RBC Royal Bank is testing a new service called “RBC Mobex Mobile Payment Service” that allow users to send up to $100 a day via text message on their mobile phone. This is a trial currently for RBC employees, their family and their friends until January 2009.
Anne Koski, head, RBC Payments Innovation said “Increasingly, consumers are using their mobile phones to help simplify their day-to-day lives, including banking and payment transactions. We’re testing this mobile phone service to find out if consumers are eager to instantly send and get cash when it’s needed most, in an easy but secure manner.”
Similar to MasterCard PayPass, RBC is also testing the use of cell phones for purchasing items at merchants rather than credit cards at Visa payWave checkout readers.
First came the introduction of the new Bell brand with “er” attached to everything. Then the tagline with stating how things are “better” at Bell… Not the case now if you are a Bell customer, have a BlackBerry and use the GPS… According to a internal document (not yet online) it looks like Bell will “interfere with the GPS signal that late-model Blackberry units (including the 8830, 8130 Pearl and 8330 Curve) receive” and have you start paying a monthly free.
Here is the start of the story:
“A number of mobile-related blogs and message boards are starting to pick up on a story that based on an internal memo, in the coming weeks, Bell will begin to interfere with the GPS signal that late-model Blackberry units (including the 8830, 8130 Pearl and 8330 Curve) receive.
Users of free GPS mapping applications (such as Google Maps or even the included Blackberry Maps application by RIM) will see the time required to establish a GPS lock increase to 2-10 minutes, up from the typical 15-20 seconds usually experienced. Additionally, there is some speculation that the resolution of GPS data will also be reduced to a 1-2.5km range as opposed to the existing 10-25m accuracy currently provided — not exactly useful when trying to find the location for your next meeting downtown in an unfamiliar city.
Of course, the existing level of service for GPS data can continue to be received, provided subscribers start to pay upwards of $10 a month to gain access to Bell’s own GPS service (”GPS Nav”).
T-Mobile’s G1 Android phone launched yesterday and we though Canadians will not see this here for a while. However, the official T-Mobile “policy is that they are willing to provide you with a SIM Unlock code, provided that you have been a T-Mobile customer for a minimum of 90 days”. This means that after the 90-day period (late January, early February 2009) we will start seeing unlocked T-Mobile G1 smartphones showing up on Craiglist, Kijiji, eBay… then possibly connect it to Rogers, Fido… One can only dream will be true.
With all the upcoming phones launching in Q4 we stopped by our local Bell World for a little chat. In addition to the November launches of the BlackBerry Javelin (CDMA version called Niagara) and Thunder, he also said the HTC Diamond will be “should be coming out” around the 15th of October, but no concrete release date.
The attached flyer shows the HTC Touch Diamond is “Coming Soon” with the price starting at $149.95 on a 3-year plan (with a minimum $45 voice and data plan required). Also, you will be able to score this at $449.95 with no contract.
Sony Ericsson announced they have been appointed (or paid) to be the Official Mobile Phone Handset of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Lennard Hoornik, Corporate Vice President and Head of Global Marketing said, “We are very excited about this announcement. At Sony Ericsson we feel we are uniquely placed to be a champion of football fans worldwide, using the marketing and promotional rights this agreement grants us to make Sony Ericsson handsets and accessories an integral part of the fan experience. Our role in football will be to use our sponsorship to innovate the experience of fans and give them greater access to football.” Official release here
If you own a small business and need a “business makeover”, Bell has announced a new contest called the “Small Business Makeover” Contest. All you have to do is in 250 words or less tell Bel why your business deserves a makeover. You can win up to a total value of $33,700 that includes prizes such as a BlackBerry Curve 8330 with $25 Anytime Local Monthly Plan, Internet, Long distance package, furniture and website design. (With all the restructuring Beller has been through this would be a perfect contest for them to actually enter, but they are big business). More info here
Chalk this beauty down in the history books. The first business book has been released for the iPhone and Canadian “Clemmer Goup has done it. The book is called “Moose on the Table: A Novel Approach to Communications @ Work” and is available at the Apple AppStore for $4.99. The book is about a middle manager struggling to regain control of his life. Check it out here
According to website Pocket-lint, Nokia will be releasing their touchscreen device that is currently known as the “Tube” on October 2nd. This will be a global launch and will likely fall under the XpressMusic sub-brand, and will be announced with the introduction of Nokia’s Comes With Music service.
In July, Anssi Vanjoki, Senior Vice President of Nokia Markets said: “Currently, the market for touchscreen products is a niche market. We always aim for a situation where we can cover all the segments with all the options. We will introduce products from the very low segment to the highest one featuring this type of functionality. Our first touch device will be aimed solidly at the ‘mid-range’ or ‘volume’ part of the market. This device will be competitively spec-ed – especially considering the price point and will be announced in a few months”
If this is true, Rogers will be releasing this one in Canada. We will did deeper and find out more info on this release and see if the global launch is valid. More here from source
Here is a video that shows the “Tube” in action:
RIM Co-CEO, Jim Balsillie will receive the ‘Men of Distinction’ Award by the Israel Cancer Research Fund. If you’re in Toronto today you can wait outside the Osgood Ballroom at the Sheraton Hotel between 11:30am – 2:00pm and congratulate him!
We reported on this earlier, now pricing has come forward. In co-ordination with Fashion Week (October 25th) Bell Mobility will exclusively launch the LG Wine… and a creative contest will come out that gives you the chance to win a wine fridge. The LG Wine… a “vintage” flip phone that “combines an elegant design with an unassuming simplicity”. This will be available in black and gold for $79.95 with a 3 year contract. The LG Wine has a 2.2” display, GPS, 1.3 megapixel camera, external speakerphone, Bluetooth and picture messaging. More soon.