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Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 9:00 am
by gsman
With the announcement of Windows Phone 7..... I'd like to know your timeline in having a version of HandBase for this platform.
I prefer this platform as it circumvents issues with exchange server & outlook.....
I hope this will not be a long rollout - as with the long awaited android version -
i would think you see already that this should be on your development list....
Anybody else think so?

Re: Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 10:06 am
by dhaupert
Hi there,

Thanks for your interest and your post. The new Windows Phone 7 OS and devices look really nice and I am glad Microsoft has put all the effort to stay in the game. What I'm not happy about is that they 'threw the baby out with the bathwater'. In this case, they wanted a fresh new interface and paradigm and thus threw away backward compatibility. Thus our Windows Mobile applications are not compatible. To make matters worse, they no longer support the coding languages used by their previous efforts, which are standardized programming languages used by many platforms (C and C++ among others). Developers have to use their newly designed programming languages/environments XNA and Silverlight as well as C#.

You mentioned Android being a long development process. It has been more than 9 man months of work to develop. Consider that this Android version while using Java is actually using all of our existing C and C++ code for the database format, encryption, calculations, sorting, filtering, indexing, relational features, etc. The core pieces of a database program that took me years to develop did not have to be designed again, and the tried and true code that has worked well on countless other devices is running on these newer devices, resulting in a more stable release at launch than if all this code was written from scratch. The development time of 9 man months would change to over 2 years if it were not for this, and with that, we'd have a more brittle and untested product as well.

That's what we'd be looking at if we announced Windows Phone 7 development today. About 2 years from now, if I were not working on anything else, we would possibly be able to release a version that had no forms support, used all new code, etc.

I hope by now you realize that what you and I would like to see is not going to be a possibility. Because of this, I don't currently have plans to support Windows Phone 7 with a HanDBase product. That could change- hopefully the product is well received by customers/users and there is enough demand to justify this sort of development. Or, like Android and even Palm/WebOS eventually did, they add support for calling C and C++ code from their new environments, which would improve the development time dramatically. Until that time, I can't take the time and efforts to invest 2+ years in a new platform.

I have seen that the press/media really love this new OS and devices, and am wondering how they will sell in the market. I will be honest- I haven't heard a lot from prospective customers. Yours is the first of such posts on here since the official launch. So this may turn out to be something like WebOS from Palm- a compelling product that the media loves, but doesn't have the number of buyers in the market. We'll see over the next few months. I for one, hope they do well and that they add an option for C/C++ so that development is not 2+ years for me!

Re: Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:19 am
by curtterp
gsman wrote:With the announcement of Windows Phone 7..... I'd like to know your timeline in having a version of HandBase for this platform.
I prefer this platform as it circumvents issues with exchange server & outlook.....
I hope this will not be a long rollout - as with the long awaited android version -
i would think you see already that this should be on your development list....
Anybody else think so?


I am not so sure that Windows Mobile 7 will be that much better syncing to Outlook and Exchange. I see Windows 7 as moving in the direction of social media. During the Mix conference this year, most of the talk was how you can have 'instant updates' to difference social media on the phone. Not a lot of the talk was towards the business user and using business applications. I would hope that Microsoft would have great support for syncing, but we will see.

I was a little disappointed that they did a total reconstruction of the software. I used Windows Mobile a lot with my Dell Pocket PC and was very happy with it, although it never got past WM2003 because Dell never provided an upgrade path with it. But it worked well for what I used it for.

I now have an Android Phone. I have no problem with syncing to my Outlook Calendar or my employee's Exchange. Yes I do use 3rd party products to achieve both, but it works just fine for me. I only sync my local calendar to my phone, not my contacts. I prefer to keep the contacts on Outlook and the phone separate (Personal Preference). Using a 3rd party program to sync with Exchange keeps my work stuff separate from my personal stuff on my phone, which I like a lot better than having them integrate with each other. Again personal preference here.

Time will tell if Microsoft did the right thing or not. I think that its a mistake to totally break everything that has been developed in the past, but I think that of the Palm Software too. I used to Palm equipment, but with their break from legacy apps (Yes I know that they have a classic program to run legacy apps, but it is only an emulator, which slows down the programs), I thought it would put them in the tank. With HP buying them out, the platform has a chance to stay afloat for now, but time will tell.

Each platform does have their own advantages/disadvantages, but with difference platforms people do have a choice. That is always good :D

Re: Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2010 11:11 am
by Ben
I also came from Windows 6x with a Touch Pro 2 and prior to that the Palm OS. Had W7 been advertised to meet the specifications that David writes of, I would have waited for W7 to come to Sprint. However, being advised that it was not going to happen in the new future, there was no need for me to even consider the platform and so off to Android I went. I too use Exchange and have no problems with it. I do miss the level of development offered on the W6x platform; but seeing no further development coming along, no new wild programs, et cetera, I made the decision to move on. Android has its issues, but it is meeting my needs with a bit of effort on my part.

Re: Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 10:35 pm
by gsman
Curt -
What direct Outlook syncing software are you using for the android phone?

Re: Windows Phone 7

PostPosted: Sat Oct 23, 2010 10:01 am
by curtterp
gsman wrote:Curt -
What direct Outlook syncing software are you using for the android phone?


I use Google Calendar Sync to sync my local (home computer) Outlook. I didn't want to sync my contacts to my phone as I prefer to keep them seperate. it is located here
http://dl.google.com/googlecalendarsync ... taller.exe

I use Touchdown from Nitrodesk for my work email (Exchange). This software is really nice, has a autosetup feature that is really nice, and it works really well. Its a tad bit expensive at $19.99, but they have a 30 day trial that they insist that you try it, so you can make sure that it works for you. All that is needed for this to work, is that the Exchange server has OWA (Outlook Web Access) enabled and running. The nice part about this software is that it keeps my work stuff contained within itself, so my work stuff is not spread into my personal stuff. It also has a kill feature, so that if you phone is lost or stolen, you can send it an SMS message with a special subject line, and it will kill all your business stuff within the program.

For a list of other sync software, check out this website http://www.syncdroid.net/
The person that keeps this site up add's programs to it when they come up, and it is pretty up to date. They also show in a grid format, what it sync's, if it does it natively with Android or if a special program is needed, what versions of Outlook it will sync to, and what each one costs. It is a very good website, and I would suggest anyone looking to sync Outlook to Android to check it out. It is really nice.