Rick's Ramblings

Friday, December 30, 2005

Vote on the "Smartphone Of The Year"

Head on over to Smartphone Thoughts where they are asking for your vote of the best smartphone of the year for 2005. I won't tell which one is leading at the moment, but there may be one or two that you have an opinion on. Check it out - good discussion as well.


New Cradle Available for HTC Wizard

Here is one that I'll be making use of once the T-Mobile MDA (their US varient of the Wizard) is out! I've always thought a Pocket PC should have a cradle available for charging, syncing and simply somplace to set the device where you always know where its at. This one is made by Boxwave and can be found here. The cradle works with the following versions of the HTS Wizard: O2 XDA Mini, Orange SPV M3000, T-Mobile MDA Vario, Qtek 9100 and iMate KJAM.

Thanks to Cool Smart Phone for the tip!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

iPass Acquires GoRemote

According to an article at eWeek, iPass has purchased their rival GoRemote Internet Communications for $76.5 million in cash. Business must be good! Anyone interested in the details should check out the article linked above.

Agenda Fusion 7.62 Released...

Pocket PC Thoughts has a post on the release of Agenda Fusion 7.62! Head on over and check it out.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Verizon Launching the "XV6700" on January 5th

Check out Cool Smart Phone's post about Verizon's upgoming WM5 Pocket PC Phone based on the HTC Apache design.

Monday, December 26, 2005


Well I've survived the holiday. Been busy, so I've not had a chance to post. Currently, I'm in northern Minnesota without any good Internet connection - so I'm connected via my mobile phone (GPRS) which is roughly equivalent to an analog dialup connection. I'll be back in range later in the week.

Friday, December 23, 2005

FlexWallet 2006 - Special Offer...

Pocket PC Thoughts has a post about a special offer on TwoPeak's FlexWallet 2006. Check it out before it runs out on Dec. 26th!

HTC Coming to America

HTC is setting up a corporate presence in the US (check out the official web site)! HTC is the largest OEM for Windows Mobile devices, working with many companies to bring devices to market around the world. From HP iPaqs, to Palm devices, to OEM devices supplied to mobile communications carriers (Orange, O2, T-Mobile, Cingular, Vodaphone, etc...), having a corporate presence in the US will further enhance the supportability and product growth in this country. Good news!


I've been using Orb for about 6 months now, and finally have gotten around to posting about it here! I've been able to access my personal media from many remote systems including: at work through the corporate firewall, Pocket PC, and Smartphone! Great concept that is well executed. Check out their services - its free, so have fun! Also, with a compatible TV tuner you can actually control channel selection and viewing over the Internet using your favorite media player! Great Stuff!

Microsoft to Buy Opera - False!

Steven Bink over at Bink.nu posted news that Opera is not being actively pursued by Microsoft or Google. This is good news from my point of view - Opera has always had a great browser, and the market needs another browsing point of view seperate from Internet Explorer and FireFox.

Scoble's Bluetoothing!

He posted yesterday about his new setup.

Interesting Visto PR Tactic

Check out this post over at Pocket PC Thoughts by Ed Hansberry. After reading the blog they've linked to, I believe it to be a simple PR tactic going into the extended Christmas holiday weekend. Make sure to read the comments, there are some good ones!

Windows Live

I've been using Windows Live as my start page for some time now. The neet thing that keeps me there is quite simply how cool the site is, how it keeps expanding, growing and having more interesting tools & technology added. If you are looking for a customizable start page that has many, many add-in options, check out Windows Live at www.live.com!

Christmas Vacation...

I've taken two weeks off for the Christmas & New Years holidays, starting today. Okay, that acutally adds up to 15 days out of the office, but who's counting ;-) ! Aside from celebrating, resting, relaxing and snowmobiling, I'm going to work on a number of ideas related to blogging. As strange as it may be for me, I'm finding this new medium (I know its been around awhile - I'm slow) interesting, with the possibilities of a great future.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Exclusive Preview of Opera Mini!

Opera is offering an exclusive preview of their Opera Mini browser for mobile phones - note that this is not targeted just at smartphones, but at regular "cell" phones! I've tested the new mini-browser on a Nokia 6600 on the T-Mobile network, and it works great. To download the browser directly to your phone, point your existing browser to http://mini.opera.com.

PocketInformant for Smartphone?

Smartphone Thoughts is reporting that WebIS has a version of PocketInformant in the works for Microsoft Smartphone platform! This should be good competition for SBSH Software's Papyrus product.

New Beta of Sprite Backup

Pocket PC Thoughts has a post detailing the new beta of Sprite Backup 5.0. It is a public beta, so if you have a Windows Mobile 5 device, you may want to check it out!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Just got done setting up a BlogRoll over at BlogRolling to manage my link list. Works pretty well! I'll be working to keep the link list up to date - the current list is a number of sites that I've been reading for quite a long time. I highly recommend checking them all out, as they have fantastic information that is always up to date. Also, many of these site have friendly, helpful forums as well. Check them out!

Palm - 4 Smartphones in Store for 2006

Geekzone has a post about Palm, Inc. planning 4 smartphone releases in 2006.


OK, I've "claimed" my blog over at Technorati, don't know if it will generate much traffic, but thought it may be interesting to do (I'm ranked 1,033,836th by the way). Interesting feature being able to search a blog directly from the Technorati site.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


Well, I'm trying out a blogging tool called w.blogger. It'll be interesting to see what kind of flexibility this brings to the posting process.

HTC Prophet...

Jason Landridge has a link to more information on the upcoming HTC Prophet. This device is basically an updated HTC Magician device - also known as the iMate JAM and T-Mobile MDA Compact. With WM5, WiFi, a 2MP camera and many other updates, this could be the device for you!

Monday, December 19, 2005

T-Mobile Catching Up On 3G

Techdirt Wireless has a post about how T-Mobile USA is now committing to 3G, hoping to launch 3G services by the end of 2006. They also mention that it may be to T-Mobile's benefit to be rolling out 3G later than their peers and that nobody has figured out how to market 3G yet.

I'll agree with this completely - T-Mobile can roll out a much more mature technology instead of spending billions implementing through trial & error. The result will be 3G services for less than the competition, and that is the key to 3G that all the carriers just don't get. There is no magic ticket for 3G except for a big fat wireless pipe for cheap, just like a home broadband connection.

The sooner carriers understand that they simply supply a connection and get away from the idea that they need to wall the customer in, or provide some 'hip' service like ringtones (LOL), the sooner they will be able to sign up the majority of their existing voice customers as data customers.

The business plan for 3G is simple if they will try it, and remains the same as many business models: Volume!

Gigabyte Releases G-Smart!

The first Windows Mobile 5 device with the AKU2 update included ships! The AKU2 update includes the Messaging and Security Feature Pack for Windows Mobile 5. This update allows direct push email comparable to the Blackberry. More information over at Jason Landridge's WebLog.

New Version of Skype for PPC Available...

A new version of Skype is available online for the Pocket PC! There are two versions, one that supports 400MHz and faster processors, and one that supports 312MHz and slower processors. Also, they've added support for Windows Mobile 5! Great news for all the HTC Wizard owners out there!

Check it out at: http://www.skype.com/products/skype/pocketpc/

RSS Icon in IE7 Selected...

Microsoft has selected the icon to represent RSS feeds in Internet Explorer 7. More information about this decision is available on the RSS Team Blog over at MSDN Blogs.

Got Voice?

Interesting new service available for Voice Mail. This company will forward your voicemail to any email account you specify, so you can manage your voice mail in email. They send the voice clip as an MP3, which will make archiving and manipulating voice mail much simpler.

Check them out at www.gotvoice.com

Friday, December 16, 2005


Finally getting ready for the weekend, we're heading north for the next two days. Hopefully we'll get a few miles in the saddle (snowmobile) while there and see what the snow cover looks like. I'm hoping this will be a great year for sledding.

Also, I'll be taking Visual Studio 2005 for a spin to see some of the new features.

First Impressions of Motorola Q

Brighthand's Ed Hardy gives his first impressions of the interesting Motorola Q:

Gmail Mobile

Google now has support for Gmail on mobile devices. Check out the information on their "What's New" page: http://mail.google.com/mail/help/about_whatsnew.html

Visto's Attack on Microsoft...

A post over at CoolSmartPhone provides links to several pieces of information about the Visto lawsuits filed against Microsoft and their new partnership with NTP.

Check it out here: http://www.coolsmartphone.com/news1989.html

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Workin' for the weekend!

Ugh, its been a week and there is still a day to go. Hope I can make it. Well we're actually investigating a mobile email system at work. What with RIM's troubles and the fact that its much easier to work with Microsoft Exchange for what we will want to do makes the decision easy.

It'll be pretty cool if we implement - our users will be able to choose their favorite carrier and we'll be able to provide much more than just access to email and calendar items. Well, I'm installing the VS05 Standard Edition that I got at the launch event yesterday. Should be fun.

I also see that some pissy little company is trying to sue Microsoft on the basis that they have infringed on "push-mail" patents the company holds - they've also teamed with NTP who is currently suing RIM for the same thing. Real original. Get a grip, why can't we get through a year without someone trying to litigate for profit? Here's an idea - try to win on your own merits, like making sure your product is THE solution - simple, inexpensive, and EASY to use for the average person? Of course, Microsoft's solution is not as easy as RIM's, so who knows where it will all end up.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Strange Behavior...

I'm having some weird things happen on my work laptop - again! While connected to VPN, the network stack will lock up! The system will eventually hang and force a reboot. After rebooting, the system, I'm finding a number of things aren't working but their status in Computer Manager is "OK". This isn't a Windows issue either - it is a 3rd party issue whether driver or software and I've had the problem for most of this year! I've had this happen about 6 time now and each time I end up installing a backup image of the PC. There simply is no error logs, messages or other areas in the software and system to point me to a solution. Googling the web and following up on many forums has lead nowhere. Working with the vendors has simply ended in fingerpointing between them, and then usually finally at MS whose problem it isn't.

Frustrated beyond belief - guess I re-image...again.

VS05 Launch

Typical Microsoft event, though larger than previous events in Minneapols. They supposedly had over 4000 people sign up for the event, though with the snowstorm that came through today it did make many people late. It was crowded, something I can't normally say for Minneapolis event for Microsoft.

Anyway, it was typical marketing fluff in the beginning followed by some semi-technical/executive overviews of the major benefits of Visual Studio 2005. I liked it and picked up the free version (Standard) at the end of the day. Nice day out of the office!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

VisualStudio 2005 Launch - MPLS

Well I'll be at the Microsoft VisualStudio 2005/SQL 2005 Launch event in Minneapolis, MN Tuesday. About 3-4 people from my office will be there, can't wait! While at the event, I'll be trying to blog, mainly just for the heck of it (everyone else does).

See ya!


I've finally got around to customizing my blog here at Blogger! Neat stuff, and good flexibility compared to MSN Spaces. That is not to knock Spaces at all, it is maturing quite quickly - the differences are substantial, and I hope to make use of both services as I go forward.

Open the floodgates!

Well the tidal wave of new Windows Mobile 2005 devices is building. Here is the current state of device releases:

  • Cingular 2125 (Smartphone on Cingular - available now)
  • Cingular 8125 (PPC Phone on Cingular - scheduled Q1 2006 Release)[model # may be incorrect]
  • T-Mobile SDA II (Smartphone on T-Mobile - scheduled Q1 2006 Release)
  • T-Mobile MDA (PPC Phone on T-Mobile - scheduled Q1 2006 Release)
  • HP rw4500 (Smartphone similar to 2125/SDAII/SP5, see the::unwired - no further information)
  • Motorola Q (PPC Phone, previewed at Mobile Burn)
  • Sprint PPC 6700 (PPC Phone on Sprint - available now)
  • Palm Treo 700w (PPC Phone on Verizon - scheduled Q1 2006 Release)
  • iMate SP5/SP5m (Smartphone direct from iMate - Available now)
  • iMate K-JAM (PPC Phone direct from iMate - Available now)
  • iMate JASJAR (PPC Phone direct from iMate - Avaiable now)

Fantastic stuff! Many of these devices on are available direct on the internet from places like MadMonkeyBoy, Expansys, MobilePlanet and more. Watch the carriers for there releases over the next 2-3 months. Great time for Windows Mobile, especially if you are considering a change from RIM's Blackberry!


Friday, December 09, 2005

Exchange SP2 "Push Mail" Solution

I've been researching Microsoft's push-mail solution and have came to the conclusion that their solution is quite adequate for the task at hand. The differences when compared to the Blackberry solution are noticeable, but once up and running will be seamless to the user.

Microsoft's requirement for a HTTP request to remain open for x number of minutes and then re-issue the request if no change is returned obviously mandates an unlimited mobile data package added to a user's mobile phone plan.

This is a key difference, because the user needs to know what to request from their carrier to support the phone, unless the carrier is providing the email address and provisions the service specifically to support the new push solution.

Even though the system is technically not a "push" solution, the end result is indistinguishable from the Blackberry service, with more device options (more on that later).

Cool stuff.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Treo 700w on Verizon

Verizon has a "coming soon" page up for the Palm Treo 700w which runs Windows Mobile 5. This device should be pretty nice, utilizing the Treo hardware design and leveraging the Windows Mobile platform.


Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Computer Repair

Going over to my parents place to work on their PC - they have been in need of work for awhile now. Mostly just cleaning junk and spyware off the darn thing.

Not enough time

Well, I have not been back to post anything yet. I've been so busy at work that I had not made time to start working on this blog, or update my MSN Space either. This evening I should have enough time to start working on this site and get some content/configuration started.

I'm impressed with the options available at blogger.com, so I'm going to make an effort to get started with this blog that I have not done on my previous attempts.

See ya!