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5 years ago

Change Your Plan on Verizon

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Change Your Plan on Verizon

Verizon is now slightly less evil than they were before (full disclosure, I think pretty much all wireless carriers are evil): starting on October 7th they will allow you to change your plan without renewing your contract. I've been burned by this policy (albeit on Sprint) so many times that I'm now the spittin' image of Darkman. I can't recall what the plan-change policies are on the other carriers, but if if your carrier still has this anti-customer policy in place, be sure to give them the hint that "you know, your competitor, who is looking very desirable right now, doesn't make me re-up." Can't hurt, right?

Verizon Wireless has announced another consumer-friendly change to its policies: It will allow customers to change their wireless service plans without requiring an extension of their contracts.

The carrier said the change will be effective Oct. 7

Read: RCR Wireless News via PocketPC Addict

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5 years ago

Must Have Windows Mobile Software

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Must Have Windows Mobile Software

In Part One of this series, we covered How To: Install, Uninstall, and Transfer Files on Windows Mobile. Now that you're an expert on installing, let's take a good look at the What... what software do you want to install and where to find it. Because there is so much WM software out there to choose from, it can be a VERY expensive adventure, trying to figure out which programs you really want or need.

In this part of the the Windows Mobile Guide, I will focus on what are the must have software apps I recommend everyone should have, software apps I would suggest getting, and where to get them all. I will even show you where to get tons of software for free...legally!

RECOMMENDED FIRST BUY SOFTWARE

Every WM phone comes with the basics that you will need right out of the box. You could, for the most part, get by without buying anything extra. But there are some really cool ad-ons that can make your phone more user friendly, more entertaining, and personalized for your specific personal or professional needs and wants. Sometimes it is just because the software that came with the phone is simply too basic and you really want/need those extra features and tools.

I am actually asked fairly often what is the first thing they should buy for their phone, and here is what I tell them (click on their names to see more details of any of the following programs):

MUST HAVE SOFTWARE

  • Resco Explorer 2007 for Pocket PC: This is what the original WM File Explore should be. It gives you full control of finding, viewing, and managing all of the files on your phone and memory card. It is easy to use and loaded with options and features.

  • Spb Mobile Shell: I personally recommend only three Today Screen plugins to everyone. This is one of them. It offers quick photo speed dialing with one finger tap on a picture of the person you want to call. It gives you quick access to your favorite and most used programs. You will always have the latest Weather at the tip of your fingers with the weather program of your choice. It is organized in tabs that help to make sure that you do not accidentally launch a program or call someone when the phone is in its case or in your pocket. It also offers one of the easiest ways to find a contact and call them with the included Spb Contacts.


  • Spb Phone Suite: This handy little plugin allows you to view how many calls you have missed, plus how many Voicemails, Emails, SMS, and MMS you have not read. This also includes a call filter so you don't have to worry about getting calls from those you put on your blacklist, and it gives you an option to send a text message to someone if you cannot answer their call right then. It includes phone profiles, so by a tap of your finger you can silence everything on your phone when you enter a meeting at work, or make sure that everything is as loud as it can be if you are in the car. These profiles can be scheduled ahead of time to make sure you don't forget to set it. It also offers a photo speed dial.


  • PocketBreeze / ContactBreeze: This dual is the third Today Screen plugin that I personally recommend to anyone. It makes it a snap to review your calendar, look up contacts, and read your email... all without opening up any PIM or email client. It saves you time and it saves you loads of memory so you do not have to have a calendar and email client running in the background at all times.


  • Sprite Backup or SPB Backup: This is absolutely the single, no questions asked, MUST HAVE! There is nothing more frustrating (or heartbreaking) than when you just got your phone all set up just like you want it... you have all your contacts entered... all your games installed...all the Registry Tweaks are just the way you want them... and then... tragedy strikes and for whatever reason you are forced to do a hard reset on your phone wiping out all your changes and bringing the phone back to the same state as if you just opened the box for the first time. Either Backup program will work fine. It is often times more of a personal preference vs features. I personally use Sprite Backup. Keep an eye out in the future for a Smackdown review between these two backup solutions here at WMExperts.

    SPB Backup:

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5 years ago

Opera Mobile Hits 8.65

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Opera Mobile Hits 8.65

While we all wait with bated breath for Opera Mobile to gather up some of the cool zoom features of Java-based Opera Mini, there's an update for the current version to 8.65. New Features? Yep:

Support for Macromedia Flash Player 7 for Pocket PC
FlashLite 2.1
Text Wrap in Desktop Mode
Grab and Scroll (only applicable to Pocket PC)
Web search in address bar
Save image
Copy text
Send link as e-mail, SMS, and MMS
Import bookmarks from Pocket Internet Explorer
Desktop Mode as default viewing mode

Read: Opera Mobile™ 8.65 for Windows Mobile

I'll cop to usually defaulting back to Pocket IE, if only because the rest of the OS seems to want it as the standard browser no matter what I do and it seems like it has less overhead. But the new flash support and the Save Image support are enough for me to give this 30 day trial a shot. Tabbed browsing is, of course, still in there. It's $24 after that.

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5 years ago

AT&T Tilt Arrives Tomorrow?

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AT&T Tilt Arrives Tomorrow?

AT&T has launched a teaser site for the AT&T Tilt. I suppose you could try to contact your "regional sales manager," but more likely you will just have a wait a little bit longer. Our regional sales manager was mum except to tell us that there is a "regional training meeting" tomorrow for the Tilt, but it's all booked up so we won't be able to put on our favorite AT&T shirt and sneak in.

We were expecting this would hit last week, but we were wrong, wrong, wrong.

There's not a whole lotta new information to write about. It's still going to be the best Windows Mobile device in the US Market. It's still a slider and has a great tilt-up feature. The only new thing I can see is that the numberpad is in a new and unique place and gets fancy silver keys. Let's hope this "Tilt Your World" promo site gets a few more details when it launches. It'll be a little bit longer - maybe even tomorrow.

It's time to change your Point of View ...
Come be part of the 2007 National Launch Tour for AT&T's Tilt!
Contact your Regional Sales Manager to see if you're eligible for this amazing event!

Read: HTC and AT&T invite you to Tilt Your World

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5 years ago

T-Mobile Shadow (Nee Juno/Phoebus) in the Wild

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Looks like T-Mobile is finally set to get some real Windows Mobile love, in the form of the HTC Shadow. The Boy Genius Report gives us the breakdown:

The device is "very glossy", and you can see the screen in direct sunlight no problem, as well. The button in the middle of the phone is actually a scroll wheel and it also performs the duties of a 4-way navigational pad.

Be sure to check out the gallery too. We saw this before as the Juno. Specs look decent 'nough:

  • 201 MHz Processor (ok, that's not decent)
  • 128 RAM, 256 ROM
  • 2 megapixel camera
  • Bluetooth 2.0, WiFi
  • The Screen just might be true VGA, not the 320 x 240 we all know so well.

The "Scroll wheel" / Nav Pad is interesting, I'd use that.

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5 years ago

Nokia Purchases Navteq

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Nokia Purchases Navteq

Nokia is buying Navteq. Navteq is one of the big two digital mapmakers out there (the other is TeleNav, who was rumored to be in talks with TomTom). The moves actually does make a bit of sense for Nokia, who offers some GPS software of their own called smart2go that works on Windows Mobile.

Navteq powers the maps on Live Search, currently the best free GPS software available for Windows Mobile.

The purchase price is hefty, $8.1 billion, so it's pretty clear that Nokia is serious about using this stuff. That, plus the fact that Nokia already makes WM-compatible GPS software makes me a little nervous that Microsoft may have to start taking a closer look at Telenav. Long ago, Nokia bought my favorite instant messenger client for PalmOS and Windows Mobile, VeriChat, then killed it dead. Please don't repeat the past, Nokia. Please.

Nokia, the world’s largest cellphone maker, said it will acquire Navteq for $78 a share, which is only 3 cents above Navteq’s closing share price on Friday. But Navteq’s stock has risen sharply in recent weeks amid rumors that it was a takeover target.

Once rumor became reality, investors seemed a bit disappointed. Navteq’s shares fell about 1.7 percent in early trading Monday

Read: Nokia to Buy Navteq for 8.1 Billion

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5 years ago

Sprint Touch Hands-on Impressions

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Sprint Touch Hands-on Impressions

Ok, I lied earlier, something sweet DID happen at Digital Life. I got a sneak preview / hands-on with the upcoming Sprint Touch. It looks pretty much like the photo above, which is to say it has the Sprint logo on the lower front. Sadly, the hands-on was so brief and hurried that I wasn't able to snap any pictures.

Details? You want details? Wilco:

  • The new keyboard looks very much like the "Happy type" keyboard. It's decent, but I'd likely keep recommending SPB Fullscreen keyboard.
  • The TouchFlo "cube" is still there, linking to some Sprint-specific stuff but still very useful. Still only 3 sides.
  • WiFi is dropped in favor of EVDO. I confirmed that will be updated to EVDO Rev A eventually.
  • It's a hair thicker than the original Touch, but still very svelte.
  • That fourth icon on the right of the HTC Custom Home screen is a super-convenient profile switcher.

Sprint Touch == iPhone killer? Well it lets you buy directly from the Sprint Music Store, has 3G, is shorter, does full music, video, YouTube, Full Office Mobile, etc etc etc. I know which one I'd rather use.

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5 years ago

HTC's Q4 Lineup: Shift, S730, p6500, Touch Dual

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Yowza. At a press event today HTC unloaded its big guns - 4 new Windows Mobile devices to arrive by year's end. No word yet on when exactly we can expect these monsters in the states, but here's the breakdown:

  • HTC Shift: Likely the best UMPC yet, a dual-booting Windows Mobile / Vista beast with HSDPA, WiFi, Bluetooth, 7" screen, and a full keyboard.
  • HTC Touch Dual: The Touch but with a slide-out keyboard. If the pictures are anything to go by, it looks like it will come in a standard T9 flavor and also a Blackberry-eqsue suretype keyboard. Oh, and full 3G, whapow!
  • HTC S730: The successor to the HTC S710/Vox that fixes the keyboard layout and adds 3G speed
  • HTC P6500: HTC's industrial entrant, whose 3 megapixel camera doubles nicely as a barcode scanner.

All of them will come with HTC's very nice new home screen. After the break, full spec rundowns and pictures of the Touch Dual and the S730.

via: the::unwired

Update: Superior Gadgets put up a video of the new Touch Dual and dayum, HTC has snuck in a whole bunch of minor touch-esque improvements that really help with some of the hassles I've dealt with on the original Touch. Video after the break, definitely worth the look!

HTC Touch Dual

  • 400MHz Qualcomm Processor
  • 256 RAM, 128 SDRAM
  • 107mm x 55mm x 15.8mm, 120g
  • 2.6" 320x240
  • HSDPA/HSUPA/UMTS: 2100 MHz, EDGE/GSM: 900, 1800, 1900
  • 16-key QWERTY slide out keyboard (also seems to have the standard 9-key variety)
  • Bluetooth 2.0
  • 1120 mAh battery for various talk times depending on network (3 hrs UMTS, 5 hrs GSM)

Yes, it's thicker than the original Touch and it does appear they dropped WiFi in favor of the 3G radio, but that's not the worst trade-off ever. Looks: still good.


Video preview from http://www.superiorgadgets.com/ :

HTC S730

The specs are a bit thinner on the S730, but here's what we know:

  • 400 MHz Processor
  • 256 RAM (assuming 128 SDRAM)
  • HSDPA/UMTS and WiFi!
  • Keyboard layout looks much improved

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5 years ago

Untamed Workforce: Hilarious Windows Mobile Marketing

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Microsoft has a freaking hilarious new online campaign: Are you Untamed? - www.untamedworkforce.org. It features great videos of mysterious mobile species like "Emailius Nonstoppicus," and "Cantfindicus Phonicus." There's a more standard site where can sign up for updates and the like as well. Go on, embrace your inner mobile nerd and watch the video below. You know that's been you at one time or another.

Via David Ciccone

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5 years ago

Office Mobile 6.1 Coming Soon

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Office Mobile 6.1 Coming Soon

An update to Office Mobile, which will finally add full support for the latest file formats from the desktop version of office, is coming soon. It was actually available briefly, due to a little mixup:

On his blog, Langridge discussed the upcoming release of Office Mobile 6.1 which was perfectly acceptable, except he said that it was currently available and provided a working link. The link's public availability was a complete accident as it was only intended for internal testing, and Langridge ended up having to remove it on Thursday evening.

Read: Office Mobile 6.1 coming soon

That's the way of things with blogging, sometimes. No worries, Landridge, we've all been guilty of hitting the "post" button a little too quickly. We're all looking forward to the update, it was announced back in June that it will be available for both WM5 and WM6 and it will be free.

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5 years ago

Back from Digital Life, AT&T Needs to get its Windows Mobile 6 Act Together

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Apologies for the ghost town on Friday. We (ok, it was just me) were in New York City last week, covering an antiquated OS in a new package (aka the announcement of the Palm Centro). Digital Life is a pretty ho-hum conference overall, featuring mainly also-ran video games. Microsoft's announcements were limited to talking about their Media Center initiatives.

Microsoft did have a few devices out, showing off Windows Mobile 6. Pictured above, a Blackjack on AT&T running Windows Mobile 6. Why hasn't this been released yet? Why hasn't Windows Mobile 6 been released for the Treo 750 yet? Canada, Australia, and Europe have it. What's it gonna take, guys? A hunger strike?

...We now return you to your regularly scheduled Windows Mobile News and Reviews. Coming up later today, part 2 to HobbesIsReal's Guide to Windows Mobile Installation! Update: Let's make it tomorrow, a crazy big news day today.

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5 years ago

Ultimate Search hits 1.5

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Ultimate Search hits 1.5

Not everybody can have a Treo with a search bar right on the Today screen. And not everybody has Windows Mobile 6 yet, either, sadly enough. What to do? Perhaps take a peek at Ultimate Search, which puts a souped-up search bar on your today screen. Here's what's in the soup (does that metaphor even work?):

  • Google
  • Wikipedia
  • Movies
  • Local
  • Dictionary
  • YouTube
  • Flickr
  • Answers.com

That looks pretty nice, actually. If the point of a search bar on your today screen is to get info fast, then being able to use a specific search type makes that point ...pointier. It's $11.95 and there's a free trial.

Oh, and notice that "YouTube" search? I suspect you'll be a lot happier using that particular option if you've installed the "Full YouTube on Windows Mobile" hack. I should mention that the whole system has been significantly improved since we first posted about it, so definitely revisit it if you haven't.

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5 years ago

Amazon MP3 Store Launched

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Amazon MP3 Store Launched

[editor's note: Dieter's leaving a jet plane for NYC today, Any breaking news today will probably have to come from me, Mike Overbo of diametrically-opposed evil twin sibling smelly-iPhone-centric site Phone Different.]

Amazon has launched a beta of their MP3 store. This store will probably actually make its own stand, as opposed most of the other online stores that try to compete with iTunes that end up as also-rans. Case in point, Virgin's online store just closed down. Exactly how Amazon got EMI and UMG to kowtow to the MP3 format is beyond me, but they got them to do it. Here's the sweet and low-down:

  • Top 100 songs: $.89 (unless otherwise noted)
  • Top 100 albums: $8.99 or less (unless marked otherwise)
  • Other songs: Usually $.99
  • Other albums: all over the place. Under $4.99 to $11.99
  • Bit rate: 256kbps, mostly variable bit rate (VBR)
  • Song Encoding: MP3
  • DRM: none
  • Album Art: yes
  • Transferrable license of music: no
  • Big labels present: Universal Music Group, EMI
  • Big labels absent: Warner, Sony BMG
  • Indie labels: about 20,000 of 'em
  • # of Songs that AmazonMP3 has: 2 million
  • # of Songs that iTunes has: 6 million
  • Works with Macs: yes
  • Works with PCs: yes
  • Works with Linux: single songs only, no albums. Album downloader application in the works.

Interestingly, the current #1 song is, natch, 1234 by Feist. You know, the gal from the new iPod Nano commercial. #1 Artist? The Apples in Stereo.

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5 years ago

Samsung SCH-i760: Not So Hot

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Samsung SCH-i760: Not So Hot

Forum user levinda was one of the "lucky" few who managed to sneak in an order for the Samsung SCH-i760 when it was briefly available via a backdoor method. The i760 looked like a sweet device to me, if only because the unique keypad on the front would give it a bigger screen. The devil, though, he's in the details, and according to levinda, the details suck:

- [...] Basically, unless you have really big hands it is almost impossible for me to use one-handed, even when I didn't need to slide the keyboard out!

- I thought the front keypad would enable one-handed use for quick typing of SMS. Wrong! It only has ABC text input. [...]

- Power button. Any time I wanted to turn on the phone I had to hit the power button on the top (not easy one-handed for a lefty) or slide out the keyboard. [...]

- No abilty to diable the touch screen during a call. Why don't all WM phones have this option? [...]

- WM softkeys not alingned under their screen functions

Read: I Jumped To The i760...For Less Than 48 Hours - WM Experts

Basically the Treo is still king of one-handed QWERTY use (as we mentioned here) and the SCH-i760 just isn't as well-thought-out as it should be. If you're going to try something new with button placement on a Windows Mobile device, make sure that you do some usability testing.

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5 years ago

How To: Install, Uninstall, and Transfer Files on Windows Mobile

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Join us in reading Hobbes' epic How-To install guide, the definitive one for how to get the stuff you want on your Windows Mobile device. It's geared to the new user, but even an old-hat like myself has learned a thing or two from this monster guide. If you're like me, you have a friend or family member who's always hitting you up for help with their Windows Mobile smartphone. My new advice to them: read this article. -- Ed.

Window Mobile (WM) phones can certainly make a huge impact on your productivity on a personal level as well in your professional career. It can offer hours of entertainment with games, movies and music while making sure you never miss a beat from the office while away from your desk. When someone buys their first WM phone, they can usually be placed into two different camps. Those who have only owned a regular cell phone and this is their first smartphone... and those who have owned smartphones in the past, but never a WM phone (i.e. they have only owned Palm OS, Symbian, Blackberry, etc.). In either case, as with anything else in this world, there is a learning curve in order to reach that level of comfort and understanding with their new phone, though this learning curve is probably smaller than some might think at first.

This is going to be the first part in a series aimed at addressing the most common questions, beginner misunderstandings, avoidable unneeded frustrations, etc... that many brand new WM users face. Or for some long time or casual WM users, it may simply answer questions you might have been too embarrassed to ask about!

Part one focuses on how to copy files to your WM phone as well as how to install and unistall software applications on your phone. This guide is written with the beginner in mind, so it does go into a little more detail than you would normally find.

How To: Manually Transfer Files From the PC to the Phone

There are times you will want to transfer files to your new Windows Mobile phone. They may be Word or Excel docs for work, your collection of MP3s, a program you want to install, or pictures of your 3 year old that you are itching to show anyone who will look. There are a few different ways you can transfer files from your PC to your WM phone. Sometimes you will have to make a judgment call as to which way will be the best for the file(s) that you want to transfer, depending on it's size, how many there are, and the location in relation to your phone. In other words, is the file big or small, do you have 2 or 163 files, is it on the PC sitting next to the phone or is the file 2,000 miles away on you boss' laptop. These tutorials assume you have a basic knowledge of Windows XP or Vista on your PC.

Transfer with ActiveSync

If you only need to transfer a few small files and you can connect the phone to the PC that has the files, then you can use ActiveSync to transfer the file. Please be aware that if you are using Windows XP vs Windows Vista, the steps below are very similar with only minor differences. The big difference is basically in the name of the Utility that you use depending the OS on your PC. In Windows XP you will use ActiveSync, which you may need to install on the PC (you can download the latest version here). In Windows Vista it already comes with its version of ActiveSync called Windows Mobile Device Center. Here is how you would do it with both WinXP and Vista:

  1. Open Windows Explorer on your PC (usually Start / All Programs / Accessories / Windows Explorer )
  2. Connect your phone to your PC
  3. In XP: After ActiveSync shows it is connected, click on the "Explore" button on ActiveSync on your PC

    In Vista: After Windows Mobile Device Center on your PC shows it is connected to your phone, hover your mouse over File Management and then click on the "Browse The Content Of Your Device"

  4. In the ActiveSync Explorer or the Windows Mobile Device Center Explorer window you just opened on your PC, browse to the folder on your phone you want to copy the file to.
    In WinXP: The window will usually open in your phone's My Documents folder in WinXP ActiveSync. In order to browse anywhere else, you will have go up one level by double clicking on "My Windows Mobile Based Device" and then browse to any folder on your phone or select Memory Card and browse to any folder there.
    In Vista: Vista's Windows Mobile Device Center it will open up to the root directory so you will have to start by clicking on the phone for the internal memory or the SD card to explorer's it's folders.
  5. Now in Windows Explorer on your PC find the file that you want to copy to your phone.
  6. To copy the file to your phone, simply drag the file from Windows Explorer to the the window of the ActiveSync Explorer or Windows Mobile Device Center Explorer window.

  7. A progress bar will show the status of the file transfer. Please note that if you are using Windows XP, you will not be able to browse either the ActiveSync Explorer window or Windows Explorer until the transfer is completed, but if you are using Windows Vista you will be able to continue to browse while the files are being copied.

You really only want to use this option if the file(s) you want to transfer are small. You also do not want to do this if you are going to transfer a lot of files.

Transfer with a Card Reader

One of the easiest ways (and the way I personally do it most of the time) is to simply remove the memory card from your phone and plug it into a USB card reader connected to your PC. Then you simply use Windows Explorer to drag and drop any file(s) you want copy from your PC to any folder on your phone's memory card.

There are times that this will really be your only option, too. For example, when you want to transfer a VERY large file (i.e. the map file for the whole USA for your GPS navigation program) or a large group of files (i.e. 682 MP3 files) then you want to use a memory card reader for two reasons: First is that copying large files or a large group of files via ActiveSync may literally take **hours** longer. I am not kidding. When I first tried using Active Sync to copy about a GIG of MP3s to my phone, 6 hours later it was still trying to finish them. It only took a matter of minutes with my card reader. Secondly, if ActiveSync does not recognize the file format, it may try to convert to a format it likes better, but then makes it not usable for the intended program (I had this happen to me when I tried use ActiveSync in WinXP to transfer my map files for my GPS navigation program).

Transfer with Email

Now if there is a program that is on a PC that is not next to the computer that you want to install on your phone, then you can email the CAB file to your handheld so you can install the program. Please note that for this to work, you will need to have a CAB file to send, and not the EXE installation file (see the next section for details on this). On the PC, send an email to an email account that you have already set up on your handheld. (Look for a future How To article on WMexperts or browse the forums if you need help with this). Then make sure you attach the CAB file to your email. And send.

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