My first mobile post

<blowing away the cobwebs> I’m back again. This is my first post from my new phone, the HTC Desire Z. Just wanted to test the wordpress app for android. More posts to follow soon. I’ll also be publishing a few mobile posts occasionally.

Next up: A post about where I’ve been for the last few months and my 6th semester at college.

Auto-rotate applications in Samsung Corby PRO(GT-B5310)

Not very recently, in January, I bought a new phone- the Samsung Corby PRO aka GT-B5310, known as the Genio PRO in the UK. The Corby series is great value for money and I’ll be posting a review of the phone and reasons for buying it soon.

The phone has a sliding QWERTY keypad and so most of the inbuilt apps and stuff rotates automatically when you slide-out the keypad. If you’ve been using the Corby PRO for a while, you would’ve noticed that the additional Java applications you’ve installed don’t have auto-rotate support and its quite a PITA to type with the QWERTY keypad while the display is in portrait mode. Thankfully, there is a solution to this problem. All you need is an archive manager and a text editor. Here’s what you need to do-

1. Download the jar file on your computer.
2. Use an archive manager to open it and edit the MANIFEST.MF file found in the META-INF folder.
3. Add these lines at the bottom of MANIFEST.MF to enable support for auto-rotate-

X-Pax-Keyboard: Qwerty
X-Pax-TextInput-Hidden: true
MIDlet-Touch-Support: TRUE
MIDlet-ScreenMode: ROTATE

4. Save the jar archive after making the above changes.

Now transfer the jar file to your phone. But there’s a catch here too. The Corby PRO’s OS doesn’t allow you to install Java applications by just opening jar files from the file manager. The only way to install applications is by downloading them from your phone. But thinking about it carefully, you don’t really need to upload the jar file anywhere. All you need to do is create a HTML page and transfer it along with the jar file to your phone. Opening the HTML page from your phone will open it using the phone’s web browser and you won’t need GPRS to install the application. Here’s what you need to do to create the html file-

1. Open a text editor like notepad.
2. Write this in the file-

<a href=”<insert filename here>”>Install Application</a><br>

Replace with the name of the jar file; for example, if you are installing the IM client Palringo and the file name is Palringo.jar, the code would be-

<a href=”Palringo.jar”>Install Application</a><br>

3. Save the file with a .html extension and give it any name like installer.html

Now when you open the HTML file from your phone, you’ll see a Install Application link. Clicking on it will install the Jar file you just edited. I managed to get all the applications I use to auto-rotate like this apart from those ones which don’t let you download the jar file from your computer. This should work for all applications. If you face any problems, feel free to leave a comment.

Make Free STD and ISD calls with Skype and Free411

Very often you come across tricks to make free calls and honestly, most of them don’t work. I recently came across a trick that really works so it gets to feature on my blog. So here goes the trick to make free STD and ISD calls with Skype.

First of all, the only requirement is that you need to have Skype installed. If you don’t have skype you can download and install it. Skype works on all platforms-Windows, Linux and Mac too.

What we are going to use in this trick is a service called Free411. Its actually a US based service with the toll free number- +1-800-FREE411 which is +1-800-3733411. Skype does not charge for calls made on toll free numbers so calling this number using Skype won’t cost a penny. So here’s what you have to do-

Dial +18003733411 on Skype and click on the call button to connect the call. I would suggest you to save this number in your Skype contacts for faster future access.

Dial +18003733411 on Skype

The call will be answered by an IVRS system. You will have to bear a small ad before you reach the main menu. When prompted to select your option, say “Free Call”. Now if their lines are not busy, you will get a 5 minute free call. You will be asked to dial the phone number to which you wish to make the call. Dial the full number including ISD code. For example prefix Indian mobile numbers with +91, UK numbers with +44 UAE numbers with +971 etc.

This service works well for me and usually I manage to connect to a free call within 5 to 10 minutes of trying to get a free line which is acceptable considering that this service is being used extensively in the US and also by people from all parts of the world. Leave a comment if you face any kind of difficulty or have any doubt about this service.

PS-The service I’ve mentioned here is a free service. Please use it judiciously and don’t use it for making prank calls. Your idea of fun will might make this service unavailable for someone who needs it more than you do.

PPS-For all my friends who for some reason haven’t added me on Skype yet and for those who intend to create a skype ID after reading this post, my ID is namanbagga.

Now compare mobiles at ConsumerMate

Consumermate is a site that was launched by 9.9 media to help consumers compare products like Laptops, mobile phones etc. When I bought my laptop, ConsumerMate proved to be very useful to compare features and prices. Consumermate has been offering comparisons of laptops for quite some time now. It it indeed one of the best source to get good comparisons on Laptop price in India. Recently, ConsumerMate launched its Mobile phone section to offer comparisons on Mobile Handsets.

I recently bought a new phone, the Samsung Corby Pro B5310. ConsumerMate made my task a bit simpler. Gone are the days when the mobile phone market was dominated by Nokia. Many people still don’t want to buy anything but Nokia but there’s a large section of the population, primarily the youth who is looking for the best phone in the best price. There are so many other brands available these days. What exactly ConsumerMate does is that it shows you the various available options for your requirement. You can shortlist phones on basis of brand, say if you wish to buy a Sony Ericsson Mobile Phone, you can select the brand from the menu and view the results. The site also has an option to shortlist phones on the basis of price and mobile type or form factor.

ConsumerMate also provides the online store facility where you can buy the phone you want from your favorite online store like Indiatimes Shopping. There’s also a very useful ASK US Section which enables customers to ask for a price for a particular model and 2 to 3 vendors in the city will contact them with the best price offers for the products selected or mentioned in the message. ConsumerMate is a very useful site as it allows users to get the best price for the product they wish to buy.

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