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Sharp puts Word files on phones

By Julio Franco · 27 replies
Dec 11, 2003
  1. Sharp said it has developed a way for cell phones to display business documents and graphics. The technology enables users to view Adobe Acrobat files and Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint files on the tiny liquid crystal display screens cell phones use, according to Sharp, which worked with Canadian company BitFlash to develop the Electronic Document Display System.

    Read more: CNet News.
  2. Shnig

    Shnig TS Enthusiast Posts: 170

    Never mind that I want an mp3 player that can play DivX's at 800 x 600(a DivX/mp3 player if you will). I mean the space is already there. The fact that I have a 60 gig zen is proof to this (Drools about the thought of a divx/mp3 player).
  3. BrownPaper

    BrownPaper TS Rookie Posts: 407

    i guess they are trying to put some pda features onto a phone so it will be more of a central portable device. my uncle always has a cell phone, laptop, pda, and digital camera that he always lugs around whereever he goes.

    i could never see myself reading word or pdf documents off the tiny cell phone lcd. then again, i did not see myself using the internet, playing intense 3d games, or even have my car's engine being controlled by a small onboard computer. heck even my parent's refrigerator has a computer chip on it!
  4. agrav8r

    agrav8r TS Rookie Posts: 103

    I would be more impressed , but the excitement of trying to type a document ( not to mention format) on a PDA or cell phone is not my idea of fun. The only thing I can see this being used for is to check email attachments to ensure I am not getting a virus. either that or I can waste my precious minutes ( unless its after 8 or a weekend ) reading spam. useless really
  5. Krugger

    Krugger TS Rookie Posts: 173

    It's certainly interesting, the gap between cell phones and pdas continue to shrink. eventually they're just going to be merged.
  6. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    I think that cell phones are going to take over the PDA market, and just become more feature packed. This is a great example of this. If you notice most of the phones are doing some things that PDA's do, as well as they are making PDA phones now. I think it is only a matter of time before PDA's are eliminated and phones take over with the same technology, if not better.
  7. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    Soon enough, you'll hear MS is thinking about asking licenses to be able to use the Word format on such devices. It's their property after all.

    I really wonder they don't use the Rich Text Edit format instead which is much more compatible & free.
  8. Krugger

    Krugger TS Rookie Posts: 173

    ahh, but they can't charge for simply viewing the contents of a word file, can they? i can use several different programs to view what's in my word file... i would think there's little they can do.
  9. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +419

    I'm not sure about that - in order to read it - it must first understand it - at least to an extent. And how did it come to understand it - thats where microsoft can pull a 'FAT type charge' on your.
    I may have been the first ever to pull off a "FAT type charge" ever in a conversation
  10. Krugger

    Krugger TS Rookie Posts: 173

    Your search - "'FAT type charge'" - did not match any documents.
    yep, you're the first ;)
    hmmm, well then they'd have to charge ANY computer program that could read or convert a .doc wouldn't they? there are tons of programs that can convert .doc files to other formats, so perhaps the cell phones could do that and get away with it. as for reading, i spoke too soon, as i don't really know how many non MS programs can open a .doc file, but i assume it's at least one.
  11. young&wild

    young&wild TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 993

    I believe they are many out there who can do so. One example is which is free off charge as it is open source.
  12. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    It could be that they're waiting for a sufficient amount of software & devices to usethe .doc format before using the patent card.

    I do believe the Fat file system has existed for a long time & has been used by USB devices & such for also a very long time. They're only thinking about asking for licensing fees now that it's used in a broad array of situations ( the financial gain is a lot bigger ).

    It's a very clever yet backstabbing tactic. Wait for people to get accustomed to a certain service then pull it out under them when they're almost dependant of it.
  13. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    Didou, that is exactly why software Patents was a bad idea. It opens a whole arena of things to be "ripped out from under our feet". Truth is, the end user is always the one who pays the price, either because of product cost going up as result of licensing fees, or because support had to be cut because of the potential cost increase.

    I agree with the earlier statement that RTF would be a better format to use, although I'm sure that there is probably some feature specific reason why .doc was chosen. I am quite sure that MS is just biding its time before pouncing on this one the same way the did with FAT. While they are at it, why don't they just patent the idea of stringing text together to form thoughts and ideas in a digital format :p
  14. BrownPaper

    BrownPaper TS Rookie Posts: 407

    that is sort of like what Thomas Edison did to filmmakers. Edison patented motion picture technology and all the mediums to use it. he did not even invent it either (like most of his other "inventions" ie light bulb); he was the patent king. a bunch of filmmakers did not want to pay for the large royalty fee Edison wanted. To flee from Edison's lawsuit jurisdiction, they all fled to a quiet, serene valley in southern California. yup, Hollywood. too bad Hollywood is not so quiet and serene anymore.

    funny how the MPAA is now upset over copyright infringement now...
  15. khosw

    khosw TS Rookie Posts: 36

    wow, that's neat.
    I know that a GPS chip tracking is on most recent phones. Is it possible to use your cell phone as a text/or voice/map guiding GPS system?
  16. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    If it isn't, it surely will be soon. As you said, most new phones have all the features present that would be necessary to impliment the feature.
  17. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    I'm telling you, cell phones are going to take the place of PDA's in the future. This is just another example with the GPS, most people use their PDA's as a GPS device, and one it comes out on phones the need for the PDA GPS system will not be there anymore. I think this is very intriguing.
  18. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    Very true Poert, soon there will be a single multifunction handheld device to replace all those other gadgets. Phones, PDAs, GPS, mp3 players, and probably more stuff that many of us don't use.
  19. Krugger

    Krugger TS Rookie Posts: 173

    Instant messenging and games too, i think the keyboad phones and N*gage show those angles.
  20. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    That is just the first step in creating an all-in-one phone. Many revisions will come about in the near future, because those phones have gotten such a good review recently.
    I think the only thing that will hinder the all-in-one phone is the small screen. They will need to come up with a way to project the image a little bigger, without making the phone that much bigger. Like the PDA phones are huge, and I would think they are uncomfortable to hold and use due to their size. But we'll see what happens, that is what is so great about technology.
  21. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    Poert, I think the size isn't really an issue, as many people use a headset for their phones now anyway. I'd just assume the "all in one" device would have a phone built in, but have it so you had to use the headset to use it. You sacrifice the convenience of a small phone, but gain the screen size, and more room for added features.
  22. khosw

    khosw TS Rookie Posts: 36

    What of the tablet pc's they are kind of like pda's-laptop hybrid, maybe you can connect the cell phone to that to extend it's capabilities like reading a book, or games, or gps.
  23. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    I know you can hook up a GPS to a laptop, or tablet if you wanted to. It's just a matter of getting the right components.

    Storm I forgot about the headsets, but I was referring to the size of the phone as far as putting it on your belt or in your pocket. It is quite a bit more cumbersome than a regular phone.

    And the screen size is kind of important if you are going to be working on a spreadsheet or something similar to that, where you need to see a fairly big picture(PDA size now, and not phone size now). There is quite a difference in that. But maybe times will change and people won't mind carrying around the new Phone all-in-one's.
  24. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    size isn't a big issue for me, as I already carry a handheld and a phone with me most of the time, so dropping the phone and being left with one device that is the size of the handheld would be just fine with me. I would much rather have the larger screen than the smaller device.
  25. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Benefon ESC! is a cellphone with GPS navigator.

    Some cellphone / PDA hybrids already run WinCE or Microsoft® Smartphone operating system, so I'd imagine a Word document viewer should be simple to implement.

    In addition, a lot of new cellphones also have J2ME (Java 2 Micro Edition), it could be possible to write a Word document viewer in Java too.
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