The biggest question surrounding the introduction of Samsung's own smartphone operating system Bada is also the most obvious: "Why?" And while Samsung have a pretty predictable response to that question, the real potential for the platform is not in smartphones alone - it's in the potential to interact with other IT devices like televisions. I tried out an early demo of this exact application yesterday at the Bada developer day in Sydney.
The fishing demo I tried out yesterday was a very early conceptual demo, showing that it's possible to control apps on a Samsung TV with a Bada mobile as the controller. Samsung reckons that we'll start seeing proper apps of this type by the end of the year, depending on the imagination of their developers.
The app itself, titled Fishing Star is a fishing game which uses the Bada phone as your rod. The accelerometer in the phone lets you cast out the line and reel it back in, once a fish has taken the bait. How hard you wave your arm around like a madman dictates how fast you try and reel the fish in. Too slowly and the fish gets away, too quickly and you'll break your line.
Considering it was more a proof of concept than a real app, the program worked surprisingly well. There was some fairly significant lag, and I'm pretty sure that played a big part in letting my second fish get away. The controls on the mobile for letting out more line or bringing it in a bit was a either too sensitive or not sensitive enough, depending on the occasion. Considering the phone connects to the TV directly over Wi-Fi, you'd expect it to be a little more responsive.
Samsung also have a Texas Hold 'em demo app that wasn't running at the developer day - on the phone you get your own two cards, while the TV displays the rest of the hand.
It's still a long, LONG way off getting anywhere near replacing your Xbox or PlayStation, but it is an interesting proposition and something Samsung are rather uniquely placed to implement. It'll be interesting to see where it goes...