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A Friendly Interface For Cell Phones ... And Not An iPhone

Alltel's Celltop interface allows for quick access to call logs, text messaging, ringtones, news, weather, stocks, and sports scores.

Leave it to the fifth-largest mobile phone operator, Alltel, to show how to solve the subscriber hell of accessing data on wireless phones.

The company this week introduced Celltop, a user friendly feature that enables subscribers to call up menus with a click or two of handset keypads.

Cells representing applications like call logs, text messaging, ringtones, news, weather, stocks, and sports scores can be ordered up to appear on a handset's mail screen.

The free service features 10 pre-installed cells that can be prioritized by subscribers, who place them in a queue in descending order of importance. The cells are displayed side-by-side, two at a time. The cells appear in similar fashion to the widgets that already are familiar to PC users.

"Wireless carriers have been trying to solve the content discovery and navigation problem for years," said Scott Moody, Alltel's director of data services. "With its modular cells and easy navigation, Celltop will change how our customers discover content and connect to information."

Based on Qualcomm's Brew uiOne platform, Celltop was developed with the assistance of frog design. Mobile software publisher Motricity provides much of the content for the individual cells.

Alltel said Celltop will be available initially on a few selected handsets. The company plans to offer the service on all new handsets by the end of 2007.

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