Upgrading to Windows Mobile

You read the title right….I am officially calling it an upgrade!

One interesting reason is that it doesn’t interact with my email/calendar/GAL as easily as my blackberry did (I don’t think any device will for some time….RIM understands how users want mobility). That may seem like a bad reason to think Windows Mobile is better; however, I never let my devices buzz me when an email arrived in the past…..and now they just don’t get there sometimes….which means I am being weaned from the crackberry status!

One other extreme downside that I recently discovered is the alarm clock……During a recent business trip I set the alarm clock on my phone for 5:40am (enough time to hit the gym, shower, and then get to work)….Well that happened to be 5:40 eastern (not 5:40 pacific). Upon returning home (to the pacific time zone) I turned off the alarm by simply setting the alarm to the off position. The next morning I woke up to my wife pushing me out of bed and an odd little sound coming from the other room….at 2:40 in the morning!!! jeese, ok fine, i guess that’s my phone, I’ll go turn it off……well that wasn’t fun and I’m sure I would hear more about it in the morning……back to sleep! after another three hours of sleep, the situation repeats itself! 5:40am pacific the alarm goes off again!! mind you this is twice now the alarm has gone off! alright, this is ridiculous….so I tried the normal stuff, rebooting the device, setting the alarm for 5pm vs. 5am, turning the alarm on and off, etc, etc…….all of which DID NOT WORK!!! that’s right the alarm went off again, again, and again, and tonight my wife won’t let me try to figure it out any longer…..as I’ve been troubleshooting it all week, she works for MS, she should be happy I’m helping….she has this strange desire to sleep through the night though. As a side note, I couldn’t find anything good on the internet to fix the problem; although, I did find a few alarm clock applications…..

So why would I call it an upgrade? email isn’t as usable as a blackberry, the alarm isn’t working (even after a traditional Microsoft Reboot), and there are a few other problems waiting for my discovery?

Yeah sounds like a disaster, but….. to be honest it does EVERYTHING! yes that is right, I mean EVERYTHING!!! That is exactly what I wanted, and that is exactly what I got…..I can talk on the phone, take video’s of my kids’ kung fu, record audio of presentations, record phone calls for podcasts, take pictures of spontaneous events, listen to music on the bus, evaluate powerpoint presentations while on a conference call, jump on wifi to get faster internet access, use the device as a modem for internet access, use the 2GB mini-SD cards as a regular USB device (which is great by the way for uploading/downloading bin files from a symm for offline editing)…..

Most of all though, I see what Microsoft is thinking, I have some internal only apps loaded that do traffic and per-building office lookups, I have live local installed which lets me get a map, driving directions, and everything else in one place, the overall experience is better, and the vision of a device enhancing my daily interactions with life is starting to emerge from the clouds……here is an example….

Today I had an appointment in downtown Bellevue (just west of MS Campus), I wasn’t positive of the location so I punched the address into live local (on my device) and got driving directions (my device doesn’t have GPS built in so it wasn’t real time data….we need mini-SD GPS), after the appointment I returned to work and took a conference call along the way (ok, that’s normal), after getting back to the office I finished editing a bin file I wanted to use and copied it to my device (I used to carry a USB Drive, but not anymore), I then walked over to the lab (while listening to the Beastie Boys), plugged my phone into the symmetrix and uploaded the new configuration, while the symm chunked away at the new configuration I took the opportunity to check my email, play a couple of games (how is it that tetris is still sooooo cool?), take another look at a presentation on restart/recovery/replication solutions that will eventually make it past our high publishing walls, listened to a podcast on SML, and then turned on some Thievery Corporation while I finished the bin load……

ok, that is kind of extreme, I don’t use the device like that every day……other days I take videos, pictures, or play more games (that freakin’ bubble popping game is addictive, 648 on standard game play is my high score, anyone higher?)…..and other days I’ll listen to my music most of the day.

At the end of the day though, when I forget to plug my Dash in (and then love the battery the next day because it is still not drained……which was impossible on my BB), I realize that everytime I needed a small piece of technology with me during the day, I had it in my phone. I could communicate with everyone I wanted to at all times, I could access all the files I needed, and I could create new information when I wanted to. It has been a great experience so far and I haven’t upgraded to WM 6 yet!! From what everyone is saying about the advancements with DeepFish etc, I really can’t wait to upgrade and somehow improve my experience….maybe the alarm will work or the email will be easier to use, regardless of what is actually improved, the thought process being put into what problems the device is solving are huge in comparison to apple or rim…..the device is clearly there to enhance all aspects of my everyday life (not just one or two like the others). So yeah, it is an upgrade, with a few bumps along the way, and eventually I think the WM platform will enhance a lot of people’s lives; expecially when they start sync’ing with OMA based standards in WM7 (e.g. OMA-DS). Then we will start to see things like Funambol as a native sync server to WM devices vs synching through an application (come to my talk at Exchange connections next week if you want to know more)….the point is the WM device will be extendable beyond the Microsoft servers and natively usable by a broader audience. Now they just need to license suretype, this T9 technology is not very helpful……

…….btw, it did cost me $250 to upgrade to this thing, so no it’s still not cheep and no there are still not enough provider incentives to make it easy to swallow (and yes my bill came today)….


One Response to “Upgrading to Windows Mobile”

  1. Random thoughts on Microsoft Strategy « Messaging….. Technology…… Life….. Says:

    […] Although Windows Mobile is cool, RIM and Symbian have more marketshare, more partners, and better worldwide support. As MS moves […]

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