Mobile optimised search engine from Handycase appears

Here’s a new search engine with a bit of a difference aimed at the mobile phone fraternity from Handycase. Gune – which apparently means ‘site’ in Basque – currently scrapes from Google and Bing and outputs the results in a handset friendly fashion.

Previous efforts at creating a spiffing mobile search engine have mainly concentrated on only searching sites which are ‘mobile friendly’. With Gune the intention is to provide output which makes sense on a typical handset’s screen, whatever the original source.

Here’s a quote from Handycase’s head honcho, Ricardo Garay. “Gune is designed so that everyone can contribute to the directory – so anyone who has, or knows a mobile website, just visits our PC website and gives us their tip. Once checked and approved it goes onto the directory.”

In essence, the idea is to include sites which are purpose built for smartphones and the like but still display all the information you’d expect if you performed the search on a regular Google or Bing page instead of on a mobile phone.

Now we get to the tricky bit. The best way to promote Gune searching would be to install a Gune app onto your mobile phone. And in theory Handycase has done this.

If you visit the Gune launcher download page here,  there are loads of options.

The list includes straight Java; Blackberry Java; Palm OS and Web Runtime. Techeye wasn’t sure exactly which Nokia handsets actually run Web runtime but Handycase’s PC site posts a very useful link to a list of runtime handsets on the Nokia web site itself here.

That lists says that our trusty Nokia N95 should run the Web Runtime version of the Gune launcher. But it didn’t.

Never mind, we thought,  let’s try the standard Java version on both a Nokia N95 and a Nokia E66. Well, the app seemed to download OK but it just wouldn’t run. Something to do with a missing ‘Gune.jad’ file, perhaps?

Despite extensive efforts at debugging, Techeye still hadn’t got the Gune launcher app going.

This almost certainly has something to do with the fact that Handycase is actually a Brazilian software house that specialises in Palm OS apps and, more recently, Android apps. Nokia, obviously, isn’t its forte.

Still, going directly to the Gune search engine from your handset’s browser gets around these problems. Plus, Handycase is rather naturally promising that there will be Portuguese and Spanish versions of this app. Will there be a Basque version, too, one wonders?