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Nokia launches useless service!

Inflatable dartboard, anyone?

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Nokia is pleased to announce its Nokia Multimedia Terminal Gateway from Q4 this year, that will enable mobile operators to deliver multimedia messages to non-multimedia phones - i.e. the ones that you and I have got.

That's amazing! A gateway that can send images, text, music to phones that previously only had a plain text interface - incredible. Well, er, no. Not strictly. Well obviously the pictures are going to be lower quality, as will the sound but still... Well, no not really. What do you mean? You said messages from the latest generation phones will be able to send multimedia messages to old phones, no? Yes. But no images or sounds? No. How's that work then?

Because what you will get on your "non-multimedia phone" - or as Nokia would prefer us all to call it, your "legacy phone" - is a message that will point you towards multimedia - a multimedia message. Geddit? [No.]

You'll get a text message with a URL and a password. Visit the site, type in the password and away you go - one multimedia message. Visit the site? Yes, visit the site with any Internet-enabled device and you will see the incredible new advancements in phone technology for yourselves.

Basically, if you want to see the message sent to you by phone, you'll have to find a PC, go to a site and type in a password.

We can see this service, which - get this - you have to pay for, becoming a huge success and people on buses jump off to nip into a Cybercafe to find out what their friend just sent them.

This is the most completely useless service that a mobile company has ever come up with - and there's been a fair amount of competition. But it also devilishly clever at the same time. If anyone knows how to tap into the irrational, posing aspect of mobile phones, it's Nokia.

Just look at how it almost single-handedly made mobiles not only fashion accessories but did that ludicrous lifestyle statement nonsense with it. People were getting the latest model, paying through the nose for it, and had no real idea why.

This time it hopes to do the same through introducing a fashionable service on a new fancy phone. Imagine the rush of teenage girls to get a phone that they can send a tiny animated pic of a bee with some music on it to someone that has to go to a computer to pick it up. Peer pressure hell.

And then of course us idiots will go and get one or be prompted into upgrading and pay just that little bit more before we're frothing at the mouth for 3G phones that offer video. Although of course, they won't.

Today will go down in history. ®

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