I was looking for a new mobile phone. And I had a list of wishes.
The first truly globally standardized mobile phone system. And fast enough for comfortably surfing the net. That means it will also work in Japan.
Since I travel a lot, a large part of my phone bill is roaming charges, that can be astronomical. The WiFi function allows me to log in to any unprotected WLan, and browse the Net, read my mail, or use a messenger to communicate.
3. Quad band GSM
So that I can use any GSM network anywhere in the world.
Since I always have my phone with me, it's the perfect place to keep all my appointments, contacts etc. Obviously it needs to synchronize with my computer.
5. Big screen
My previous phone could surf the web, through GPRS, but the screen was to small to see anything else then sites specially made for very low resolution. If you increase the resolution, but not the size, text gets too small to read (at least for me .
6. Touch screen
Not essential, but being an old Palm pilot user, I'm comfortable using a stylus to enter small pieces of text, and for web browsing it works just like a mouse.
Since I use this device for e-mails, and instant messaging, it's nice to have a real qwerty keypad.
With this rather long list of wishes I went looking for a 'device'. And it turned out that there are few that have everything I require.
I picked the HTC Tytn.
So far I'm satisfied. To be perfectly honest, a 'normal' mobile phone or 'smart phone' is a bit better if you mostly use the phone function, and only need basic Internet and agenda functionality.
The Tytn is really a PDA with integrated mobile phone. It runs Windows Mobile Edition 5.0, and has Pocket Word, Pocket Excel, Outlook and Internet Explorer as standard.
I had no difficulty setting up my e-mail accounts, and getting the web browser going. The Dutch version of Windows Mobile didn't have 'block recognition', the classic Palm symbol system, but I could download that from the Net, and install that myself. That's one of the nice things of a PDA. You can easily install all kinds of software yourself.
I've used the WiFi function several times already. Both in Cairo (Egypt), and Chengdu (China) I found free WLan's that I could use to check my mail etc. Probably most big cities have free or paid WLan's that you can log in to.
The qwerty keypad is controlled by your thumbs, and that works very well. After a few days already, I found that the keypad is quicker then the stylus for anything more then a few words. E-mailing , and text messaging is a dream! If you slide out the keypad, the screen is automatically turns 90 degrees, which makes it ideal for reading text.
A camera was not on my wish list, but since it has one, I'm happy to report that the 2.0MPixel camera makes really descent pictures.
You would expect that synchronizing with Windows is easy. And I didn't have much difficulty getting it to work with Windows XP. But a few weeks ago I upgraded to Windows Vista, that has a new synchronization utility, and now it works like a dream! Simply plug it in the USB port, and it synchronizes with Outlook, Media Player, and a few other programs if you wish. At the same time the battery is being recharged, and you can access the Tytn and it's memory card, like an external hard disk.
I've used the Tytn with MSN Messenger over WiFi, and that works perfectly. Setup is easy, and the keypad and screen make reading and writing your messages very comfortable.
The Tytn is also one of the few mobile devices that can run Skype (although only with a headset). Most phones and PDA's don't have the audio hardware for it. I haven't tried that yet, but apparently it works.
Is it perfect?
No off course not. Windows is still windows, and not perfectly stable. The logging in to an unknown WLan sometimes requires me to restart windows first. But to be honest it could be my limited knowledge causing that. If you're running many different programs, it gets slower and slower. For some reason it never really shuts down a program, but always keeps it in it's memory. You need to shut down programs by selecting "Settings > System > Memory > Active Programs > Select the program you want to stop > Stop". Don't ask my why, but you can't shutdown a program from the program itself.
Quick dialing a recently used number is AFAIK not possible. Only the last used number.
The size is just a bit bigger then a 'normal' phone, but that means it doesn't comfortably fit every trouser or jacket pocket.
Dialing a number means sliding out the keypad, use the stylus, or type on the touchscreen with your fingers. The latter is by far the better solution, but not as nice a the number keypad of a phone.
I can go on endlessly, but I wont. If you have questions I'll answer them
If you want a truly worldwide usable multi-function communication device, I think it's hard to beat.
I'll add a picture I've taken with it.