It’s a revolution: The Japanese mobile-phone service DoCoMo (sounds like an old Beach Boys title!) is making entertainment on cell phones rapturously popular. With its instant-on Net, millions of wild- eyed kids in Tokyo and beyond perch like happy Pokémon characters over their phones. DoCoMo is not yet available in the U.S. — but there is a mighty good alternative: The current titan of cell tech is LG’s LGI-3000W, a first-of-its-kind cell phone and PDA combo. Its large, high-res monochrome screen (bigger than DoCoMo’s) makes graphics look stellar. And the touch screen makes surfing for Hollywood news a snap. Here are some other phones that’ll enable you to access the Web — and a limited amount of entertainment.
Samsung and Sprint PCS’ Uproar phone downloads MP3s at a rate of 56K. Which is slothlike — but if it premieres, say, the new Mariah tune exclusively, you’re gonna yearn for this gem.
Motorola’s Timeport P8767 earns points as a cool, tiny Star Trek-like communicator, fitting easily in a shirt pocket. Still, accessing Net services on its tiny screen is kind of a drag. The screen’s brighter and more colorful than the StarTAC, but it’s way tiny.
What’s cookin’ out there in the ether? You can access these entertainment services via mobile phone — if the satellite’s working well.
Afronet.com: Offered on Sprint PCS, you’ll get snippets about everyone from Halle to Denzel.
AT&T and Verizon supply you with Barpoint.com. Input, say, the Dr. Dre CD bar code, and you get info including price comparisons and reviews.
Mr. Showbiz, rich in ‘tude, is on Verizon Mobile Web. But because the reviews are short, the personality of the critics fails to come through loud and clear.
Moviefone lets you buy tickets online fairly quickly, but one thing’s supremely annoying: entering credit-card info using cell-phone keys.
Yahoo! (on Sprint PCS) is the mobile-phone Web geek’s bible. When entertainment news breaks, it’s there, on your handheld screen, in a flash.