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All posts tagged "smartphone"

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Windows Mobile Quick Reference Guide

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 05:00 PM

If you're new to the Windows Mobile scene, or work for company that uses Windows Mobile phone, and need a little reference guide to help you figure out what the heck we are talking about sometimes then do I have a present for you. Pocket PC FAQ has put together this simple one page PDF file that gives you the skinny on what all those pesky things on your homescreen or Today Screen are called. This guide is free for individuals to download and use but if you are a corporate user you will have to contact Pocket PC FAQ for details on licensing this guide and customization options.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Windows Mobile Device + Train Set = Fun

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 10:50 PM

"If you read my blog then you'll probably realise that I can be a little nuts at times. Every now and then I like to do some weird things with my Windows Mobile... Yesterday I decided to do something a bit more bizarre and plonked my HTC phone onto the carriage of a toy train set. "What?" I hear you cry. Well, I was helping my nephew with his train-set while Emily gave our son a bath, so I decided to film it because it was, quite possibly, the longest track we'd ever made... Yes, it's a little nuts, but this is what happens when you have kids ;)"

Tired of sitting around and twiddling your thumbs while we all patiently wait for the release of Windows Mobile 7? Well here is a little something to pass the time and maybe even give you a chuckle. Gears from has attached his Windows Mobile HTC handset to a electronic train set and has sent it down one of the longest toy train tracks I have ever seen constructed. It just goes on and on and on. You can see one of the videos above. To see the second clip point your browsers this way.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Celebrate The 4th of July with Astraware Fireworks!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 06:29 PM

"Astraware Fireworks is a simple FREE application, showing sequences of fireworks flying and exploding into the air. As 4th July is traditionally a time for fireworks and celebrations in the USA, the features have been created to help our American friends highlight one of their major holidays - Independence Day!"

Now you can enjoy fireworks anytime you want with Astrawares latest offerings for the mobile world. You can download this free application from Astraware's website or by going here.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Tech-ED EMEA - Windows Mobile Track - Give Jason your ideas!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 10:58 PM

"This year I've got the great honour of running the Tech-Ed EMEA Windows Mobile Track! This is the first time Windows Mobile has had it's own track at Tech-Ed so I want to make sure it is the best track at the whole conference! To do that I need your help... What sessions do you want to see being run at Tech-Ed EMEA for Windows Mobile?"

Jason Langridge is sending out an SOS to all of us Windows Mobile users. As stated above Jason is running this year’s Tech-Ed EMEA Windows Mobile Track and needs our help in deciding what should be run this year. There are a few suggestions such as Windows Mobile 6.1, development, security and more. If you would like to help Jason out you can do so by posting a comment on his blog here.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

LG Bringing Christmas in June to California!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 10:31 PM

"On the first of July, California residents will no longer be allowed to talk on the phone while driving, without using hands-free accessories. This is the reason, tomorrow LG Mobile will give away more than a thousand Bluetooth headsets at a special event. It will be hosted in Los Angeles, at the Petersen Automotive Museum (6060 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90036) from 11AM to 1:30PM (or while supplies last) on the 19th of June. All are welcome."

First off, I apologize we're posting this so late. I didn't catch wind of this story until 20 minutes ago. Now on for the goodies! LG is showing a lot of love to cellular phone users in Los Angeles, CA. As the post says above you LG will be giving away 1000+ Bluetooth headsets between the hours of 11AM and 1:30PM PST on Thursday June 19th, 2008. If you live in the Los Angeles area you should take an early lunch tomorrow and treat yourself to little gift because nothing says fun like brand spanking new electronics before lunch! To get your free headset you have to go to the following address:

Petersen Automotive Museum [map]
6060 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Glastonbury's Wind and Solar Phone Charging Tent

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 01:16 PM

"If you accidentally leave for Glasto without your pocket solar charger or HYmini hand-held wind charger, fret not -- you'll be able to power your phone at a dedicated renewable energy tent. Built by Orange, the 'recharge Pod' is a seven-metre high tent with 500 watt solar panels and a 500 watt wind turbine on the roof that'll generate electricity for dead mobile phones."

This has to be one of the coolest things I have seen all week. Words cannot describe how badly I want one of these tents! Sure it wouldn't be very practice as I do not have 100 phones to charge but can you imagine having a slimmed down personal version of this tent? Maybe something powerful enough so you could take it camping and charge whatever electronics you brought with you and even power an electric hot plate. Sure you could cook your food over a fire but chances are if you're reading this site you're a fan of tinkering with technology and this is some pretty cool technology. Sort of makes you wonder why the heck we don't have similar solar and wind powered setups like this everywhere... you know, without the tent portion and just the clean renewable energy that portion.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

HTC Windows Mobile Device in Q1 2009

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 10:26 AM

"If you're apt to believe it, supposedly a regional HTC GM by the name of Kevin Chen flapped his lips about the first Windows Mobile 7 devices launching in Q109 -- so between six and nine months from now. We reached HTC, which had no (further) comment on the matter, but everything we've seen about 7 so far kind of leads us to believe that 7-based devices launching before next year's Mobile World Congress sounds a bit premature, even if that doesn't necessarily jibe with the MWg roadmap (which promised devices possibly even later this year)."

[Photo courtesy of Engadget]

The possibility of have having a brand spanking new Windows Mobile 7 device in my hands by my birthday is pretty exciting - even if the thought of waiting until next year for Microsoft’s new mobile operating system is a little bit daunting. While I can completely understand Microsoft's recent stance at keeping every new product with a '7' in its name super hush-hush, I still wish the Powers That Be would throw us a bone and let us know how development is going. To be honest, I don't even care about feature XYZ; I just want a little reassurance from Microsoft that they're still in the game. Is that so much to ask?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Astraware Bubble Babble for Windows Mobile Now Available

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 12:42 PM

"Challenge your word power with this undersea bubble-bursting brain teaser! Link together letter bubbles to form words and impress Wordsworth Smartygills - your friendly fishy host! Bubble Babble includes a fun interactive tutorial to teach you how to play with the bubbles and make words from them. Score points for each word you make. Impress Wordsworth with more complex or unusual words and he'll reward you with shiny shells for your collection!"

Astraware has released Bubble Babble for the Windows Mobile platform. This undersea puzzle game puts you in the center of the ocean so you can spell out words with bubbles. Sounds silly when you say it out loud but I'm sure like all Astraware games this game will help you kill that dreaded downtime when you're out and about and need something to do. Normally this game would cost you a whopping $19.95 but from now until June 21st, 2008 you can pick this game up from our affiliate store(s) for a low $9.95. [SPT] [PPCT]

Be sure to pick up your copy today! Continue reading for the full press release. Read more...

Monday, June 2, 2008

Qualcomm Spills the Beans on Windows Mobile 7

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 09:25 PM

"Maybe those calls for 'Vista light' on UMPCs and MIDs are getting answered with Windows Mobile 7. While you could use a Celio REDFLY paired to a Windows Mobile phone for a similar experience now, Qualcomm is already showing off a portable device on Engadget Mobile to exemplify the potential here. In fact, SVP Luis Pinada alluded to that just today: 'Microsoft Windows Mobile 7, which is made for chips used in mobile phones, will be more laptop friendly than older versions of Windows Mobile.'"

[Photo courtesy of Engadget]

According to Engadget Mobile, Qualcomm will be releasing a Windows Mobile 7 powered handset which will be powered by their Snapdragon mobile CPU. The device is supposed to make "big presence in Snapdragon-based devices at CES 2009" and pack a $299USD price point that is almost as tiny as the device pictured above. This tiny powerhouse will also come equipped with 3G mobile Internet technology. All and all, not too shabby Qualcomm! If only 2009 wasn't so far away...

Thursday, May 29, 2008

mDesktop - Remote Control Your Windows Mobile Device with Ease

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 10:09 PM

Everything you do with your Windows Mobile smartphone you can now do from your PC - on your big screen, big keyboard and complete integration with your desktop. With mDesktop on your PC and Windows Mobile smartphone connected to it you can: make outgoing calls from the smartphones address book, manage incoming ones with ease from your desktop, have threaded SMS conversations, manage images, manage calendar and contacts straight on your phone, no synchronization required.

I took a bit of time to play around with mDesktop today and I have to admit that it is pretty impressive. Being able to control my handset without having to type away on the tiny QWERTY keyboard was refreshing. Also when using mDesktop, installing CAB files on your device from your desktop couldn't be any easier and the same can be said for taking screenshots of your phones display. If you were looking for a somewhat inexpensive way to remote control your handset you can pick up MotionApps mDesktop today from their website for $19.99.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Microsoft Crosses Fingers: Hopes for 50% Smartphone Growth by 2009

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 11:16 AM

"TAIPEI, May 27 (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp expects global unit sales of its Windows Mobile software for cellphones to grow at least 50 percent per year in fiscal years 2008 and 2009 as demand for smartphones rises rapidly. 'Fifty percent growth is the minimum,' Eddie Wu, the software company's managing director of OEM embedded devices Asia, told Reuters on the sidelines of a news conference on Tuesday. He said Microsoft expects to sell 20 million units in its 2007/2008 fiscal year ending in June, and expects to grow at least 50 percent annually over the next two years. It sold over 11 million units of its Windows Mobile software in its 2006/2007 fiscal year ended June. 'We're actually still seeing very good growth (for our mobile software) in markets like Europe and the United States,' said Wu. Wu added that growth of Windows Mobile is seen fastest in Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Brazil, Russia and India."

11 million units worldwide is an incredible feat and with all the fancy new handsets popping up like the new Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1 and the HTC Touch Diamond, it is pretty much a no brainer that Microsoft will hit their now hopeful 50% increase and then some. Now if one the manufactures out there would stop ignoring us poor Windows Mobile Standard users and release something nice and customized for us, I would be a happy man! It is not fair that our Windows Mobile Professional brothers get all the fun while we're stuck with the same ol' non-jaw dropping interface. It might be time for me to get over my unnatural hatred for smudges and pick up a HTC Touch Diamond.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Rural Wireless Carriers File FCC Petition Opposing Handset Exclusivity

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 08:36 PM

"If you thought you were annoyed when one of the big wireless carriers locked up a phone you were after, you have no idea how frustrated small and rural wireless carriers are -- they've just filed a petition with FCC seeking to ban the practice. The 80 companies in the Rural Cellular Association serve small markets not well-covered by the big guys, like parts of New Mexico, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, North Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming, and they say that carrier exclusivity deals not affect their bottom line, but also deprive consumers of desirable phones like the iPhone and upcoming Blackberry Bold. They've actually got a pretty good point: lots of rural customers can't purchase and use an iPhone without technically breaking the AT&T service agreement. We'll see how this one goes -- although we'd love nothing more than to use any phone we wanted on any carrier, there are plenty of reasons it won't happen, and exclusivity is the easiest way for carriers to differentiate themselves to consumers."

As a consumer I really hope that in the coming years we start to see an end to all of the exclusivity contracts. I can understand them to a point but in the case of the iPhone, as mentioned above, was five years really necessary? Also I think the iPhone is a horrible example of a handset to use an example here since a lot of the rural carriers I can think of off the top of my head all run off of CDMA networks and the iPhone is a GSM and soon to be HSDPA handset. Even if the exclusivity deal was not in place, do you really expect Apple to make a CDMA version just to be fair to the little guys? A lot of high-end handsets have trouble selling in densely populated areas and if there is not enough customer demand to convince the big five to open shops in those rural areas, what makes the little carriers think they could even secure those fancy handsets in the first place?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

iPass Provides Wi-Fi Connectivity for Windows Mobile 6 Devices

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 03:30 PM


"REDWOOD SHORES, Calif., BUSINESS WIRE -- iPass, Inc. (NASDAQ: IPAS), a long-time leader in providing mobility services to some of the world's largest companies, today announced service availability for Windows Mobile 6 devices. Users of the iPass Mobile Office service for enterprises and iPassConnect(TM) mobility service for individuals can now connect to the Internet via Wi-Fi using their Windows Mobile 6 smartphone and handheld devices. With more than 100,000 business-class hotspots worldwide, (also announced today), iPass Wi-Fi connectivity gives smart phone users a high performance, inexpensive alternative to 2.5G and 3G access provided by cellular providers. For international business travelers, the cost savings can be especially significant when they use Wi-Fi to avoid the high roaming fees mobile operators charge for out-of-country usage."

You know at first I thought this was a good idea and then I decided to take a walk with my girlfriends T-Mobile SDA and ran across exactly 8 open Wi-Fi hotspots that I was able to connect to within an hour’s timeframe. Is a service like this even necessary nowadays? If you do need this service, you can subscribe to one iPass's monthly plans which start out at $9.95 and can get as high as $14.95 for their Global Wi-Fi connect plan. You can view their site and sign up for their services here.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Put Windows Live on Your Windows Mobile Phone

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 11:08 PM

"Windows Live for Windows Mobile is now available to download for your Windows Mobile phone. Windows Live for Windows Mobile lets Windows Mobile users sync their email from Windows Live Hotmail as well as their Windows Live Contacts. Just download the .cab file for the version of Windows Mobile you are running (Standard or Professional). Windows Live for Windows Mobile works on phones running both Windows Mobile and Windows Mobile 6 (and 6.1)."

It seems like just yesterday we were reporting on the Beta version being available for download, huh? Well Windows Live is now available and ready for download in final version form. While Windows Live isn't exactly on my must have software list - mostly due to the incredibly annoying integration of my Exchange contacts with my Windows Live contacts - the program did serve to be pretty handy the few times that I did use it. According to Neowin and Windows Live Messenger has been removed as to not interfere with revenue that the carrier would normally make off SMS... which I find utterly ridiculous because the same argument could be made for email and Microsoft chose to leave Hotmail integration in with this software package. Oh well. You can download the latest version of Windows Live for Windows Mobile Smartphones and Pocket PCs here.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Yahoo! Go 3.0 Beta Released For Windows Mobile!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 11:48 AM

"Looks like Yahoo Go development is continuing apace with the release of Yahoo Go 3 (Beta). You can grab a download here, but a perusal of the compatible devices list seems to indicate that it's only compatible with Windows Mobile Standard for now. New features include: An integrated at-a-glance Yahoo screen, improved Yahoo oneSearch, prettier design and navigation, full-on widget support, with in-app widgets like MySpace and eBay"

[Photo courtesy of WMExperts]

Be forewarned before using this application. After I installed it and fired it up to start playing with it, I was informed that that this pretty hefty 2.5MB program that just installed itself to my device needed to connect to the internet to finish installation. I could not tell by the wording that was used if it was just to configure the service to your Yahoo! username or to download additional files. Either way if you are not on an unlimited data plan please pay attention to your data usage so you are not surprised by a large bill next month! From what I can see there is a fair amount of communication with the 'Cloud'. My initial impression is that this is a pretty slick application. The application dock on the main screen is beautifully designed and easy to navigate. Animations did seem a little jerky though. I will play around with this application for a few days before passing final judgment on it, but so far I like what I see!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Homebrew ROM Updates Over The Air via AppToDate?

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Talk" @ 01:00 PM

"Microsoft has built Windows Update into the OS and nobody uses it, and everybody blames everybody else for the fact that today, we still can't keep our devices up to date without tethering with a PC... While the people who supply us our devices decide who takes responsibility for deploying our updates, and as scores of users take to trying 'Cooked ROMs' to get the features they want, why not develop an OTA (Over The Air) update method of our own? It sure is possible using the work already done by others on custom bootloaders, and the work i've already done with AppToDate."

I was incredibly excited when Windows Update was announced for the Windows Mobile platform. Logic fooled me into thinking that if Windows Update was being included with our new devices then Microsoft most have cooked up a plan to issue us system updates without the need to flash our devices - and risk something going wrong and bricking our handsets - or even distribute updates to software packages like Office Mobile or Live Search Mobile. Unfortunately at this moment in time I cannot think of anything that was distributed via Windows Update at all. This is why I love the idea behind AppToDate. The whole concept behind this application is so simplistic and beautiful that I am completely baffled as to why a system such as this is not included with our handsets!

As the video above shows it is perfectly within our grasps to issue complete system upgrades over the air without the need to connect our devices to our computers. Personally I would never feel comfortable upgrading a device in such a way, but it can be done! Read more...

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Win a Copy of SpaceTime 3.0

Posted by Darius Wey in "Pocket PC Events" @ 11:00 PM

We're armed with copies of SpaceTime 3.0 to give away, so you know what that means. That's right - contest time again here at Pocket PC Thoughts and Smartphone Thoughts. If you love maths, you're going to love SpaceTime. Here's what it offers:

"SpaceTime 3.0 by SpaceTime Mathematics is a revolution in mathematics software with 2D, 3D, and time graphing with MobileCAS® for algebra and calculus. With features only available in Mathematica and MATLAB, SpaceTime is the most powerful cross-platform mathematics software ever developed for computers and mobile devices."

We have one all-platforms license and two platform-specific licenses up for grabs. To be in the running, all you have to do is post the answer to "sin (90 degrees)" in this thread by 11:59am (GMT) on Sunday, May 11, 2008. Winners will be announced the following week. Good luck!

Update: Thanks to all who entered. The contest has now closed. Winners will be announced shortly.

DivX Mobile Player 0.90 Released for Windows Mobile

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 04:15 PM

"DivX Mobile Player 0.90 makes installation easier through signed packages, improves battery life with better power management, supports alternate screen orientations for the Motorola Q and Windows Mobile phones, and is now localized for Spanish and Portuguese. Windows Mobile 2003+ and Symbian OS 9+ downloads are available from the DivX Mobile Community homepage. Please note that you need to subscribe to the DivX Mobile Community group to access these downloads. Subscription is open and free."

I spent a few minutes playing around with this today and I have to say, I'm pretty impressed. The previous version of the DivX Mobile Player that we reported on was pretty buggy, slow, and severally distorted your screen layout on landscape devices such as the Motorola Q and the Samsung Blackjack upon exiting the application. From what I saw in the brief bit I time I spent playing with version 0.90, all of the problems have seemed to have disappeared and video playback on my Samsung Blackjack was speedy and showed no signs of lag what-so-ever. I have only had time to play around with the included demo videos but I will attempt to play some of my own DivX videos later tonight to see how far along this application has really come. For those curious to give this application a test drive you can download copies of both the Windows Mobile Professional and Standard version here.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Skyfire Beta v0.6 Now Available For Download!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 07:00 PM

"Skyfire is a free, downloadable mobile web browser that makes browsing on your phone exactly like browsing on your PC. Now, you can use the web from your mobile phone with unprecedented speed and simplicity. For the first time ever, you can watch any web video, listen to any web music, stay connected on any social network and browse whatever you want. Anything you can browse from your PC, you can now browse from your mobile phone. We’re talking about full-featured PC versions of your favorite web sites. Skyfire gives you speedy page loads, full audio, video, images, dynamic Flash content, advanced Ajax, Java and more – just like your PC."

I received an email a few days ago informing me that Skyfire Beta v0.6 Internet browser is now available for download. According to an email, I would receive a SMS message within 24 hours with a link to download the newest browser. Unfortunately that still has not happened yet. For those of you that are a part of the Skyfire Beta, I would be on the lookout for this new version! If you're not a part of the current Beta and are interested in being a part of the second Beta program for the Skyfire browser you can do so by registering here.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Acer Outlines Smartphone Plans

Posted by Darius Wey in "Pocket PC News" @ 07:25 AM

"Acer will likely launch its first smartphone near the end of this year or early next year and it will be a Microsoft-based device, the president of the company said Wednesday. Smartphones will represent as much as 10 percent of Acer's revenue in the next few years, said Gianfranco Lanci, president of Acer, at the company's first quarter investors' conference in Taipei... Acer's quick entry into the smartphone market comes largely due to its NT$9 billion (US$297.3 million) agreement last month to purchase handheld device maker E-Ten Information Systems of Taiwan. E-Ten has developed and sold several smartphone models over the past several years, including its Windows Mobile 6.0-based Glofish smartphone with GPS (Global Positioning System), in addition to other handheld electronic devices such as GPS devices and pocket PCs. Acer plans to focus on smartphones. E-Ten has already stopped selling PDAs, and GPS is already becoming a standard part of other devices instead of just on stand-alone gadgets, said Lanci. E-Ten has only sold its handsets directly to the retail market in the past. The boards of directors at Acer and E-Ten have already approved the deal, but they still face shareholder votes and approval by government regulators. The companies expect the deal to close in the third quarter of this year."

I cringed toward the end of this article. Either Lanci had his information wrong, or InfoWorld misquoted him. E-TEN hasn't stopped selling PDAs yet. Two new models, the M750 and M810, have just hit the market, and the V900 is still on track for a second half release. On top of that, the company's products certainly haven't been limited to direct retail market sales only as the article otherwise suggests. Nitpicking aside, Acer is hoping to complete the acquisition of E-TEN by the end of Q3, and have a new Windows Mobile phone out the door by early '09. Its specs is anyone's guess, although I sure hope they focus more on functionality and less on turning it into another Ferrari.

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