HTC Touch Pro/Fuze review

Soon after reaching out to the HTC folks at CTIA, I received an HTC Fuze to review. The HTC Fuze is AT&T’s locked and branded version of the HTC Touch Pro. This is my first review unit from HTC, and hopefully the first of many. Within about an hour of getting the phone, I unlocked and unbranded it into an HTC Touch Pro (sans front-facing camera).

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Hello AirCard 860, goodbye BlackJack

Contrary to popular belief, I rarely get free devices to review! So after recently acquiring my Nokia N95, I decided to sell my Nokia N80 – I also decided to sell my Samsung i607 (BlackJack), and I acquired a Sierra Wireless AirCard 860

The AirCard 860 is extremely affordable and is HSDPA (1900/850MHz) and EDGE (quad-band) compatible. This is my first time owning a dedicated data card – mine is unlocked, and is working very well with both Cingular (HSDPA) and T-Mobile (EDGE) in Windows XP Pro.

I plan to test it in Linux (Ubuntu) as well :)

Nokia N95 battery life

There’s been a lot of great Nokia N95 coverage in the past week, and one of the biggest criticisms is about battery life

I’m experiencing about the same battery life with my N95 as with my Nokia N80 or my Samsung i607 (BlackJack), i.e. I’m averaging 24-48 hours between charges, depending on use.

“Use” for me means about 1 hour of talking per charge, some web browsing (both WiFi and EDGE), some photo taking and viewing, some music playback, some GPS mapping, and some Bluetooth and USB access.

By default I keep WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth off. My N95 is set to GSM only and the display is set to maximum brightness, with a 20 second timeout.

Sure, the N95 battery life is not the best compared to some others, but it’s manageable, especially when you consider that most people charge their phone every night!

If your N95 is running on empty after 6-18 hours, what are you doing?

I’d like to know :)

Tasty bits – 16

Now that the Nokia N95 is in the wild, so are the pictures, the unboxing, a navigation review, a music review, and a camera review! In addition, here’s a video podcast about video editing, as well as info about GPS applications and the tilt sensor

The OQO Model 02 is also in the wild – but where is mine?

Speaking of handtops, the Vulcan Flipstart is shipping.

Will you buy the Apple iPhone on June 11? I’m going to try :)

Apparently, the LG KE850 (Prada) is now available for free – check out this interface video

Here are more pictures of the sexy Samsung F700!

It looks like Microsoft is trying to catch up to Nokia on the mobile web browser front.

Speaking of browsers, Opera Mobile for Windows Mobile Smartphone is now available for download – my Samsung i607 (BlackJack) is smiling :)

How about high-quality DRM-free music from the iTunes store? Well, it’s about time.

Tasty bits – 15

CTIA just started, bringing Symbian v9.5 along with more pictures of the Nokia E90….

Several bloggers have received production versions of the Nokia N95, including Steve, Rafe, James, and Darla who got a custom pink one!

In addition, there are rumors that the N95 is going to be released officially by Nokia in the US.

Here is a promotional video and a design video of the beautifully sleek Nokia N76.

Samsung i607 (BlackJack) users (me) rejoice! An official Windows Mobile upgrade is now available…

I’ve mentioned before that 2007 will be the year of the touch-based device, and apparently Microsoft got the memo.

OS X update adds Bluetooth PAN

On Tuesday, Apple released the Mac OS X 10.4.9 update, which (amongst other things) adds support for Bluetooth PAN! Strangely, this profile was missing from OS X, despite Apple traditionally leading Bluetooth support.

So why does this matter to me? Like most devices running Windows Mobile 5.0 with AKU3, my Samsung i607 (BlackJack) does not support Bluetooth DUN, so until this OS X update, I was forced to connect via USB…

I’m happy to report that Bluetooth PAN in OS X works flawlessly with my BlackJack.

On a related note, I was asked why I’ve not mentioned the BlackJack here recently. Well there’s really not much to report… I tweaked the device to be useful to me and I’ve been using it on and off ever since.

I have replaced Windows Live Search with the native Windows Mobile version of the Google Maps client.

I originally picked up the BlackJack because I was looking for a US-compatible HSDPA smartphone. It is a good device overall, and Windows Mobile is better than I expected. Nonetheless, I still prefer Symbian!

The problem with Bluetooth PAN

Other than OS X not (yet) supporting Bluetooth PAN, the lack of Bluetooth DUN on my Samsung i607 (BlackJack) was not a major problem for me… Until yesterday.

I tried to share my Bluetooth PAN connection over WiFi in Windows XP (thus turning my OQO into a WiFi access point for a friend’s Mac) – but no, it’s just not possible! Yet it’s possible to share a Bluetooth DUN connection.

So Microsoft, what’s going on here?

Java solution and Windows Live Search

Thanks to a bit more help, I now have working Java solution for my Samsung i607 (BlackJack)! Java applications are no longer constantly prompting for permission to access the network… This makes the Google Maps Mobile and GMail Mobile actually useful :)

And speaking of Google, I recently installed the native (Windows Mobile) version of Windows Live Search, and I’m pretty impressed! Which begs the question: when is Google going to release a native (preferably Symbian) version of Google Maps Mobile? Because despite being a non-Microsoft person, I’m sorry to report that Windows Live Search walks all over Google Maps Mobile…

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