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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Stereo BT with Altec-Lansing Backbeat

Posted by Nurhisham Hussein in "Pocket PC Accessories" @ 02:00 AM

"Mono Bluetooth headsets are already everywhere, but this could be the year that those of the stereo variety take off, and Altec Lansing's hoping its new BackBeat series will be a contender. They're made in partnership with earpiece-guru Plantronics, so callers will find integrated voice dialing, omnidirectional microphones, 7 hours of talk time, and AudioIQ to boost volume when you're in a noisy situation."

After a 6-month study-related hiatus, I'm back! And this first post is on something I've been looking at for some time. Stereo BT headsets have largely been a niche area over the last few years, but the technology has certainly improved in the interim. What still bothers me though is the price, with most stereo headsets coming in at the US$100 dollar level (like the Backbeat). That's the price for a premium mono headset with noise-cancelling, and way, way over what typical mono headsets cost these days - not exactly a recipe for mass-market adoption. Granted, you've got a lot more technology and research dollars embedded in stereo headsets (and hopefully better quality sound), but is that worth the premium? Thoughts anyone?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

US Markets Receives HTC S740 Variant!

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone News" @ 09:00 AM

"HTC Corporation, a global leader in mobile design and innovation, today unveiled the HTC S743, a compelling fusion of style and power. By combining a traditional 12-key keypad design with a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard, the HTC S743 was created to bring the muscle of Windows Mobile 6.1 to customers who prefer a more traditional user interface. The HTC S743, which supports high-speed HSDPA (850/1900 MHz) networks, will be available through select retail outlets, including and, during the first quarter of 2009. 'While others are content focusing on a single design or user interface, HTC is dedicated to bringing the benefits of mobile convergence to all consumers, without forcing them to use a device that doesn’t truly fit their lifestyle,' said Jason Mackenzie, vice president of HTC America. 'The HTC S743, which packs high-design and high-performance into a trim 4.9 ounce package, is a great example of HTC’s rejection of a ‘one-size-fits-all’ philosophy.'"

It is nice to see HTC bring this seriously sexy Windows Mobile Standard handset to the US market. I have been lucky enough to get my hands on a HTC S740 that I have had for a few weeks and after playing around with that handset I might just have to pick up this model once the device is released on our side of the pond. I don't want to say too much since our review of the S740 should be up by the week’s end but I can tell you that I truly sad to have to send it back. We will keep you guys updated as we receive more information on the HTC S743. Also be sure to check out the full press release after the break Read more...

T-Mobile Shadow 2009

Posted by Pete Paxton in "Smartphone News" @ 08:00 AM

"It's not the T-Mobile Shadow II as you would expect, it's going to be called the Shadow 2009. When the original T-Mobile Shadow came out, it was kind of ground breaking. It was one of the 1st Windows Mobile phones to radically change the default UI. It took some criticism, but it also took in a good deal of praise. Well, BGR has some info about the Shadow 2009, but a big problem is looming for it, no 3G support? I realize T-Mobile's 3G network is young and not widespread, but they are doing themselves no favors if they leave 3G out altogether."

With everything else out there, does the Shadow 2009 even stand a chance? It's fairly ordinary looking, no qwerty keyboard, and the real killer... no 3G? This seems more like a 2007 phone than a 2009 upcoming device. It's at least @Home (Hotspot Enabled). Are any of you planning to pick this one up and if so, why? And does anyone else feel T-Mobile is falling way behind? I'm curious to know what you all think.

Flexilis Security Suite For Windows Mobile

Posted by Ed Hansberry in "Pocket PC Software" @ 05:00 AM

"We are a team of security researchers, software developers, and mobile technology fanatics who want to help make the mobile world a safe place to work and play. Our team is primarily comprised of very technical folks who want to take on the challenge of developing security solutions for the next generation of computing devices. Most importantly, we are the kind of people who love building great products that are as easy to use as they are advanced in how they keep you safe."

Flexilis is a new security suite that is designed to protect your data from malware, viruses, theft or loss. It is in beta right now. To find out more, or to sign up for the beta, head over to their site.

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Monday, January 5, 2009

Conduits Releases Pocket Player 4.0

Posted by Darius Wey in "Pocket PC Software" @ 10:18 AM

"Conduits Technologies, Inc., announced today the release of Pocket Player 4.0, an alternative media player for Windows Mobile 6 Pocket PC and Smartphone. Pocket Player aims to satisfy consumers who demand more from a dynamic media player on a mobile device, and recently won Best Audio at the 2008 Smartphone and Pocket PC Magazine Best Software Awards for its Pocket PC and Smartphone editions. Pocket Player 4.0 introduces AAC and M4A playback and podcast subscriptions, as well as enhanced MP3 support and other improvements. Pocket Player 4.0 is fully compatible with all Windows Mobile 6.1, Windows Mobile 6, and Windows Mobile 5.0 devices."

A free trial version of Pocket Player 4.0 is available. If, after trying it, you like what you see and want the full version, you can grab it from our affiliate software store (Windows Mobile Classic/Professional, Windows Mobile Standard) for $19.95. However, if you purchased Pocket Player 3.x on or after December 1, 2008, you're eligible for a free upgrade; if you purchased any version of Pocket Player before that date, then it's just $9.95 for an upgrade.

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  • Source: Press Release

Rent Your Phone From Rentoble

Posted by Ed Hansberry in "Pocket PC News" @ 07:00 AM

Rentoble will allow you to rent the latest phone from the four major US carriers, or rent an unlocked GSM phone to use wherever you want. When you are done, just send the phone back and pick out a new device. They don't have every phone the carriers handle. For example, for T-Mobile they only have the G1 and Sidekick LX, and for AT&T a couple of Blackberry's and the Samsung Epix. The only Windows Mobile devices I saw were on the Sprint and Verizon networks.

If you are the kind of person that is constantly buying a phone, then selling it after several months when something new catches your eye, this might be a cheaper alternative.

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  • Source: Mr Mobile

Friday, January 2, 2009

Closed vs. Open Phone Systems

Posted by Ed Hansberry in "Pocket PC Talk" @ 06:01 AM

The Motley Fool posted an article a few days ago on how Palm could lose everything (haven't they just about done that already?) and what they must do to survive. The main reason I am posting this is the Fool has some research showing that closed systems are crushing open systems in the marketplace. Closed systems are represented by Nokia, Apple and RIM, where the own the operating system and do much if not all of the hardware design. Open systems would include Palm, HTC and Motorola where the software is purchased from a third party, like Microsoft or Google.

This is the exact opposite of the PC world where only Apple owns their own OS. All other PC vendors buy from Microsoft or use a flavor of Linux, and despite all of the media attention on Apple, it is still below 10% of US share, though it is growing, especially in the consumer space.

Years ago when MS got into the phone OS business, they hoped to repeat their desktop success in the mobile device world and to date, aren't even close, while newcomers like Apple and very focused developers like RIM own the top positions. Do you see this trend continuing? What can the open system vendors (MS, HTC, Palm, etc.) do to turn this around? Should MS release their own phone? I know one of the things that really frustrates users is when there is a problem with their Windows Mobile device, Microsoft won't even talk to them. It is the carrier's responsibility to service the consumer, and speaking from experience, in all but the easiest of solutions, the carrier immediately responds with "wipe the devices memory and let's see what that does." That response simply says "I have no clue about this OS we've put on your phone, so just reset it." If MS sold a phone, I suspect they'd be far more inclined to help the user than their OEM partners are.

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  • Source: Palm InfoCenter

Winners of the Ringtone Shuffler Contest

Posted by Darius Wey in "Pocket PC Events" @ 12:28 AM

To kick off the new year, we're announcing the winners of last month's Ringtone Shuffler contest. If your username is listed below, congratulations! Please check your private messages within the next 24 hours for registration details.

  • edhead
  • janoulle
  • maskology
  • paulsg63
  • ucfgrad93

Thanks to Gx5 for their generosity. Stay tuned as we bring you more contests in the coming weeks!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

The $3.95 Windows Mobile Game Sale

Posted by Rocco Augusto in "Smartphone Software" @ 10:00 PM


"Meteor: You have to destroy bricks, saving your meteor from enemy missiles and getting as much power-ups as possible. 90 various levels with attractive space environment make much fun for players of all ages. Jackpot Casino: Virtual casino with blackjack, roulette, video poker, caribbean poker, craps and slots"

I just ran across a couple of fairly priced games in our affiliate store to help ring in the New Year. For those of you that like casino games we have Jackpot Casino as well as the 90 level meteor defending Meteor - both from Mobile Steam. Until January 4th both games are on sale for a mere $3.95, saving you a whopping $12+ off of each of their respective price tags.

Happy New Year: Here's To A Great 2009!

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Thoughts Media Off Topic" @ 12:01 AM

Depending on where you are in the world, it's already 2009, but I've still got a few hours left in 2008 so here I am writing up a quick post. I wanted to wish everyone in the Thoughts Media community a very happy New Year! 2008 ended a bit rocky for most of us, but I hope 2009 will be a great year of prosperity and hapiness for everyone. I want to thank each and every one of you who regularly visit our sites and have made them your technological home on the Web. Your support is deeply appreciated. I also want to thank the great teams of volunteers that make each of these sites tick: your dedication and desire to strive for excellence helps make these sites great. Here's to a great 2009!

We'll all be taking January 1st off to relax and come January 2nd we'll be back to the news as normal.

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