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View Full Version : ZDNet: "How Smart is Microsoft's Smart Phone?"

Jason Dunn
04-15-2004, 06:00 PM
<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://reviews-zdnet.com.com/AnchorDesk/4520-7296_16-5129907.html?tag=adts' target='_blank'>http://reviews-zdnet.com.com/AnchorDesk/4520-7296_16-5129907.html?tag=adts</a><br /><br /></div>"We've all heard the jokes about what would happen if Microsoft made cars. And as editors, we know that stories about Windows nightmares are surefire crowd-pleasers for the same reason: they play off the perception that Windows is about as stable as the Jackson family. Earlier versions of the OS were flaky, but that's ancient history. I've used Windows XP on numerous notebooks and desktops--both at home and at work--for years with little trouble. (The constant barrage of service packs and security updates is more disconcerting, but that's another column.) So I thought the stability concerns about Microsoft software were overblown--until I tried one of the first Windows smart phones..."<br /><br />This is one of the more critical articles covering the MPx200, which has more or less with the darling of the Smartphone world in the US, if for nothing else than the fact that's it's reasonably priced from AT&T, unlike the Samsung i600 Smartphone. For the most part his criticisms are valid - I've had the MPx200 lock up on me twice in the three month period I was using it. But, to be fair, the Sony-Ericsson T68i also locked up on me several times as well (usually related to IR or Bluetooth). So it's my opinion that phone lockups is more an symptom of modern day "computer phones" than just an issue for the Smartphone platform. The reviewer got the resolution wrong though - don't we WISH it was 720 x 220 instead of 176 x 220! :lol: His other chief complaint is that the software seems a step or two behind him, and I'd have to agree there. Quite often when I'm dialling a number, it takes several seconds for the number to show up. For me, this is just a minor irritation - it doesn't cause me to mis-dial (why would it?). Still, it would be nice for the phone to feel snappy and more responsive. <br /><br />In terms of hardware, the MPx200 lacks Bluetooth and a camera, two things that almost all modern high-end phones. This will be addressed by the forthcoming MPx100 and MPx220 Smartphones, but it does make the MPx200 look like a "Johny come lately" to some degree. The single email account limitation is fixed in Smartphone 2003, but it's unforgivable that Microsoft thought this was an "ok" solution - the people buying cutting-edge phones are not the type of people to only have one email account. Thankfully, Smartphone 2003 allows for up to eight accounts.<br /><br />I'm using an SPV E200 right now, and it's nice, but in many ways I prefer the MPx200 - it just feels more like a real phone.

04-15-2004, 06:36 PM
April 14th and he is just now writing a review about this?


Jerry Raia
04-15-2004, 11:39 PM
News Flash! The i600 locks up just as nicely :)

04-16-2004, 01:56 AM
The thing is that the Plam based Samsung i500 I have locks up just as much as the Microsoft Smartphone being knocked around for it. My friend's Treo 600 is even worse. That one locks up so much more frequently and it has a newer Palm OS compared my much older OS 4. Point being that since its Microsoft people love to bring this topic up. What infuriates me is that no journalist who has reviewed the Treoo 600 has the b@lls to say that the Treo is actually worse in this regard (and you have to use its browser and advanced features and not just as dumb phone). And my Samsung A500 (one of the first 3G colour phones in the US) wouild also get locked once in a while esp. when running Java apps.

Of course this doesn't mean that Microsoft shouldn't make their Smartphone OS rock solid, but there are double standards here folks. Microsoft will get ripped apart no matter what.I just wish the installed based of Win9X OSes will finally retire and all these jokes about unstable Windows will finally end when these fools finally start using a stabler Windows version. In a couple of years I suppose then one wouldn't hear of silly BSOD jokes.

04-16-2004, 11:48 AM
Having used both Symbian and Microsoft Smartphones, I can say with all honesty that the Microsoft ones I've had have locked up far more often than any other I've used, though unlike my SPV, my MPx200 has not yet lost me any data.

As for speed, I thought my MPx200 was quite nippy, particularly compared to the SPV - for a comparison, compare Jetpack Jim (I'll catch up with you encece, just you wait ;-) )on the SPV with the MPx200 and the difference is enormous and far greater than I would have expected for a simple 2D game. So if he thinks tha MPx200 is slow, sheesh! He should try the even older Microsoft Smartphones!

I can't speak for Palm, but I know that a stable (although not perfectly stable) mobile OS is a reality for manysmartphone users right now and although Microsoft is actually getting there (albeit very slowly), Symbian is far closer.