The Mobile World Congress (MWC) is underway, and all your favorite cell phone makers are there pitching the future of their products. Microsoft is at the event in a big way to introduce Windows Mobile 6.5. This facelift to WinMo 6.1 is hyped as the new, touch friendly version of the interface.
I'm not very excited about this update. I think MS is right to call this a 6.5 rather than a 7.0. There just isn't enough there. And to make matters worse, it doesn't achieve the goal of making the interface a one-handed touch only affair.
When I first purchased my PDA, it was running Windows Mobile 2003 SE. I used the WM 5.0 upgrade when it was available, and recently upgraded to WM 6.1. So what has changed in the Windows Mobile experience in the last 6 years? Very little, to be quite honest. If you have an old Windows Mobile PDA collecting dust in a drawer somewhere you could pick up the WinMo 6.5 devices on display and feel right at home. The only significant change that I have noticed is that I am not required to soft reset my device on a daily or weekly basis anymore. Taking six years to simply get the device to work is a sorry excuse for progress. It is time for Microsoft to really rethink how to approach the mobile market. If not, Apple, Nokia, Palm, and others are going to bury them with the smart innovations they are putting into their latest phones.