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ScreenshotThis started life as an idea for a boxout in an article for PDA Essentials magazine. How often have you been stuck in a meeting (or long, boring conversation) and desperately wanted a good excuse to leave? Assuming you can't signal a secretary to call you up, why not make it easy to queue up an authentic phone ringing sound on your P800 or P900 in a minute or so's time? You then rise from your seat, going 'Hello? Yes? Excuse me, I must take this call..."

My idea was to make a little application out of this, but it turns out that it's trivial in UIQ's Time application, with the right phone sound queued up. It can be accomplished in three taps (two, if Time is already in the foreground). I put Time on my top 'Application Shortcuts', with one of my three alarm slots used for the bogus call. If you don't already have a suitable ringing sound sample, use this one instead.

The nice thing is that UIQ automatically assumes that you want the alarm at the end of the next minute, with your last chosen alarm sound. So, as I say, once you've set this up once, you can potentially queue a new one up in two screen taps.

The key to the illusion working, of course, is to queue it up as if you're checking your calendar, or making a note, then close your flip and put your smartphone aside. Then, when it rings, you act surprised, pick it up and press the same flip button to acknowledge the 'alarm' as you would to answer a normal phone call.