Tikl Me, Elmo

Somewhere between the world of SMS messages and voice calling is the land of two-way push-to-talk technology. Some cell-phone providers have this feature as an option for select phones, which makes your 2012-era cell phone act like a CB radio from the 1970s. Don't get me wrong, I understand there are situations when this is beneficial, but it still makes me laugh to see people using smartphones like walkie-talkies.

If you don't have the push-to-talk (PTT) feature from your cell-phone provider, you can download the free Tikl app from the Android Marketplace. Tikl allows you to use PTT technology with any other users that have Tikl installed on their phones. Because Tikl is available for both Android and iOS, it covers a wide variety of smartphones.

I don't use Tikl very often, but in my limited testing at a softball game, it worked as advertised. My daughter was able to give me her 10–20, and I was able to give her a big 10–4 on her request to play on the swings. Although using Tikl while driving probably is safer than texting, we still don't recommend it. It'd be tough to convince the Smokey that your Android smartphone is really a CB radio.

Shawn is Associate Editor here at Linux Journal, and has been around Linux since the beginning. He has a passion for open source, and he loves to teach. He also drinks too much coffee, which often shows in his writing.

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