Microsoft helps Android users remotely control their phones

UNEXPECTED: on{X} lets you control and extend the capabilities of your Android phone using a JavaScript API to remotely program it. – Microsoft/Relaxnews 2012

In an unlikely turn of events, Microsoft has launched a website and mobile application for Android smartphone owners that enables them to remotely control and program their own device.

The service is called on{X} and is still in beta, but it paints a great picture of some of the new time-, action- and location-aware ways in which we will use our smartphones in the future.

“Wouldn’t you like to program your phone to automatically send a reply SMS with your current location as you’re driving, when your wife texts you a ‘where?’ message?” asks Eran Yariv, engineering manager at the Microsoft Israel R&D centre in a blog post introducing the service.

“How about programming your phone to automatically show you today’s agenda as you step into your office? Or today’s weather as you wake up in the morning?”

This new breed of app remains on in the background and uses the phone’s sensors to proactively automate everyday actions – such as texting your partner when you leave the office or showing your horoscope in the morning.

Once users have the application installed on their phone, they can visit the on{X} website to write or adapt short pieces of JavaScript code that tell the phone to perform actions and react to everyday events.

For now, on{X} is targeted at developers and tech enthusiasts with basic coding knowledge. However, there is already a growing catalogue of “pre-canned recipes” (codes) that enable mobile owners to trigger events when the phone’s sensors detect that “user mode-of-transport just changed from walking to driving” or “user left home.”

Eran Yariv says that there are plans to bring on{X} to additional platforms in the future. – Relaxnews 2012

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