Review: My Mobile Screensaver
Version Reviewed: 1.00
In the same way that SMS seemed to have appeared from nowhere and become really popular, the idea of themes is doing its best to become a big thing for the networks and carriers - of course, not every phone has the same theme engine as another - ask all the N-Gage freaks if they want the same theme support that the 6600 has, and they'd probably offer to write the code.
MyMobileScreensaver is hoping to capture one of the areas of the phone that hasn't been themed in Series 60 or UIQ, and that's the 'idle' screen. The 'idle' screen is the one that kicks in if you do nothing with your phone for a few minutes - the screensaver - you know, the one that shows the time on your phone when you leave it alone. Now, you can have a variety of different things on show in this display.
How It All Works
There are two parts to MyMobileScreensaver. The first is the Screensaver engine, which is a free download. This installs on your Series 60 or UIQ device, and sits in the background once you run it. When the system decides it's time to start the Screensaver, the engine takes over and shows the selected screensaver, rather than the sytem default.
What's nice is that the engine uses the times you've set on the Control panel, so it integrates itself into the phone's UI as much as possible. In addition, you've got a standard looking application to look over the installed screensavers, preview them, and alter any settings they may have.
All in all, the engine is stable, easy to install and use, and sits happily in the background. I've not noticed any slowdown or crashes in the three weeks I've been testing it.
Content is King
But what you really want to know is what the screensavers look like, and are they any good?
Let's start with the one screensaver you get with the engine, called "Blue Clock." It's a full screeen, analogue clock with enough contrast that you don't need to have the backlight on to see what's going on. This is probably my one problem with the Screensaver engine. There are times when I just want to put the backlight on, and not have the screensaver dissapear (for example, in the middle of the night). Apart from that, there are no complaints.
Getting extra modules is as simple as going to the web site, choosing a module and paying for it. Along with the traditional methods, Cascata have ensured you can order via SMS. There are a number of topics that group the screensavers, from Art, Sports and Nature, to branded content from Mr Bean and Basil Brush (very English). Screensavers themselves can be of different types. I've already mentioned one type, the "Clock" screensaver. There are others, from static images and slideshows, to picture frame screensavers. These are where you can take a picture, or supply a picture taken previously, and it will be framed inside a screensaver image.
All in all, there's a large amount of content, with regular updates. There's even an offer, hidden deep in the Contact page, about submitting ideas to the development team. The engine is currently 'closed' to content writers, but if you have a burning desire to make screensavers (or think you can sell bucketloads of them through your National Newspaper ad campaign) then the team would naturally like to hear from you.
A Well Rounded Application
I'm pretty sure anyone can find at least one of the Screensaver modules that they like, and is useful. Yes you could spend a lot of money buying up all the modules, but the previews on the web site are more than adequate, you're not going to be spending a fortune, and I think at least 25% of you will be happy with the default blue clock. So MyMobileScrenSaver is a great service for Symbian OS (being multi-platform really helps), and it's going to be something a lot of people like. It's not to everyone's tases, and it's not a killer app, but it does what it does really well. And that's the important thing when you find your corner of the market.
Reviewed by Ewan Spence at