Windows Phone Thoughts - Daily News, Views, Rants and Raves

Be sure to register in our forums! Share your opinions, help others, and enter our contests.

Digital Home Thoughts

Loading feed...

Laptop Thoughts

Loading feed...

Android Thoughts

Loading feed...

All posts tagged "cell phone"

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Sunny Days: Staying Connected with the Monaco Solar Cell Charger

Posted by Don Tolson in "Windows Phone Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

Product Category: Accessories -- Solar powered cell phone charger
Manufacturer: Monaco
Where to Buy:
Price: $79.95 USD (regularly, but may be on sale...)
Specifications: Battery Capacity: 1800mAh; Weight: 93.5 grams / 3.3 oz; Dimensions: 55.5 x 105.8 x 14.5mm.


  • Convenient, lightweight;
  • Charges quickly in sunlight;
  • Suitable for almost any type of USB-powered device.


  • Regular price is a bit high, but vendor seems to be having discount sales;
  • Depending upon the consumption of your unit, the battery may only provide one day of use.

Summary: There are lots of emergency power accessories and options available for phones, games systems, music players, etc. but most suffer from a common shortcoming -- lack of power when you need them most, far away from a wall socket. Enter Monaco, with a different spin on a solution. Instead of providing just a battery or set of solar cells, why not combine them into a single package - a wall or solar chargeable battery pack!


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Mini Size, Maxi Features: The HTC HD Mini Reviewed

Posted by Doug Raeburn in "HTC Windows Phones" @ 07:00 AM

Product Category: Windows Mobile 6.5.3 Smartphone
Manufacturer: HTC
Where to buy: Expansys
Price: $339 USD Unlocked version
Specifications: From HTC site


  • Good performance;
  • Small and light - fits nicely in your hand and your pocket;
  • Capacitive touchscreen is responsive with fluid scrolling;
  • Most thoroughly "touch enabled" WM phone yet.


  • Capacitive buttons on front panel too easy to hit by accident;
  • Back cover difficult to remove;
  • Doesn't support 3G for AT&T.

Summary: Not too long ago, HTC introduced the HD2, which featured just about everything a Windows Mobile smartphone buyer could ask for. But it also had a couple of characteristics, namely comparatively large size and heavy weight, that didn't thrill some prospective buyers as much. So HTC subsequently introduced the HTC HD Mini in Europe, with the goal provide the bulk of the HD2's capabilities in a smaller and lighter form factor. How successful were they at achieving that goal? Join me as I research that question...


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Win an AT&T Pantech C820 Matrix Pro

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Events" @ 11:00 AM

I'm not quite done with the Windows Phone Thoughts re-launch contest: next up is an AT&T Pantech C820 Matrix Pro (Check out my review here.). It's a Windows Mobile Standard smartphone running Windows Mobile 6.1. I used one for a few months last year, and it's a surprisingly capable phone that's easy to use with the dual sliding input keyboards (the QWERTY keyboard and the 12-key dialling pad). It's locked to the AT&T network, so this contest is restricted to people living in the USA.

Want to win it? Just post a reply to this post telling me what your first mobile phone was - make, model, or whatever you can remember. That's it! I'll randomly select one winner on Thursday the 19th of August at 12 noon GMT -7. One post per person, and you'll want to make sure you have forum private message notifications turned on, because that's how I'll be notifying the winner. The winner will have 72 hours to get back to me to claim the prize.

I'm looking forward to reading about a lot of ancient cell phones - bonus points if you can post a link to an image of your first cell phone...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Mini-Microsoft Weighs in on the Death of KIN

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 02:05 PM

"Get out of the way Microsoft Bob, you have a replacement that Microsoft's Gen-Y employees can claim for their own! It's spelled K-I-N. KIN's demise can't surprise anyone. When I looked at the phone's features, I thought: alright, an incomplete Facebook experience that I cannot improve by installing new applications... and I pay $$ through the nose for a plan. But I've got a green dot and KIN Studio... maybe that will be enough to sell enough units to justify the Danger acquisition and the person-years of work behind getting KIN out. What the hell where all those people doing? I couldn't imagine anyone wanting the resulting iffy feature-phone at a smartphone cost, but KIN wasn't made for me. I was willing to let the market be the judge of KIN. Verdict? Guilty, guilty, guilty."

The Mini Microsoft blog is a treasure-trove of fascinating insider information about the company; having worked with (and for) Microsoft for years, I can see a fair amount of truth in the things written there. With KIN, sadly, Mini Microsoft seems right on the money. The comment replies to the post are also eye-opening...if even half of what's written is true, KIN was in trouble long before launch and should never have seen the light of day. Another good read on the subject is found over at Business Insider; it speaks to the sense of embarrassment felt by many at Microsoft Campus over the high-profile failure that KIN became. One thing is for sure: business schools will be studying the KIN debacle for years to come.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Microsoft Puts a Bullet in Kin's Head

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone News" @ 02:33 PM

"Just six weeks after launch, Microsoft's Kin, the social phone we wanted to love, is dead. Microsoft is pulling the plug, sources close to Microsoft tell us. There won't be a separate Kin product anymore. Effective immediately, Andy Lees is shoving the entire Kin team into the core Windows Phone 7 team, so there will just be one big group to focus on Windows Phone 7."

And there you have it. After only a few months Kin, launched with much fanfare, has been terminated by Microsoft. You can look at this one of two ways: Read more...

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Hands-On With the Samsung Omnia Pro 4 B7350

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Samsung Windows Phones" @ 12:30 PM

"This morning I was fortunate to attend the local Microsoft Office 2010 launch event for consumers, after the Microsoft Office 2010 launch event for businesses back in May. One of the cool things for me as a Windows Phone enthusiast was a demo of Microsoft Office Mobile 2010 on the Samsung Omnia Pro 4 B7350, which was announced today on the CommunicAsia 2010 event."

As a long-time fan of the front-keyboard messenger-style devices, I like what this device has to offer - while I was initially impressed with the touchscreen keyboard on my HD2, after extended use I have to say it needs so much more work before it's usable without frustration. Read more...

Sony Ericsson Prepping the "Julie" for Windows Phone 7 Launch?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 01:00 AM

"Sony Ericsson has been struggling to keep up with the Android release cycle, but apparently that is not going to stop them from dabbling with other platforms. According to unconfirmed rumors, Sony Ericsson is currently working on a mysterious Windows Phone 7 powered device, codenamed Julie."

Very little is known about the Julie, other than it's rumoured to have a four inch screen and have a sliding keyboard - and the usual bevy of Windows Phone 7-required hardware, including a 1+ Ghz processor, a capacitive screen, etc.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

WM Experts In-Depth KIN Review

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 09:00 AM

"In looking at the Microsoft KIN, we've taken a look at the design of the KIN and the KIN's software. In this last part of the review, we pull everything together and look at the KIN's performance. As was mentioned at the start, while the KIN is a Windows Phone I don't think it was ever intended to take the place of a Windows Phone running Windows Mobile or Windows Phone 7. However, after using the KIN for some time now, it is a good alternative for someone wanting more than your standard feature phone but less than a Windows Phone running Windows Mobile."

WM Experts has been spending some serious time with the Kin lately - first they looked at the design, then they looked at the software, and in this third part, they're looking at the performance, camera, and other aspects of the product. What I find quite fascinating about KIN reviews is that, generally, the geeky reviewers who look at phones all the time aren't very impressed with KIN...but younger people using feature phones all seem to think it's a pretty cool system. And the younger, feature-phone using market is exactly whom Microsoft was targeting. I really like Matt Miller's work in this article, and in this one, where he involves his teenager daughters in testing the products. I still maintain that Microsoft and Verizon really screwed up with the pricing of the data plans, but from a product perspective, Microsoft's KIN team seems to have really nailed it for the target demographic they're going after.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Look at the Speaker-Amplifying Kin Battery Cover

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 01:18 PM

"Back in the day i was really into car audio and one of the things i was fascinated with was the designing and building of speaker boxes. The basic reason a speaker needs a box is to combat the cancellation of the in and out of phase sound waves. When a speaker makes a sound the cone moves forward, but the cone must move back to its original position it also makes a sound firing in the opposite direction. These two sound waves are opposites or what is referred to as our of phase. So what the speaker box aims to do is to negate these backward cone movements with a sealed and angled charmers."

It's pretty slick how the Kin was designed to amplify the power of the on-board speakers...clever design is great to see in any product!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Some Thoughts on the Kin by a Windows Phone Thoughts Community Member

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 06:00 AM

"The Kin appealed to me the moment it was announced. I am not in the target market for the device but I was still intrigued by it. My mobile phone history is varied. I have owned Symbian and Blackberry devices as well as at least one model of Windows phone from each of the various names it has gone through. At present I have an HTC Touch Diamond 2 for my work phone. I also have a simple Samsung SGH a777 that I use for strictly personal needs. I am very interested in the upcoming Windows Phone 7 devices, and like many others, think the Dell Lightning looks promising."

randallewis, one of our very own Windows Phone Thoughts community members, has posted a great write up in our forums about the Kin that he bought. It's well worth the read to understand what the Kin offers, and how it's positioned against current smartphones.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Dell Lightning: One Hot Windows Phone 7 Device!

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 04:39 PM

We knew that Dell was one of the Windows Phone 7 launch partners, but I wasn't expecting something like this from them - to be honest, I didn't know what I was expecting - but the Lightning looks awesome! I'm digging that keyboard if the device thickness is kept under control. I generally adore my HD2, but the on screen keyboard sucks. It really, really sucks. Until someone can come up with a software keyboard as good as what Apple has on the iPhone, I really want to have a hardware keyboard on my next phone.

Engadget has a few slides from a leaked PowerPoint deck, but the basic rundown is a 1 Ghz Snapdragon processor (the QSD8250), a 4.1 inch OLED screen at WVGA (800 x 480), AT&T and T-Mobile 3G support (in the same model? Maybe two models?), a five megapixel autofocus camera (I think I see a flash there too), 1 GB of Flash memory with 512 MB RAM, and 8 GB of storage on an attached-to-the-motherboard microSD card (presumably). It also has a GPS, accelerometer, compass, FM radio, and apparently...full Flash support. Flash support? Really? Hrm. Not sure if I buy that - Microsoft has been pretty up-front about the lack of Flash support at launch. Q4 is the release date, so no surprises there. The surprise? Apparently it's going to get an upgrade to LTE in Q4 of 2011. An OEM willing to offer a significant device upgrade a year after it comes out? Times have changed folks - and that's a good thing. Hop on over to Engadget to check out the device.

So you Windows phone 7 haters - still planning on staying away? ;-)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Hands-On With the HTC HD Mini

Posted by Jason Dunn in "HTC Windows Phones" @ 12:30 AM

I'm actually surprised to see a video - I wasn't expecting to see this phone in the hands of anyone yet...this is a short video, but it gives you the overall basics of the HTC HD Mini. If the price is right, this could be a very popular phone!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Sony Ericsson Aspen Hands-On Video

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Windows Phones" @ 11:22 PM

I can't understand a word of the dialogue, but the video speaks for itself - the Aspen looks like one nice device if you're the kind of person who likes the front-facing QWERTY messaging devices (and until the HD2 came my way, that was my #1 preferred device style). Oh, be prepared for some psychedelic white balance issues in the's trippy!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Nvidia Announces Next Gen Tegra

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune News" @ 03:09 PM

Nvidia had their CES press event today and among the announcements were details on the next generation Tegra chip. The Tegra powers, among other things, the Zune HD and from everything I’ve seen it’s a very impressive chip already. The current Tegra runs the ARM11 chip. The new Tegra is going to be running the dual core Cortex-A9.

They also said that there will be 8 independent processors so if I understand the transcript from Engadget correctly, that means 16 cores total on the new Tegra (I didn't understand correctly. Thanks bitbyte for pointing out there are actually 2 Cortex A9 processors). All while only consuming 500 milliwatts. They claim this will allow for 140 hours of music and 16 hours of HD video but of course, that will depend on a lot of factors unrelated to the Tegra alone.

Nvidia’s biggest announcement for Tegra is that it will be powering all Audi cars starting in 2011. I assume that means the 2012 model years but they don’t specify in the live blog on Engadget. There is no mention of the Zune or other devices specifically but they do say there are 50 devices in the pipe for the new Tegra.

I think a combination of Tegra, Windows Phone 7, and the Zune all on one platform could make for a killer device.

Check out the rest of the live blog on Engadget. They have other announcements involving 3D on our laptops, which I’m sure everyone is excited about and lots of great pictures and slides from the Nvidia’s presentation.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Microsoft's My Phone Service Put to the Test

Posted by Eriq Cook in "Windows Phone Software" @ 09:00 PM

"The short video segment showcases the Microsoft My Phone service which, amongst other things, allows users to locate and retrieve a lost mobile phone. Watch as host Natali DelConte tosses her AT&T HTC Pure into the back of a cab as it drives straight into the heart of New York City. Laugh Be concerned when the GPS signal fails and the phone is no longer traceable, seemingly lost forever..."

CNET's Senior Editor Natali DelConte tested Microsoft's My Phone tracking service, which helps users locate misplaced (or stolen) smartphones, by throwing it into the back of a cab in New York City and seeing how successful she is recovering it by using the service. In the end the GPS tracking feature didn't help, but the phone was returned by a good samaritan who saw a message on the phone's screen that was sent using the service. Read more...

The AT&T LG eXpo Unboxing and First Impressions

Posted by Jason Dunn in "LG Windows Phones" @ 01:15 PM

This is a two-part unboxing and first impressions video of the AT&T LG eXpo. The LG eXpo is a Windows phone, running Windows Mobile 6.5, and runs on the AT&T GSM network. It's a quad-band GSM phone, and a tri-band 3G phone, supporting the 850/1900/2100 bands. It's the first smartphone to be sold in North America that features the Qualcomm "SnapDragon" processor, which runs at 1024 mhz. The LG eXpo has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 512 MB of ROM, 256 MB of RAM, GPS, Bluetooth, 802.11b/g WiFi, and is 0.63 inches thick. Read more...

Monday, December 21, 2009

HTC Touch HD2 Deep Dive Software Walk-Through

Posted by Jason Dunn in "HTC Windows Phones" @ 02:00 PM

The HTC HD2 [affiliate] is a device worthy of much coverage - it's really a ground-breaking Windows Mobile device, and a big part of that is the software that HTC has put such huge effort into creating. This is a two-part video walk-through of the HTC "secret sauce": HTC Sense, a.k.a. TouchFlo 3D. The second video is after the break - enjoy, and let me know if you have any questions about the device or the software. Read more...

My Unboxing Video of the LG eXpo Won't Be Like This...

Posted by Jason Dunn in "LG Windows Phones" @ 12:47 PM

An LG eXpo showed up today! I'll be shooting an unboxing and first impressions video of it later this week - but I figured I'd share this somewhat amusing video in the meantime. It gives a decent overview of what's in the phone, though you've got to wonder why someone would go through all the trouble of making this video and not post it to YouTube in HD or even HQ format. Oh well. Give it a view...

Friday, December 18, 2009

First Impressions of the HTC HD2: Yowzers!

Posted by Jason Dunn in "HTC Windows Phones" @ 07:00 AM

This is a two-part unboxing and first impressions video of the HTC HD2 [affiliate], a Windows phone running Windows Mobile 6.5. The HTC HD2 has is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, at an amazing 1024 Mhz. It has 512 MB of ROM, 448 MB of RAM, and a microSDHC card slot for expansion up to 32 GB. It weighs 5.54 ounces (157 grams), and measures 11mm thin (0.43"), 120.5mm tall (4.74"), and 67mm across (2.64"). Read more...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tegra 2 Details Coming At CES

Posted by Josh Sorenson in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 03:30 PM

"Full details regarding Tegra 2 are unknown, but it's expected to have roughly twice the power and graphical capabilities of the original and be based on 40nm processes. The current-gen Tegra is already capable of 1080p HD video; Hara says NVIDIA's goal is the desktop internet and media experience in a portable device:"

The first Tegra chip is mouth watering enough, but imagine a chip that can handle twice what the current Tegra does. That is just what Nvidia's Tegra 2 is rumored to do. They are set to release more details at CES 2010, including some demo products from their partners. The first half of next year will bring us tablet PCs, smartbooks, netbooks, and MIDs all powered by Tegra 2. Later down the line will we see a second generation Zune HD based off of the new chip? Or a Windows phone? Only time will tell on that one.

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...