I said there would be a ton of announcements from 3GSM this week and if your head isn't already spinning with the speed and number of device announcements then get ready for another one. Research in Motion announced the BlackBerry 8800. The BlackBerry 8800 is the thinnest BlackBerry device and yet features their famous QWERTY keyboard and the trackball navigation system similar to the Pearl. Integrated GPS and a microSD expansion slot are also packed into this slim device. The BlackBerry 8800 comes with BlackBerry Maps that work with the integrated GPS radio to provide driving directions to your desired destination. The device sports a 320x240 landscape color display.The quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE smartphone will be available worldwide starting this month.
The Mobile Gadgeteer
Professionals are doing more today on the go than ever before. Matthew Miller provides you with news, commentary and in-depth reviews of the latest in mobile gadgetry such as iPads, Android tablets, cutting edge smartphones, portable gaming,
Matthew Miller started using a Pilot 1000 in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since.
There will be lots of news coming out of the 3GSM World Congress event being held in Spain this week and we've already posted lots of Windows Mobile 6 news. Nokia also made some major device announcements that include model updates and a new Communicator for the enterprise user. The Nokia E90, E65, and E61i are three new devices for the enterprise market. The Nokia N77 adds DVB-H TV to a high end multimedia devices. The Nokia 6110 Navigator allows you to get GPS navigation and location based services on a small form factor S60 device.
A couple of new Windows Mobile 6 devices were announced earlier today, but the bulk of the announcements were just made from ASUS, BenQ Siemens, Gigabyte, HTC, Lenovo, Motorola, and Palm. All these companies announced Windows Mobile 6 devices that would be launched in 2007. The device that has me most interested is the HTC Vox that is a Windows Mobile 6 Standard device with a standard looking phone keypad, but with a side slide-out QWERTY keyboard to use when you really need to enter some text. I am also interested in the GSM Motorola Q that runs Windows Mobile 6. While it is nice that Palm will be updating the Treo line with Windows Mobile 6, the more interesting part of Microsoft's announcement is that 320x320 resolution is now supported so Windows Mobile Palm Treo devices can have the same hardware as the Palm OS models. The lower 240x240 resolution has been an area where people have been disappointed with Windows Mobile Treo devices.
It has been a couple of years since we last saw a Toshiba Pocket PC, but as the popularity of Windows Mobile continues to dramatically increase we are seeing old and new manufacturers launching devices. Toshiba looks to be starting off well with the G900 that looks a lot like an HTC Hermes or Apache device and runs Windows Mobile 6 Professional. Toshiba's other entry is a Standard device with a slider that reveals a phone keypad, similar to a Nokia N80 device. These Toshiba devices are slated for release in Japan so I don't know if we will even see them in the U.S.i-mate also revealed a couple of new devices and upgrades to the existing JAQ3.
HP has had Pocket PC Phone Edition Mobile Messenger devices for a couple of years, but they have never really seemed to have taken off. HP continues to try to compete in the mobile market and is launching their HP iPAQ 500 series Voice Messenger. The Voice Messenger is a Windows Mobile 6 Standard device (aka Smartphone) and looks to also have a 1.3 megapixel camera. The HP Voice Messenger is capitalizing on the increasing popularity of VoIP and includes capabilities and integrated WiFi for this functionality. HP is also including a powerful voice command system that actually allows you to reply to email by dictating and sending a voice response without the need for any typing. GSM/EDGE and Bluetooth radios are also included on the device. The new HP Voice Messenger should be available this Spring, but you can check out our image gallery in the meantime.
Microsoft was forced to unveil their new operating system, Windows Mobile 6.0, last week due to a breach of NDA by a media source and today they posted the "official" press release. A couple of exciting bits of news that can be found in the press release that were not revealed last week are that future T-Mobile Dash devices in the U.S. will come with Windows Mobile 6 and existing owners like myself will be able to upgrade our devices to Windows Mobile 6, Orange will deliver the SPV E650, and SoftBank Mobile Corp will offer new devices from Toshiba and HTC in mid-2007. Yes, that's right it looks like Toshiba is coming back to the world of Windows Mobile and hopefully we'll see more details about the hardware soon. Look for lots of hardware details soon from 3GSM in Spain.The first Windows Mobile 6 hardware revealed at 3GSM is the Samsung SCH-i760 and a couple photos are included in this post. I saw this unique Windows Mobile 6 Professional device at CES, yet it did not have a battery so I didn't get to see it in action. The Samsung SCH-i760 has an original phone keypad with an offset directional pad on the bottom left with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard.
The lines are becoming blurred between the different categories of devices as you can see in the image gallery with some of the key differences in the new Classic, Standard, and Professional classes being a much more powerful Office Mobile application suite that allows you to create documents on a Professional or Classic device, Remote Desktop Mobile in the Classic/Pro models, stupid basic calculator on the Classic/Pro devices while the Standard device actually has a new, fresh calculator designed for non-touch screens, ability to setup your own home page in Internet Explorer Mobile on Classic/Pro devices, and external storage card encryption support on Classic/Pro devices. Check out the 42 new actual screenshots from a Windows Mobile 6 Professional device, including the Windows Update sequence.
Nokia announced that users of other select S60 and Windows Mobile 5.0 devices can now also download maps over-the-air for free when they are connected wirelessly. Support for other S60 devices, S40 devices, Linux, and other Windows Mobile devices is planned for the future. Their smart2go maps provide worldwide coverage and allow for mapping in routing in over 150 countries. I have been using Google Maps quite a bit for finding locations when I am traveling, but will definitely be trying out the Nokia maps because I can now pair my devices with a Bluetooth GPS and get satellite navigation functionality. There is a desktop client to download maps and store them on a storage card in case you are traveling to an area without wireless carrier coverage.
If you are a Treo fan then I highly recommend you check out fellow ZDNet blogger and mobile gadget fan Marc Orchant's recent post linking to his Treo-focused podcast. Marc recorded the podcast with David Spark on The Communications Insider for Sprint show. Marc starts off with the top 3 things you should do when you take your Treo out of the box and I completely agree with his valuable tips, especially regarding Agendus. Marc then goes on to chat about all kinds of great tips and tricks that can be valuable to users of all kinds of mobile devices. Check out this 25 minute podcast now.
Microsoft was expected to reveal their new Windows Mobile operating system, previously codenamed Crossbow, on Monday at the 3GSM event in Spain. Events suddenly changed and the NDA was lifted a few days early so stayed up much later than planned to give all of my readers here my first take on Windows Mobile 6 since I have been using it for the last month on a Windows Mobile Smartphone device. Check out over 33 actual screenshots with more from the Professional device to come in another article. Windows Mobile 6 offers lots of user experience improvements and a fresh clean look. Stay tuned for Windows Mobile 6 news at 3GSM next week.