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Smartphones Must Get Smarter

Handset makers may need to get smarter and more personal.

Juniper Research issued a report that sees rising demand for complex, multimedia-rich software applications, requiring handset manufacturers to design increasingly smarter and highly personalized mobile devices. Remember when PDAs (personal digital assistants) were digital items to swoon over?

Now smartphones are the hot items. And Jupiter believes that next-generation smartphone devices will account for as much as 23% of all new handsets sold by the year 2013.

Search Wars

Here's some Yahoo! (YHOO - Get Report) search-engine news that doesn't refer to a possible deal with Microsoft (MSFT - Get Report). Bloomberg is reporting that Yahoo! could replace Google (GOOG) as the default search engine for Vodafone's (VOD) "Live!" service. Vodafone chose Google as its default search engine partner in early 2006. No word on whether such a deal would extend to Verizon (VZ) here in the U.S. Vodafone owns a big piece of Verizon Wireless.

And, if you're up on your wireless alphabet, here's a new one to add to your database. The VoLGA (Voice over LTE via Generic Access) Forum officially launched today. What is VoLGA you ask? It's a joint effort dedicated to bringing voice and SMS services to future 4G LTE networks.

As I told you last week, T-Mobile (DT) is part of this LTE initiative, along with Verizon, Alcatel-Lucent (ALA), Ericsson (ERIC - Get Report), Huawei, LG, Motorola (MOTO), Nortel (NT), Samsung and ZTE. According to a statement, the Forum will "define a set of specifications for enabling delivery of voice services over LTE access networks."

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