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GSM Treo Pro now unlocked!

The CDMA (Sprint) version of the Palm Treo Pro has been unlocked for a while now, meaning you can load custom ROMs and, especially, Windows Mobile 6.5.

Uber-hacker cmnoex has released a version of her hardSPL tool for the GSM version of the phone. A slight word of warning, however, from cmonex herself:

OK right now I don't have time for the final tests (am still without a device) but I suppose it works. let me know if it does.

Grab the unlocker at ppcgeeks. Any brave souls out there willing to give it a go? Let us know (and let cmonex know) in the comments. (And don't forget to donate to your favorite chef!)

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Palm finished with Windows Mobile

We hate to see it happen, but it's really not that much of a surprise:

After pumping out a half-dozen Windows Mobile devices, Palm officially is finished with the operating system and will focus solely on webOS. Our pals at just broke the news from John Rubenstein himself during a financial conference call:

Due to importance of webOS to our overall strategy, we've made the decision to dedicate all future develoment resources to the evolution of webOS. Which means that going forward, our roadmap will include only Palm webOS-based devices

That's definitely a bummer for all you Windows Mobile Treo fans (and we certainly have our share around here). But strategically, it makes sense. Palm will be able to throw all of its resources into webOS, as it really needs to be doing.

The good news, at least for those of you lugging around Treo Pros, is that you'll still be able to partake in the Windows Mobile 6.5 fun, thanks to custom ROMs.

Fare thee well, Palm. Thanks for many years of solid Windows Mobile devices. You'll be missed.

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Thanks to some eagle-eyed (and tenacious!) forum members, it looks like Verizon has slapped a big ol' "While Supplies Last!" badge on the venerable Palm Treo 700wx (as if the exclamation mark is really necessary).

Usually that's a good sign that the device's run is coming to a quiet end.

Coincidentally, forum member Scott who has been relentlessly hounding Verizon on the status of the Treo 800w, has nailed those guys down to a specific date for release: October 12th.

(see our earlier coverage here)

Sometimes, the stars just align perfectly and everything comes together. Stay tuned...

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Review: Smartphone Experts Sync & Charge Cable with Tips

Geeks (like myself) tend to have a lot of gadgets. Those gadgets tend to come with an assortment of cabling for power, audio and synchronization. Trying to sell a geek more cabling can be like pulling teeth, unless that cabling helps cut down on the existing cable clutter.

Smartphone Experts produces a number of Sync & Charge solutions for various Smartphones, including several that offer retractable cabling that allows for easy storage and transportation. The problem with these types of solutions can be that they are locked down to one device manufacturer or model. This problem is handled elegantly by this option.

Stick around for the full rundown.


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Rubenstein takes over as Palm CEO

While our pals over at at TreoCentral certainly see the lion's share of Palm news, let us not forget that Palm still has a strong Windows Mobile showing, most recently with the Treo Pro.

And with that we join with our Pre- and Treo-loving brethren as we congratulate Jon Rubinstein in becoming the new CEO of Palm, and also offer our thanks to Ed Colligan, who led the company for 16 years and the release of six Windows Mobile phones.

Rubenstein takes over on Friday. Colligan will take some time off, Palm said in a statement, then join Elevation Partners, which came to Palm's financial rescue in late 2008.

So to Colligan, we say thanks. Windows Mobile Treos are what brought many of us into the smartphone world. And to Rubenstein, we again offer our congratulations on a successful launch of the Pre, and we hope to see more for Windows Mobile in the months ahead.

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Sprint Treo 800w User Guide

As we get closer and closer to that inevitable date of July 13th (but probably earlier for some if they can find 'em in a store), more info on the 800w is being found.

In our forums, member Tawp has done some hunting and managed to find the new user guide for the 320x320 WM6.1 device.

(Sprint link is down; Mirror below)

We haven't gone over the manual with a fine tooth comb yet, but if we find anything that we don't already know (doubtful) we'll be sure to post it in the forums.

Thanks MinistrOfJustiz

--> Mirror for User Guide

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Sure, the Treo 800w was a blip on the Windows Mobile radar and has now even disappeared from Sprint's Web site. But eight months after its release, one cool feature has now been discovered:  the 800w can act as a USB host.

So what does that all mean?  In short, with a cheap $8 adapter cable (like those found here on eBay) you can connect up all sorts of USB devices that don't require separate drivers to run.  Such devices include external hard disk drives, USB flash drives, USB headphones/mics, and for bnsguy, a USB ultrasound probe!

What makes this unique is that at the moment, very few WM devices can act as a USB host (if you happen to know any, drop us a line) and to be honest, it is a really cool feature that we would like to see on future devices.

After the jump, we'll post a few shots of what this setup looks like on the 800w and some various USB devices that can run on it!

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I'll always have a special place in my heart for the Palm Treo 750 — my first smartphone. Felt great in the hand. Tremendous keyboard. Great on calls (at least for me). And so I get a warm feeling in my tummy seeing a video like this.

The 750 was passed over for an update to Windows Mobile 6.1, but of course the chefs at XDA Developers took care of that. And now we see a 6.5 build on the venerable ol' phone.

Of course, hacking your phone is bad, unofficial, not necessarily legal, may cause joint pain and loosen teeth, is not safe for small children and some animals, and almost assuredly won't help you with the opposite sex.

But it's nice seeing some new life breathed into an old phone.

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With all the hub-bub about CTIA, we let this one slip under our radar: Verizon and Palm let loose the WM6 update for the very long-in-the-tooth (but reliable as heck) Treo 700wx. (nay on the 700w, though check out Ebag's custom ROM for that one).

The update can be found here and is the usual ActiveSync installation.

Users in our forum are reporting that their devices are actually zippier than before, while a few say slightly more sluggish, so YMMV.

Improvements in WM6 include:

  • Calendar functionality - See the big picture at a glance. A Topline bar in the agenda view shows when you're free or busy, and when you have scheduling conflicts. Drill down to view meeting attendees, contact information, acceptance status, and reply-to or forward meeting requests.

  • Email support- Send and receive HTML emails with tables, bullets, and colored text intact1,2,The "smart filter" for contact search is available so you can search for emails stored on your company's Exchange Server2. Send an automated "out-of-office" message from your device2.

  • Office 2007 support - Open and edit Microsoft Office Word and Microsoft Office Excel® documents, and view Microsoft Office PowerPoint® documents. Backward compatible with Office 2003.

  • Windows Vista® compatibility - Easily sync your smartphone to your Windows Vista PC, via the Windows Mobile Device Centre (WMDC).

  • Powerful security and IT policies2 - Remotely wipe devices and SD cards clean in case of loss or theft. Plus, IT can create and enforce tougher security policies, such as password protection to better manage the entire device fleet.

  • Email hot keys - Work in the fast lane with single-key access to your most frequently used email functions. Press "r" to reply, "a" to reply all, or "m" to move to one of your folders.

  • Email Inbox search - Find that important document or email. Automatically search for attachments, senders, or keywords by simply typing a few letters while you're in your email inbox.

  • Access Sharepoint - Get what you need then get going. Access documents stored on your company's SharePoint servers via links in HTML emails1,2.

  • Voice Command via Bluetooth® wireless technology - Get more done while you stay hands-free3, Dial by voice, or hear your upcoming appointments with your Bluetooth headset.

Sure some of us have been using WM6 on our old WM Treos for months now, but official is still nice. Too bad it is not WM6.1 though.

Treo™ 700wx Updater 1.24

Thanks to Broncot and post your experiences or ask questions here!

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Unless you've been living under a rock, you're probably aware of the excitement surrounding the Palm Pre. And that that quickly turned the long-awaited carrier-supported versions of the Treo Pro into a red-headed stepchild. (The same sort of thing happened when the Treo Pro was announced not long after the Treo 800w first became available, much to the chagrin of a number of 800w owners.)

Of course, all that affects the bottom line.

Last week, Palm announced that its revenue for the third quarter would be $85 million to $90 million. Wall Street had been expecting $150 million for the quarter.

Today, Palm has put 18.5 million shares of its stock back on the market, giving it at least $49 million more in cash and increasing its stock price a bit. Palm's main investor, Elevation Partners, likely will use a chunk of that money to buy back that stock at the higher price, thus making all the investors a little happier and keeping the company afloat (or as Dieter notes over at, on the metaphorical ropes), at least for now.

So what's it all mean? Basically, the future of Palm (at least for now) appears to be solidly resting on the Palm Pre. And that directly affects Windows Mobile, which we're still expecting to be supported on the Treo line. So let's keep our fingers crossed for our WebOS cousins, shall we?

Electronista and Information Week

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Welp, after a few weeks they finally got it done and better late than never. Those determined members (Ebag333, NightRaven and some brave testers) managed to beat Verizon and Palm to the punch and get a fully working WM6 AKU 4.2 ROM on the Treo 700wx (Sprint, Verizon, Alltel).

Best part? There are two versions: one is a "trimmed down" setup, where a bunch of unnecessary files have been junked saving space and making it speedier and suitable for making your own "custom ROM". The other is just straight up WM6.

Also check out Ebag's new GUI front-end for his ROM kitchen, which should make things a wee bit easier for you newbie chef's out there ;-)

So, some initial thoughts on WM6? SDHC does not seem to work at this point--but there is a lot of reason to believe this is just a matter of finding one of the many SDHC drivers floating around. Everything else seems great though: it's quite fast (not as fast as WM5 though), the graphics are much better looking, messaging and calendar are way better than WM5.

Bottom line: if you don't mind the risk of flashing your device and you can take the time to carefully follow directions, it is definitely worth it. (Get it HERE)

Post your comments below and hop into the original thread and post your feedback.

Wanna see some screen shots of WM6? Click the link to see a small gallery.

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Around SPE - 9 Nov 2008

This week's Around SPE is sponsored by the the TiPb iPhone Accessory Store, which has long been your best source for iPhone accessories. A lot of iPhone 3G upgraders were left out in the cold when their car chargers turned out to not be compatible, but they've got plenty that are, not to mention plenty of headphones that are a step up compared to the standard white buds

Last week both and WMExperts found themselves on the cusp of major releases -- the BlackBerry Storm, BlackBerry Bold on AT&T, the HTC Fuze on AT&T, not to mention a few others on the Windows Mobile side. So while everybody has been anticipating new devices, all of the editors at SPE are anticipating something else that will be starting on November 17th. The hint is right up there in the picture!

Read on for the full skinny on what's been happening around SPE!


WMExperts made a big splash Friday afternoon with the 'net's first and only video of the HTC Fuze for AT&T! Be sure to check back Monday morning because we're also cooking up a full review of this latest and greatest Windows Mobile smartphone. It looks like the Fuze release date has finally been pinned down, too.

WMExperts also tends to cover some more general industry news, so all the action at the FCC last week definitely caught our eye. Lastly, we're more than a little proud of our writer George Ponder, who used a Treo Pro to help manage the election in his district.

Over at, thousands of BlackBerry enthusiasts rejoiced as AT&T stayed true to their promised November 4th release date and launched the Bold. Picking election day turned out to be a smart move for AT&T and RIM, as stations like CNN played the new AT&T BlackBerry Bold commercial all day long.

The BlackBerry Storm, RIM's first touchscreen BlackBerry, continues to build on the hype leading up to its launch. Vodafone has dropped word of a November 14th release, and the Vodafone BlackBerry Storm bus has been traveling London which has turned out a bunch of Storm preview videos. While Verizon has not given official on the availability of their Storm, the educated rumor points to the week of the 23rd.

You'll want to keep it locked to this week. The What Would You Do for a BlackBerry Storm? Contest has come to an end and the top ten finalists have been selected. In order to win their new BlackBerry, the winners have to carry out their “To Dos” which will be published on as they come in. The first one hits on Monday!

The iPhone Blog

According to JD Power, the iPhone is absolutely destroying the Blackberry in *business* satisfaction due to it's drop dead ease of use and killer UI, but does Apple just not “get” the Four Pillars of PIM, something Palm nailed way back in 1997? Probably not, as the latest iPhone OS 2.2 leaks focus on over-the-air podcast downloads (admittedly super sweet!) and yet more App Store tweaks.

Speaking of the App Store, turns out Opera Mini was NOT denied (but probably would be), WeightBot's developers aren't done innovating on the iPhone just yet, and Shazam wants a piece of Midomi in our App vs. App battle royal for music mastery. (Leave a comment and you just might win an iTunes gift certificate). Of course, if you want to win a whole slew stuff -- an Ultimate iPhone Accessory Pack no less -- check out the Phone Different to find out this week's way to enter (hint: requires @theiphoneblog and rhymes with “sweet”.)


Over at TreoCentral, we learned via a Barron's article that analysts at Avian Securities and Morgan Keegan downgraded PALM due to the belief that Palm's cash position will significantly erode ($248 million at the end of the latest quarter to $75 million over the next year) which leaves “little room for error.” The downgrade was also due to a U.S. retailer survey resulting in the belief that smartphone sales will come in below expectations for the next several quarters.

We also found out in that same Barron's article that we might not (corrected, thanks Scott!) be seeing the Treo Pro on AT&T and the Treo 800w on Verizon in time for the holiday shopping season.

Plus we learned that Apple almost bought Palm back in the summer of 1997. Jean-Louis Gassée noted in an article over at Monday Note:

A perhaps little known fact: in the Summer of 1997, Steve Jobs called Eric Benhamou, 3Com's CEO (the company owned Palm). “Give me the Palm and come and join my Board of Directors. Only Apple can make Palm a true consumer brand.” Nothing happened. Apple's foray into the product segment had to wait ten more years.

Android Central

We've settled in over at Android Central, now that the G1 seems to be out there and getting used by a surprisingly large number of people. Just check out these download statistics for the Android Market to see what we mean, or check out some the backstory behind Android Apps.

Our favorite new app: the Android Gameboy emulator! A close 2nd favorite use for the G1 might be the newly discovered tethering method, though. Meanwhile, we're keeping our eye on the just-discovered Android Jailbreak and security risks that have popped up.

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My Perfect Treo Pro Setup

Yes, folks, my Treo Pro just landed here at WMExperts. Big thanks to everybody who sent in tips that their Treo Pros have shipped. If this weren't the internet, I'd invite you to touch my blessed, blessed head. Since we've already covered the thing six ways from Sunday (Find the full Treo Pro Review and links to a lot more coverage here), I figured the thing to do was lay out just how exactly I'm rocking this thing.

After the break, find Dieter's list of what's installed on his Treo Pro and what accessories he's rocking with it, too.


SPB Mobile Shell 2 ($29.95)

What can I say about Mobile Shell that hasn't already been said in this full review? Not much: except that I still love it and using it with a flush screen makes it even better. I don't use their custom Today Screen replacement, however, as I prefer the modularity of their standard Today Screen Plugin

Kinoma Play ($29.99)

Are you surprised after I gushed about Kinoma Play in our review? You shouldn't be. Kinoma Play + 3.5mm headset jack + 8 gig memory card == bliss.

Resco File Explorer 2008 ($29.95)

Read the full review. If you want a powerhouse file manager and a great Registry editor, Resco is the one.

Opera Mobile 9.5 Beta (Free)

It's not perfect, but it's still my favorite next-gen browser for Windows Mobile Pro Touchscreen devices.

Skyfire .8 (free)

Just out and just great for multimedia web browsing.

SEVEN Beta (free)

Still the easiest way to get push email from non-Exchange email. Note: they're moving offices right now (Sept 26th), so there will be some intermittent downtime

GooSync (Free or Subscription)

I live in Gmail, so I need that gmail contact and calendar info synced. GooSync is the best of what I've tried.

GPSToday (free)

GPS Info on your today screen: as Malatesta said, is “killer.”

BeeJive IM (Free)

My favorite multi-client IM app right now.

...That about does it for software that's not baked-in. Of course I use Live Search, Google Maps, Telenav, and a few other pieces of built-in software like, oh, Outlook on a daily basis. I'll be adding some games and a few other games and bits as time goes on.


maximo iMetal Isolation Headset ($69.95)

The stock headphones with the Treo Pro aren't actually all that bad, but I need noise isolating headphones and I didn't really want to give up having a microphone and button. These maximos do the job quite nicely.

BlueAnt Z9i ($74.95)

It's my favorite Bluetooth headset right now -- check out our review of its precedessor, the Z9.

SPE Sync 'n Charge Retractable Cable ($11.95)

Good in a pinch and small.

SanDisk 8gb microSDHC Card ($89.95)

Two of them, actually.

Redfly Mobile Companion ($199)

Yep, I need to pay for this stuff too and yep, the $200 price drop got me to purchase the Redfly.

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Treo Pro Q & A: Removing the Battery Door

As people receive their Treo Pros the questions are rolling in. I just listed out my must-have apps, but there's plenty more to talk about here. What do you want to know about the Treo Pro? Hit us up in the comments and we'll hit ya back next week with answers.

I've received no fewer than 5 instances of the same question from folks -- folks who have the Treo Pro in-hand, mind you. The question: how the heck do you remove the battery door. The video above should help.

So what'll it be? What else can we tell you about the Treo Pro?

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