July 2007


Misc. T-Mobile Dash Questions from my YouTube Mailbag

Here’s another Windows Mobile question I found in my YouTube mailbag. This one is from dagdag32.
so on my dash…im wondering how do u change da background to oother things….like wuns dat dont come wit da phone….and how do u put new games and upgrade it to a bettel windows mobile.

First, it sounds like you would really benefit from just spending 30 minutes exploring your Dash. It is a very rich device and well worth learning more about. You’ll find yourself getting a lot more productivity and enjoyment from it by becoming more familiar with Windows Mobile in general and features specific to the Dash.

Take a look at the manual that came with the Dash. If that is not enough, browse through some of the excellent books covering Windows Mobile. I can heartily endorse my friend Frank McPherson’s excellent WM5 book: How to do Everything with Windows Mobile. It was written for WM5 devices. However, a good chunk of it still applies to WM6.

Fortunately, T-Mobile made the Windows Mobile 6 upgrade for the Dash available free of charge. You can find and download it from the T-Mobile USA (assuming you are in the US) website.

Mobile Devices
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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Windows Mobile Standard Edition Wireless File Transfers?

I discovered today that the little Windows Mobile videos I’ve been posting to YouTube has actually generated some questions via YouTube email over there. I created those videos to illustrate things I talk about in this blog. So, I didn’t pay much attention to them. Some of the comments are interesting though. So, I’m going to try to muddle through a few this week. Here’s one from DargonPacer to start things off…
Just got my Dash a few days ago.. AWESOME device.
I am able to connect to wifi and surf, but I cannot find out how to transfer files via wifi.(I want to be able to just drag and drop files on the laptop into the dash, w/o using ActiveSync)

I wouldnt mind using active sync over wifi or bluetooth so much, but I cant get either to work..followed your tutorial, didnt help.
When it is connected via USB, all works well including active sync, but the only thing I can do with the wifi is surf faster.

The bluetooth pairs fine and the bluetooth software on my laptop ‘sees’ the phone (and the phone ‘sees’ the laptop), but active sync wont connect. Have tried using various serial ports (making sure to add correct comm) and all that..

I have the latest Active sync on my laptop and the days SAYS it has Windows Mobile 6 Standard (CE OS 5.2.1236 (Build 17741.0.2.1)) on the Dash (came with it). Any suggestions?

Couple of comments: First, IMHO Bluetooth under Windows XP or Vista is iffy at best. I, for example, was unable to use my Microsoft Bluetooth Presenter Mouse on my Dell D620 notebook after the June Patch Tuesday. I can’t diagnose your particular bluetooth problem. But, I can address your other question. Be warned, however, it doesn’t offer much help.

Microsoft removed the ability to use ActiveSync over WiFi with the introduction of Windows Mobile 5 and Active Sync 4. Older (Windows Mobile 2003 2nd Ed.) should be able to sync over WiFi using AS4 because it actually drops back to AS3.8 code when it sees pre-WM5 devices.

If you used a Pocket PC (Professional Edition) instead of a Smartphone (Standard Edition), you might have been able to use File Explorer’s Open Path function to access a shared directory on a network. But, honestly, that has been an iffy proposition too in my experience.

So, short of using a USB connection, putting the micro-SD card in a reader, or emailing a file attachment to yourself, I don’t see any other alternatives (perhaps someone who does know of one can chime in here). You might want to get a second set of eyes to look at your PC’s Bluetooth configuration to see if you can get it working with ActiveSync.

Mobile Devices
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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MobileViews Blog 1st Anniversary

Although the MobileViews.com site has been around for many years, this version of the blog just reached its first anniversary since its relaunch on July 22, 2006.

The blog had been down for many months after one of those former web hosts and broken software sob-stories. And, it took a while to decide to get back to blogging after that horrible experience.

Many thanks to everyone who took the time to visit this blog more than once 🙂 And, a special thanks to everyone who took the time and effort to comment on a blog post. When you agree, disagree, or correct an error on my part, it is all appreciated.

Announcements
Mobile Devices

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All New MSN Mobile?

Like many of you, I received the mass email announcing the all new MSN Mobile found at…

mobile.msn.com

But, after a quick look, I can’t figure out what is new about it. And, despite all my complaints during a beta testing phase earlier this year, it still has way too much white space that forces me to scroll way too much on a smartphone.  For some reason, many of the major portals have adopted the use of enormous amounts of white space in their mobile portals that forces me to scroll up and down a lot. Google went from a fast clean design to a scroll-a-lot design. Yahoo did this too for some reason. I thought their previous mobile portal was the best designed in terms of a small, fast, clean mobile UI. Is the same consulting team providing this awful advice for all of these redesigns?

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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Cameraphone Evolution: HTC Advantage Close-up Shot

HTC Advantage 7500 photo of Altoids tin

Most cameraphones (at least the ones I’ve tried over the years) have limited the kinds of photos I take. Outdoor shots in bright but not too bright sunlight came out best. Indoor shots were grainy. And, close-up Macro type shots? Forget it. One of my early cameraphones (the MPx220?) had a flashlight sort of flash. But, it was essentially useless for indoor shots. I’ve heard great things about the various high-end cameraphones available outside of the US (or outside of my budget like the Nokia N95) but have not been able to test any. So, it has been very interesting to take the camera part of the HTC Advantage 7500 (Windows Mobile 5, the WM6 based 7501 is out now) through some tests.

The photo above was cropped and resized smaller to fit this blog. But, it is otherwise untouched. The original 3 megapixel photo was taken indoors. And, I used the 7500’s flash feature to light the Altoid can (I just discovered this Dark Chocolate dipped Peppermint candy last week :-). The 7500’s autofocus feature seems to result in photos that are much much better than the usual photos I get from other cameraphones. I hope lower end cameraphones start getting these specs and features soon.

Digital Photography
Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Windows Mobile

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HTC Advantage 7500 Photos Look Pretty Good

HTC Advantage 7500 sample photo

I’ve been interested in cameraphone photography since the first time I tried a Nokia 3650 cameraphone way back in 2003 (The Nokia 3650 GSM/GPRS Phone with Camera, Bluetooth, and More). I also wrote a half dozen of the hacks in the cameraphone section of the book Digital Photography Hacks (2004). But, I’ve always readily admitted that cameraphone photos were nowhere near the quality of even low priced digital cameras. You just can’t compare a glass lens device to a (usually) plastic lens device. However, cameraphone photos have been steadily improving over the years and are starting to look pretty good. The T-Mobile Dash I use as my day to day phone takes decent photos in daylight conditions. I just started taking photos with an HTC Advantage 7500 (a Windows Mobile 5 Pocket PC Phone Edition with a 3 megapixel camera). So far, I’m reasonably happy with what I’ve seen so far (see a shrunken version of a photo from the camera above). I’m planning to perform more testing of the 7500’s still photo and video capabilities over the next couple of weeks and will post photos here and on other sites.

Digital Photography
Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Windows Mobile

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