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Burn Feeds for Cellular Phones

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on
July 12th, 2007
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Blogging News, Cool Scripts

Buzz Me is a service that allows you to “burn” your feed for mobile phones. I first saw this service on Performancing and it looked interesting. The service is fairly flexible and you can burn feeds of almost any blog or website that offers a feed on its own. It generates a feed page for your mobile phone that you can visit at your leisure to read your favorite feeds. Though I have some technical questions about the service, the FAQ page (on WordPress) explains the nuances in some detail and there is a page for publishers to offer up the service to their readers. I had trouble finding a name or brand that was consistent which I thought was odd and I am assuming they want to call their service Buzz Me. I stopped short of signing up because their terms of service put me off a bit with the all encompassing clause for future monetization of the service.

The idea is interesting and a phone news reader is something of a novelty. Google Reader is already available for your mobile phone and this product should perform the same. However, it got me thinking. It would be relatively easy to write a cell phone notification plugin for WordPress blogs. It would be a time sensitive, opt-in service that could be used to alert readers of updates, track particular posts, comments or even link back to a mobile version (WordPress Mobile Edition. Alex, you really need permalinks for your individual projects) of your blog from each alert. Most of the code exists in various plugins and WordPress’ excellent plugin framework would do the rest.

Would you (or do you already) read feeds on your mobile phone? Once I get my Treo 755p, I know I will.

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Comments

  1. David (1 comments.) says:

    What, no iPhone? I thought that was the only phone selling as of last Friday. Then again I’m just an Apple snob who’s too stubborn to check.

  2. Mark Ghosh (386 comments.) says:

    I wish they offered the iPhone for other providers beside AT&T.

  3. Marc says:

    A phone news reader…a very cool idea. Too bad for T-Mobile users (T-Mobile won’t allow 3rd party apps). What about a plug-in for WordPress (or maybe using an Autoresponder) that would automatically generate an SMS ‘alert’ for each new RSS updates/posts? Granted, this really shines for RSS feeds/blogs/websites that are infrequently updated. Currently, FeedBurner users can subscribe to an RSS feed using their email service and submitting a sms email address or similar workaround. As of 2/21/2007, FeedBurner did not have any ‘specific SMS-centric plans’ in the works. Any other ideas for a some sort of RSS/SMS mash-up?

  4. Blog Make Money (1 comments.) says:

    I already implemented this cool blog mobile post option in my blog. Check it out.

  5. BJohnM (7 comments.) says:

    I’m not sure why you believe T-Mobile does not allow 3rd party Apps, Mark. I’m sure they don’t support them, but I have a ton loaded on my Wing (and MDA before that). In fact, somewhere on their site they even provide a link to their own handango store.

    That being said, I found a great RSS Feed reader through Handango. It’s called Egress and is by Garish Kernals – http://www.garishkernels.net/software.html. It does a great job of formatting to read on the phone, and is very customizable. For Windows Mobile and Smartphone.

    It even has a Today Screen module to scroll headlines.

  6. Jesse Harris (10 comments.) says:

    Maybe I’m just hopelessly clueless, but I thought the idea behind XHTML/CSS was to not have to customize things for different platforms and devices including mobile phones. Are mobile phone manufacturers really that incompetent at building a standards-compliant browser?

  7. Otto (215 comments.) says:

    @Jesse: No, you’re not clueless. It’s just that most people don’t know how to implement CSS to the handheld profile properly. If you create a custom CSS for handheld devices and then add the media=”handheld” stylesheet tag to your page, nearly all mobile phones will use it. I implemented it on my page and it works on every phone I’ve tested it on (except the iPhone, which displays the full normal page).

  8. Dave (5 comments.) says:

    I’ve been using Google on my cell phone to read RSS feeds, and it’s served me quite well.

  9. Oren (1 comments.) says:

    Mark,
    Thank you for trying out BUZme / BUZmob, and for your comments.

    Our focus is on content publishers (bloggers, media sites, news outlets, etc.) who want to mobile-enable their content without making any changes to it. http://www.buzmob.com is our publisher website, whereas buzme.buzmob.com is our end-user site, for mobile users who want to push any feed to their phone.
    There’s more to mobilizing content than just good xHTML – there’s image transcoding, page splitting, specific-device adaptation, etc.

    Existing solutions are either platform specific (WordPress plugins, which do not support full transcoding to older phones) or they require a handset client download (which most users won’t do) or they simply bypass the content publisher (Google Reader).

    I noticed you came across the service on Performancing – we’ve just mobilized the entire Splashpress Media blog inventory, and even created a mobile site for them (http://splash.buzmob.com).

    Yours,
    Oren (& the rest of the BUZmob team).

  10. Jason (1 comments.) says:

    it would be really cool. as of now i am blogspot user, but i’m gonna launch my other blogs to wordpress with bluehost. this feature is definitely i would be using



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