Our regular round-up of who's saying what about smartphones today turns up some great apps, brilliant phones and recommended freeware. There's also some positive news for the smartphone market in general.
Dipping into the blogosphere to take the temperature of the smartphone world is not without risks. For every piece of valuable info, there's a rant, a rave or - even worse - a malware trap set for the tenderfooted surfer.
But in the past few days there's been some great blogging about smartphones, including the gems we highlight here.
10 great smartphone apps for business
First up is a piece from Inc.com, which highlights 10 great smartphone apps for business.
These range from DataViz, an app that lets you create and edit Office files, through portable scanning app Scan2PDF Mobile, to the slick contact exchange tool Bump. We can't guarantee that you'll like or want to use all of these tools, but we're pretty confident as least one of the free or low-cost apps will improve your working life.
Windows Mobile freeware
As may many of the free Windows Mobile applications highlighted on the Smartphone Freeware blog.
Windows Mobile has often been maligned, but its hard core users swear by it, and Microsoft has reaffirmed its desire to properly play in the mobile space. If you want Windows wherever you go, it's the only game in town, and this blog points our literally hundreds of free smartphone software programs that you can download and try today.
Given the importance of apps to choosing a phone handset, it makes for interesting reading.
The 10 best smartphones of 2010?
Want to start an argument? Then make a definitive statement on a subjective issue. Gadgetophilia is sure to get some dissent for its verdict on the 10 best smartphones of 2010, but that may have been the point.
It makes for lively reading, and we can't imagine there'll be too many arguments with the Apple iPhone 3GS being number... will there?
Smartphones: on the up!
So much for speculation. How about some cold hard statistics - brought to you by the good people at Digital Trends.
Digital Trends has dissected figures from the analysts at IDG, comparing smartphone sales figures from the final quarter of 2008 with the more recent, 2009 data.
The good news is, it's all good news.
According to Digital Trends, Q4 smartphone sales were up 39 percent year on year, with around 55 million handsets being shifted in the three months up to the close of the year.
Indeed, the IDC figures suggest that four of the top five smartphone vendors set new records in the quarter (Nokia, since you ask), with more than 174 million phones being sold in total during 2009.
According to IDC, greater convergence means that people expect more from their phone, and are shelling out for more functionality.
Whatever the reason, the smartphone's place at the epicentre of the computing world seems assured.
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