Motorola deals expand Java apps for mobile phones

Motorola has teamed up with mobile software publisher Handango to promote development and use of J2ME (Java 2 Platform, Mobile...

Motorola has teamed up with mobile software publisher Handango to promote development and use of J2ME (Java 2 Platform, Mobile Edition) applications for handsets.

Motorola also joined HillCast Technologies to provide financial applications and with Micro Java Network, a network of wireless Java developers, to provide additional business and productivity software for its phones.

Motorola was an early proponent of Java-enabled phones and offers several handsets equipped to download and run applications written with J2ME. Consumers and businesses have been slower to adopt the technology than expected, but the recent introduction of bigger colour displays and integrated carrier billing systems will encourage more users to try it, said Motorola vice-president of solutions management Joe Coletta.

Handango and Motorola will jumpstart the development of applications for Motorola phones and will certify those applications through the Handango Mobile Ready certification process. Both companies plan to collaborate on marketing of phone-based applications.

Handango now provides the back-end infrastructure for the Entertainment Zone on Motorola's software shopping site, More than 1,500 games, ring tones, graphics and themes are available from the Entertainment Zone, which work on Motorola's latest data-capable phones, including the V60i, C330 and T720, and can be purchased for download from the site.

Motorola is also advancing into the business software sector with HillCast's MidCast software, which streams continuous financial market information. It is now available to users of Motorola Java-enabled phones including the V60i, V66i, T280i, T720, A388 and A008.

MidCast is designed to provide price, closing price, trading volume, charts and other information on stocks over GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) and CDMA2000 (Code Division Multiple Access) networks.

Users can get the data in real time by putting in a stock ticker. Motorola said news, stock trading and personal portfolio management would be added in future versions.

MidCast, which can be downloaded from and, will be available for a one-time fee of $30 (£19) with unlimited free market data.

Through its deal with Micro Java Network, Motorola will make available on its online software store a variety of applications, including software for collecting survey information from employees, a tool for keeping track of projects, tasks and expenses, and a world clock.

Most Java software for phones consists of games and other entertainment, Colleta said. About 30% of available applications fit into those categories, and when mobile customers use Java software on phones, about 80% of the time it is for entertainment. Productivity tools are starting to catch on, but entertainment will continue to dominate the scene for at least a year.

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