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5 years ago

IE6 on Windows Mobile 6.5: A Hybrid

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IE6 on Windows Mobile 6.5: A Hybrid

 

As we just hinted, IE6 on Windows Mobile 6.5 is going to be a sight better than it currently is on the WM6 Sprint Treo Pro. There are plenty of reasons for this. Stuff you likely already knew: it has a better, touch interface and it will be on 6.5, which will only be on devices with plenty of RAM, which will mean that its nigh-insatiable appetite for memory won't be as much of a problem.

But wait! There's more! We caught a couple of nice tidbits from the excellent MIX09 Windows Mobile presentation video featuring Loke Uei Tan (who is currently taking one for the team. Go Lokeuei!). Namely, IE6 on 6.5 is more of a "hybrid" than it is a straight mobile implementation of IE6. First up: it actually supports PNG alpha channel  transparent graphical elements ftw! The other change is that it's using the javascript engine from Internet Explorer 8 which should add some compatibility and performance to the entire thing.

Of course, that doesn't mean we're happy about the rendering engine. I've personally lost time roughly equal to the Jurrasic period to IE6 compatibility. That movement to get web designers to give up supporting IE6 altogether (thanks Rich!), it didn't spring up out of nowhere. The lack of tabs is also disturbing.  But hey flash support, right? Right?

Up to now I haven't much cared about rendering fidelity on mobile. As these devices get more pixels, I suspect it will begin to grate more. What say you?

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5 years ago

Last.fm calls third party apps, hangs up

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Last.fm, the popular internet music streaming service, has announced that all third-party apps will be shut out of its service. Popular third-party clients include Windows Mobile’s Pocket Scrobbler, S60’s Mobbler, and if you’re a Crackberry addict, Flipside also will go the way of the dinosaur. Citing pressures from record labels and wanting to flex its muscles, these changes should take place in the near future.

Last.fm breaks it down further in its forums:

Last.fm has never had a public radio API, although we've tolerated third-party clients using the undocumented calls that our client uses. This is finally about to change - we're going to make a public, documented streaming API available to everyone who has an API account. There are a few limitations:

  • Only subscribers will be allowed to stream using API applications unless you negotiate a separate deal with us - we need to get the money to cover royalties.
  • You won't be allowed to use our API to stream to mobile phones. This is unfortunately a limitation of some of our licensing agreements. Again, we may be able to make an exception to this if you talk to us directly.

So on the upside, current developers may take advantage of new APIs to help them develop under Last.fm’s guidance. Word on the street is that the official apps on the iPhone and Android platform will continue to work, as they are officially sanctioned.

This is going to upset a lot of people. But the good news is that there still will be APIs available for developers, it'll just cost some cash.

Last.fm via Gizmodo

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5 years ago

Opera 9.7 coming, will have Flash, Ajax support

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Our love-hate relationship with Internet Explorer may again become a bit of a moot point as Opera Mobile has announced some details of the next version of its browser.

CNet reports that Opera Mobile 9.7 will support Flash and Ajax. CNet also says Opera Turbo, which squeezes data through slower connections, will make its mobile debut, and that 9.7 scores a perfect 100 on the Acid 3 rendering test. Google Gears and Open GL ES for graphics also will be on board, as will widgets.

Drool.

Opera Mobile 9.7 is intended for release by carriers and phone manufacturers, CNet says, but a consumer release is hinted at.

Alls we know is this: Between IE6, Skyfire, Firefox and now Opera 9.7, it's starting to look like the browser wars are back with a vengence.

Update: Opera's posted a video of 9.7 in action. Peep it after the break.

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5 years ago

Microsoft employees get to test 6.5

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Microsoft employees get to test 6.5

This kind of is a no-brainer, but here it is, highlighted in pink. If you're a full-time employee (or full-time equivalent?) of Microsoft, chances are you're taking part in the beta test of Windows Mobile 6.5. [wmpoweruser via uberphones] Enjoy, you lucky dogs. The rest of us will wait not so patiently.

Kinda makes us wish we hadn't dropped out of school to follow Phish around, but whatevs.

[updated to fix link]

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5 years ago

Quick Tip: Better IE6 Scrolling on the Sprint Treo Pro

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We've (somewhat infamously) laid a bit of hateration on the Internet Explorer Mobile 6 on the Sprint Treo Pro.  Truth be told, if you can set aside or otherwise manage its heavy memory usage, it actually does quite well at rendering pages accurately.  We also have higher-than-you-might-expect hopes for IE6 on Windows Mobile 6.5 (more on that in a later post).

One of the hassles with IE6 on the Sprint Treo Pro is navigation, moving that little pointer around to find links and scroll pages can become quite a chore with the Treo Pro's D-Pad. There's a 'nuclear option' for dealing with that, namely rolling back some of IE6's interface 'improvements' with a registry hack that makes it behave like IE5 Mobile.  That's not really an ideal solution, however, even with the convenient (and clever!) cab file that automatically toggles between the two modes from CodyPPC.  

Lucky for us, Marc has emailed in this non-obvious tip: use the spacebar!  You can hit the spacebar solo to scroll down a full page.  Another option: hit Shift + Space either together or serially to hop down to the next link.  If you're wondering, both spacebar methods also work on the GSM version of the Treo Pro as well.

Sprint Treo Pro owners: How's IE6 Mobile treating you these days?

Thanks for the tip, Marc!

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5 years ago

Developers weigh in on Marketplace plans

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We've been digesting the news surrounding Microsoft's Windows Marketplace for Mobile as the details trickle out. Developers keep 70 percent of the profits, same with Apple's App Store. Standards must be met, but Microsoft will be there to guide developers.

And recently there's been a bit of debate as we learned that updates to an application count the same as submitting a new app. [I Started Something via jkontherun]

Here's how it works: For the initial $99 application fee, devs can submit up to five apps. Any additional submission beyond the first five will cost another $99. So you could submit one application, then update it four times in a year without paying more. Or you can submit five different apps. Dealer's choice.  Counting app updates against the 5-a-year free limit sounds downright crazy wrong to us, but we're not developers.

So before we get all outraged, let's take a deep breath and think things through. More to the point, we asked developers. After the break, we talk with a few well-known developers and see how they feel about Marketplace.

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5 years ago

A Closer Look at AT&T’s Fuze Test ROM

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A Closer Look at AT&T’s Fuze Test ROM

I’ve been running the leaked AT&T Test ROM for some time now and have to admit, if the final product is anything like the test, Fuze owners will be very pleased.  We've given you the technical changes and fixes the ROM offers but how does all this translate to performance.  Does it speed up the Fuze?  Slow it down?  Are there stability issues?

As was mentioned in the original post concerning this Test ROM, if you’re going to try the Test ROM understand it may/may not have issues and installing it deletes everything (original ROM, data, apps, etc.) from your Fuze. If you’re not sure, check out the forums and read up on flashing devices. 

Having thrown out the obligatory word of caution, if you're curious how the Test ROM performs, follow the break.

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5 years ago

Review: Auto Ranger Stix by Cell Ranger

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Review: Auto Ranger Stix by Cell Ranger

In the last decade or so, one of the biggest advances in technology has been mass availability of mobile connectivity. As the various cellular providers battle for the titles of largest and fastest networks, our dependency on these providers becomes more and more prevalent.

The downside of this mobile revolution is that this strength becomes a glaring weakness when that connectivity suddenly disappears. Very few solutions are available for those of us that spend much of our time in limbo between three bars and zero. One such product that is making a play to “Boost Your Bars” is the Auto Ranger Stix by Cell Ranger. This Intelligent Amplifier system works on all major US carriers with the exception of Sprint/Nextel.

Click on over to get the full look.

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5 years ago

Review: Samsung WEP-350 Bluetooth Headset

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Review: Samsung WEP-350 Bluetooth Headset

These days, Bluetooth headsets are about as popular as a glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. This is due partially to the coolness factor of the technology as well as the various government laws requiring their use while driving. As the pool gets more crowded, it keeps getting harder to find that headset that is perfect for you.

Samsung is one of those names in the electronics world that is always considered one of the biggest in any niche. Whether it is TV's, Cameras, Bluetooth headsets or even the Windows Mobile phones that we are all so fond of; Samsung is one of the best in the business. Samsung's WEP-350 headset is designed in the image of some of the slimmest models available.

To get the full report on the latest from Samsung, click on through. 

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5 years ago

Krusell Horizontal Case with Multidapt

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Krusell Horizontal Case with Multidapt

Cases are a vital accessory that we entrust our phones to and is easy to forget that we continually use every day. Also with cases ranging on average from $20-$30, it is also very expensive to try to find that perfect case through trial and error. Today WMExperts will help to make that decision a little easier, we have reviewed the Krusell Horizon Multidapt (S) case and we have made a firm decision on whether we would recommend it or not. To find out if this is a must have or must not and why, please read on.

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5 years ago

Review: Parrot MINIKIT Slim Bluetooth Speakerphone

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Review: Parrot MINIKIT Slim Bluetooth Speakerphone

 

Some people just really don't like wearing Bluetooth headsets. There are numerous reasons for this; long hair getting tangled, small ears making wear uncomfortable, or just not liking the way they look. The solution for these folks is some type of speakerphone, whether built in to your car or as an additional purchase.

Parrot is one of those manufacturers that I always keep an eye on to see what they're releasing. If you read the review of the Parrot MINIKIT, you know what there were some shortcomings in the design and execution of that particular model. If you're on the lookout for a Bluetooth speakerphone, don't go anywhere. This could be the one for you.

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5 years ago

Review: Prima Vertical Pouch Case

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Review: Prima Vertical Pouch Case

When you’re looking for a case for a new device, a lot of the options tend to look the same. Finding that perfect case that fits your lifestyle can be a difficult task. Personally I have had phones that I kept a variety of cases to use depending on what I was doing.

Leather cases that have an executive or business look and feel to them are one that I tend to keep around for any phone that I carry. Prima has made several such cases that seem to be on par with some of the top case manufacturers on the market. Their Vertical Pouch case has many of the features that are standard issue with an executive style case.

Click on through to see this case under our microscope (figuratively speaking).

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5 years ago

RexRegina Stanton Case

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RexRegina Stanton Case

It's hard to beat a quality leather case for your phone. Solid stitching, quality leather, soft lining, comfortable carry and a secure hold are qualities we all look for in a case. RexRegina hopes to match all these qualities with their premium leather cases. The California based company produces the Stanton Case which is a premium leather, horizontal case. We recently gave the case a test drive with the AT&T Fuze and to see how it shaped up, read on after the break.

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5 years ago

Review: HTC Extended Battery for AT&T Fuze/Touch Pro

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Review: HTC Extended Battery for AT&T Fuze/Touch Pro

 

The one Windows Mobile phone feature that we never seem to get enough of is power. Only one Windows Mobile Phone comes to mind that ships with a high capacity battery as standard; the Samsung Black Jack II with it's 1750mah battery. When the HTC Fuze/Touch Pro hit the market, excitement filled the air because of the versatility and features this phone offered. It didn't take long to realized that the stock 1350mah battery was woefully under matched. The Windows Mobile community waited with anticipation as after market, extended life batteries slowly began to appear. HTC has contributed to the "energy crisis" by offering a 1800mah Extended Battery. The plus side is that it provides more gas for your HTC Fuze/Touch Pro. The down side is that it requires an oversized battery door.

We took the 1800mah battery out for a test drive to see how much more juice this oversized battery provided. Read on after the break to see how well it performed and how the oversized battery door affected the HTC Fuze.

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5 years ago

Review: PDA Skins Organizer Case

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Review: PDA Skins Organizer Case

 

I love going on vacation. It doesn’t matter if it is a 3 day weekend at the coast or a week at Disney World.  At times like this I find that I want something to take with me that will hold my phone along with any other small items that can come in handy, i.e. hotel keys, local tourist maps, an autograph book for when we bump into Mickey Mouse, etc… A backpack is too much and even a fanny pack can be more than I sometimes need. So, I am always looking for a good phone case organizer, just for these special occasions.   With this in mind I wanted to try out the PDA Skins Horizontal Organizer. Looking at the stock photos and reading the description, it looked like this would fit my needs very nicely. But when I got my hands on it, I started to have my doubts. There are times that when my first impression is not very good, that after using the product for a while I gain more respect for it. Take a look at the full review to see if this is truly one not to waste your money on or if it eventually did live up to my initial expectations... 
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