May 22, 2007 10:54
Cell phone companies currently offer services that just a few years ago were almost unimaginable. The latest is a service that lets people use their cell phones to locate fish.
Wireless provider SK Telecom is launching the service for fishermen, using a float-shaped ultrasonic transmitter that is connected to a cell phone on one end and a fishing line on the other. When the device is put in the water, the cell phone can show the the location of fish and the depth and temperature of the water.
Cell phones used to be nearly useless for fishermen who sat by rivers or at the beach on summer nights. But now mobile phones can be a big help to outdoorsmen. For example, SK Telecom, KTF and LG Telecom offer a service that shoos away mosquitoes using ultrasonic waves.
Female mosquitoes bite people during their egg-laying period, but during that period they avoid male mosquitoes. Taking advantage of this biological characteristic, the service broadcasts through the phone a frequency that approximates the sound made by the wings of male mosquitoes to drive away biting female bugs.
All kinds of new and unusual cell phone services are being developed by content providers. SK Telecom alone works with some 1,300 providers, and last year it received 5,000 new service proposals. Of those, some of the more promising ones are transformed into commercial services. With these novel ideas, content providers are a hidden driving force making Korea a telecommunications giant.
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