Migrating to Exchange 2010, an opportunity to dump BlackBerry

Exchange
Here’s an interesting article about a company, Global Crossing, who is migrating from Exchange 2007 to Exchange 2010 and using this as an opportunity to switch their mobile fleet from Blackberry to Windows Mobile 6.5 phones:

“RIM requires that you pay for a license for the BlackBerry servers,” says Steven Schafer, Director of Network Services at Global Crossing. “You pay a license for every BlackBerry user that you have connected, and then you also pay for support and maintenance for the servers and users.”

But Is WinMo 6.5 Good Enough?

Despite the cost savings Global Crossing could reap by ditching BlackBerry servers and licenses, Windows Mobile 6.5 has faced some harsh criticism since it launched a month ago. It was mostly panned by critics and, based on recent studies, it has fallen way behind in the smartphone race.

Most of the gripes about Windows Mobile 6.5 are that it is a stopgap before the arrival of Windows Mobile 7, with underwhelming interface and touchscreen features. But even though WinMo 6.5 is not being hailed as a great mobile OS for consumers, critics admit that it’s a solid enterprise mobile OS given how well it integrates with Exchange.

Schafer is counting on such a smooth integration with Exchange 2010 and Office Communications Server. It’s what sets WinMo 6.5 apart, despite its lackluster reviews, he says, adding that he expects more enhancements with the arrival of Windows Mobile 7 in the second half of next year.

Read the rest here

Source: SFGate via wmpoweruser

New ZuneHD firmware version 4.3 released

ZuneHD wider landscape keyboard
Microsoft has just released a new firmware (version 4.3) for the ZuneHD which adds support for the upcoming 3D games & applications and a wider touchscreen keyboard among other bug fixes/features:

Browser:

•Faster performance in navigating web pages
•Option to render pages as Desktop or Mobile (Option in settings)
•Better Tap-To-Zoom
•Better ability to scroll when typing a message online

Keyboard:

•Predictive Text
•Auto capitilization
•Dedicated Settings Menu
•Wider keyboard in landscape mode

Music:

•Artist bios now contain links to songs, other artists, and other albums
Radio:

•Choice of seek method (presets or seek) in settings
Other

•Apps load slightly faster, and the accuracy of the touchscreen is improved during game play.
•Apps close faster
•The power off says ”slide down to power off” instead of just ”Power Off”
•Faster Startup (less than 15s) or maybe not (see comments below)

Source: Zune Forums via Chinster

HTC HD2 Camera test: pictures and video


Here’s a long video that was shot with the HTC HD2. Unfortunately quality isn’t up-to what you can expect from a high-end device like this one especially when you know that the Qualcomm SnapDragon chipset is capable on encoding 720P videos (it’s still better than most WinMo phones though). HTC did a fairly good job improving the picture quality and speed of their camera in the last year, hopefully they will now put as much effort in improving the camcorder feature. I just hope that the phone doesn’t have a shitty lens cover because there seems to be a red tint/dot at the center of every video and picture (like the HTC Touch Diamond, but it was bleu).

Sample video (watch in HD or download the original files):

Source: HDBlog.it

Acer neoTouch in-depth review

acer netouch review
GSMArena just posted their review of Acer’s SnapDragon Windows Mobile 6.5 smartphone the neoTouch. As it’s usualy the case they’ve packed the review with screenshots, pictures samples. They’ve concluded that the device will prebably have a hard time against the HTC HD2 and that it’s best to wait a little bit until the price is lowered. What should be noted though is that as we have seen earlier, the neoTouch is currently the fastest Windows Phone on the market.

The Acer neoTouch left us with mixed feelings. On the plus side it comes with the much heralded high-end 1Ghz Snapdragon CPU. It also has a huge 3.8″ display and runs the latest Windows Mobile OS. And last but not least, it handles the OS very well and packs all kinds of connectivity options.

Switching to the negatives, Acer have done little to customize the OS, there is no dedicated music or video player beyond what Microsoft have to offer (and it’s not much). There’s no DivX/XviD support, the camera photo and video quality is a downer and there is no GPS satnav software on board. Acer have left Windows Mobile almost stripped to the bone, and this is inexcusable given what the likes of HTC and Samsung are doing in terms of making the interface more user-friendly. The final straw comes from the less than stellar video playback and poor choice of accessories in the retail box.

We have to admit though the neoTouch is not among the top-priced smartphones out there, so the lack of sweeties in the box and other omissions such as the GPS navigation software are not a major point against. But even for a mid-priced device we don’t think it’s too much to ask for a decent music player and some additional codec support.

Source: GSMArena

Two new HTC HD2 Reviews

HTC_HD2_Windows_Phone
Lots of HTC HD2 coverage lately… and it ain’t stopping. Here are 2 reviews of the device, the first one is from SlashGear who seemed to really like the device but found the camera to be lacking:

It’s not a perfect smartphone – the camera, for instance falls short of what we’d expect from a flagship handset – but its strengths certainly outweigh its failings. We’d have difficulty overstating how well internet access is handled, and the HD2 could legitimately be called a MID-smartphone crossover; the combination of speed and screen size comfortably place it ahead of phone rivals. Underscoring all that is decent phone performance and the sort of build quality you’d expect for what will be a premium price. Microsoft can breathe a huge sigh of relief, because HTC have just given them the handset that bridges the gap between now and Windows Mobile 7.

They’ve also posted a a video of the device in action:

It’s a shame that some people still don’t know how to correctly use/setup a WinMo device. As you can see in the video the WiFi icon is constantly blinking (which means that the device is looking for available Wifi networks) even though the phone is already connected in HSDPA. This significantly bogs down the device’s performance, there’s no need to have to simultaneous connections at the same time. You can check out the whole thing here.

The second review comes from TechRadar who did a 13 pages article on the device. Unfortunately their hate of Windows Mobile kinda overshadows their judgment:

The HTC HD2 smashes past the iPhone in terms of raw processing speed and the ability to handle Flash video.

It dwarfs the Hero with a more responsive screen and its Wi-Fi routing ability too, and is far better than anything Samsung, LG or Nokia have come up with so far.

That said, the phone is still built on an inherently iffy OS, and there are times when that problem rears its head and snorts fire into your hand (metaphorically… that would be a health hazard otherwise).

We so desperately want to give the phone 4.5 stars to rank it alongside the likes of the Hero and the iPhone 3GS, but it just falls short.

If Microsoft sorts out its Marketplace with a few more (and cheaper) apps, as well as a couple of firmware tweaks, this could easily be the phone of the year, even at this late stage.

But until then it will have to be content with being the best ‘business device’ on the market by a country mile.

Read the whole review here