Zumobi stamps Twitter, Facebook widgets onto the BlackBerry

On Thursday, Seattle-based mobile widgets maker Zumobi announced its graphics-rich application for BlackBerry. Originally developed for Windows Mobile phones, Zumobi's BlackBerry release marks the application's second platform appearance and hearkens a handful of other improvements.

As a widget organizer, Zumobi lets users add 16 "tiles" to the application's home screen. The number keys and pearl are used to navigate among the four quadrants, and then again among each remaining quadrant to arrive at the elected tile.

Each tile, created by partners, independent developers, or users online, serves an ad, ratings scale, forwarding link, and search … Read more

Zumobi and Squace: Read the mobile Web in squares

The widgets story has always locked icons and links in a race to recover your most-wanted data quickly and accurately. When it comes to cell phones, there's been no clear winner, only trade-offs. Mobile browsers such as Opera Mini and Skyfire promise rich desktop search augmented by straightforward links to favored sites, while well-designed widgets applications such as Yahoo Go supply clear paths to tightly-focused content, some of it user-customized.

Seattle-based Zumobi and Swedish newcomer Squace are two companies I spoke to this week that are pitching icons over links. On Wednesday, Zumobi announced a version update that gives … Read more

First Look: Zumobi

If you missed the hands-on review of the release version of Zumobi's quick-apps for Windows Mobile phones, here's your chance to see it in action in this First Look video. You'll see the app's rich graphics and interesting design. If you can overlook the slight rendering hiccups, Zumobi is yours to download for free.

>>See all First Look videos

Zumobi ditches beta, gets its act together

Surfing the Web on a cell phone screen can be the laggy, draggy pits, but companies like Zumobi want to make it a rush. The announcement of Zumobi's first full release (for Windows Mobile 5 and 6) brings the Microsoft-birthed, now Microsoft-partnered platform for delivering mobile content closer to the dream.

I've been following Zumobi's young career for some time and happily, its character is catching up to its glitz. Version 1.0 corrects many of the beta's more glaring errors, including major functionality potholes that are now mostly paved over.

For the uninitiated, Zumobi is a grid of 16 thumbnails that users access by zooming into a quadrant and then zooming in again to an often-customizable "tile," each of which is populated by the content partner and updated several times a day. For instance, Amazon's tile operates a portable-book store that also links to Amazon's mobile site. AP News, MTV, Epicurious, and Flickr are other well-known brands.… Read more

Zumobi to climb onto Windows Mobile phones

Article updated and corrected on January 22, 2008 at 3:10 pm PST.

Microsoft and Zumobi, a content distribution platform for mobile phones, announced on Tuesday a partnership that will preload Zumobi (download here) on select Windows Mobile phones.

Zumobi's downloadable app (available now for Windows Mobile 5 and 6) offers an interface of 16 tiles to help users access key content quickly. Each tile is a widget that's entirely programmed by developers and partners--like Amazon.com, Flickr, and AP Sports--and which is subject to advertising banners. Zumobi's big innovation is the navigation that zooms into tiles … Read more

Software that's ready for takeoff in 2008

It's hard to predict the next Twitter or Facebook, and that's what makes massive overnight, now-we're-worth-fifteen-billion-dollars success (or not) so gosh darn breathtaking. I mean, did Facebook know it was going to be Facebook?!

So my point is, we go on what we've got when predicting which software is going to turn heads. This list has been compiled partly by educated guesswork and partly by whimsy. Chances are, the software that ends up meaning something to people, we've never seen coming. It's probably not even a glimmer in its developer's eye.

If I turn out to be wildly off-base in my predictions, even better. Groaning at gross miscalculations from tech's crystal ball is part of what makes making them so much fun. Without further ado, here's the lineup.… Read more

Hands-on the Zumobi widget platform

The long-awaited beta for the Zumobi (download it for Windows Mobile 5+ from CNET Download.com) mobile widgets platform (at least awaited by me) became available Friday to Windows Mobile 5 and 6 users and developers who register on the site.

Zumobi, like Yahoo Go (which just moved out of beta) and Plusmo, is an experiment in mobile widgetry that cooks up an interactive recipe for getting wanted Web content fast.

Zumobi's twist is part interface, part monetizing. The app opens to a grid of 16 tiles, each its own app readied for your click. Four tiles cluster around a central hub, what Zumobi likes to call its "flower." To access an app, click--I mean zoom--into the nearest "flower" foursome and use whatever navigation your phone provides to draw up the app you want.… Read more

Developer's pick: iPhone, Android, Zumobi

It's a good time for talented developers. Architects of Web and client-side apps have their choice of dazzling users on not one, but three cutting-edge mobile platforms. There's no shortage of opportunities to create custom Safari apps for the iPhone, and add them to our growing collection of iPhone apps, of course. Developers can also now download the Android SDK (for Mac or Windows) to start measuring and mixing an app for Google's new mobile platform. Inspired developers have a chance to earn a share of the $10 million in prizes offered in the Android Developer Challenge.… Read more