Recent Articles

Headlines

5 years ago

Sprint Q2, er,Q9c to Hit Nov 23rd

6
6

Sprint Q2, er,Q9c to Hit Nov 23rd

Update: Looks like out intuition that it was the same clueless person who used a PalmOS screenshot on the image at right who also dubbed the Sprint Q9c the "Q2." Both have been fixed at Sprint's promo site. It will indeed be the Q9c, so we can breathe a sigh of relief about that. Then take another breath and hold it until Sprint releases the sucker on Black Friday.

Alright, I've had it. Motorola, listen up: You are not HTC. If you want to be HTC, you need to crank out a ton of different form factors. Just because you can't develop a coherent naming strategy doesn't mean you're competing with HTC. It's just silly.

I'm referring, of course, to the Smartphone-Formerly-Known-As-the-Motorola-Q9. Sprint's version is now apparently going to be known not at the “Q9C,” but as the “Q2.” Take that with a grain of salt, however, because the promo site that names it as such also slaps a PalmOS screenshot on the sucker. So what I'm saying is we can still believe in a Christmas miracle - Motorola and Sprint not confusing things by slapping a “2” after the “Q” instead of a “9.”

In any case, it's rumored to hit on Black Friday for $149.99 after rebates.

Read: Motorola Q9c Windows Mobile smartphone to hit Sprint on November 23rd

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

Zenzui is Zumobi, Still Chock Full of Tiled-Browsing Goodness

0

It looks like the folks who were making ZenZui (which we wrote about before) decided that “ZenZui” doesn't mean much - so ZenZui becomes Zumobi. That's “Zoom” and “Mobile” crammed together - which is awfully clever.

Nothing else about the “display web content in zoomable tiles instead of traditional browser windows” idea has changed if their snazzy flash demo is to be believed. What is different (and what's actually news here) is that they're finally going to be offering a public beta on December 14th.

They'll also be offering a “Zumobi SDK” so developers (and hopefully sub-developed-developers like little old me) will be able to create their own tiles for the platform.

Read: Zumobi via Jason Landridge

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

HTC Cruise Announced

3
3

HTC Cruise Announced

The Touch Cruise is looking to be the new king of the GSM hill - Quad-band GSM/EDGE/UMTS/HSDPA, WiFi, GPS, FM Radio, HTC's TouchFLO interface, and a decent amount of processor power and memory all wrapped up in a pretty slim form factor. That's 'slim' as in “no physical keyboard” slim, 15.5mm, just about 1.5 mm thicker than the original HTC Touch.

Actually, comparison-wise, the Touch Cruise pretty much beats up the original Touch in every conceivable category except size. The little guy even is going to come pre-loaded with TomTom GPS software (with maps for Europe, though). That “European map” bit is your clue that HTC is going to start selling it SIM-free in Europe and we don't have any US carrier info yet. We called up AT&T and they said something about front-facing cameras giving them an inferiority complex about their network and would we please stop bringing it up.

Go on and get your press release or your Official Specs, you crazy rascals.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

PC Mag Rounds Up Various WM Devices

1
1

PC Mag Rounds Up Various WM Devices


PC Magazine has come out with their best WM Phone List….is yours on it? Each phone on the list has a link to read a detailed review of it. Windows Mobile has been taking a beating lately, from David Pogue and also in the (I humbly admit, pretty accurate) feedback from the Round Robin over at Phone different and CrackBerry.com In my totally unbiased point of view of being a writer for WMExperts.com, I thought PC Mag's take was important as well:

We've taken Microsoft to task for the company's various faults in Windows Mobile 6. But despite our qualms, it's still our Editors' Choice for the best mobile operating system [...] What does Windows Mobile 6 offer compared with, say, BlackBerry, Palm, and Symbian operating systems? For starters, it integrates beautifully with Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Office, including out-of-the-box connectivity to corporate Exchange servers. Handsets running WM6 also serve as nifty portable media centers that synchronize well with Windows Media Player.

With praise like this I am sure some Palm, iPhone, & Blackberry lovers might be asking how much did Microsoft pay for advertising in this month’s PC Magazine! =) But here at WMExperts we all know that it is well deserved (setting aside, of course our must have list of improvements for the next version of the OS).

But as I mentioned above the best part is the list of their best choices of the current WM Phones. Whether you already own one of the phones on the list or are drooling over getting one of them, you will find their individual phone reviews very interesting to look at as well. You can find the full article and reviews here.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

Smartphone Round Robin: First Thoughts on the BlackBerry 8310

40
5 years ago

Samsung SCH-i760, Video First Look

5
5 years ago

Review: BlueAnt Supertooth II Speakerphone

6
5 years ago

Round Robin: Fond Farewell to the iPhone

15
5 years ago

Round Robin: iPhone Mike's Final Thoughts on the ATT Tilt

2
5 years ago

Sprint Touch - Video First Look

8
5 years ago

Pogue Hates Windows Mobile, Does It Need a UI Overhaul?

77

So David Pogue put up a review of the T-Mobile Shadow (Video First Look of the Shadow here) - I'm jealous because the Shadow is the device I'm itching to try out for real once the Smartphone Round Robin is over. He gives the hardware and the specs very high praise, but spends the bulk of his review railing against Windows Mobile.

Frankly, Windows Mobile 6 is a mess. Common features require an infinitude of taps and clicks, and the ones you need most are buried in menus. Apparently the Windows Mobile 6 team learned absolutely nothing from Windows Mobile 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.

Read: Looks Good, Feels Good, but Wait... - New York Times

I have a few thoughts on this (including a Zuney zany idea!)- read on after the break.

Fair 'nough, I suppose, that Pogue is frustrated by extra dialogs, menus, and wait times. CrackBerry Kevin and iPhone Mike expressed similar complaints in their Round Robin posts. A lot of that is, as Pogue says, the manufacturer “punting” their responsibility to tweak Windows Mobile a bit to match the hardware. But a lot of it is stuff that I might be blind to - I pop up menus to do things and it doesn't often bother me because I have the shortcuts built into my “lizard brain.”

What I mean is that Windows Mobile works for me in large part because I 'grok' it. I encourage other power users to try to 'grok' it too so they can access the incredible functionality squirreled away inside Windows Mobile. With non-power-users, though, I often find myself just suggesting they get something simpler, which is a real downer.

We mentioned that Microsoft is playing around a bit with the interface with the Shadow, and may be playing around with the interface in general for the (unlikely) rumored Windows Mobile 6.1 update. Should they be playing around more?

I'm sure there would be a lot of support for a complete User Interface overhaul of Windows Mobile. In fact, I'd say most people keeping an eye on this space are expecting just such an overhaul from Photon / Windows Mobile 7.

In an IM conversation with our very own Merlyn3D, I had a surprising thought. The Zune isn't doing all that well in the market of MP3 players (and that's not too surprising), but what if Microsoft doesn't care? What if they're using the Zune to build up their “interface chops” and using what few buyers they've gained as secret beta testers? We know that we won't see a “Zune Phone”, but we also know that the Zune and Windows Mobile share the CE Platform underpinnings.

So how about it? If we want to know how Microsoft is going to simplify the User Interface of Windows Mobile in Photon, do we need to look no further than the Zune?

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

HTC Touch gets Memory Bump, New Colors

9

The biggest knock I have on the HTC Touch (Video first look here) is that it's pretty short on memory. I spent way too much time uninstalling apps and managing what was open - it was just too small. Fortunately, the Sprint Touch doesn't look to have that issue. Now HTC has announced that they're giving the GSM version a bump - 256 MB of ROM and 128 MB of RAM. They've also added two colors to the already available “Elegant Black” and “Wasabi Green” -- “Burgundy Red” and “Immaculate White.” The Red version looks pretty awesome, me want.

There's also apparently another version of the Touch coming from CarPhoneWarehouse, designed by Ted Baker and called The Needle. It looks to have the same functionality, but with slightly redesigned buttons and a slightly slimmer shape. New color too - a purple/pink - and apparently comes preloaded with a cuckoo clock wallpaper. Yeah.

link via pocketnow.com

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

Observations from the Centro, Implications for the next WM Treo

0

(Editor's Note: Malatesta remembers that Palm has claimed that they intend to share hardware between their PalmOS devices and their Windows Mobile devices. The latest and coolest PalmOS hardware? The Centro. Will the Treo 800w sport similar improvements?)

Recently in the TC forums and on WMExperts, there has been a lot of discussion of what the upcoming Palm Treo 800w will have for hardware and what features it will contain. No doubt that many will judge the device just on pure numbers e.g. how much memory, how fast a processor and, if like the recent AT&T Tilt, it has all the technological bells and whistles that could be crammed in.

While the hardware specs are certainly important, I’d also argue how that hardware is implemented and integrated in the OS is just as significant, if not more so.

Read on for more of Malatesta's thoughts!

Case in point: Bluetooth. Palm Treos all have version 1.2 and also have the notorious reputation of being some of the worst implementations of this popular standard. Blame it on the hardware or blame it on the BT software stack, either way Treos are not known for their stellar BT performance. However, if you look at the new Sprint Mogul (ppc-6800), it has BT 2.0 -- surely an upgrade from the ubiquitous 1.2 standard that is out there. But here too HTC drops the ball a bit as many report the usual: connection and static issues, something that was partially addressed in the recent HTC ROM update.

Lesson learned: just because it’s the latest version of something doesn’t mean it works well.

So how is Palm doing in this regard with their latest device, the Palm Centro? I recently picked one up and one thing is clear: Palm seems to have finally nailed down hardware performance and integration. Will this new found hardware improvement carry over to their upcoming WM Treo 800? Too early to tell, but the Centro inspires confidence where it was previously lacking. Read below for my review of the new Centro hardware and why this bodes well for WM Treo users.

Keyboard

Changes: The Centro’s keys are slightly smaller and don’t have the “smile” layout of previous Treos. They are also not hard plastic buttons but rather soft and rubbery. The keys are printed as a single sheet, as opposed to poking through the plastic shell.

Opinion: Despite the size, the new style keyboard is very nice and a keeper. My thumbs no longer get sore at the tips from banging on hard plastic keys and I have to say, I’m delighted with the new keyboard.

D-pad/Soft buttons

Changes: The new D-pad has a large center button, in fact much larger than the current dimple button that some find hard to press for the “Enter” function. I was concerned when I first saw the change as I felt the current D-pad was actually the most comfortable I’ve used on any WM device (the HTC 6700 hands down being the worst). Also the new Soft buttons e.g. the Green and Red phone buttons are now flat and polished.

Opinion: The new design choice is preferable. The D-pad on the Centro is very smooth, requires little effort and is even gentler to push—if the expression “like buttah!” ever meant anything, it applies to the new hard keys of the Centro. The rest of the soft keys are also large enough for your thumb and I find easier to toggle than my Motorola Q, which can be quite difficult to push at times.

Bluetooth

Changes: The Centro still has BT 1.2 (although it may actually have BT 2.0 + EDR)

Opinion: Bluetooth on the Centro is a finally a pleasure to use. I’ve had no dropped calls, little static and the call quality, especially on my Blueant Z9, was top notch—even better than my Treo 700wx. I’m not sure if the hardware radio is different or the software is enhanced, but it looks as if Palm finally figured it out.

Camera

Changes: The Centro still has the same measly 1.3MP camera as the 7xx series.

Opinion: Once again, in comparison to the Treo 700wx’s, it is sharper, brighter and has better contrast. For 1.3MP it’s actually one of the best I’ve seen and I could only imagine how a 2+MP camera may look.

Cell Radio (reception)

Changes: Unknown

Opinion: Improvement. As many have attested in the forums the Centro has great reception. I can make calls in my apartment in some spots where before on my 700wx I could not.

Speakers (ear & rear)

Changes: Unknown

Opinion: The rear speaker on the Centro, though still a mono it has quite fantastic clarity and is very loud. I’d liken it to the Motorola Q and can easily say it bests any of the Treo 7xx series by a long shot. Same with the earpiece: call quality has a nice warm sound to it and volume quite ample (though as usual, some may prefer even louder).

Screen

Changes: Removed blank border around the screen edge

Opinion: The Centro’s screen is quite impressive. Though the smallest yet (2.2” versus 2.6” on the Treo line), contrast is high, resolution looks great and now without the border, the full screen real estate is finally used.

Miscellaneous

Screen Protector: The Centro's a built in, protective layer over the screen appears to be a slight improvement over the protective layers on Treos. In turn, there is no included screen-protector sheet (which was always junk anyways). Like a ringer switch, some things are just so obvious and implementing a built in screen protector is one of them. Nice to see Palm filing in these gaps.

Battery Cover: Though some have had problems with removing it, the new battery cover is very flush with the device and eliminates any chance of it accidentally popping off due to hitting of the release button (since there is no release button). The Centro’s back feels solid and clean with the device contours.

Size: Despite what you may think form seeing pictures of the Centro, it is very tiny. It’s so narrow that my Arkon Universal vehicle mount can’t hold it (the clamps don’t reach the sides!). I don’t think we’ll see the new Treos as small as the Centro, but it may be close. The good news is they maintain very good ergonomics i.e. it feels great in the hand as opposed to the more awkward Motorola Q.

Power Saving: The Centro has dimmer keyboard lights than all the other Treos, which is a good thing since the Treo lights were often too bright. Palm also put in an option to turn of the screen automatically during a phone call, saving precious battery life. Finally, even though it has only an 1150mah battery, the Centro’s hardware seems to manage it quite well. It’s nothing mind blowing, but most seem to be quite pleased despite negative expectations.

LED: Okay Palm, you fail on this one though. The LED is supposed to blink for new voicemail or SMS but it does not, so fix it on the Centro and have it for the WM Treo!

Conclusions

What makes this review interesting is this: the $99 Centro has virtually the same hardware specs as the more expensive Palm 7xx line, yet performance of that hardware is remarkably different. The Centro easily beats all other Treos in every category in hardware: camera, screen, speakers, reception, keyboard, buttons and even BT. (Of course this is the least we should expect from smartphone manufactures, but unfortunately it’s not uncommon to find a company taking 2-steps forward and 1-step back on devices.)

Maybe it has something to do with Palm being reportedly heavily involved with the Centro’s hardware design or maybe it’s on Inventec’s end (the OEM of the Centro)—either way, it’s a very nice change. If the leaked Treo 800w mockup image is accurate, it looks like Palm will be keeping the Centro and Treo lines separate in terms of style, but hopefully this improved quality of hardware performance will carry over for WM aficionados.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

Opera Mini 4 Out of Beta

2
2

Opera Mini 4 Out of Beta

We liked the Beta of Opera Mini 4 a whole heck of a lot, so we see no reason we'd feel any differently about the non-beta version:

Opera Mini 4 is based on the same rendering engine as the Opera 9.5 desktop browser. The browser still has a very small install size, less than 100k, even though we've added all these cool new features.

Go and take a look at the giant list-o-features, then tell anybody still stuck in featurephone land to install it post-haste on their phones. Windows Mobile users - well - you'll need to use it in a Java Virtual Machine.

I think that Opera Mini's zoom implementation might actually have a slight leg up on the native Opera 8.65's version. That version of Opera is my default browser, btw, or it least it is when I'm not using an iPhone as my main brain.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
5 years ago

Microsoft Responds to Android: Meh.

0
0

Microsoft Responds to Android: Meh.

I'll admit that Google's announcement of the Android Platform had its intended effect on me: I saw the list of folks on board, I heard that an 'early SDK' is coming on Monday, and I believed that not only was Android not vaporware, but it was something pretty significant. Today things look a little shakier - Who's in control of what parts? Just how locked-down will some of these things be? What guarantee will there be than an app will work on disparate versions of Android (hello Symbian)?

Basically: Are there too many chefs in the Android kitchen?

Microsoft has a different take than I do, and it's a shrug of the shoulders:

“It really sounds that they are getting a whole bunch of people together to build a phone and that's something we've been doing for five years,” said Scott Horn, general manager of marketing at Microsoft's Windows Mobile business. “I don't understand the impact that they are going to have.”

Microsoft has forecast that more than 20 million handsets running Windows Mobile software will be sold in the business year to June 2008, nearly double the amount sold last year.

Read: Rivals dismiss threat of Google mobile platform | Reuters

Now, I strongly suspect that there are GoogleFanBoys out there to rival AppleFanBoys and they're currently bookmarking the above article to better make Microsoft eat their words someday. At the present moment, though, “I don't understand” actually isn't all that bad of a reaction - it feels like we barely know more about Android than we did on Sunday.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
Show More Headlines

Pages