By June 28, 2008

Review mDesktop for Windows Mobile

Having looked at Dashwire it’s worth mentioning a localised phone tool that works on your home computer and gives you the power of your phone without touching it.

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There are a couple of these on the market however I would say that none are as easy to use as mDesktop. SOTI can suffer from complex connection problems. There is also micro management when it comes to features.The big sell of SOTI the lovely customisable skins, see you phone (or a differently branded/unbranded variant) on your screen and push the hard front facing buttons to see full emulation of their functions.

mDesktop takes a simpler approach with only a few options and no customisation. In some respects this helps a new users but when it comes to the crunch, you can’t do anything to personilise the interface.

Along the top you have basic but crucial information, available at a glance. Calls, SMS and email. I am pleased that the app also connects over Bluetooth, thus allowing for full functionality on those infrequent days that Mobile Device Centre falls out with the USB.

mDesktop contains a keypad for direct dialling of the phone. This doesn’t seem to be able to convert to any other sort of keyboard other than a dial pad. The messaging section is effective but a little confusing as it seems to mix in your email with your SMS as they arrive. The SMS is listed as a chat box much like the Treo or Windows Mobile 6.1. I’m not sure how this operates when using 6.0 or 5. You are also notified by a pop-up in the middle of the screen with an "okay" button to push for each and every email/sms you get. This get irritating and there doesn’t seem to be any way of switching it off

The contacts section is quick and easy. Simply click on a person and you can select what you want to do E.G. email, SMS, call. There does seem to be a slight bug in the contact list, when scrolling down the list it seems to quickly refresh and defaults back to the top of the list. After a minute or so it seems to settle and become usable. Also the buttons for the Surname are pretty big and in order to view them all you have to resize the app to fit them in.

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The Calendar is a quick reference of upcoming appointments and tasks listed in date order. You can add and delete until your heart in content.

The photo gallery is a nice touch. The app loads a bunch of thumbnails based on the folder you are viewing. I managed to find some photos I didn’t know were there. The file browser works in the same way as File Explorer on the phone, or at least as far as the viewing and deleting functions work.

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As with all these programs you are able to directly access the phone with the mouse pointer. This is still an awesome feature no matter what software you are using. If the built in message screens are not for you then you can ignore them and see the phone’s own message section directly.

The drag and drop .cab installation feature is one of my favourites. Gone will be the process of dropping a cab file onto the phone or memory card and installing. Whilst I keep a folder on my memory card with my cabs in it in case of a hard rest being required (this is Windows Mobile after all) mDesktop leaves you without the cab on the phone afterward.

Overall mDesktop gets to the point and what you see is what you get. For those who think the screenshots don’t match their desktop style I guess it just tough. Its easy and handy so long as you are not looking for any extended features. For must customers it will tick all the boxes.

 

Posted in: Phones

About the Author:

Seasoned tech blogger. Host of the Tech Addicts podcast.
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