Recent Articles

Headlines

5 years ago

MS to Offer EMI's Non-DRM Tracks

0
0

MS to Offer EMI's Non-DRM Tracks

To be fair, this quote from the MS spokeswoman is surely accurate, in that Microsoft was working on getting non-DRM tracks before Apple's announcement:

"The EMI announcement on Monday was not exclusive to Apple," said Katy Asher, a Microsoft spokeswoman on the Zune team, in an e-mail to the IDG News Service today. She said Microsoft has been talking with EMI and other record labels "for some time now" about offering unprotected music on its Zune players in an effort to meet the needs of its customers.

Strangely, Microsoft offering Non-DRM tracks isn't much more exciting to the Windows Mobile ecosystem than Apple doing it - mainly because it's tied to the Zune marketplace. It's a safe bet, however, that with these non-DRM tracks spreading (legally) around, we'll see them pop-up on some WM compatible stores soon enough.

Read: Microsoft changes tune on selling DRM-free songs

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

Mobile and Embedded Developer Conference Discount

1

Microsoft's big Developer conference for Windows Mobile, MEDC, is coming up pretty quickly. If you're a WM developer and you haven't signed up yet, you're in luck, as Microsoft's Derek Snyder has a discount waiting for you.

If you’ve been holding out for a good deal before registering for the Mobile and Embedded Developer Conference, then now is the time.

If you want to know more, here's a video of Snyder talking up MEDC, plus there's a good chance you'll also get to hang out with the Lord of Devices. Heck, if nothing else, MEDC is in Vegas and should be a good time - any group of people that will cover an entire office in tin foil should know how to enjoy themselves.

Read: moGadget » Blog Archive » Get into MEDC for $800, tell them Derek sent you

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

Consumer-Grade GPS to Suffer in 2011?

1
1

Consumer-Grade GPS to Suffer in 2011?

Infosyncworld, among others, noticed that GPS, er, sucked in December - and posted that it was due to a solar flare. My own local paper elaborates with a story from the AP detailing how we can expect more of this excitement in the future:

The Global Positioning System, relied on for everything from navigating airplanes to transferring money between banks, may be threatened by solar flares, scientists warned on Wednesday.

The big problem is that solar flares occur in 11 year cycles - the next one is due in 2011. During our last peak, in 2000, GPS wasn't as widespread as it is now. I've heard from various doomsayers that your average GPS unit will experience 2011 in the same way that a newborn experiences light: bright, fuzzy, confusing, and not able to really identify anything specific.

So get your GPS fun in now, before the sun starts having its way with it.

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

Samsung i760, first of many Samsung WM Phones in 2007

0

So we've seen now that the Samsung i760 has been approved by the FCC. That makes me pretty happy because I was fond of it when I got to handle it at CTIA. Some better news, though, is that Samsung's German division just committed itself to releasing six (count them six) windows mobile smartphones in 2007. Some of that love has got to make it's way over here.

Even better (for me, anyway), according the unwired article is that Samsung recognizes that the big growth isn't going to come from stolid, boring business phones, but instead from "the prosumer and even consumer segment." That smells like thin, media-savvy, and stylish to me.

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

Samsung's Awesome Smartphone Homescreen

2
2

Samsung's Awesome Smartphone Homescreen

Carousel, Samsung's custom home screen they developed for the non-US SGH-i600 (that's a Blackjack with WiFi, basically) has made the rounds before. Now that people are actually getting their hands on the little wonder, screen shots of the great interface are coming around again. Me Likee. I like it enough that I spent more time than I care to admit yesterday hunting around the web looking for somebody who has provided a ROM dump of the i600 so I could install this on my own Blackjack. No joy yet, but if you find something please let me know.

Basically, the Carousel/Card Wheel plug-in provides several decks which are accessed by using the D-Pad. Each deck contains grouped information which can be accessed straight from the Home Screen.

Read: the::unwired - REVIEW: Samsung SGH-i600 Home Screen Carousel/Card Wheel Plug-In

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

DIY MVNO (OMG LOL)

3
3

DIY MVNO (OMG LOL)

Sonopia got a write up in Business Week yesterday. The deal, apparently, is your group (i.e. Sports team fans, church, local grocery store co-op, whatever) can sign up with Sonopia and let them provide a Mobile Virtual Network (piggybacking on Verizon) for you. The benefits: your group gets a bit of the profit and you get to communicate with each other via the MVNO.

All this tells me two things: 1) there's a lot of extra money sloshing around the mobile phone market (which I knew anyway from the crazy way that phones are subsidized) and 2) It would be fun to start up a WMExperts MVNO. Who's with me?

A former Microsoft exec is starting a service that lets just about any group—from churches to sports teams—become its own cell-phone provider

Read: Do-It-Yourself Wireless (via Consumerist)

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

WM Alt Browser Update: Minimo and Opera

2
2

WM Alt Browser Update: Minimo and Opera

Two exciting bits of browser news to share today. Minimo, the Mozilla-based browser for Windows Mobile, has been updated to 0.2. That's a tiny version number, but it's not a tiny set of features you'll get. The previous version of Minimo was well-nigh unusable (for me, anyway), so I hope this one is better. Check it out: Minimo project page

We also get a new version of another alternative browser: Opera. You can download a trial here, but it'll die on June 1st or within a set time period, whichever comes first. Get browsing!

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

Coming in May: Some iTunes Store Music on your WM Device

0

Looks like EMI is the first record label to respond to Steve Jobs' Open Letter calling on labels to let Apple sell DRM-free music. And how! The music will cost an extra 30 cents per song, but you'll be able to upgrade your current purchases. The better news is Jobs anticipates more labels coming onboard soon. The new DRM-less songs will be 256kb AAC, which means they'll play on basically any modern music player - including, drum roll, Windows Mobile devices.

8:24 Announcing premium downloads. Free from DRM, and higher sound quality.
- 8:25 Upgrade ability as well.
- From press release: $1.29 for premium tracks (DRM-less), $.99 for standard (DRM), and $.30 for upgrade

Read: Mac Rumors: Apple/EMI Press Conference Coverage [Live Updates]

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

Review: Monaco Aluminum Case for BlackJack

2
5 years ago

Pinger For All

0
0

Pinger For All

Pinger, the neat little service that lets you send really quick voice mail messages to people (think of it like a combination of SMS and voicemail), announced at CTIA that they've upgraded their service so that you can send these quick little notes to anybody in the US. Previously, if you sent a message to a non-member, they had to muddle through the signup process -- which was my biggest roadblock to using it.

They also showed off a neat little Blackberry app that allowed you to browse through and send Pinger messages - and also said that they're working on a WM version. Neat.

Pinger, Inc. today expanded its service to tens of millions of Blackberry and US mobile phone users. Pinger, which provides text messaging for your voice, released a mobile application to optimize the Pinger experience for Blackberry users. In addition, Pinger expanded general support for mobile phones on nearly every US mobile carrier

Read: Pinger Press

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

Deepfish Updated, sorta kinda not really available for download

0

We mentioned Deepfish way back before WMExperts was really really live, but it looks like it's making the rounds again. Deepfish is a new browser for Windows Mobile that has some really nice zooming features (ala iPhone). Sadly, it appears that they're not allowing for any more downloads of the current Beta. Bottom line: it's really clear that Microsoft has been giving thought to alternative and innovative mobile user interfaces lately.

Deepfish is a new type of mobile information browsing experience, aimed at preserving the rich layout and full form of documents on mobile devices while providing novel ways of effectively navigating that content on small screens.

Read: Microsoft Live Labs - Take Deepfish for a Swim

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

ZenZui = Smartphone GUI + Mobile Content

0
0

ZenZui = Smartphone GUI + Mobile Content

Ever since Pieter Knook mentioned it in his keynote, the WM Community has been all atwitter about ZenZui. Near as I can tell, it's a combination of two major things: a fancy thumbable interface (that's also friendly to T9 phones) combined with a unique way to provide and cache mobile content.

With ZenZui, your phone screen is a portal into your own customized Zoomspace, an information landscape of personalized, cached content in the form of Tiles that directly reflect your lifestyle. Using a single thumb, you fly in and out of your Zoomspace – two simple taps get you directly to any Tile.

The "Tiles" allow you to zoom in and out of the content you're looking for relatively quickly and easily - it's actually a really smart way to build an interface. Take a look at the embedded YouTube Video after the break. The content comes from two directions, apparently: tiles created by companies and tiles created by independent developers - the users pick their favorites and share them with each other "virally." Basically it looks like ZenZui is trying to get money to folks without making us users crazy with ads and spammy content and whatnot.

In any case, it makes a little more sense when you watch the video. It'll probably make even more sense when we use it. I'd say this is a good idea without a future, but it's a Microsoft spin-off, so I'll say it's a good idea with a good chance.

Read: ZenZui

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

CTIA Day 3: Ubiquio and Randomness

0
0

CTIA Day 3: Ubiquio and Randomness

The surprise of the day was stumbling upon the UBiQUiO (Seriously, that's how they want you to do the capitalized and non-capitalized letters) devices. They're full Pocket-PC smartphone (touchscreen and all) available in unlocked GSM versions from Mobile Planet and originally made by a unnamed Taiwanese manufacturer. But if all those sketchy details don't bother you, the price for the upcoming Ubiquio 503 might: $650 for the unlocked version, available in June.

The 503 has some great specs, though: WM6, a 520mhz Intel processor, 256 megs of ROM, 64mb of RAM, quad-band HSDPA/GSM radio, WiFi, and two cameras. Dang. They just had a dummy model of the 503 at the booth, but they did have a live 501 there for me to play with. More details on that one (currently available) after the jump, along with some other random CTIA newsbits.

Ubiquio 501

The Ubiquio 501 is a quad-band GSM PocketPC Windows Mobile 5 device. The thumbboard on it is actually pretty nice, it reminds me of the thumbboard on the MotoQ9 (which is perhaps not a coincidence - "keepin' it real fake" as Engadget would say). It sports a very nice 320x240 touchscreen and otherwise pretty standard specs for a GSM/EDGE PocketPC device: Triband GSM, Bluetooth 1.2, WiFi, and a 2 megapixel camera.

Overall I was pretty impressed with the form factor. Ubiquio decided to make it thin (.53 inches) and wide - which results in a somewhat slab-like device that is nevertheless very pocketable.

In any case, if none of the currently available offerings the the US float your boat, one of these guys might be a worthy import.

JB5 Browser

Jataayu had a small booth at CTIA where they showed me a little of the JB5 browser - the one I wasn't able to get working on my Dash. They were using it on a MotoQ9 and overall it was pretty neat. I was especially font of their zooming feature. I'll be giving it another go and a full review soon.

More Moto Q9

Jataayu weren't the only folks using a Q9, I saw a lot of booth-drones using them. It's like Moto is giving them out like candy. I want some candy, too. Heck - Motorola even embedded them in the floor of their booth (right). I'm thinking Motorola is pinning a lot of their hopes on the Q9 being a success - they really need a success right now.

Yahoo Go!

I did my part for the Windows Mobile community and gave Yahoo guff for not having their excellent Yahoo Go software available on enough WM devices. Right now it only works on tall-screen Smartphones. Seriously, I want to use this, especially now that they're going to be offering unlimited storage for their email. At least their oneSEARCH service works on everything.

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

CTIA Day 2: Living Proof

1
1

CTIA Day 2: Living Proof

Day two consisted of walking the show floor to see what we could see. Sadly, there's wasn't anything earth shattering. Here's the first bit of non-earth-shattering rumor confirmation: LG is indeed a new manufacturer of Windows Mobile phones. The proof is in the image on the right - a simple prototype of a WM6 device that we weren't allowed to touch. The casing: surely not what will finally come to be. In fact, pretty much all we've learned from this is that LG is capable of slapping together a WM prototype.

Whatever the final product is, let's hope it's as sexy as the Prada:

More images and CTIA news (including our thoughts on Microsoft's part of today's Keynote speech) after the jump.

More Living Proof: WM6 on Cingular phones

In case you didn't really believe it, here are the big three Cingular WM phones that'll be seeing the Windows Mobile 6 update: the Treo 750, the Cingular 8525, and the Samsung Blackjack. All are running WM6 with aplomb. Enough said.

Well, not quit enough. I have a message for Microsoft, Palm, Samsung, and Cingular: If you're going to announce a major upgrade for existing users - you should expect that we're going to want to know if it's free or not. It should be in the press release. If not, it should be on the tip of your tongue when I ask. What should not happen is what did happen to us over and over again: confusion that the question was even being asked. Folks: this is information we want to know.

I'll tell you what I feel like - I feel like the guy on the right that got placed on a slide in a Windows Mobile 6 presentation at Microsoft's booth. Check out the expression there: it's saying "I'm really happy about this news but confused as to how exactly it's going to affect me.

Keynote

Today's keynote was a threefer (though Ed Zander backed out at the last minute - bad quarterly earnings must've got him down) from AT&T, RIM, and Microsoft execs. Microsoft's representative was Pieter Knook and as I've said before, anybody with "ieter" in their name is ok in my book.

In any case, Knook's speech was all about Windows Mobile 6 (naturally) and how he's like to see it positioned in the market. He's hoping that mobile devices can "extend the promise of Web 2.0" (those of you who remember "embrace and extend", be quiet). More to the point, Knook emphasized that WM is an "open platform" - not in the evil commie "open source code" sense but in the sense that it's easy to develop for and anybody can release an app for it. Clearly it was a shot across the bows of both Blackberry and Apple - both of which lack WM's gigantic 3rd party app support. Though to be honest, the "open source" stuff rang a little hollow coming immediately after RIM listed something like 100 3rd party apps they support in lieu of actually saying something interesting in their keynote.

But I digress. Some other big data points from the keynote: over 3 million WM devices shipped in the last quarter of 2006 - a 100% increase over the same quarter in 2005. Here's another shocker: there are 55 different manufacturers around the world making WM devices - including (as mentioned above) the new guys LG and Toshiba. 125 operators support Windows Mobile phones on their networks.

Knook rounded out his speech by pointing out some necessary preconditions for real growth in the "prosumer" mobile market. Precondition number 1: simpler data plans, especially when roaming. Number 2: better mid-to-high level tech support from carriers. Hear Hear.

Last bits:

So, my world wasn't tilted on its axis, but it was a good time. We'll finish out today's post with a photo of CTIAs gone by. Sometimes it's nice to remind ourselves what a "brick phone" really is.

We'll hit the show floor one last time tomorrow - and then we'll be back to our regularly scheduled programming after that. Sadly, we won't be here for the presidential keynote on Thursday, but WM vs. PalmOS vs. iPhone vs. Linux is enough partisanship for us, let's not bring actual politics in.

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

CTIA Day 1: Device Ogling

1
1

CTIA Day 1: Device Ogling

Day One-Half, technically, where we go to a press-only event that preceded CTIA proper. What happened at this pre-show show? Lots of fun ogling some of the latest and greatest coming out soon. Read on for impressions of the HTC Vox, the Samsung i760, and the Motorola Q9.

HTC Vox

First things first: the HTC Vox is as hot as you've imagined. It's tiny, it's actually smaller overall than a lot of high end feature phones (Like the Sony Ericsson W810, just barely), with a great bright screen that has very high density.

Sadly, the keyboard was just a little disappointing, but that's mainly because I wasn't used to it. It's off-center from the screen (which is obvious if you click on the thumbnails above), which is a disconcerting. I could get used to it, though. Sincerely, I could get very used to it. I want this phone. More good news - although there aren't any official carrier announcements in the US (yet!), it is being released in a CDMA/EVDO version on Telus in Canada. This means there's at least a chance this little wonder could be available on every major carrier in the US.

Motorola Q9


The Motorola Q9 is an improvement in every way over the original Motorola Q. Especially, especially in the thumbboard department. I've written before about being disappointed in the MotoQ's thumbboard, and although the Q9 still doesn't have a delete/backspace key on the main QWERTY board itself (for shame), the feel and tactile quality of the new thumbboard is so great I can easily say it's second only to the Treo 750 in the world of Windows Mobile thumbboards. Better than any slider I've used, too -- it's great.

Samsung i760

There's not much to say here: If you like the HTC Vox but don't think you can give up the touchscreen, then you want the Samsung i760. I'm still a fan of their neat little 5-way next to phonepad, and the thumbboard itself is comfortable and easy to use.

Assorted Bits

We spoke to Yahoo about their plans for Yahoo Go. It currently only supports the "tall format" smartphone versions of WM5 (320h x 240w, like the Cingluar 3125). New formats that support other screen resolutions are "coming soon." Also notable is that it doesn't appear that the application does push email any more (it did in the first beta), mainly due to the fact that it no longer integrates with Pocket Outlook but keeps! your! Yahoo! email! within! the Yahoo! Go! application! On the bright side, you can set it to update every so often and it will update everything from Flickr to news to weather to email. So that's nice.

At HTC's booth we learned the above Telus / HTC Vox in CDMA format tidbit and got to take a gander at the HTC Advantage - which I like but don't find especially compelling overall. Big screens are nice, but big devices are not.

We also took a peek at the HTC Artemis, which has a combination trackball and a jogdial-type scroller around it. All-in-all, a great device for folks who don't care about having a thumbboard. If you know any of those people, I'd like to meet them and ask them what exactly is going on in that head of theirs. US availability: unknown.

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

Pages