I recently got my Audiovox SMT5600 on the AT&T Wireless network (now Cingular) because I wanted a platform other than Palm (bleck!) or some other random vendor-specific OSs like the Nokia. The Microsoft Pocket PC 2003 for SmartPhone also offered me a platform I could actually develop to if I was ever moved to do so. I liked that.
When I got home, the first thing I did was hardwire the phone to my PC's USB port. I downloaded the newest version of ActiveSync from Microsoft.com (ignoring the version shipped on the CD in the box) and created my partnership to sync up with Outlook - only to be disappointed in the missing Outlook Notes, restricted Inbox message count and absence of the File/Folder sync options.
Straight away I bought the SD mini memory card (256MB) and upgraded the phone. I diced up some of my daughter's movies so I could play them movies on the phone with Media Player (a real treat). Then, I loaded up the SlovoEd english dictionary for Smartphone - a most excellent piece of software, especially if you wander what autologous means when you're in the car.
I didn't really like having my phone tethered to my PC in order to sync or in order to use the ActiveSync network pass-through feature to browse the internet without using the GPRS network. So, I setup a bluetooth solution. Look at this image:
I use the bluetooth function of the phone to connect (almost anywhere in my home) to the bluetooth USB adapter I bought on ebay. For this to work I had to set up the bluetooth partnership between my phone and my computer and let ActiveSync use the COM port the bluetooth adapter software created. Once this was setup, I could connect via the ActiveSync Smartphone client to my PC's copy of ActiveSync. Once connected I could sync with Outlook or surf the Internet (once I told ActiveSync on the PC to allow network pass-through).
This made me love my phone that much more.
One thing I have not figured out yet is how to connect to my computer (a laptop) at work and sync back with my home computer (with a static IP address) and get it to sync across the internet when I am not in the house. Once I get that figured out, I will be set; but from what I have read, it is not possible with this version of ActiveSync - unless I have an Exchange server, which I do not.
Microsoft Releases Streets 2005 with Smartphone Support!
You may already know that Microsoft's Streets 2005 now has Smartphone/GPS support. My plan, eventually, is to get the Pharos bluetooth GPS (OEM shipped in some boxes of Streets 2005 for $100 or so). From what I have read, the Smartphone screen is the UI with a Smartphone version of Streets loaded on the handheld (I assume it is trip-specific). I foresee this as a great application for the car.