Personal Digital Assistants Morphed into Pocket PC’s

Once upon a time the PDA (Personal Digital Assistant was born. You remember them I am sure, they were born way before the Pocket PC was. I am talking about the little credit card sized Casio type devices that only allowed you to input 50 names addresses and phone numbers. They had approximately 32kb of ram onboard and there was no way to back up the data in case of a problem. I owned one of these gizmos many years ago and remember how long it took to enter the data for each contact. Then the unthinkable happened and I had to reset the device. POOF!!! All the data was magically gone. That ended my NEED for one of those things pretty quickly.

Fast forward to 2006 which is approximately 16 years since I used one of those Casio devices and now I have a Pocket PC that comes with 64 mb of RAM on board and I can run all of my Microsoft Office applications and store data on removeable media such as SD or CF cards that plug in. I can also plug my device into a synchronization USB cable and use Microsoft Active Synch to synchronize the data between my PPC and my home computer.

Several years ago I got interested in the Handspring Visor and then upgraded that to the Compaq Ipaq device that has one of the clearest screens that I had ever seen and then I upgraded that device from the Ipaq to a HP Pocket PC. Thanks to Microsoft Activesync I was able to synchronize all of my devices listed above with my home pc. No matter which device I used to input new data I could keep each device synchronized and have duplicate copies of data. The Ipaq and Pocket PC both have the ability to synchronize directly with Microsoft Outlook which is a popular Personal Information Manager/ e-mail client.

There are several types of mobile devices that allow you to manage your personal data and/or even make phone calls. These devices are called smart phones. Most of these mobile devices either run on top of the Palm OS or Microsoft Windows CE or Mobile software. Not only are these devices very mobile but you can now connect to the Internet through a WAP (Wireless Access point) using the 802.11 networking protocol.

There are two ways to get data onto these devices. You can either synch your device with your home computer and you can also use Windows Explorer to copy data from your pc to your device. You can also utilize mobile data services such as Avangto or Mobileplay to provide you with different types of information such as News, Weather, Stock quotes, Sports Information etc. Avantgo has been doing this for several years but the downside to using this service is that you must have your mobile device tethered to you home computer via the hotsynch cable to connect to the Internet and synch your content to your mobile device via Microsoft Activesynch. That is fine and good as long as you do not want to refresh this data while you are on the go. You read the information and once it is read there is no going back for more until you synch your device the next time.

Today I learned about Mobileplay and you can find them at the following URL of I was able to set up a free account at Mobileplay in approximately 5 minutes and then download their Mobileplay software to my Pocket PC which then allows me to dynamically chose and install any data information application on my device. No matter where I am I can connect to a wireless access point and effortlessly synchronize the data from Mobileplay. For now Mobileplay is in a beta stage which means that eventually they will begin to charge for some sort of extras. As for me, I am SOLD on this service. I love it so go check it out and enjoy data on the move.

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