Feeds
50%
HTC P4350 Communicator

HTC P4350 Communicator

Simplicity seems to be the selling point

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Once WLAN was configured, the device constantly informed us of new networks in the vicinity. Which, since this reporter lives in an apartment block, was about once every 45 seconds. In this sense, at least, Windows Mobile perfectly replicates the Microsoft Windows desktop experience: with endless popups you don't need to see.

HTC also has added another distracting feature: blinking lights. The control panel also proved to be something of a tarpit: more than once it required a reboot to exit the Connections tab.

On the telephony side there's been progress, although device was strangely hesitant about hanging up a call. Call quality was average, although boosted by a decent loudspeaker. In landscape mode it was not possible to start Word Mobile or Tasks. There seems to be no sense behind this decision. And while the variety of pen input methods was welcome, there seemed no logic to when the text entry box would appear or disappear. Sometimes it just liked to hang around.

Cursive handwriting recognition was impressively accurate, but the agonising delay between inputting and rendering the text makes using it feel too much like a game show. It'll get there, with more processing power.

We also longed for more logical navigation than using the Start menu as a task-switcher and a more sensible option than an OK button, which also closes, or sometimes dismisses - one is never sure - the application with focus.

The parts of the Windows Mobile that work best are the parts that Microsoft has written, or had the most control over. This business model permits original design manufacturers (ODMs) to innovate and customise their devices, but there's little evidence of innovation and the "customisation" has resulted in a user interface disaster. Perhaps it's because the ODMs rarely meet the end-users, being insulated by operators, and other companies who re-badge the product.

Verdict

The parts of the Windows Mobile that work best are the parts that Microsoft has written, or had the most control over. This business model permits ODMs to innovate and customize their devices, but there's little evidence of innovation and the "customization" has resulted in a user interface disaster. Perhaps it's because the ODMs rarely meet the end-users, being insulated by operators, and other companies who re-badge the product.

IT departments whose primary need is contacts, calendar and mail sync do look for a native Microsoft option, but the quality of the Windows Mobile devices in so many other areas is severely compromised. It's little wonder they've turned to Blackberry devices, or Good software, or a third-party Exchange sync running on a superior, easier to manage mobile device.

Nokia offers far superior hardware to anything Microsoft's Asian ODMs can offer, and Motorola's return to the UIQ fold gives it a first-class product with global reach to market. With only incremental improvements on the horizon in Windows Mobile 6, Microsoft should look at new development models and routes to markets. The current approach offers users few disadvantages, and a great deal of trouble. IT departments with considerable investments in Microsoft infrastructure deserve much better than this.

Application security programs and practises

50%
HTC P4350 Communicator

HTC P4350 Communicator

Must try harder...
Price: £345 RRP

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Seventh-gen SPARC silicon will accelerate Oracle databases
Uncle Larry's mutually-optimised stack to become clearer in August
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.