HandMark Launches Express Wireless Info Service

HandMark has released Handmark Express, a wireless information service targeted at smartphones. The application works with any internet connected Palm OS device to deliver streamlined news, maps and other information services.

HandMark touts Express as a much faster and easier method for searching with the micro-browsers found on wireless PDAs and smartphones. HandMark Express is a direct Internet client application that works via a subscription, as opposed to a web browser based service. It provides automatic and on demand updates to news, market data, weather, sports scores, maps and directions, directory lookups, movie times and ticket purchases.

Handmark Express enables a wireless search of residential and business directories by name, address, or as a reverse directory. Express users can avoid paying for 411 directory assistance calls. With Express look-ups the complete listing information for all possible matches, including name, address, and phone number, are displayed. Users can choose the correct listing, dial directly from Express, add the complete listing data directly to the device's permanent built-in address book, and display a map of the location.

According to Handmark vice president Douglas Edwards, "even if there were no constraints on bandwidth, viewing web pages through a tiny two inch screen is a less than satisfactory experience. Express is an application that talks directly to Handmark servers for an optimum user experience, it's faster, easier and does much more than try to squeeze a service designed for desktops onto a handheld screen. Express was created specifically for the mobile device. It's much more than just better than browsing, Express makes smartphones smarter."

Express is available for $6.99 per month and at retail with a prepaid one-year subscription for $69.90 USD.

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just_little_me @ 3/23/2004 4:26:46 PM #
Is Express US-centric? Or does it have offerings for the rest of the world too...?


RE: US-centric?
guig @ 3/23/2004 10:31:06 PM #
Express has Canadian content for Movies, Weather, 411 and Sports. More cities for weather will be coming soon, and further international content can be expected in the future.

RE: US-centric?
just_little_me @ 3/23/2004 10:48:55 PM #
Thanks Steve...! ;-)


Giving it a go - good so far

nrosser @ 3/23/2004 4:37:15 PM #
I've been using it since yesterday, and it's pretty nice, I have to say. Does seem faster than going to various sites and other apps (like DA, on the treo, for personal and business lookups). The news aspect leaves a little to be desired, but it's a good app on an overall basis.

RE: Giving it a go - good so far
The Ugly Tooth @ 3/23/2004 6:12:38 PM #
Too spendy

"Sometimes the tooth just isn't pretty"
RE: Giving it a go - good so far
RhinoSteve @ 3/23/2004 10:09:51 PM #
This app is what Palm is all about. Something from the ground up that really puts data services in a context that handhelds can really use instead of gobbing a web page never intended for a handheld.

They have a winner.

That $10 a month for quick response across a wireless link is way worth more tha what they are charging. I'd bay $30 a month for this.
RE: Giving it a go - good so far
just_little_me @ 3/23/2004 10:50:23 PM #
Can you pay for me and my friend then? That way you pay $30 and we have good karma for keeping you happy...? ;-)


RE: Giving it a go - good so far
Scott R @ 3/24/2004 10:31:02 AM #
"This app is what Palm is all about. Something from the ground up that really puts data services in a context that handhelds can really use instead of gobbing a web page never intended for a handheld."

I agree 100%, though the concept isn't really new. They're basically reviving the PQA concept, though it isn't open to other developers and the price is no longer free. I wrote up a blurb/rant about this on Tapland the other day where I made mention of WeSync, another great idea that Palm didn't seem to know what to do with. Apparently the management at Palm found out that they were losing money by giving it away for free and decided to abandon these things rather than charge for them. They've been chasing after the multimedia aspects of the PPC that they've lost track of the simple zen features that made their platform successful originally.


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