September 2007


MSN Video Beta + Windows Mobile = Nothing

MSN Video Beta

I just read about the MSN Video Beta. So, I figured that surely Microsoft enabled it to work with Windows Mobile smartphones to counter YouTube (which doesn’t play well with WiMo). So, I pointed a Pocket PC Phone Edition at http://next.video.msn.com/ and, well, it turns out I figured wrong. Once again, WiMo users are shut out of a Microsoft product. Not even the login link on the beta page works with WiMo.
And, where is Microsoft Office 2007 compatibility for WiMo anyway? Or, SkyDrive, or multi-page live.com?

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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What’s with the Names Windows Mobile Standard Edition and Professional Edition?

HTC TyTn and HTC Vox

Most non-geeky, non-techie people (if you are reading this, you are a tech geek, btw), seem to know how to distinquish the different Apple iPod models. The shuffle doesn’t have a screen. The nano is the little one with a screen The iPod (now iPod classic) is the big one. And, the touch… well you can touch its screen on purpose. It is the iPhone without the phone (for the most part). You don’t need to go into engineering or design philosophy details to distinguish the various models. And, note that the distinguishing names are all in lower case: shuffle, nano, classic, touch.

Now look (literally) at the Windows Mobile Standard Edition and Windows Mobile Professional Edition. You practically need to be an engineer to sufficiently distinguish the two devices past the touch non-touch dimension because the Professional Edition is not a true superset of the Standard Edition. The Pro Edition is actually missing a few features that are in the Standard. And, quick, look at the photo above and figure out which is the Standard and which is the Professional in under 1 second (the time it would take to distinguish between iPod models).

What is the deal with the Standard and Professional designations anyway? Is the Standard Edition for non-professionals? That’s the implication from the names, isn’t it? Microsoft needs to rethink this whole branding campaign. The previous Smartphone vs. Pocket PC Phone Edition was much easier for the average consumer to figure out (though still way to wordy) that Standard vs. Professional. The first thing they should do is create a secondary branding using WiMo instead of Windows Mobile just to shorten that part of the name. Then, they need to shorten the device category names to something like WiMo Touch (Pocket PCs with touch screens) and WiMo Phone (no touch screen) or WiMo One (one-handed Smartphone operations) and WiMo Two (two-handed Pocket PC operation). Or, how about WiMo Pocketphone and WiMo Smartphone? It would be a lot easier for non-techies to remember and cut down the typing and awkward sentences in articles and blogs 🙂

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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Lotus Notes Traveler for Windows Mobile

Lotus Notes Traveler

Lotus Notes Traveler is scheduled for release sometime in 2008 (screen shot above obtained from IBM’s site). The big deal about this IBM product is that it will, for the first time, provide native Windows Mobile connectivity to Lotus Notes. I wonder, though, how widely accepted this will be buy Lotus Notes support staff may be very unfamiliar with Windows Mobile devices. And, I wonder how it will affect the long available CommonTime products that seem to currently be the product line of choice to get Lotus Notes and Windows Mobile devices working together.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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Power Toys for .NET Compact Framework 3.5

OK, this one is for the Windows Mobile developers out there…

Power Toys for .NET Compact Framework 3.5

…was released on Sept. 12. The various toys focus on diagnostics and performance evaluation. The Known Issues list is quite long. So, be sure to read through the list before using the Power Toys.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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diggm8: Digg Reformatted for Mobile Viewing

Diggm8

diggm8 (pronounced digg-mate) is a non-Digg affiliated site that reformats Digg.com for mobile browsing. Unlike Digg’s own iPhone formatted site, diggm8 works fine with a Windows Mobile IE browser.

Digg was my favorite post-Slashdot morning destination site. But, its focus has become so diluted that I’m looking for a new destination site. Any recommendations for something to succeed Slashdot and Digg (or TechMeme for that matter) for geekie news?

Mobile Devices

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Smartphones Are NOT An Enterprise Tool

One of my big beefs with Windows Mobile’s roadmap for the past few years has been its focus on the Enterprise and mobile carriers instead of the consumer. So, here comes the Information Week 500 survey, and it reports that…

And those smartphones? Just 10% consider “issuing smartphones beyond a few top executives” a most-effective strategy of the past 12 months,…

IMHO 10% maketh not an enterprise strategy (as IW points out above). In the meantime, while people synching with Exchange Server may be OK, ActiveSync and WMDC remains broken. Windows Mobile is a great platform. But, it needs to be refocused on its core customers: Individuals on the street who go and buy their own phone and don’t have an IT department to support them.

Mobile Devices
Mobile Phones
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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