Nokia killed Symbian. Many links to Symbian apps on this site have expired. Check out Android Underground.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Updated: Instant messenger Slick, push email program System Seven, and feed reader FlyScreen

Symbian instant messenger Slick, push email program System Seven, RSS feed reader FlyScreen

Instant messaging program Slick connects to GoogleTalk and other Jabber networks, and to MSN, Yahoo, ICQ, and AIM. Slick does file transfer but not voice chat.

Slick was updated twice lately. The first update fixed a bug that bit Feature Pack 2 phones (hitting the enter key wouldn't sent your messages), but another bug appeared: you couldn't change your Yahoo login details anymore. This was repaired in the second update.

You can use Slick for free while beta testing lasts. But there are so many free instant messengers around that it's hard to believe that Slick will ever cost money.


System Seven

Mobile push email client System Seven comes with preloaded settings for some popular email services like GMail, which makes it easier to set up your email accounts. System Seven can sync your contacts, calendar, and mail with MS Exchange Server.

The latest update fixes a problem with the * (star) key, which failed to launch the symbol entry menu. And now it can handle multiple accounts with the same username.

System Seven is still in beta testing, and there's plenty left to fix before the program may become usable on Symbian phones. System Seven eats lots of RAM, which slows down everything else on your phone. Your battery also takes a serious hit.

The program installs itself on your phone's built-in memory. If your phone doesn't have loads of built-in memory, forget about System Seven, because it stores your email including attachments on your phone's built-in memory, and you can't tell it to use your memory card instead.

When System Seven runs for the first time, it sends an SMS to +447624802625 without asking you first. It also snatches an active standby shortcut for itself without asking you first, and it does so before you accept the license agreement. Uninstalling System Seven does not necessarily restore the original active standby shortcut.

Before you can download System Seven, you'll need to sign up first. Even if you want to read the FAQ on the System Seven trial site you'll have to register, because the FAQ is part of a closed user forum. You can test System Seven for free while beta testing lasts, but you'll probably need to pay when the program is ready.

System Seven


FlyScreen is an RSS feed reader with Twitter, Facebook updates, a Google search box, and it shows the weather forecast too. If you leave FlyScreen running in the background you'll always have your updated feeds at your fingertips. If you don't want to keep FlyScreen running in the background you'll have to dig deep into the settings menu to find the exit, or fire up the task manager and use the delete button.

The program does little more than displaying links to websites, and even launches your web browser when you try to edit your collection of feeds. The FlyScreen site made the Symbian browser on my phone display a certificate error.

New in FlyScreen: previews of articles. When you click a title in a feed, FlyScreen shows a snippet of the story. But if you want to read the entire entry FlyScreen still needs to launch your phone's browser to display the content.

Not new in FlyScreen: FlyScreen won't let you merge RSS feeds into a single feed, and it calls all your custom feeds "Custom RSS" in the header without an option to choose a name yourself. The RSS feed box only fills part of your phone screen, with lots of empty space around. And switching tabs often sends you back to your menu or standby screen by accident.

A very annoying "feature" of FlyScreen is that it always remembers the last used access point, even if you don't want it to. The settings menu doesn't have an "always ask me which connection to use" option.

On the bright side, FlyScreen correcty displays the RSS feed of this blog.

FlyScreen wants you to create an account with your phone number as your username, and they want your email address too. If you don't want to get too personal with the makers of FlyScreen you can enter a fake email address and some numbers that look like a phone number.


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