Vol 2, #2, Jan. 12, 2010
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January 12 , 2010


Online intervention works for alcholics, study finds
iseedocs goes live with Remoba email services
Social networking, entertainment phone coming to Canada
PowerPay turns cell phones into credit card terminals
iPhone app has innovative display navigation
Anti-spam bill suspended
XTop Mobile announces North American debut
Horizon launches world's first ETF app for BlackBerry
Tether now available for BlackBerry

Online intervention works for alcoholics, study finds

A recent evaluation by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) shows that online interventions for problem alcohol use can be effective in changing drinking behaviours and offers a significant public health benefit.

In the first evaluation of its kind, the study published in Addiction found that problem drinkers provided access to the online screener www.CheckYourDrinking.net, reduced their alcohol consumption by 30% - or six to seven drinks weekly - rates that are comparable to face-to-face interventions. This result was sustained in both the three and six month follow-up.

Problem drinking is a major cause of preventable deaths in Canada as well as morbidity, trauma and violence, yet many of those who struggle with problem alcohol use will never seek treatment. A recent general population survey indicated that 81% of problem drinkers in Canada have Internet access, and about a third indicated that they would be willing to seek intervention via the web.

Brief Internet-based interventions for problem drinkers are promising, and fill a gap in the services available to problem drinkers, according to principal investigator, Dr. John Cunningham Senior Scientist with the Social and Community Factors in Prevention Research Section, CAMH.

"An unfortunate reality is that many problem drinkers do not seek treatment. While getting help from a health care professional is ideal, there are barriers to access such as concerns about stigma, a desire to handle problems on one's own, or simply because treatment is not readily available - online interventions can help reduce these barriers by allowing people to seek help in their own homes."

By analyzing self-report data, the website provides problem drinkers with a report that compares their alcohol intake to the national average and informs them of the physical and health risks associated with their drinking patterns. The report also calculates the amount of money spent on alcohol annually and how much of their time is spent under the influence each year. Safer drinking guidelines are also provided to website users.

"The Check Your Drinking online screener provides participants with a wealth of information about their drinking, its consequences, and how they compare to others," said Cunningham. "When presented these facts in a non-judgmental manner, participants are able to re-evaluate their drinking and may be motivated to reduce their alcohol consumption." Top of Page

iseedocs goes live with Remoba email services

iseemedia Inc., a leading provider of technology and services that allow mobile phones to be experienced like desktop devices today announced that it has begun commercial deployment of iseedocs on the T-Mobile Network in the U.S. with Remoba. iseedocs enables instant attachment viewing and navigation without having to download content. Handsets provide access to enterprise email, calendar and contacts. The combined offering is now being rolled out to T-Mobile customers as a choice download with affordable email data plans.

"As more people travel and work from multiple locations, mobile phones must perform more complex tasks and access email with sizeable attachments," said Anthony DeCristofaro, President and CEO, iseemedia. "iseedocs is the ideal solution to perform this task on mobile phones. We are excited to be working with Remoba to deliver a complete PC experience on T-Mobile sidekick handsets."

Unlike most email attachment handlers, iseedocs delivers a document index which is also the document management system. All pages, images and graphs are accessible on demand. Unlike other attachment viewers, iseedocs does not download the document to the mobile device, but streams pages as they are requested. The user can also zoom and pan the document, providing a higher degree of information than is normally available on mobile devices.

Using a Smart Adaptation Engine, iseedocs maintains virtually all document formatting and content. So if a chart embedded in the Word document is too small to see, the user can zoom in to view more detail. If a 30-page document is being viewed, and the reader needs to view page 21, they can access the page directly through a table of contents or page thumbnail navigation.

"We provide the Smartphone alternative for consumers and business users without the costly data plans, proprietary devices and IT infrastructure modifications," said Guru Thalapaneni, President and CEO of Remoba. "iseemedia serves as the perfect complement so users can readily manage their everyday activities directly from their mobile phones. More importantly, we help network operators to control their bandwidth costs while allowing them to offer new services on mass market devices. We look forward to expanding our efforts with T-Mobile as we make steady progress with this launch."

The mobile phone application allows users to access business on their mobile phones. It can securely access email stored on servers and perform almost all the functions through the mobile phone just the way one would do from a home or office computer. The application can be downloaded to the phone like any ring tone or game, and setup by entering username and password. Top of Page

Social networking, entertainment phone coming to Canada

Canadians will be among the first in the world to experience open and integrated social media, communication and entertainment with the launch of the Sony Ericsson Xperia ™ X10 phone, which will make its North American debut first in Canada , exclusively from Rogers . The Xperia ™ X10 is expected to be available in the second quarter 2010.

“At Rogers , we have built our legacy on innovation, bringing the most exciting and exclusive handsets first to customers in Canada ,” said John Boynton , Executive Vice President, Marketing, Rogers Communications. “We are thrilled to be the exclusive Canadian carrier to offer this phenomenal mobile entertainment device.”

“Building on our entertainment heritage, the Xperia X10 underpins our commitment to an open and multi-platform strategy that maximizes choice for the consumer and delivers the best possible entertainment experience,” said Andrea Gaal, General Manager, Sony Ericsson Canada . “This handset makes communications more fun and more playful while multiplying and enriching opportunities to connect.”

Introducing signature applications like Sony Ericsson Mediascape and Timescape, the Xperia X10lets consumers organize everything in their phone and in an intuitive way:

•  The Sony Ericsson Timescape application manages all your communication with one person in one place. Browse through your conversations and check out your Facebook, Twitter and MySpace accounts 1 , photos, emails 1 , and texts 1 all in one seamless, easy to use interface

•  Sony Ericsson Mediascape application is the smart way to get all the music, photos and videos you want from your favourite friends and artists. It accesses this content from just about everywhere – your phone or YouTube and Facebook services 1 and presents everything for you in an integrated way

Intelligence capabilities, integrated into Sony Ericsson Mediascape and Timescape applications, automatically recognizes connections between contacts, content and media.

By recommending alternative ways to communicate or guiding to new media experiences, consumers can discover more in a truly open way. For example:

•  Pressing the new “infinite button” guides you through the connected world, aggregating all your interactions with one person into one view

•  Intelligent face recognition features recognize up to five faces in any picture, automatically connecting them with your social phonebook and all other related communications with that person. The X10 also features an 8.1 megapixel camera including 16X digital zoom.

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PowerPay turns cell phones into credit card terminals

Transaction Wireless, a mobile commerce payment and marketing company, and PowerPay, a leading electronic payments company, today announced a partnership enabling PowerPay to offer TW’s wCharge Credit Card Terminal to its customers.  Under the agreement, PowerPay’s customers will gain access to TW’s web-based solution, turning any mobile phone into a credit card terminal without extra equipment, allowing merchants of all sizes to accept payments virtually anywhere.

Through this partnership, PowerPay customers gain value by combining TW’s Point of Sale (POS) credit card terminal with a PowerPay account, offering savings on processing fees which directly affect the bottom line of any small business. Transaction Wireless’ safe and convenient mobile POS solution will extend the functionality of a PowerPay merchant account to any mobile phone making it easy for merchants to process payments in real time at a trade show, at home, or anywhere business can be conducted, creating a 360˚ payment solution.

“We know how important capturing revenue and creating savings at every level can be for merchants during these ongoing economic difficulties,” said Bruce Springer, CEO, Transaction Wireless.  “We’re proud to partner with a leader like PowerPay to extend the value of the wCharge offering to PowerPay customers.”

PowerPay supports all major credit and debit cards, electronic benefits transfer (EBT), government purchase cards, petroleum cards, loyalty cards, gift cards and recurring bill payment with applications suiting a variety of needs.  Since its inception, PowerPay has offered an attractive combination of competitive pricing and individualized service. This formula has made the Company one of the fastest growing service providers in the nation.

 “At PowerPay, we’re constantly investing in technology and looking for additional savings for our merchants,” said Michelle Boudette, chief sales and marketing officer, PowerPay. “By adding the wCharge terminal to our offerings, our customers can easily take advantage of the power of mobile technology to provide a new real-time payment option to their customers, creating additional convenience and security.” Top of Page

iPhone app has innovative display navigation

INNOVENTIONS, Inc. has released a new free iPhone app that demonstrates its patented RotoView "tilt and scroll" display navigation system for smartphones. RotoView provides intuitive single-hand navigation, allowing the user to simply tilt the device left-right or up-down to see beyond the virtual boundaries of the display. RotoView complements multi-touch, especially when the user cannot use both hands.

Described by online magazine Brighthand.com as one of nine technologies "that could profoundly change handhelds," RotoView can be incorporated into a wide range of portable devices, including smartphones, media players, GPS devices, e-book readers, cameras and tablet computers.

"The new app demonstrates that integrating RotoView technology into smartphones requires only our proprietary software, because smartphones include built-in accelerometers," said Dr. David Feinstein, president of INNOVENTIONS. "RotoView works in a complementary way with iPhone's multi-touch, although it can perform all of the view navigation tasks on its own."

"Our goal is to integrate RotoView into the core of all mobile operating systems. This will bring fundamental single-hand view navigation capabilities to every web page, photo, map or other scrollable data view," added Dr. Feinstein. "We are looking for major smartphone and other personal media device manufacturers to partner with us to achieve this goal."

The free RotoView app is now available at the App Store. Users can navigate their photos and get a glimpse of this new technology, while programmers, product engineers and other prospective partners may also use this app to evaluate the RotoView technology in great depth. Top of Page

Anti-spam bill suspended

A Canadian anti-spam bill that appeared certain to pass has been indefinitely delayed after the country’s government suspended its Parliament until March, it has been reported.

This is good news—temporarily, at least—for marketing.

The suspension of Canada’s Parliament means that all bills that had not been passed into law must be restarted. Canada’s anti-spam bill, C-27, was one of those that had not passed. Before the suspension, it was just about to be reviewed by a Senate committee.

According to reports, the bill can be restarted where it left off by a unanimous vote in the House of Commons.

However, a single “no” vote will require it to be started from scratch. Top of Page

XTop Mobile announces North American debut

Intelligent Mechatronic Systems Inc. (IMS), a world leader in telematics and mobile media solutions announced today the upcoming availability date of XTop Mobile. XTop is a Smartphone and PC downloadable application that seamlessly leverages the internet connectivity from your Smartphone, enabling you to surf the web and open attachments on your laptop/PC immediately after they arrive on your Smartphone. With XTop, you never have to search for a WiFi hotspot again. XTop will be available through several leading content portals and wireless carriers by March 31st, 2010.

XTop also extends your Smartphone functions onto your desktop environment over a seamless, secure Bluetooth connection, allowing you to interact directly with information contained on your Smartphone while on your laptop so you can enjoy a full PC experience that unifies your Smartphone and PC functions. XTop integrates Smartphone functions such as SMS, phone calls, e-mail and calendar appointments into a convenient, easy-to-navigate dashboard on your laptop, bringing all of your contact points together and allowing you to choose from a variety of response modes including SMS, voice call, email and more.

XTop lives in harmony with existing Windows desktop notifications and applications and is seamlessly installed on your notebook without the need for hardware or drivers. It's the only application on the market that offers a real-time solution, providing instant notification of your Smartphone events such as e-mails, calendars, calls, SMS chat and BlackBerry PIN to PIN messages directly on your desktop or notebook.

"The days of searching and paying for WiFi are coming to an end. With XTop we're empowering mobile workers with a full in-office computing experience regardless of location," said Tony Cassetta, Chief Operating Officer, IMS. "We've been told time and time again that road warriors not only want but need access to presentations and the web while on the road."

Benefits of XTop Mobile include:

  • An intuitive dashboard on your laptop/PC for an 'at-a-glance' view of Smartphone events
  • Receive real-time, automatic access to events and information on your Smartphone directly on your laptop/PC - no synching needed
  • Quickly switch from SMS to calls to e-mails etc. via multi-modal response options
  • Leverage your Smartphone's internet connectivity so you can stay connected, such as web browsing on your laptop - without having to look for a WiFi hotspot
  • Enjoy a full desktop experience and keyboard as soon as attachments arrive on your Smartphone through a simple and secure Bluetooth connection
  • Ensure all your calls, emails, SMS, and PIN to PIN Messages are logged in one place for easy access and storage

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Horizon launches world's first ETF app for BlackBerry

Horizons Exchange Traded Funds Inc. the exclusive distributor of the Horizons BetaPro Exchange Traded Funds and the Horizons AlphaPro Exchange Traded Funds, is pleased to announce that it will become the first exchange traded fund provider in the world to offer an interactive application for BlackBerry smartphones. The Horizons ETFs Application will provide increased flexibility to investing by allowing BlackBerry smartphone users to track their holdings without being in front of their computer. This convenient, first-of-its-kind application features:

  • Mobile access to Horizons ETF information
  • Increased transparency with the ability to see current pricing (data delayed by 15 minutes)
  • A mock portfolio to track selected Horizons ETFs
  • Links to all press releases and media coverage of Horizons ETFs

With access to current pricing, learning modules and portfolio construction tools on Horizons and the ETF marketplace, the Horizons ETFs Application shows the importance of making ETF investing more transparent and flexible.

"The leading edge capabilities of BlackBerry smartphones have transformed how we do business," said Howard J. Atkinson, President of Horizons ETFs. "We are pleased to be at the forefront of this initiative to provide greater access to accurate information for investors."

Though users cannot currently trade ETFs using the Horizons ETFs Application for BlackBerry smartphones, Horizons intends to grow the functionality of the application and will continue to work with both partners and users to ensure the best user experience.

In celebration of the launch, Horizons ETFs will be ringing the opening bell at the Toronto Stock Exchange this morning. For additional information about Horizons ETFs or the Horizons ETFs Application, please visit www.HorizonsETFs.com. Top of Page

Tether now available for BlackBerry

Tether announced today that its landmark application, which allows laptop-users high-speed, affordable Internet access via their smartphones, is now available at BlackBerry App World.

The announcement comes as the company, founded in March 2009 as TetherBerry, changes its main product brand name to reflect its intention to expand into new market segments, including Windows Mobile, iPhone and Android.

"More than 60,000 customers in 114 countries use Tether to connect their laptops to their smartphones, ensuring a fast and affordable tethering option anywhere they have cellphone coverage," said Tim Burke, Tether's Director of Development. "Now that we're available at AppWorld, it will be easier than ever for BlackBerry users to access our service."

As well as recently releasing a simpler user interface, Tether has now begun beta testing its Android version and has launched a new version of Tether that uses USB and Bluetooth.

TetherBerry was launched in March, 2009, as a means of allowing people fast, affordable Internet access almost anywhere by letting them work on their laptop via their BlackBerry's data plan. Within days, the product was selling around the world, drawing praise from such tech blogs as the New York Times' Gadgetwise and CrackBerry.

Tether's applications can be downloaded at www.tether.com. Top of Page