There's no shortage of local search applications for cell phone users to rely on. In addition to Google Maps Mobile, Yahoo OneSearch (which is also bundled into Yahoo Go), and TellMe's BlackBerry app, is newcomer FreeMobile411, a simple, clean-looking WAP app that searches local business and residential listings for people, business names, and business types. While the publisher, V-Enable, works on distributing a more robust client through cell phone carriers starting with Sprint, FreeMobile411.com remains as reliable a lookup for people on low-end Internet phones as it is on high-end phones.
At CTIA 2008 in Las Vegas, Yahoo's executive vice president of Connected Life, Marco Boerries, demonstrated with great enthusiasm the newest feature to grace its mobile search tool: voice input. The technique, which asks users to press and hold a key while speaking their lookup request, is already active in Windows Live Search Mobile. Yahoo, however, hasn't released it beyond a preview. On Tuesday, one ankle-biting competitor jumped into the ring with its version of voice search.
There's no real killer app yet for retrieving listings information on your mobile phone, but there could be soon.
On Aptil 11, FreeMobile411 launches the consumer version of its carrier-offered services. Visting FreeMobile411.com from your mobile browser gets you a decent-looking ad-supported WAP site that simplifies directory search and helps you avoid long waits while listening to ads from dial-in services like 1-800-FREE-411.
Enter the search term--it can be a business name ("Blockbuster"), business type ("video store"), or person ("Bill Blockbuster"). Then select the search type, and fill in either the city … Read more