Mobile Distractions: How to Kill Time w/ Your Web Enabled Phone

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Everything’s coming up mobile this week, or so it would seem. Not so much on the news front – it’s been far too long since I saw a good Android conspiracy theory – but with everyone else: clients, friends, colleagues – everyone. Hell, I can’t say that I’d be terribly surprised if Az up and started inquiring as to my preferred mobile applications.

To own the truth, that portfolio has changed very little since I asked you folks for suggestions. Apart from Gizmo Mobile, which I’ve done nothing more than toy with, the only mobile applications I use with any frequency are the browser, Gmail, and Google Maps. The latter has improved dramatically, both in performance and with the addition of features like the usually-broken-but-magic-when-it-works My Location.

Fortunately for me, and, I’d guess, many of you, Web 2.0 has broken its desktop shackles and is beginning to throw its weight around on mobile handsets. Even those that are not iPhones. Considering that del.icio.us, my favorite social bookmarking service, has yet to make an appearance on my Nokia N75, I thought it might be instructive – both for present edification and for future reference – to snapshot the sites that make comprise my mobile bookmarks as of this particular moment. In alphabetical order, they are:

  • eBay (m.ebay.com): very useful as i divest myself of material goods
  • Boston Globe (mobile.boston.com): this used to be decent, but they’ve since made it impossible to navigate: never use this anymore
  • ESPN (http://mobileapp.espn.go.com/): in case i’m bored
  • Google (google.com/m): also a shortcut to my personal Gmail
  • Google Maps (http://www.google.com/m?site=local&source=mobileproducts&source=m2): use the actual application: it blows this away
  • Google News (http://www.google.com/news?output=xhtml&source=mobileproducts&source=m2): a bit cramped
  • Google Reader (http://www.google.com/reader/m/view/?source=mobileproducts&source=m2): fantastic way to kill time in line
  • GrandCentral (grandcentral.com/mobile): very slick: clicking play actually downloads the voicemail and plays it over speakerphone
  • Dopplr (m.dopplr.com): the journal is particularly useful in this setting
  • Facebook (m.facebook.com): anything you do here you’ll have to confirm later
  • Flickr (m.flickr.com): don’t use this one too much
  • MLB (wap.mlb.com): best real time game scores application on the web
  • Orbitz (mobile.orbitz.com): the traveler tips feature is somewhat useful
  • JetBlue (mobile.jetblue.com): very spotty performance – just like their website
  • RedMonk Calendar (google.com/calendar/hosted/redmonk.com): the Symbian browser apparently isn’t supported, but at least SMS access and notifications work
  • RedMonk Mail (mail.google.com/a/redmonk.com): our webmail, as provided by Google Apps
  • Twitter (m.twitter.com): feed the addiction
  • Weather Underground (m.wund.com): only mobile site w/ nautical forecasts
  • My WordPress: my WP install, from which i can approve/spam/etc comments remotely
  • Yelp (m.yelp.com): is it me, or are more and more people using Yelp?

Not being a long time mobile user, however, I’m sure there are dozens of mobile-enabled sites that I’m missing. What are you guys using?


  1. Stephen

    Have you checked out Mowser (mowser.com)? It does a reasonably good job of “mobilising” most non-mobile sites – it’s not perfect of course, particularly on sites not intended for mobile use, but del.icio.us for instance was usable. It will also look for a supplied mobile site – if it can find one, it will use that.

  2. This all makes me cry, yet again, that the N810 is not a phone like god intended it to be.

    (shakes fist)

  3. redsoxlinks.com

    everything you need, nothing you don’t. el tiante for el presidente.

  4. thought about installing the jaiku native S60 client?
    i realise that you are probably a twitter person, but there are ways to make one feed the other, and the native jaiku client is really rather cool.

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