phone SIM Card Spy (Images courtesy BrickHouse Security)
By Andrew Liszewski

USB devices that can be used to access SIM card data on a computer are nothing new. But this particular one from is apparently the first SIM reader that can be used to access deleted text messages still on the card. Just like deleted files on a PC hard drive, as long as the deleted data on the SIM card hasn’t been written over by a new file, it can still be retrieved.

Obviously such a device raises a whole mess of privacy and legal concerns, but the company is targeting it at parents who want to check up on their kids or bosses wanting to check up on employees, which are apparently both legal uses for it. And while using the device to check up on a suspected cheating spouse is kind of a legal gray area, using it to see what secrets a complete stranger has on their SIM card is of course completely illegal.

The SIM card spy can also be used to backup or edit phonebook data on a PC, which is a considerably easier task with a full keyboard. But at $149 from there are far cheaper USB SIM readers on the market if that’s all you want to do.

[ Cell Phone SIM Card Spy ] VIA [ Geekologie ]

Black Hole Bag – For The Paranoid Talker

Black Hole Bag

By Luke Anderson

I’m not what you’d call a paranoid guy. Sure, there are things I worry about, but I generally don’t buy into most conspiracy theories. That’s why I’ve never really worried about the government activating my cell phone and listening into my conversations. However, I do know a few people that are convinced that someone is “out to get them.” This gadget is for those sorts of people.

The Black Hole Phone Bag is a simple pouch that completely blocks all incoming and outgoing transmissions from your mobile phone. I’m pretty much content with just turning off my phone. If I’m meeting my friends in the mob to arrange the purchase of bootleg DVDs on the black market, I’ll even go as far as to take out the battery. If you’re in need of an extra layer of protection, you can pick up one of these for just $12.

[Brando] VIA [CrunchGear]