Review: Quotestream


Functionality
At a basic level, you can quickly check out individual stocks based on symbol (as well as do symbol lookups), and add them quickly to your portfolio. In addition to the range of stock information (last trade, change, % change, volume), you can also pull up news by sector, such as Financial and Technology, as well as by topic, such as Stock Splits or Acquisitions. The interface for news browsing is a bit wonky. You need to first select the bullet, then select Open Details through the menu. Three clicks seems a bit excessive to get to a news item, doesn’t it?

By default, stock information is delayed by 15-20 minutes, which can be changed to real-time streaming. The handheld FAQ tells you to “login to your account manager and follow the online instructions”, which is actually a way of evading the point that you need to pay $10/month extra for real-time information. Irksome, but that little extra not only gets you streaming updates, but you can also access Level II information, where you can view bid and ask information live on your BlackBerry. It would have been much more helpful if the FAQ just came right out and said it. Beyond that, reception is highly temperamental. If I had anything short of 5 bars, Quotestream wouldn’t log in, and even with full reception sometimes I couldn’t get in.

Verdict
$10/month isn’t crazy for web, desktop and BlackBerry stock manages clients, and being able to scale up your plan for real-time stock information puts Quotestream at enterprise-level functionality. For all of its interface quirks, the bottom line is that Quotestream provides a wealth of information from handheld or desktop. We’ll be giving Quotestream 3 Tickertapes out of 5 - it’s not hurting in function, just ease of use. If you’re still interested, Quotestream II is in beta, and will be available as a free upgrade for folks who sign up now. You can pick up a copy here.

Comments [7 Responses]

Barry
October 27th, 2007 at 7:00 am

Thanks for the review, since you gave it 3 out of 5, any suggestions for a better Blackberry client that has live stock info? What would be the top 2 competitors? Thanks in advance.

Dave Shworan
October 31st, 2007 at 12:37 pm

Hi Simon,

Thanks for doing the review of Quotestream Wireless.
I’ll respond to some of your comments…

“First off, clicking with the trackball didn’t activate menu items.”

The Quotestream Wireless application is written in J2ME and does not use the proprietary BlackBerry hooks (this is because it works on many other phones other than Blackberry), and the track-ball is part of the Blackberry hooks. That is why the menu key has to be pressed. Blackberry’s without trackballs (just scroll wheels, like the one I use) navigate quite well.

“Secondly, the default portfolio issues a popup alert every time one of the stocks change”

I believe this was a bug with that account. How was the account made? Was it made from our site, or did someone from QuoteMedia create the account for you? The popup alerts being triggered for every symbol is an anomaly and is not standard.

“Quotestream does very little talking with the BlackBerry OS, which is really too bad. Being able to save news stories in Memopad, or e-mail drastic stock changes on the fly would be really great features to have.”

Again, this is because of the J2ME language. Most people just switch to their email client and send messages and then click back to Quotestream (as I do). But this is good feedback.

“The interface for news browsing is a bit wonky. You need to first select the bullet, then select Open Details through the menu. Three clicks seems a bit excessive to get to a news item, doesn’t it?”

Again, this is because of the J2ME language. Radio buttons are required as Blackberry doesn’t allow a multiple line link. We couldn’t fit a whole headline on one line, so the radio button link to view the story is the best we could do with the Blackberry J2ME limitations.

“The handheld FAQ tells you to “login to your account manager and follow the online instructions”, which is actually a way of evading the point that you need to pay $10/month extra for real-time information.”

We are not trying to be deceptive, it is just that there are many real-time packages (US, CDN, Level 2, etc) and it’s too much to put into an FAQ. I believe everyone with market knowledge knows there are fees associated with real-time data. Otherwise, we would just make it real-time by default.

“Beyond that, reception is highly temperamental. If I had anything short of 5 bars, Quotestream wouldn’t log in, and even with full reception sometimes I couldn’t get in.”

Connectivity issues are not related to the Quotestream application. If connectivity to the internet is there, users can login. It’s a simple http request. I personally can login with even 1 bar. I believe it must be a network issue, as when I travel and switch networks, some are better than others. And not just for Quotestream, but for all Internet access.

Again, thanks for the review.
All the best,
Dave

Dave Shworan
CEO QuoteMedia

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February 27th, 2008 at 8:04 am

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