When Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC was announced earlier this summer, many handheld users were happy to learn that there would be an upgrade available for their devices running Pocket PC 2002. However, over a month later, these still aren’t available for most models, though the companies say they will begin shipping in the coming weeks.
Unfortunately, upgrades won’t be developed for all models, despite some petition drives to urge manufacturers to create them.
For those who are new to this, releasing a new handheld operating system doesn’t work the same way as it does with desktops and laptops. The upgrade doesn’t come straight from Microsoft. Instead, Microsoft gives the new operating system to its licensees who customize it for their individual models and release it.
infoSync reports that HP has begun shipping upgrades for its iPAQ h3900 series. The company will also begin shipping upgrades for its h5400 series in the next two weeks. The one for the h3800 series isn’t expected until October.
The section of HP’s web site on upgrading to Windows Mobile 2003 makes it clear there won’t be an upgrade for the iPAQ h1910, h1915, h1920, or any Jornada model.
Those who purchased an iPAQ h5450 or iPAQ h3900 series handheld between May 23, 2003 and September 23, 2003 can get a free upgrade. Those who purchased an iPAQ h5450, iPAQ h3900 series model, or h3800 series model before May 23 must buy the upgrade from HP for $29.95.
Dell’s move to Windows Mobile 2003 has been greatly complicated by the discovery that its initial implementation of the new operating system was flawed, causing handhelds that ran it to perform more slowly than ones running Pocket PC 2002.
It had begun shipping its Axim X5 models with the new OS in June. It was these that were discovered to be running slowly and, as soon as it was made aware of the problem, Dell stopped shipping them.
Dell developed a patch that fixed this problem and tried to make it available to customers with handhelds running Windows Mobile 2003. However, hackers quickly found a way to use this to perform an unauthorized upgrade from Pocket PC 2002 and Dell just as quickly pulled the patch. The company is currently working on ways to distribute the patch only to those authorized to have it. It has also resumed shipping New Handhelds with the corrected version of the OS.
This has naturally delayed the release of authorized upgrades for the Axim line. Shipments of these are expected to begin in the coming weeks. This upgrade costs $29.
Toshiba is already shipping an upgrade to the new operating system to owners of its e755.
The company announced recently that it will not release a similar update for its e740. This decision came despite an online petition with almost 6,000 names on it asking for such an upgrade. Toshiba has never officially said it won’t offer a Windows Mobile 2003 upgrade for the e330 but, at this point, it strongly appears the company has no plans to do so.
People who purchased an e755 after May 23, 2003 and before September 23, 2003 are eligible to upgrade to Windows Mobile 2003 supposedly for free, but there’s a $15.99 charge for shipping and handling. Those who purchased a e755 with the Pocket PC 2002 operating system before May 23, 2003 can upgrade to Windows Mobile 2003 for $50.00 (shipping and handling included).