Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 17th Dec 2007 22:15 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless To counter the success of the iPhone, Microsoft is revamping its mobile operating system, according to Ars Technica. "Never one to back down from a challenge, Microsoft is busily preparing both a minor UI refresh (Windows Mobile 6.1) and a major new release of the operating system (Windows Mobile 7.0). A gallery of screen shots from the 6.1 refresh compiled by Boy Genius shows an emphasis on simplification: the screens are more task-oriented and have less clutter than their immediate predecessor. A new and clearer font adorns the UI, and new features such as zooming, copy and paste in Internet Explorer, and auto-configuring ActiveSync for e-mails are sure to be welcome additions to the platform. In addition, Microsoft is making it easier (and more Windows-like) to switch tasks by adding a standardized task manager to the platform."
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broad user base
by fejack on Tue 18th Dec 2007 07:55 UTC
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Apple really innovated in terms of interface with the iPhone. We're still waiting to see how much momentum they are going to gain with third-party applications... if they ever do get some, that is. However, thanks to them, the competition is now compelled to improve their products, which is a 100% benefit for the end user.

MS has been marketing Pocket PC pretty well: it is endorsed on a plethora of devices, creating a broad user base with lots of third-party applications.
Most of the applications "just work", and you can install them on any device built running Pocket PC.

As a desktop Linux user, I've had a frustrating experience with a Zharp Zaurus and eventually resolved to get a Pocket PC, which will enable me to use some of my favorite applications such as Keepass and Skype on the go and straight out of the box. I would love to have a Linux PDA or phone that handles WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS without looking like a prototype running beta software. It looks like I might have to wait a long time before that wish comes true: embedded Linux does'nt seem to be doing well. Sharp, Trolltech, Palm, Nokia, Google and OpenMoko are all involved with different flavours of Linux, which obviously will not interoperate between them. Every month, some new Linux phone project pops up, adding to the number of iterations and forks, while spreading the ressources thin. It will eventually spread so thin tere won't be enough developers willing to work on one iteration.

In the meantime, MS is trying to get their act together. They won't likely achieve something as "cool" and "hip" as OSX for the iPhone, but unless something sustainable comes from Embedded Linux (or Palm or Symbian), it looks like it's gonna be a piece of cake for MS to keep its broad marketshare.

Edited 2007-12-18 07:56

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