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5 years ago

ActiveSync 4.5 out of Beta

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ActiveSync 4.5 out of Beta

It may not be Windows Mobile Device Center, but at least it's somthing: ActiveSync 4.5 has been released today. Doesn't look like there's anything new here that wasn't in the Beta, though. The biggest feature to 4.5 is faster file transfer speeds. The second biggest, ah, "feature" is that Remote PC Sync has been removed because it was just to difficult to keep secure. I've been using 4.5 Beta for awhile and I'm content with it.

Download details: ActiveSync 4.5 (thanks to msmobilenews for the ip)

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5 years ago

How-To Video: Setting up Bluetooth GPS on WM5

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As promised, here's a quick video walkthough showing you how to set up a Bluetooth GPS "puck" on Windows Mobile. Credit goes to Microsoft, specifically the Windows Mobile Team Blog.

The benefit of this is you can use free mapping and directions software like (in order of my preference)...

....to find your way around. None of these free apps are particularly well-suited to being used while driving (even the new smart2go, which so far I'm not impressed with), but they're great for lighter usage.

If you don't already have a GPS puck, our store sells a few standalones.

If you're looking for just straightforward GPS-in-your Car for in-driving Navigation, though, I still think a bundle is a good way to go.

How-To Video is after the jump.

(Directly download the video here)

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5 years ago

MWE Prize-A-Day, Day 2

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MWE Prize-A-Day, Day 2

It's Valentine's Day, so today's contest has got to be about showing the love. A couple of comments on this Google Maps post asked for more info on how to set up GPS with a WM phone, so later today I'll get up a quick video how-to and screencast. But let's get some community love (get your mind out the gutter) going here too.


How to Win

Just post a comment on this entry (form below, be sure to include your name and email address!) with your favorite Windows Mobile tip or trick. It can be esoteric like the GPS bit I'll post later, or just something neat.

The Prize for today is obvious, given the theme, Bejeweled Valentine's Day Edition for PocketPC or Smartphone.

Show the love!

(Full Contest information here - must use valid email address to register.)

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5 years ago

Mobile Phones to fight Aids in Africa

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Now this is cool. A group calling itself "Phones for Health" is going to be using mobile phones to rapidly gather health data in Africa. Perhaps this explains why Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush are speaking at CTIA next month too. Suddenly being a mobile phone nerd doesn't feel so commercial.

Phones for Health will allow health workers in the field to use a standard Motorola handset equipped with a downloadable application to enter health data. Once entered, the data is transferred via a packet based mobile connection (GPRS) into a central database. If GPRS isn’t available, the software can use a SMS data channel to transmit the information. The data is then mapped and analyzed by the system, and is immediately available to health authorities at multiple levels via the web. The system also supports SMS alerting and other tools for communication with field staff.

Read: Major Public-Private Partnership to Use Mobile Phones to Fight HIV/AIDS Pandemic @ PhoneMag.com

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5 years ago

Daylight Savings Time Update for WM

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Daylight Savings Time Update for WM

Microsoft has posted a quick patch for Windows Mobile to keep up with the new changes to Daylight Savings Time. The instructions are a bit overcomplicated, but they should work fine. You know what would work better? Abolishing Daylight Savings Time. Then again, I'm from Minneapolis, if it weren't for DST I wouldn't see the sun for three months.

Congress has changed the dates for Daylight Saving Time (DST) in the United States starting in 2007. Canada has adopted similar DST dates. These changes could cause clocks and Microsoft Outlook calendar appointments on Windows Mobile-powered devices to display incorrect times for March 11 – April 1, 2007 and October 28 – November 4, 2007 and again in subsequent years. You can find more information about the exact dates and potential impact in the Changes in DST section.

Windows Mobile Updates for Daylight Saving Time

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5 years ago

3GSM: More on the Toshiba G900

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3GSM: More on the Toshiba G900

We just did it with i-mate, so let's give Toshiba the (much shorter) roundup treatment. They certainly deserve the attention for coming back to the PocketPC fold after a two and a half year hiatus.

First off, the specs for the G900 are darn impressive. It's a quad-band GSM/UMTS/HSDPA phone, it has a 480x800(!!) resolution, two cameras (for video conferencing), WiFi, and USB-on-the-go. USB on-the-go, if you're not familiar, means you can host other usb devices like keyboards, memory sticks, and so on. Nice. Oh, and a fingerprint scanner for security.

Anyway, moving on, we have a brief hands-on from MobileBurn and a longer, more extensive one from msmobiles.

My God. The screen. I don't think it's in my best interest to even see one these in person: after seeing 480x800 resolution on a device like this, I'd be ruined for other gadgets.

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5 years ago

3GSM: i-mate Roundup

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3GSM: i-mate Roundup

Although 3GSM has already given us some exciting photos of devices running WM6, some of the specs and details have been pretty thin. Now that we've had a moment to breathe, let's take a close look at what i-mate has dropped on us ("us" being "the world," as i-mate's history of shipping devices in the United States isn't what I'd like it to be).

Details after the jump.

i-mate Ultimate Line

We'll start with Engadget Mobile, who points out that the i-mate ultimate line is actually going to consist of 5 completely different form factors.

i-mate is taking a pretty interesting approach with its newest range of Windows Mobile devices -- the WM6-equipped "Ultimate" range -- by shoving a full five models out the door

Read: i-mate goes deep with Ultimate line, five models promised - Engadget Mobile

Meanwhile, PocketPCthought's post about the 5 ultimate phones points out an even cooler nugget for you Vista owners:

the devices are SideShow-compatible, meaning they can operate as gadget-displaying secondary screens for Windows Vista. Furthermore, the devices can act as Windows Media Center Extenders, so that great Media Center experience is always within reach.

PocketPCthougts also suggests we will see these monsters in the stores in June.

Read: Pocket PC Thoughts - Daily News, Views, Rants and Raves

...What about specs on this Ultimate line? PCMag has the specs, and they are the very definition of overkill:

Windows Mobile 6 Professional, 520 Mhz Marvell Bulverde processors, VGA touch screens, 128 MB of RAM, 802.11 b/g/e/i Wi-Fi (with built-in voice-over-internet calling), Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR, 2-megapixel cameras, XGA TV video out, and full-speed USB 2.0 connections.

The even better news from PCMag, in my humble opinion, is that these phones fully support the "Advanced Wireless Services" band that T-Mobile gobbled up last year - raising my hopes not only that we'll see these monsters in the United States but also that my own wireless carrier will support them. Oh, and i-mate is "keen to support the US Market."

Read: I-Mate Unveils Windows Mobile 6/Vista Sideshow Phones - News and Analysis by PC Magazine

JAQ4

The JAQ4 is no slouch, either. With a shape that says "I'm Standard Edition" but is actually the Professional Edition and a scroll wheel (it's the little things that get me), I can appreciate this little guy.

i-mate is also launching the JAQ4 - the first i-mate device to ship with Windows Mobile 6 – a sturdy QWERTY keyboard GPS phone with a five-way joystick and scroll wheel allowing for easy navigation and use of services including push email. Furthermore, the landscape 2.8” colour touch screen supports the use of the stylus as an increasingly popular means of accessing and writing email and messages.

The specs are definitely not in the "Ultimate" category, but they ain't bad. Hello GPS! Goodbye 3G Data!

  • Microsoft Windows Mobile 6
  • GPS
  • Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE
  • WiFi 802.11 b/g
  • 64 MB RAM, 128 MB ROM,
  • Mini SD Card Slot
  • 2.8” 65k Colour Transmissive Micro-Reflective (TMR) touch screen
  • Talk time 5 hours, up to 200 Hours Standby
  • 2.0 Mega Pixel Camera
  • Bluetooth V1.2 Compliant

Read: i-mate Announces the JAQ4 and SPL Running Windows Mobile 6

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5 years ago

WME Prize-A-Day, Day 1

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WME Prize-A-Day, Day 1

Let's kick off our prizes with a classic, hey? The Plantronics Bluetooth Headset, a great in-ear Bluetooth headset with a nice little portable charger.

How to win:

It's Monday, so we'll keep it simple: Go on and register in our forums (those of your registered at TreoCentral's forums are already registered!) and then head over to this thread: Prize-A-Day, Day 1: iPhone SmackTalk Edition.

Anybody who posts a reply in that thread between 9amEST on Feb 13th and 9amEST on the 14th will qualify for the drawing (and also will receive one entry for the Grand Prize. But we want you to do more than qualify, we want you to talk some smack in honor of the Windows Mobile 6 announcement. The preferred format is:

Your iPhone is so [blank], it [blank]!

Don't be fair. Don't be nice. (Don't be vulgar, though, either). Heck, don't even be truthful. We're talkin' smack here, kids!

(Full Contest information here - must use valid email address to register.)

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5 years ago

MobileBurn Hands-on with the MotoQ9

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MobileBurn Hands-on with the MotoQ9

The folks at MobileBurn have a few really nice hands-on photos of the new MotoQ9, including one shot of it next to a Blackjack - the Blackjack holds up surprisingly well, form-factor-wise, next to the new device.

QWERTY keyboard, QVGA display, and 2.0 megapixel camera are all present and accounted for, with the quad-band GSM MOTOQ q9 featuring HSDPA and Bluetooth 2.0 for data connectivity. At just 11.6mm (0.46") thick, the device looks great, and is packed with all the benefits of Microsoft's new Windows Mobile 6 Standard operating system.

Read: Motorola MOTOQ q9 Live Photo Gallery (MobileBurn)

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5 years ago

Microsoft Announces PlayReady, Yet Another DRM "Standard"

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GAH! How many types of DRM is Microsoft going to create here? The latest is "PlayReady", which looks to be intended to support a wide range of formats (from AAC to H.264 to, of course, WMA) so that companies can wrap pretty much any content they want in DRM - be it ringtones or video or whatever. It'll be (thankfully) backwards compatible with Windows Media DRM 10 (which should mean that PlayReady devices will also be PlaysForSure devices). Is this replacing PlaysForSure? That's unclear right now, but with the Zune already eschewing PlaysForSure, it definitely doesn't look to be long for this world.

I'm starting to think I'm going to need a spreadsheet to figure out which devices will play which DRM. I'd bang my head against the wall in frustration, but with the proliferation of DRMs coming from Microsoft, I'm not entirely positive I have the proper permissions to do that.

Wireless delivery of content to handsets continues to grow rapidly, underscoring the need for compatibility and interoperability. To address this requirement, Microsoft PlayReady has been designed to be fully backward compatible with Windows Media DRM 10, allowing devices that support Microsoft PlayReady to access content using Windows Media DRM. Microsoft will also provide an interoperability program so content may flow to qualifying DRM and content protection technologies.

Read: Microsoft Announces Breakthrough Technology Enabling Simple Access to Broad Set of Digital Content

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5 years ago

WM6 Video Interview Featuring WM6

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WM6 Video Interview Featuring WM6

on10.net's Laura Foy scored an interview about Windows Mobile 6. Product Manager Derek Snyder shows off a slew of WM6 phones, including the HTC Vox, the Cingular 8525, and the MotoQ9 (aka Norman) - and that Vox looks pretty sweet. The bulk of the video is a live demo of the T-Mobile Dash running WM6, which is pretty fun to watch.

Read: Windows Mobile 6 is here! | Laura Foy | Channel 10

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5 years ago

DocsToGo for WM Now Shipping

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DocsToGo for WM Now Shipping

Although its importance in the coming months may be, er, annihilated, DataViz today announced that DocsToGo for Windows Mobile is out of Beta. That means WM5 Smartphone Edition users will be able to edit Office Docs directly on their phones. Moving forward, DataViz has a tough row to hoe: making their mobile office suite so compelling it convinces users to pay for whatever added features they can offer over Microsoft's own document edition on WM6.

*Office Suite Documents To Go®, is now available for Microsoft® Windows Mobile™ 5.0 Smartphone devices.  *

Read: DataViz' Documents To Go First to Fill Office Editing Gap for Windows Mobile 5.0 Smartphone Devices

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5 years ago

WMExperts.com: Prize-A-Day Contest!

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WMExperts Prize-A-Day!

To celebrate the launch of WMExperts we're going to be giving away a some great prizes... and by "some" I mean "One every weekday for an entire month" and by "great" I mean "really, really great." Here's the short of it:

Every weekday beginning February 13th, 2007, WMExperts will be posting a relatively simple 'challenge,' ranging from "comment on this entry" to "write a limerick making fun of the PalmOS" to "Post in the forums." Simply fulfill the challenge on any given to to be entered in a random drawing for that day's prize. What are we giving away - well it's going to vary from day to day, but take a look below for some examples.

At the end of 4 weeks of prizes, WMExperts will be giving away a Grand Prize and two Second Prizes, drawn randomly from the list of all entrants to each of the daily contests. What are we giving away? The Grand Prize is a WM Smartphone of your choice plus $300 to spend on accessories for it. The Second Prize for two winners: A Slingbox Pro.

...More details and the full rules after the jump.

(Update: We've started. You'll find the latest contest in the righthand sidebar every day.)

Grand Prize (1)

Your choice of any Windows Mobile Smartphone that's currently available in the United States...

...Plus $300 to spend on accessories in the WMExperts store.

(Also: If you happen to chose a GSM phone that's available in an unlocked version, we'll get that version for you)

Second Prizes (2):

Two lucky winners will receive a Slingbox Pro!

The Slingbox PRO is the perfect companion for your home theater. With the ability to watch and control one high definition video source and up to three standard definition video devices, the Slingbox PRO ensures that you can watch all of your favorite home theater entertainment anywhere you go. Using an Internet-connected computer or compatible mobile phone, you can watch and control your home TV, DVR, basic cable, digital cable box, or satellite receiver anywhere around your home or around the globe. With a Slingbox PRO you are never separated from your favorite TV shows, sports broadcasts, breaking news stories, digital video recordings, or video on demand.

Daily Prizes (20)

These will vary from day to day, but will include stuff like Bluetooth Headsets, games and productivity software, cases, and more. Check back every day to see what we're giving away.

Contest Rules and procedures

The Prize-A-Day contest will run from February 13th, 2007 until March 12th, 2007. A Daily contest will be held each weekday during that period. You can find the latest Daily contest here.

For the Daily Contests each entry must have a valid email address associate with it, the method of inclusion will be specified in each day's post. At the end of each day, a winner will be chosen at random from all of that day's entries. Once a person has won three daily prizes, he or she will no longer be eligible for daily prizes, but his or her entries each day will still count towards the Second and Grand prizes. Limit one entry per person per day.

For the Final Drawing, all entries for the Daily Contests will be added up and then drawn from at random on March 19th, 2007. Limit 20 entries per person (one for each day).

Disclaimers

  • Employees and contractors of Smartphone Experts or its affiliates are not eligible.
  • We cannot substitute prizes.
  • US residents only (sorry!)
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5 years ago

WM6 at 3GSM: Mega Roundup 2, Including Device Photos

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Today was supposed to be the day for Windows Mobile 6, but after the embargo on was was broken late last week, a lot of the details are already widely known. However, that doesn't mean that there isn't a bunch of new info that you'll want to know about today. The most exciting bits: photos of WM6 running on a bunch of old and new devices - photos after the break.

It appears that T-Mobile is going to be the first US Carrier out of the gate with WM6 shipping on the Dash. The really surprising news is that it looks like a few current WM5 devices will be getting upgrades - T-Mobile has already announced they'll be giving a free upgrade for the Dash and Palm is expected to announce an upgrade for the Treo 750 as well. Given the standard operating procedure of most carriers and manufactures, not having to buy a new gadget to get the new OS is a welcome change.

The other exciting bit this morning is that both Toshiba and Lenovo are in the Windows Mobile game now (Toshiba got out of the game a few years ago, welcome back!). The MotoQ is coming to GSM too. Also after the break: the official press release, Microsoft's WM6 "Fact Sheet", and a ton of device shots.

Official stuff

Here's the offical press release. If you've been following the story, there's not much new here. If you have not, here's a few important bits:

  • View emails in HTML, email also requires fewer clicks to do stuff like delete and forward emails.
  • Built-in Windows Live Search
  • Edit Office docs on all platforms
  • WM6 Pro is the touchscreen smartphone version, WM6 Standard is the non-touchscreen smartphone version, and WM6 Classic is the non-smartphone, touchscreen version (quit snickering, you, some people still want this).
  • Direct Push with Exchange Server built-in (for those of you with terminally old version of WM5)
  • Devices available in Q2.
  • All sorts of companies are on board, including: "AT&T, Chunghwa Telecom, Dopod International Corp., HP, LG Electronics, Motorola Inc., Palm Inc., Samsung, Sprint, Telefónica, Toshiba, Verizon Wireless and Vodafone."
  • "One-Click easy" Internet sharing (read: Dial-up Networking) over bluetooth and USB. Please, carriers, don't break this.
  • Built-in VOIP "backend" to make developing VOIP applications easier.

You may also want to take a peek at the WM6 Fact Sheet, which teaches us, well, it teaches us the same things but in a shorter, better-looking format.

From the horse's, er, mouth, comes this gallery of Window Mobile 6 screenshots

Finally, Microsoft has a new Windows Mobile 6 page up, for those who want the official pretty. They also have a great webcast available as well (Internet Explorer required, naturally) hosted by Pieter Knook, Senior Vice President, Microsoft Mobile and Embedded Devices division (since my name is Dieter, a guy who puts an "i" there in his name is OK in my book).

WM6 Devices that should make it to the US:

Toshiba's Back!

Great to see Toshiba (and Lenovo, see below) come back to the PocketPC game. Toshiba's really out-doing themselves here, the G900 and the G500 both look great. The G900, the one with the full keyboard there, is a HSDPA WM6 Professional phone with all sorts of neat little innovations, including:
  • Fingerprint sensor feature for extra security and easy menu navigation
  • 3-inch wide, colour W-VGA display for enhanced viewing quality
  • Read and write access to a USB flash memory device
  • 2 mega pixel camera
  • Secondary camera for video telephony
  • Support for VoIP
The G500 is no slouch either, despite having WM6 Standard. It has essentially the same specs as the G900m, just lacking the touchscreen. Strangely, Toshiba's site says this little bugger runs WM5. Say it ain't so, Toshiba.

Moto Q9: Awesome; Moto Q: Coming on GSM

The original MotoQ made a big splash followed by a bit of fizzle. I think the Q9 is significantly better looking and significantly cooler, if only because it's being offered as a quad-band GSM phone with HSDPA right out of the gate.
Quad-band GSM plus 3.6 megabit HSDPA
QVGA display
Just 11.8mm thick
2 megapixel camera
Stereo Bluetooth
microSD card slot

Read: Motorola Q q9 with HSDPA - MobileTracker


The original Q is also getting the GSM treatment. With the Q9 coming, all I can say is yawn. The last photo here is the Q GSM veriosn next to the Q9. I know which one I prefer.


HP: iPaq keeps chugging along

HP hasn't impressed me lately, with any luck this new Voice Messenger iPAQ 500 will change that. It's got VOIP built in and a full 6 hours of talk time on GSM/EDGE. No UMTS or HSDPA, tsk tsk, HP, you're continuing to disappoint me. I appreciate the built-in WiFi, though. It looks like HP is positioning this as a kind of super-office-phone, using VOIP when you're at work and the cell radio when you're not. More on the iPAQ 500 at Mobility Site

HTC: T-Mobile Dash to Run WM6, HTC Vox: Pretty Please, come to the USA

It's worth saying again: Big Ups to T-Mobile for announcing they'll be offering WM6 on future and current Dashes. Oh, yeah, the upgrade will be FREE, available in Q2.

Also new from HTC and running WM6 Standard, the HTC Vox. This looks like a great form-factor to me. Here's hoping I'll be able to get one in the states soon. Shots of the Vox below, including comparisons to the Dash (aka. the HTC Excalibur)


Samsung SCH-i760: Best Slider Yet?

Ever since I saw the (battery-less) i760 at CES, I've been in love. The little wonder is due to come out on Verizon. I really like the innovation of moving the 5-way down to make space for a full 12-key phone pad, I really like the slider on this guy, I really like the fact that it runs WM6 Standard. Samsung seems to be doing a really good job with form-factors lately (check out this dual-sliding awesomeness, though no word yet on what the linked f520 will have for an OS). Übergizmo has a video from CES of the i760.

Since the i760 has me so jazzed, I have to include a few extra photos here.


Palm Treo 750 Running WM6

Here's what appears to be a 750 running WM6. It does appear to be that horrible 240x240 resolution (though it's worth noting that WM6 supports 320x320, the Treo's resolution on the PalmOS versions). Palm will be announcing upgrade to the 750 later. JOY.

Live Search is out of Beta

They renamed it "Live Search", thank the lord, so that it doesn't share the same name with the built-in Search app on WM. This is one 3GSM announcement you can apply to your current phone - it works just fine with WM5 (it's built-in to WM6. You can go get it here.

Live Search for Mobile, which we first revealed in December, is now out of beta and available for public consumption in two localized versions - United States and United Kingdom.

Read: Pocket PC Thoughts - Daily News, Views, Rants and Raves

WM6 SDK for developers available soon

Although WM6 looks to be fully backward-compatible with WM5 apps, that doesn't mean that there aren't new WM6 toys for developers to play with. Linked is a white paper describing the new tools available to developers.

The Windows Mobile® 6 developer platform release focuses on a few core goals: simplify line of business (LOB) application development and deployment, make the task of building a single application that runs successfully across the many different devices in the Windows Mobile family easier, and provide an enhanced user experience. This paper explains the new Windows Mobile 6 features and their purpose from a developer's perspective. This paper also explains the many new tools provided by the Windows Mobile 6 Software Development Kit (SDK), and provides some guidance on getting started developing Windows Mobile 6 applications.

Read: What's New for Developers in Windows Mobile 6


Devices that may or may not (sniffle) make it to the US

Asus

Asus has a few devices coming, we'll start with the Aries, a UMTS Tri-band (850, 1900, and 2100) QWERTY phone with a scroll whell, 2 megapixel cam (and smaller one on the front).


Here's the Pegasus line: P735 (no keyboard on front) and P526 (keypad on front). Not much in the way of details on these yet, but the P526 is pretty darn good looking. The P526 also should have GPS built-in and has won a design award too, rightly so.


i-mate

i-mate has announced a slew of great-looking phones, I really hope that they make their way to these shores, but I'm not optimistic. Pictured here is the i-mate SPL, now available in colors.


Also new from i-mate is the JAQ4, a QWERTY phone with Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, which is disappointing, but it does feature WiFi, so that helps.

The JAQ3 will also run WM6. Here is it next to it's newly announced big brother. Specs on both here


Lenovo

Good news: Lenovo is also jumping on board the Windows Mobile Bandwagon! Bad News: we know next to nothing about these two phones. More details as they come - one of which I hope will be the explanation for that intriguing "Google G" we see in that first shot.


Phew! That'll do for now. There are other announcement by other manufactures like Gigabyte and BenQ, but I don't think there's much of a chance of seeing those in the US market.

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5 years ago

Dear Carriers: You Should Follow the Net Neutrality Model

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A week ago I wrote a long rant about the wireless carrier business model after the news that a few carriers were plotting a walled-garden-style rival to Google and Yahoo. Well, it looks like I'm not alone in that hope, BoingBoing.net points us to a great new paper from Colubmia University's Tim Wu which calls for a new model of wireless service.

Most interesting (from my initial skim, anyway) are the parallels the paper draws between the current state of the wireless industry and the monopolistic practices of AT&T in the mid 20th-century. Seriously, folks, go get the pdf and read it over your lunchbreak sometime.

Over the next decade, regulators will spend increasing time on the conflicts between the private interests of the wireless industry and the public's interest in the best uses of its spectrum. This report examines the practices of the wireless industry with an eye toward understanding their influence on innovation and consumer welfare.

This report finds a mixed picture. The wireless industry, over the last decade, has succeeded in bringing wireless telephony at competitive prices to the American public. Yet at the same time we also find the wireless carriers aggressively controlling product design and innovation in the equipment and application markets, to the detriment of consumers. Their policies, in the wired world, would be considered outrageous, in some cases illegal, and in some cases simply misguided.

Read: SSRN-Wireless Network Neutrality by Tim Wu

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