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Old 08-26-2008, 06:40 PM
Darius Wey
Developer & Designer, News Editor Emeritus
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Default Smartphone & Pocket PC Magazine Hangs Up Its Boots

"I have sad news. After 11 years, we will be publishing a final 2008 issue of Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine and then suspend publication! We are working hard to make it the best Windows Mobile issue ever, a keeper, a reference guide... It is with great regret I make this announcement. We are a very small, self-funded magazine publishing company. We did not make this decision lightly, especially after 11 years of issues. It has become harder and harder to grow our circulation over the past three years since Windows Mobile changed from being PDAs to being phones.  Pocket PC manufacturers like HP used to work with us to offer their customers a free issue of our magazine in their packaging. The phone companies have not shown similar interest in working with us. The other business challenge has been the lack of advertising sponsorship from Microsoft, phone companies, and OEMs, despite our coverage of their products. In order for us to sell subscriptions at current low consumer magazine-type prices, we must have a stronger and growing circulation, and we much attract the large advertisers who benefit the most from our existence. Of course, the irony is that almost 20 million Windows Mobile units were sold this past Microsoft fiscal year. We think there is a great opportunity to continue the magazine in this high growth smartphone market  for a more sophisticated publishing company or a funded entrepreneur."

After eleven amazing years, the folks at Smartphone & Pocket PC Magazine are suspending publication due to a lack of interest and sponsorship from a number of parties. For many years, I've had the pleasure of working with Hal Goldstein and his committed team in the Best Software Awards, and have appreciated their enormous level of dedication and enthusiasm shown toward the Windows Mobile platform and community. It's sad news, and on behalf of the team at Thoughts Media, I wish Hal and his team the very best in their endeavours. Of course, the door is still open; if you'd love to see Smartphone & Pocket PC Magazine continue on and have sponsorship ideas, you might want to contact Hal.

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Old 08-26-2008, 07:04 PM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 19


This really is sad news!

But why don't you stick to an online subscription based magazine only?

We can't afford to loose such iconic source of info!!!

Sad... really sad!!!
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Old 08-26-2008, 07:54 PM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 42

I have a sad feeling that the MS Smartphone will be gone in 5 years. The article didn't even mention the advances in competing technology- i.e. the iPhone, but I am sure that was a big issue for them. Also, the prices of laptops have come down considerably (sub $400) and laptop-minis are on the rise- all eating into the already narrow market for MS-based smartphones.
What happened to all the third-party apps advertising space? Are third-party apps the next to go?
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Old 08-26-2008, 07:58 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 156

Video killed the radio star! I think online sites, such as the (excellent) thoughts media, have done it! Unfortunate but true. I stopped buying magazines on gadgets because online sites are faster and more convenient. Not to mention more feed back through the discussion forums. What do you think?
Why, oh why didn't I take the blue pill?
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:12 PM
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 24

There were some quotes missing from the link:

Our focus in 2009 will be the four scheduled iPhone Life issues, which we will publish under the umbrella title of Smartphone Magazine under the same newsstand distribution as Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine. That title and our 4 iPhone issue 2009 schedule leaves us space to produce more Windows Mobile issues, a Google Android issue, a RIM Blackberry edition, or a generic Smartphone issue depending on where the opportunities lies.

Thaddeus Computing is launching a new publication, iPhone Life, which will appear on newsstands starting September 8. The premier issue will be sent to all current Windows Mobile subscribers. Subscriptions can be purchased at More details will be given in a future press release.

All current subscribers will receive the premier issue of iPhone Life and the final issue of Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine. Those subscribers with issues remaining will continue to receive Smartphone Magazine's iPhone Life for the duration of their subscription. Alternatively, by contacting [email protected], subscribers can receive the knowledge or renewal bundle.

Calling the decision to switch focus to Apple's revolutionary iPhone "a business decision," publisher Hal Goldstein says: “Feel free to E-mail me your comments, angry or supportive or in between at [email protected].”
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:31 PM
Reid Kistler
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Pocket PC Mag won't be the first Technology publication to either disappear or be significantly reduced in size (content and/or staff), and it probably won't be the last.

Still sad when it happens.
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:11 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 303

So they think the bread is buttered better by the iphone? Hmm, go figure.
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by subzerohf View Post
Video killed the radio star! I think online sites, such as the (excellent) thoughts media, have done it! Unfortunate but true. I stopped buying magazines on gadgets because online sites are faster and more convenient. Not to mention more feed back through the discussion forums. What do you think?
Agreed. Online sites are usually more up-to-date as well, due to the lead time in order to print. I can't remember the last time I bought a tech magazine. I find all my information about tech online.
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:55 PM
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Posts: 62
Unhappy Live Fast or Die!

I have always looked thru the mag on the newstands, and over the years I've bought several that had something specific I was interested in, but the truth is it just takes too long to get this kind of a magazine out to the public. Their most interesting headlines were usually 3-6 month out of date.

I was never able to use one of their comparisons or buying guides, 'cause I'd already made my decisions, bought the phone/software and moved on. Also, their level of analysis was so far below what's available on line here, at MoDaCo, Howard Forums etc. So little by little, for me the mag changed from an anticipated tombe of advice, to something of a joke. Sad but true.

Frankly, I'm not sure if there is a large enough market for such tech-laden publications. Most people are not like 'us'. They aren't interested in the technology, they just want a good, useful and cool phone!

Their leap to the iPhone is very interesting, as it shows two things: that this is where most of the new 'smartphone' customers will come from for the next few years, and that most of them will not be tech-oriented cognicenti, so they will need help and advice.

Is their new focus viable in the long run? I have my doubts. I wonder why most of their target market would buy a magazine when they are paying over $100/month to have the internet in their hands! Given how tightly constrained the iPhone is and the slow pace of device evolution (it's only 1 phone from one manufacturer after all!) - how much is there to say about it? What will the big stories be? "To buy or not to buy!" "8G or 16G!" "How to get your Company's Tech Support to make your email work!"

No, the only thing to talk about will be "How to get started", followed by "What's in the i Phone App store?", and really, who still thinks the best place to get that advice is in a magazine! More importantly, if you are thinking about shelling out for an i Phone, are you likely to be the kind of person who thinks the best place to get that advice is in a magazine?

I'll bet that people thinking about an iPhone will get an issue or two off the stands, then once they're set up and working, will have no futher reason to bother with it.

Phones, smart or not, are only going to be popular with the masses if they are SIMPLE TO USE! (Which is after all the whole shtick for the i Phone!) Combine that with the fact that they actually give you good access to the Internet anywhere, and there will be no market for paper magazines like this anymore.


Last edited by MadSci; 08-26-2008 at 09:59 PM..
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:57 PM
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 12

That's sad news. I was a print subscriber while I used WinMo. I expect to be back on WinMo, so I'll miss it, but the online site is spectacular and will apparently continue....

What about the future of this Web site?

We feel proud about our great content here, and there is no reason not to continue to support and grow it. We have these great blogs and our support forum. We also have 11 years of magazine archives, a huge tip and how-to library, our 5000 product Encyclopedia of Software and Accessories, Best Software Awards winners, Device Comparison chart, and free weekly newsletters.
Get all your mobile gadget and ebook information at
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