Thursday, September 17, 2009
Posted by Ed Hansberry in "Pocket PC News" @ 01:00 PM
"UAE mobile phone company i-mate has gone out of business, according to market sources. The company, which mainly sold branded smartphones, has closed its office in Dubai Internet City and founder and CEO Jim Morrison is believed to have left the country."
iMate came on the scene really strongly with the Windows Mobile 2003 SE devices like the PDA2K which had a keyboard that slid out from the bottom. They really hit their stride with WinMo 5 with the K-Jam, JasJar and many others. These were HTC devices, but iMate was selling them unlocked to consumers through various retail outlets, and this made them popular with a lot of users. When things soured between them and HTC, iMate contracted to have their own devices made, but it was never really the same. It also didn't help that they rarely provided OS upgrades for their devices, free or otherwise. Even their updates often proved buggy. More than once I had to rely on XDA Developers for a fix to some new bug introduced in an updated ROM. Even with 100% reproducible bugs confirmed by dozens of posts at various sites, they just shrugged it of saying they couldn't repro so it must not be their problem.
I hate to see anyone lose their job and feel for all of the iMate employees that have been let go recently, but as far as I can tell, the main culprit is upper management that favored profit over customer satisfaction. I hope any of you with a device under warranty have no problems with it.