PDA News – “Photon” glimpse, Gartner says no Blackberries, Cutting-edge Loox

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First hint of next generation Windows Mobile OS

It’s still a long, long way off, but we’ve seen the first glimmer of the next generation of Windows Mobile. According to the editors of Windows Mobile enthusiast SmartphoneThoughts.com, the next iteration of Windows is code-named “Photon,” and will be the next major version of the OS. Endgadget staff who were also on hand described the demo as “hot… without a doubt a big (and much overdue) leap forward for the platform.

Furthermore, Photon is supposed to do away with the line between the touchscreen-enabled “PocketPC” version of the OS, and the non-touchscreen “Smartphone” version. This change was started in WM5, which provides for program compatibility between the two versions, but did not merge the interfaces or software bundles.

If details are scant, it’s because the meeting was apparently off the record and not to be reported on, except for the fact that the meeting actually took place.

It wasn’t touched on in the current reports, but rumors circulated previously have also suggested that significant improvements in battery life would also be a major point of WM5’s successor.

Don’t get too excited though. Photon may not be out for years, and for the time being the WM division’s strength is still focused on development for Windows Mobile 5.0. So don’t go holding off any device purchases waiting for Photon, because by the time it rolls around, the cutting edge Loox mentioned below will probably seem quaintly underpowered.




Gartner: Stop deploying Blackberries

Research firm Gartner has issued a report suggesting that enterprises should halt new deployments of Blackberry technology until the current patent war between RIM and NTP is resolved. Gartner goes on to state that RIM’s client base should demand that the company publicly detail its plans for a work-around should the suit be lost. RIM has previously claimed to have deveoped such a work-around, but it has yet to be demonstrated to any outside audience under any conditions.

If RIM were to lose the ongoing infringement lawsuit, it could conceivably result in a shutdown of the Blackberry service, and/or a very hefty settlement figure paid out to NTP. Originally, the companies had a tentative agreement to settle for $450 million, but that deal fell through, and estimates now are topping $1 billion dollars. Depending on how the case plays out, that figure could go even higher, threatening more of RIM’s $12 billion market cap.


Loox N560 to include VGA, 802.11g, kitchen sink

For those who love the cutting edge, Fujitsu Siemens is making the Loox N560. Based on the form-factor of the older N520, it reportedly features a VGA screen, Bluetooth, 802.11g WiFi, SIRF III GPS, 624 MHz processor, 64 MB RAM, 256 MB flash, USB Host, and an Intel 2700G video accelerator with VGA-out. The one thing that it doesn’t have is a CompactFlash slot, so I guess I’m sticking to my Axim for now. Release is expected to be around February. Price is likely to be approximately 600, which is US$700 dollars.




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