7 Killer Wireless Apps

Updated: January 01, 2008

SpinVox (now owned by Nuance): If you are a criminal-defense attorney, SpinVox can provide you with that special Perry Mason moment like never before. While you are in the courtroom, your investigator confirms a critical detail and sends you a voice mail. SpinVox translates his voice to text and sends it to you as an SMS message, which you receive while the witness is on the stand, just in time for your cross-examination.

SpinVox's brain, a system called D2, is an amalgamation of artificial intelligence, voice recognition and natural linguistics. It also learns from humans — how we speak and what we say — with a striking degree of accuracy in English, French, Spanish and German. SpinVox is great for anyone who needs to receive voice mail immediately and discreetly, whether in a meeting or just on the go.

SoonR: Who needs an iPhone when you can harness the power of your desktop through your current phone with SoonR? Some call the technology "life caching," but regardless of what it's called, SoonR grants you access to applications and files from anywhere at anytime.

With SoonR, which is still in beta testing, any phone with a data plan becomes a smartphone. SoonR provides its basic service for free, giving users access to photos, files, documents and email. For a fee, SoonR offers premium features like guaranteed access to files, even when your computer is off; encrypted data backup; and cheap international calling.

Celly Space: Celly Space has positioned itself as a Twitter with a toolbox, targeting people who are looking for a customizable, muscular phone messaging system. While Twitter is geared toward connecting family, friends and co-workers, Celly Space is designed for marketers blasting text, images and video to paid subscribers.

With the app's MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) composer tool, you can send basic Twitter features like text, audio and video. With Celly Space's ringtone composer, you can send tones to your phone or sell them to customers. A broadcast- messaging tool gets deeper into the business side, allowing users to schedule bulk delivery of SMS and MMS to subscribers. Plus, with publishing and selling tools, Celly Space allows content producers to monetize their products.

SkyeSpy: While its makers have billed this gadget app as an intruder-detection alarm, a baby monitor and even a remote car-alarm monitor (yeah, right), the only reason you would want this app is to spy on someone by turning a Nokia handset into a covert surveillance device. Using this product in most U.S. states for its intended purpose would most likely be illegal.

After installing SkyeSpy on the Nokia, you pair it with another mobile or landline phone. Once the phone detects audio, it will record the sound for 60 seconds and send it to the predetermined device as an SMS, an MMS or a phone call. If you want to listen for more than one minute, you can call the Nokia back, and SkyeSpy will answer secretly and discreetly. Think of all the ways you want to use this app, then think of going to jail for them. After a one-day trial, SkyeSpy sells for $18.

Ask Voice: Struggling to find innovative ways to compete with Google, Ask might have come up with something new by integrating voice-recognition technology into its Mobile platform in the form of a directions application that allows a user to speak the address instead of typing it.

This technology cocktail makes getting directions on your phone much easier, since it saves time typing a long address into a phone keypad, and it solves the problem of address variation and abbreviations. To use the app, you need a GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) connection and a phone or mobile gadget with Web access.

Qipit: Need to copy notes on the fly? Or are you a lazy notetaker in meetings? Or are you a spy looking for a way to discreetly copy secret documents? Visit Qipit. With this app, you can convert pictures from your phone's camera into PDF files.

Qipit is like a copy shop on your phone. Here's how it works: You create a free account on Qipit's Web site, take pictures of documents or whiteboards with your phone, and email them to copy@qipit.com. Then, you receive a link to a PDF file that you can access online. From there, you can send the PDF file as an email or by fax, right from your phone.

Web-Alerts.com: With this app, you can stay on top of news, keep track of the competition, monitor job listings, or get updates on your favorite blogs as they happen by SMS messaging — like a Google News alert to your phone. And like most new apps, it's free.

Go to Web-Alert.com's Web site, paste the RSS feed you want to follow into a box, enter your phone number and Web-Alerts does the rest — automatically monitoring the site(s) and updating you when something new is posted. You can even enter a keyword to limit the results to only the information you need.

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