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When Two Webs Collide

There’s no doubt that the rise of a truly mobile Internet is here. But it’s bubbling up in two distinct flavors: computer-based providers using WiFi and future technologies such as UltraWideband and smart phone providers optimizing content for smaller screens.

Last week, the smart phone set got the biggest boost.

CIO Today reported that two multimedia content providers, CinemaNow and MediaPass Networks, plan to sell downloadable music videos for smart phones.

Meanwhile, Bitstream is developing an advanced phone browser called ThunderHawk that relies on data-compression so it can deliver full-blown HTML pages instead of scaled-down content.

TechWeb reported that Sprint launched a new suite of services that enables companies to manage smart phones and other wireless devices with the same level of control and security that they use for laptops.

As always, though, the biggest news comes from the adult entertainment industry. According to a Reuter’s story, the smart phone porn sales are about to explode.

During a seminar last week, one of the Web’s founders, Tim Berners-Lee, urged designers to make their pages accessible to browsers on cell phones if they want to stay competitive in the fast-growing world of the wireless Web.

All of this, though, doesn’t mean WiFi is being left behind. The new WiFi-enabled PlayStation Portable is not only good for gaming, but will soon also be good for accessing content and data using the Web.

While the two Webs continue to develop independently of each other, a relatively new company Clearwire is working on a way to bridge the two.

The telecom operator offers broadband service through cellular networks so that a computer can get the Internet anywhere a user can get a cellphone signal. Clearwire is also going to dive into Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) – which means that the PC may soon have smart phone capabilities.

Science Fiction, Now

Even though we are not orbiting Europa a la 2001 (although it might happen fairly soon), the future depicted in science fiction novels is slowly coming true.

The BBC News reports that Hitachi has produced the first humanoid robot, Emiew, that could actual give Honda’s Asimo a roll for its money.

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