Quick Clicks: Reuters Launches Wireless Apps On BlackBerry, iPhone

Hold 'em or fold 'em? Wall Street investors need to know what the world financial markets are doing 24x7. To help bulls, bears and brokers on the go, Thomson Reuters on Monday launched News Pro, a free app for the RIM BlackBerry and Apple iPhone that provides realtime stock market data. Multimedia content includes customized business news, photos, regional market data, company data and personalized stock tabs. The apps also provide offline browsing.

The News Pro app on BlackBerry is geared more toward business users. Although the app for iPhone and iPod touch also features financial news, there's a general news focus, such as world headlines, science, tech, health, sports and entertainment news. The application currently is available in English for the U.S., U.K., Canada and India.

Thomson Reuters worked with Kansas City, Mo., developer Handmark on the app. Handmark also has developed mobile apps for a slew of other news and entertainment providers.

Although the News Pro app certainly will be welcomed by mobile device users, Thomson Reuters is a bit late to the party. Business content already is available from powerhouses such as The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Forbes and The Associated Press. So, it remains to be seen what Thomson Reuters will be able to bring to the table in the already-crowded playing field.

The Wall Street Journal Mobile Reader app for the iPhone and iTunes was launched last month. It is also free, and in addition to financial news, offers exclusive Journal video and podcasts.

Before Mayor Michael Bloomberg began running New York, he made -- and still continues to make -- a fortune in providing breaking as-it-happens market news. His company's best-known product is the Bloomberg Terminal, a desktop system costing $3,000 or more each, which is used by financial institutions. The terminals provide access to Bloomberg Professional, a service that enables users to perform trades, conduct research and communicate with central banks, investment institutions, commercial banks, government offices and agencies, law firms and corporations in 150 countries.

While you won't get anywhere near the breadth of those abilities, you can download a free Bloomberg app to a BlackBerry, iPhone or Windows Mobile device. Bloomberg launched its mobile service, which lets users send messages, get stock alerts, news, realtime price charts, market trends and create a customized stock tracker, in October 2008. The company also has several free podcasts for download from Apple's iTunes store.