Monday, February 11, 2008

Mobile Technology Forges Ahead At Barcelona

Interesting developments this year at the wireless industry meet in Barcelona.

Sony Ericsson decides to bundle Windows Mobile on smart phones.

Yes! This just *had* to happen sooner or later. Sony has designed and produced great looking hardware, be it notebooks, cellphones, flat screen TVs etc. Back in the Palm days, the Sony Palm PDA had the best form factor.

Designing software apps for a mobile device is a challenge. Small screens, restrictive input methods, tiny memory RAM/ROM and the User Interface real estate is limited.

Symbian is an obnoxious OS on a cellphone. I can never figure out the flow of logic on a Symbian OS. The UI is big and ugly, menus are nested way too deep and any setting that involves a network configuration … ouch .. good luck finding your way around.

I hope Sony decides to get rid of Symbian altogether, go full steam ahead with the Windows Mobile OS and release loads of applications off the Windows Mobile SDK. There is a great cloud of win mobile applications already, so finding developers should not be hard.

Windows mobile has been doing great on HTC devices. To keep the innovation going, HTC now has a giant of a competitor.

The newly announced Sony Xperia is packed with a gorgeous 800x480 touchscreen, WiFi radio and Mobile 6. The microSD flash support (a first one from Sony?) signifies Sony’s seriousness in embracing open standards and making its presence felt in the market.

I guess what really spun this development is the Apple iPhone. The iPhone was the *first* in telling users, “Hey look, we’ve re-created the software stack”. There are features like touch and a full fledged desktop class browser that users can now look forward too. Not to mention a gazillion of other features that cellphone companies never bothered about.

Motorola is in trouble today because of crappy software. The RAZR cellphone did not have a rock solid OS. Plus, adding in features and installing apps was hard and impossible. Hardware with pathetic software slapped on is junkyard scrap. Sony would be in this state too, had they not jumped the Windows Mobile route.

Interesting to see how this is going to go ahead. Robust windows mobile on sexy hardware that seamlessly integrates with the desktop. Good times ahead!

More Details on the Sony Press Release

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