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  1.    #1  
    Just thought I would create a new topic for Pocket PC users to share their ideas and experience.
    ------------------------------

    My overall impressions so far: I love it!!!

    Here is a quick review (More thorough review to come) of my PPC:

    FAVORITE APPLICATIONS:

    The funny thing is the application I was least impressed with is turning out to be one of my favorite features; Microsoft Reader. It's pretty damn cool! There are several ebooks you can download from www.pocketpc.com, some of them are children's stories, but others are quite useful including the Encarta Dictionary. I'm reading the "Legend of Sleepy Hollow" right now, and the text quality is superb. Even w/o my glasses or contacts I can still read the screen.

    FAVORITE FEATURES:

    And here is a must have feature for the Palm/Visor: When viewing a web page in Pocket Explorer/AvantGo, you can click on an email link within a web page and it automatically open a new email message ready to create and send. The same is true of an email message. I can view an email message with a hyperlink, to a web page, from within my INBOX, and clicking on that link will open Pocket Explorer! You will of course need a connection to the web to visit that page, but it's a very intuitive feature.

    I was also surprised at how file syncing is actually more intuitive on the PPC. For example, if I want to place a file on my Visor I have to click on a file (a *.prc or *.pdb) which will then place it in the Hotsync install directory. I then have to perform a HotSync to send the file to my Visor. But with a Pocket PC the connection is always active, in other words, I can actually browse the files on my PPC from my PC just as I would a separate computer hard drive on a LAN network. There is a folder on my Desktop called "Pocket_PC" that I can drag'n'drop files to and from that will automatically send them to my handheld. I love it!!!

    WHAT I DON'T LIKE:

    So far, I haven't found any significant flaw. But I've only been using my new unit for 3 days, and I need more time to draw my final impressions. Overall though I will admit the Palm OS is slightly more "minimalist" than the Pocket PC OS, but it's not bad.

    ----------------------------
    Foo
  2. #2  
    Damn you and your blasphemous ways! I put you in kill file!




    Glad to see you like it. I for one just wouldn't need THAT much with my little organizer. I use it to read books, articles (avantgo), and keep track of numbers and appointments. For me, it's worth the extra 150-200 to not have things such as movies and whatever on my organizer.

    I do like what you say about the lan-like file browsing on it. That would be nice, but it seems as if the mechanics with the palm aren't set up for an active connection like that. Since it seems more like a pocket computer over an organizer I can see that being more important though.

    Hopefully now Palm will realize that they have a worthy competitor and step up their system functionality a tad.. not go all out like MS has done, but enough to make the little things (like the active connection, file dropping in folders, etc) a reality.

    BTW, when you find your first flaw, be sure to post it because the savages are getting restless
  3. #3  
    foo fighter:

    Keep up the good work! You offer some useful insight into another alternative product. Your posts tend to be very informative.

    While I am not actively pursuing a PocketPC at the moment, I did look at CE devices a few months ago when looking for an organizer. The search was pretty much over when I found the Visor because it did what I needed to have done at a price that couldn't be beat!

    That said. I'm wondering if you know of any good PocketPC sites along the lines of VisorCentral? I'd be interested in keeping up with the goings on in both the PPC and PalmOS world. Who knows? Maybe my next handheld will be a pocketPC... Gotta keep my options open, ya know?


    ------------------
    MarkEagle - Ice is nice!
  4. #4  
    foo fighter -- thanks for sharing your impressions so far. Just curious, can the Encarta Dictionary interface with Word? It would be cool to click on a word and get a definition.

    So I take it you haven't had any crashes so far? Hope thats the case

    I am going to play with a unit today for a while to check out some of the features (ie, stuff I wanted to do with the Visor but can't) and if the reviews are still positive on the units, I will probably be purchasing one in a month or two.

    Joe
  5. #5  
    Check out this thread on PDABuzz to view the widest range of opinions and experiences with the PPC so far. It's pretty informative.
  6. #6  
    Thanks for the link Gameboy .. seems like a LOT of the compliants on that thread were resolved which seems great (and a few more owners saying the machine is stable is another plus)

    I was at Best Buy today checking them out, a Microsoft rep was there with lots of papers on how the PocketPC worked, however, the only demo unit there, a Casio unit did not work. What I found interesting was she claimed that the battery needed to be charged and it was plugged in. Seems like it would work if it was plugged in?!? I found that strange.

    However, the rep seemed pretty informative. Didn't seem to garnish much more data above and beyond what I have read or what Foo has been writing about, however. Was really wanting to toy with Word and just play with the unit -- oh well. Maybe another day, anoter store..

    Quick question -- anyone know if you can IR print from Word/Excel with full formatting of documents without needing additional software? Just curious..

    On the Visor side of things, they had a lovely display of the Visors (Visor std, visor deluxe in graphite and blue) along with the Springboard modules. According to the Best Buy rep there, he sold 28 units so far (all Deluxe model) -- he noted many purchases were made by informed individuals on the Visors capabilities. He said there was some type of selling competition going on with the Visors .. not sure if that was just a store thing or a Handspring sponsored competition..
  7. #7  
    I am still on the fence whether to buy a palm unit or pocket pc. It will be my first PDA. I tried out the HP the other day at Staples and was very impressed. I am concerned about all the negative comments on the handwriting recognition. It did not work well for me for the few minutes that I was playing with the unit. I have seen some posts that say there is a graffiti equivalent. Can you give us a bit more information on your experience with data entry. Thanks.
  8.    #8  
    Samabari,

    There is a setting in the Character Recognizer options entitled "Uppercase Mode".

    By selecting this the HR will recognize all Graffiti strokes, and it works perfectly!

    The only difference is that it only requires one tap to create a dot or period, as apposed to two taps on a Palm.

    --------------------
    Foo
  9.    #9  
    One note about the HP:

    It's easy to add dots with one stroke. Which means, if your the type who is constantly pecking at the screen, you'll get this effect. But overall I haven't had much trouble inputting strokes into my unit. And just like Graffiti, if there is a mistake, you can use the "backstroke" and erase the letter you mistakenly created. Pretty simple stuff.

    There is also a neat little feature within NOTES, you can actually write words on the screen in freehand, then select "Recognize" from the EDIT menu...eureka! It translates everything you just wrote. Although if you really sloppy handwriting, you may have to go back and correct spelling errors.

    And the Transcriber feature works quite well also.

    --------------------
    Foo



    [This message has been edited by foo fighter (edited 04-23-2000).]
  10.    #10  

    Another thing you also need to remember is that there are technically fewer overall strokes necessary on a Pocket PC due the Auto complete feature.

    For example: If I write the word; emergency, a small text box will appear above the location I am writing and offer a "guess" as to what word I'm trying to input with each letter. So as I write e-m-e-r-g, the word "emergency" will appear above. I just click on that box, and it automatically finishes my word for me. Pretty slick huh?

    I think there is a similar program for the Palm that does something along these lines to.

    ------------
    Foo
  11. #11  
    for what its worth, as a mac user (therefore unable to use a pocket pc...) i am able to drag and drop a file for installation. i have an alias for the files to install folder on my desktop, when i download a program i drop it in and on my next sync, poof, there it is. granted i set it up to do this, but anyone who knows their way around a mac should know how to do this. my pc experience is not as extensive though, so i don't know if this is a feature of the mac os bill and co forgot when stealing it for windows - oops, i mean borrowing it - i mean... well, what do i mean?

    matty
  12. #12  
    Foo! Have you any comments on a Pocket Pc model. After reading many reviews I am looking toward the Ipaq color model. It looks like the main difference is the type of expansion slots between hp,casio, compaq..
  13.    #13  
    There are several differences between each Pocket PC.

    Casio E-115= Don't buy one! It comes will serial sync only, and that is too slow, and it has a very poor form factor; big and heavy. Simply put, Casio didn't change the design of the E-100 series at all. On the plus side it does have a beautiful display.

    HP Jornada 540 series= HP is trying to snag the Palm user crowd with this one, and in my opinion, they have a winner. The emphasis on the Jornada is form factor and style, and they've done a fabulous job. It's nearly the exact size as my Visor, has a Gun metal case, with elegant rubber accents which are designed to make the unit easier to hold. Generally the consensus is that the display on the Casio is a little bit better, but no one cares. They are still choosing the Jornada over Casio's model hands down! The only downside to the Jornada is; no power jack on the unit, TYPE I Compact Flash slot, and a funky stylus.

    Compaq iPaq= The iPaq looks like it's going to be the Pocket PC to beat. It has a beautiful metal case (magnesium alloy), modular design that uses "sleeves" to add to it's functionality by fitting on the unit like a glove (think Springboard), in other words, there is a cell phone sleeve to turn you iPaq in to a cell phone or pager, a Camera sleeve to turn it into a Digital Camera, a PC Card sleeve that will accept PCMCIA form factor cards, and a wireless sleeve that will turn the iPaq into a wireless internet access device. And all of these sleeves are supposed to be available at the time the unit ships. No having to wait 6 months....are you listening Handspring? Another one of it's claims to fame will be a REFLECTIVE TFT color display that you can view outdoors in direct sunlight. That's something no other Pocket PC or color Palm can do, at least not well. I can still see the screen on my Jornada outdoors in sunlight, but the screen appears a little washed out. But you can use the flip-up lid to shade the screen. And the entire unit is as thin as a Palm. I may end up selling my Jornada if these iPaqs' are as good as they sound.

    Bottom line: I love mine, their awesome, and tons of fun!

    I'm not going to steer you away from the Palm or a Visor because they are neat little products. I still have my Visor, and I was playing with it this morning. But all I can say is, you'll never be bored with a Pocket PC.

    --------------------
    Foo



    [This message has been edited by foo fighter (edited 04-23-2000).]
  14. Ken
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    #14  
    Hey Foo & friends – just got back from Southeast Asia. As you can tell, I’m still adjusting to the time change.

    I haven’t be able to read ALL the comments posted here regarding the new PocketPC, but I’m beginning to think that this is the wrong place to find accurate info. I can’t believe some of the remarks found under the PocketPC-Microsoft thread. For example, “Foo: I swear you work for Microsoft the way you praise PocketPC.” I rolled my eyes on that one. Give me a break - most of those guys probably have life size cardboard cutouts of Dubinsky and Hawkins in their bedrooms, with incense, candles, and dried flowers at their feet. I feel as if I’m seeing the beginnings of some new cult … the Church of Palm.

    I found the discussions going on in PDABuzz to be far more informative and helpful. (I know … I shouldn’t expect much help from a web site that’s dedicated to the Visor).

    Do you know anything about the Casio units? I’ve seen some pictures, and although they don’t look all that great, I’m kind of intrigued by the EG series. One thing I’ve read … “The EG Series of Pocket PC also feature Casio’s new breakthrough technology in power management -- flat Lithium Polymer Rechargeable Battery designs capable of extended battery life up to 76 hours.” Hmmmmm.

    Glad to be back.
  15. Ken
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    #15  
    www.byte.com/column/BYT20000419S0001

    I must say, the HP "looks" bad to the bone.
  16. Ken
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    #16  
    This is such a freakin’ joke. The Church of Palm is at it again. I was reading through the “User Opinions” on CNET for the Jornada 545. Most of the thumbs up are from people who have actually PURCHASED the product, while the thumbs down are from self professed Palm worshipers who played with the Jornada for maybe 5 minutes. Get real, people.

    As someone who has yet to purchase my first PDA, the cult of Palm is really beginning to bug me. They’re starting to look like a bunch of blind, empty-headed zealots who want nothing more than to keep their precious PDA on top.

    Sorry. It’s late. I need to get some sleep.
  17. #17  
    Originally posted by Ken:
    This is such a freakin’ joke. The Church of Palm is at it again. Most of the thumbs up are from people who have actually PURCHASED the product, while the thumbs down are from self professed Palm worshipers who played with the Jornada for maybe 5 minutes. Get real, people.
    Well ya know, the Palm people feel that if the PocketPC is not exactly like a Palm, it is worthless. However, I think after they play with a store demo model after 5 minutes, they do become experts since they were previous PalmOS owners, so hense their "unbiased" reviews should be taken as gospel (Which generally point out how the PalmOS is better (ie, longer battery life, 10,000 applications which all do one or two functions each and do not interoperate with each other, etc..))

    When purchasing your PDA, figure out what you expect to do with it and then purchase based on YOUR needs. However, regarding all of the positive reviews -- these are the "gotta have the latest and greatest toy" crowd. So that coupled with the fact they paid $500+ for the unit they *MAY* be overly positive about their purchase. (I mean, who would really want to get on a message board and exclaim how they wasted $500?!)

    Now if they would just release a high contrast B&W unit that was designed like the iPaq and went for about $250-$300..

    Joe
  18. #18  
    Just as the world is flat; it is also in 4 shades of grayscale.

    By the way who all went to the Church of Palm on Easter Sunday?
  19.    #19  
    Oh come on everyone! Let's stop this entire Palm vs. Pocket PC argument once and for all.

    In the end it all comes down to the needs of the end user. For someone who wants more functionality, and multimedia (MP3) compatibilities, currently, the Palm is simply not an option. I still love my Visor, but the last time I checked, I couldn't play MP3 files, it didn't have a built-in web browser with wireless capabilities, and it certainly didn't have a high resolution color display, and it still has a cheap plastic case.

    Obviously not everyone wants all of the features of a Pocket PC, and that's perfectly fine. My only point is that you can't add to the capabilities of the Palm, the Visor yes, but the Palm...no. And let's face it, as of now, the Visor has only gained a very small percentage of the PDA pie. Right now the best selling PDA is the Palm V series.

    And for those who still think I'm wrong for wanting my PDA to play MP3 tracks, you had better look at the latest news item posted at CNET News.com, apparently Palm executives have, finally, admitted that features such as wireless internet access, color displays, voice recognition, and MP3 playback are going to converge, even on their handhelds. And if you think Pocket PC devices are absurd for having 200 MHZ ARM processors, then you had better hold on to your checkbooks because, apparently, Palm is moving to a 200-400MHZ processor as well.

    Lets see, didn't all of you tell me that Palm would never add these features because..."we don't need multimedia capabilities". Apparently Microsoft isn't as crazy as everyone thinks. Enjoy your handheld!

    ---------------------
    Foo
  20. #20  
    The C|Net article that foo refers to reaffirms my fear that Palm without Jeff Hawkins is as clueless as its competitors. Expect to see a reversal of fortune between Palm and Handspring in the next two years reminiscent of the one between Apple and Palm in 1997.

    However, the article contained a link a very impressive video demonstration of the Palm VII with the Stowaway. The video is kind of infomercial-ish, but its worth watching just to see the "anchor" take the Stowaway out of coat pocket, unfold it, pop the Palm in, etc. Check it out.
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