windows mobile

Hey, Microsoft, your Silverlight is showing

We're still waiting for some real Silverlight-enabled apps for Windows Mobile, but Microsoft is diving in head-first on the desktop side.

And this time they're showing off their Flash competitor on another Windows Mobile portal, with a focus on enterprise and getting-things-done applications.

You'll find such goodies as:

  • SportsDo, a GPS sports tracking platform.
  • Fizz Traveller (which we've reviewed before).
  • Resco Sudoku, to relieve "the pressures of the day," "relieve tension and stimulate your mind."
  • MSCMDM, for when you really have to have control.
  • And a host of others.

Head on over and check out what's available, and keep your fingers crossed that some Silverlight WinMo apps appear in the near future.

Windows Mobile Applications [via MSDN]


Any Lees, MS SVP of Mobile Communications, Speaks out on Windows Mobile

On a day when many are filled with equal parts joy and dismay on the iPhone side of life, let's not forget something important:

In terms of # of devices sold, Windows Mobile's growth over the last three months exceeded the total number of iPhones sold. Of course, that number was pretty seriously deflated by a lack of availability in the last month or so, but still: last quarter Microsoft shipped 4.5 million WM licenses -- up 1.8 million year over year to the iPhone's 1.7 million. That's some healthy worldwide marketshare right there.

That was Andy Lees point during his keynote at last week's partner conference. Lees also threw the gauntlet down when it comes to Enterprise App Development:

Nokia has -- and actually Apple, both have basic support for business productivity, Apple with their new update where they just provide very basic connectivity into Exchange, not as rich as you would get on Windows Mobile. But as far as the programming models that they provide, they really aren't robust enough for application development outside of the browser, and so for you to be able to provide application platform business solutions, certainly we provide a much richer way of doing that.

Lees also sat down for an interview with the::unwired and talked up similar points, though he did make a special note to discuss the consumer market and how Windows Mobile is going to address it better in the future.

So hit both articles up if you're tired of hearing iPhone users complain about having inactive phones, a nice antidote to today's media blitz.


Samsung i907 passes FCC, is AT&T-bound

Looks like another goodie from Samsung has made its way through the feds, and it appears headed for AT&T.

We should be able to expect at least 3G, WiFi and Bluetooth, but that's pretty much a given these days, right?

Another pic from the FCC is after the break. But my Korean's a little lacking. Feel free to translate in the comments.

Thanks to Marco for the tip.


Control your phone from your desktop

There's something strangely perverse about using your desktop to control a Windows Mobile device, but there are times when it makes sense.

Enter the recently updated My Mobiler, which does exactly that, and more.

In addition to simply controlling your device, including emulating most of the buttons, you can:

  • Cut and paste from the device to the desktop, and vice-versa.
  • Capture screenshots.
  • Capture video of your device.
  • Drag and drop files to your device.

My Mobiler is freeware and works on WinMo 5, 6.0 and (if you're living in the past) CE.

[via]


What the iPhone 3G can do for you

OK, we get it. There are two days left until the iPhone 3G is released. Yes, reviews are beginning to flow. Lines are forming the world 'round.

But what are we, the Windows Mobile faithful, getting out of all this madness?

Last year, just before the launch of the 2G iPhone, AT&T upgraded its EDGE network for the almighty to take advantage.

This time around, it appears 3G coverage is getting beefed up in the more "rural" markets that until recently have been EDGE-bound, great news for those of us who don't live in a major metro but aren't exactly in the sticks, either.

This isn't that much of a surprise, given that AT&T told us about their expansion plans some time ago.

The AT&T 3G network is now available in more than 280 U.S. major metropolitan areas. The company will deliver 3G service to nearly 350 leading U.S. markets by the end of 2008.

Other plans for 2008 include the completion of the nation's first High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA)-enabled network by the middle of the year. The AT&T 3G network now delivers LaptopConnect users typical downlink speeds ranging between 700 kilobits per second (Kbps) and 1.7 megabits per second (Mbps), and faster uplink speeds ranging between 500 Kbps and 1.2 Mbps. The faster uplink speeds allow users to quickly send large files and take full advantage of the latest Internet and business applications.

Check out the AT&T 3G Expansion threads on HowardForums, and let us know in the comments if you suddenly have a whole new outlook on life faster data speeds.


Viigo unleashes Project Tango on Windows Mobile

We've long been fans of Viigo's mobile RSS reader, and we were practically salivating when we got our first look at Project Tango on the BlackBerry.

And now, Viigo has released a free beta Project Tango application for Windows Mobile devices.

Included in the current beta is support for:

  • News and RSS
  • Audio and podcasts(!)
  • Weather
  • Sports
  • Entertainment
  • Stocks
  • Finance

And coming up we should see airline flight info and local search. Also, if you already use Viigo, your feeds can be imported to Project Tango from your My Viigo account.

The BlackBerry edition of Project Tango teamed up with the WES conference in May, and the WinMo version is dubbed the "Microsoft Worldwide Partners Conference edition" in conjunction with this week's shindig in Houston.

Viigo Project Tango for Windows Mobile

Edit: Anyone else having problems getting to the download site on their device, or problems with the desktop installer? Let us know in the comments. From your mobile device, go to www.GetViigo.com/wpc. (The address in the text message I received was bad.)


MWg Zinc II - Welcome to America

Chalk up another contestant for Malatesta's Black Slab beauty contest, though this is probably as close as you'll get to it.

Introducing the MWg Zinc II (that'd be for Singapore's Mobile & Wireless Group), making its  U.S. debut after spending some time across the pond in Europe.

The specs aren't shabby.

  • UMTS Tri-band, GSM Quad-band
  • HSDPA 3.6 Mbps
  • Samsung 500 Mhz
  • 2.8” TFT QVGA (Touch Screen)
  • Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional
  • Semi-automatic sliding mechanism with qwerty keypad
  • WLAN (802.11 b/g) and BT v 2.0
  • 2MP Camera (rear-facing)
  • GPS : SirF Star III
  • Dimension: 109.5 x 59 x 18 mm

But the price is hefty: Upwards of $700 from your favorite online retailer, as no U.S. carrier is offering (read: subsidizing) this one. However, MWg appears to be hoping to change that.

“MWg has established a full operation in the US focused on developing MWg as a recognized brand in the region. The Zinc II is the first new device to be released in this market and will be sold unlocked through various channels including retailers, e-tailers, corporate resellers and systems integrators.”


Go hands-free on your device's speakerphone

The recent law that several states passed requiring motorists to use hands-free devices (i.e. Bluetooth headsets and speakerphones) is undoubtedly a good thing.

But if you're still on the fence, SpeakerPhone - Auto On is a freeware app that runs in the background and will, as the name suggests, automatically turn on your device's speakerphone when you receive a call.

Be sure to grab the latest version of the app, and follow the installation instructions.

[via]


Blow up your phone

Follow a night full of fireworks filling the sky with a day of fireworks filling your WinMo screen.

Astraware (the geniuses who brought us Bejeweled) unleashed a free Fireworks app for the July 4 holiday, and you can still snag it if you want.

OK, it's not quite the same as sending miniature ICBMs into the sky. But it's free. And you're far less likely to blow off your hand.

Astraware Fireworks [via MSDN]


HTC 'Neon 400' may be a CDMA Touch Dual

While you were busy spending your Independence Day stuffing yourself with hot dogs and hamburgers, another iteration of HTC's Touch Dual was working its way through the FCC.

As Endgadget Mobile points out, the "Neon" designation points to the Touch family, and the FCC testing shows a CDMA radio.

So, customers of Alltel/Verizon and/or Sprint or may have another Windows Mobile device (and big brother to the keypadless HTC Touch, which all two three carriers are currently selling) to look forward to in the coming months.

And for a look at what may be in store (minus carrier customizations, of course), check out Dieter's recent review of the unlocked GSM Touch Dual.

NEON400 FCC filing


Toshiba Portege G810: Hello, goodbye ...

We had high so-so hopes for the Toshiba Portege G810, with SPB's Mobile Shell built into the interface from the get-go, and Pocket Plus and Full Screen Keyboard thrown in for good measure.

But Pocket Now has run the device through its paces. And while the guts of the G810 are still nothing to sneeze at (and you gotta love the lights), a lack of tactile feel from physical buttons and beyond sub-par battery life are cited as reasons to pass on this one, especially with a $700 price tag.

Read the full, extensive review here.

Via Engadget Mobile


Windows Mobile Knows When You Lie

Next time you see a friendly officer with a Windows Mobile device you might want to think twice before you tell him about how you had to speed because you're on the way to the hospital.

Only because they could be using their device to see if you are lying! Starting this month, the Pentagon will be working on a device that will be issued to soldiers in Afghanistan to assist in lie detecting. Being such an advanced technology, it only makes sense that they use Windows Mobile to get the job done. They are hoping the new technology aids in narrowing suspects. In the screen shot you can see the interface in action sporting the good old fashioned Start button. Eat your heart out, polygraph.


The savior of Windows Mobile?

We've reported that Microsoft is taking mobile music more seriously, and that even Steve Ballmer thinks mobile Web browsing needs some improvement.

Enter J Allard, who has been promoted to "Chief Experience Officer" and "Chief Technology Officer" (and who has one of the coolest bio mugs out there).

You may know Allard from his previous work with Microsoft on the Xbox, the Zune, Windows NT and, everybody's favorite, TCP/IP (among another 30 or so products).

Windows Mobile is now under his auspices, which should lead to some promising developments for our beloved, but oft maligned, operating system.

From his updated executive bio:

J Allard is responsible for the technical architecture and user experiences related to products and services of the Entertainment and Devices (E&D) division. Allard works closely with technical leaders across the company to align E&D product teams with Microsoft's overall services strategy and product architecture, and drives the technical and design agenda to deliver Connected Entertainment experiences for consumers.


AT&T's WinMo roadmap for the rest of the year

Lookie, lookie. Someone's got their hands on the roadmap of upcoming devices for AT&T.

What you can expect later this year, in the fourth quarter:

New Pantech Duo:

  • Windows Mobile SP 6.1
  • Tri-band HSDPA (3.6)/Quad-band EDGE
  • 528 MHz Processor
  • 128MB RAM
  • 256MB ROM
  • USB, Bluetooth 2.0
  • Micro SD
  • 2 MP Camera
  • GPS

The current Pantech Duo will get a WinMo 6.1 upgrade in October.

Samsung Blackjack 2: Upgrade to 6.1 sometime this month.

Motorola Q9H: Upgrade to 6.1 sometime this month.

Samsung Blackjack 3 (the i788):

  • Windows Mobile SP 6.1
  • Tri-band HSDPA (3.6); Quad-band EDGE
  • 528 MHz processor
  • 128MB RAM/ 256MB ROM
  • Camera 3 MP
  • AGPS
  • VSC
  • WiFi

AT&T Tilt: Upgrade to 6.1 sometime this month.

AT&T Tilt 2:

  • Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional Edition
  • Tri-band HSDPA (3.6); Quad-band EDGE
  • Qualcomm 528 MHz processor
  • 256MB ROM/ 128MB RAM
  • 3.0 MP camera
  • WiFi; Bluetooth 2.0
  • PTT; AGPS
  • VSC (at launch)

Also: Another Samsung device in the fourth quarter, possibly the Omnia.

Bad news for Palm fans: The Treo 750 is specifically mentioned as NOT getting an upgrade to WinMo 6.1. No mention yet of the upcoming Treo 850, but that's not too big of a surprise.

Via Boy Genius Report


Meet the new Windows Mobile online

We've done our fair share of hating on Microsoft over Windows Mobile, and some much of it is deserved. But we're not above dishing out some unfettered love from time to time, and that's about what we have for the new Windows Mobile online.

The site is mainly geared for consumers, and does a pretty good job of going through the basics of Windows Mobile.

Join us after the jump for a more friendly Microsoft (yeah, we're going that far), one that takes the time to introduce you to Windows Mobile, your phone, and how to make it yours.

The home page

The page you see above is what you first see when you visit the site. You're greeted by a Verizon HTC Touch, and a scrolling list that helps you "Find the phone that fits." Hovering over a phone will display its name, operating system - odd that 6.1 is nowhere to be found - and what carrier you can find it on in the United States. Samsung, HTC and Motorola are represented, though Palm is conspicuously missing. We'll see if the upcoming Treo 800W or Treo 850, which should both sport WinMo 6.1, are added once they're released later this summer (we hope).

Receiving prominent placement is "TotalAccess," which we'll touch on in a little bit.

For now, let's dive into the nav bar at the top. Featured are:

  • Meet Windows Mobile
  • Choose Your Phone
  • Use Your Phone
  • Make It Yours
  • Total Access

Meet Windows Mobile

Ah ha! There's 6.1! And, Microsoft says, "Your mobile life is about to get much better." Better? Yeah. Much? Maybe. But there are a few items on this page that we'd like to point out.

  1. Compare versions: A chart that compares the features of WM 5.0, 6.0 and 6.1, standard and pro. (Actually, the list is so long it's a little unwieldy, but them's the breaks.)
  2. WinMo 6.1 FAQ: Translated, that's Windows Mobile 6.1 frequently asked questions. 'Nuff said.
  3. See the phones: Here's a rundown of phones currently available in the U.S. that are running WinMo 6.1.
  4. Windows Live: We've covered this pretty extensively, but think search, maps, e-mail.

Choose Your Phone

With the myriad devices on the market today, it can be pretty tough - overwhelming, even - to decide what will work best for you, and what will work best within your budget.

For our part, check out How To: Buy a Windows Mobile Phone. Boy, some of those phones look old now, but the principles behind making a decision still stand.

Here, Microsoft lets you drill down through the features, carriers and brands available. Standard vs. Pro. WiFi. GPS. Physical or on-screen keyboard. It's a very useful tool if you're not sure what's out there, or if you're helping someone else pick out their first smartphone. (Also check out our numerous device reviews and Phone Scoop's Phone Finder.)

Outside the U.S.? No problem. Pick your country from the drop-down list, and you're on your way.

Use Your Phone

This is why you bought the thing in the first place, right? This page is broken down into several basic sections.

  1. Getting started: Because, as the site says, you have to start somewhere.
  2. Personalizing: Make the phone your own, without third-party software.
  3. E-mailing and texting: Pretty self-explanatory, but it does tackle how to manage multiple e-mail accounts.
  4. Synchronizing your phone and PC: Still the bane of most WinMo users, to the point where many people only sync over the air. Maybe this will help.
  5. User forums: Find help from someone like you. Or someone more experienced than you.
  6. Support: How to get in touch with your carrier or device manufacturer.
  7. Notices and upgrades: Such as the Daylight Saving Time fix, for those who still need it, and upgrades to ActiveSync.

Make It Yours

Here's a repository of apps, including the usual Microsoft gang - Office Mobile, Live Search, Outlook Mobile, Internet Explorer Mobile (no longer Pocket IE?), Live, and Media Player Mobile.

The Windows Mobile Catalog features third-party apps, though it really serves as a portal to software retailers Handango and MobiHand.

Total Access - the elephant in the room

Evident on just about every page is a link to Total Access. Sign in with your Windows Live ID, and you'll get ... most of the same things you've gotten through the rest of the site, with a couple of bright spots. The best news is that it's all free.

  1. Ringtones, Extras and Add-ons: Preview and download two dozen ringtones (in WMA format, of course). Snag some wallpapers or download entire themes. The Halo 3 content isn't awful.
  2. Tips and premium help: Links to massive, Microsoft-esque PDFs that nobody will make it through. (Then you get an e-mail thanking you for downloading it.)
  3. Software, Services and More: Links to Live Search, an MSNBC.com mobile app, Zumobi and Viigo (which is a fan favorite around here).
  4. Member Benefits: See Nos. 1-3. A page to entice you to sign up.

Conclusion: A good start

It's good to see Microsoft making an earnest effort. Simplicity is key for the average user, and this site should offer some help. There's plenty of room for improvement, but this could prove to be a good step as we await Windows Mobile 7, and hope that such extensive how-to sites aren't even necessary.


Wired gets inside Android and its battle against the status quo

WMExperts is, strictly speaking, a Windows Mobile site. But we recognize good wireless industry prose when we see it, and we see it in Daniel Roth's piece in Wired magazine, "Google's Open Source Android Phone Will Free the Wireless Web."

Roth details the birth of Android - the brain child of Andy Rubin, seen above - and the Open Handset Alliance, created to directly compete against WinMo and Apple's iPhone, as well as to challenge the status quo among device makers, carriers and software/OS developers.

"But WMExperts," you say, "you were quick to post on a reported Android delay, and we could see the smirk on your face as you chalked up another point in the Windows Mobile column."

OK, we've been skeptical. But the story provides an interesting look at some of the behind-the-scenes problems with developers and carriers that Microsoft currently has to deal with, that Apple largely has bypassed, and that Google is learning to live with.

And besides. We're trying to be a little less evil.

An excerpt:

Microsoft's system, however, was the ugly stepsister of what Rubin was proposing: Redmond executives cared less about opening up the Net to mobile users than about tying the mobile operating system into its desktop dominance. A decade ago, Microsoft had underestimated the growth of the Web and then lost control of it to Google. Now it looked like it was Google's turn to be caught flat-footed.

Read "Google's Open Source Android Phone Will Free the Wireless Web"


The wait for Opera Mobile 9.5 is (almost) over

The long-awaited Opera Mobile 9.5 is nearly ready for the public. Opera has announced that an initial beta test is slated for July 15 at www.opera.com, and we'll all be able to get our grubby little hands on it.

Opera also addresses what's taken so long:

Some versions of Opera Mobile 9.5 are already shipping on great phones like the HTC Touch Diamond, and some of you have asked why we wouldn't be able to release it publically yet. As you probably know, releasing a version that works on a large variety of phones is more complex than making it work on one specific phone. You should also expect a few differences between the versions that are pre-installed on phones and the public version of Opera Mobile 9.5.

So, the beta version may contain a few differences than what was seen in a hands-on review back in February.


One-stop shopping for Google's WinMo apps

 

The Google Mobile Blog has alerted us to a new umbrella page for its mobile services.

Hit up www.google.com/mobile/winmo from your desktop for one-stop shopping for all of Google's mobile device products available on Windows Mobile, including Google Maps, Gmail, Picasa and their bread and butter, Internet search.

Nothing earth-shattering here, but it's all available under one roof, with some how-to videos thrown in as well. No mention of Google Gears, though.


Find your phone with Navizon's Mobfindr

Recently updated in the movement to invade your children's privacy, follow your cheating spouse, ...never lose your phone and locate your friends is Mobfindr from Navizon that will allow you to find the location of nearly any device with a text message.

How it works: The Navizon software utilizes "Virtual GPS", which uses WiFi and triangulation from cell towers to approximate your location. Mobfindr is a service that runs in the background. When an SMS containing a customized passphrase is sent to the Mobfindr-enabled device, it returns its approximate location (within about a mile) via text coordinates.

The Navizon software also features "group" and "buddy" services that allow you and your friends to locate each other.

You can try a free 15-day demo or shell out $24.99 for Navizon Premium. Mobfindr currently only works with the iPhone should be released as a separate application for WinMo and BlackBerry in the near future. A version for S60 devices also is in the works.

Peep video of the Mobfindr service after the break.


Play Commodore 64 on Windows Mobile

1982-83. A banner time for geeks and gamers the world 'round. Lotus 1-2-3. Reagan's "Star Wars" Strategic Defense Initiative. Pioneer 10 leaves the solar system. Nintendo goes on sale in Japan. Microsoft Word (word!).

And, of course, the Commodore 64.

In this age of dual-core and multitouch, it's sometimes nice to go back to a simpler era, when 8 bits were enough to get you through the day. Now, you can do it on your Windows Mobile device, thanks to Clickgamer's Pocket Commodore 64 Plus Vic 20.

Featured in this upgrade are:

  • A completely re-written new core and interface.
  • Complete user control over CPU frequency, disk frequency, vertical frame rate, border sizes, etc.
  • BIOS roms BUILT-IN! Choose from 7 Kernal ROMs and 2 disk ROMs!
  • Full menus, keyboard and paddle controls in landscape mode.
  • Customizable skins.
  • And much, much more!

Pocket C64 runs on all forms of Windows Mobile, standard and pro, and costs


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