When I was in Hong Kong a few weeks ago, I bought a Dopod 566 Smartphone. This is one of the newer Microsoft Smartphones. This phone was codenamed HTC Hurricane and is also known as the C550 if you're in Europe. Unfortunately, it's not available in the US yet (although T-Mobile is apparently going to bring it here eventually.)
It's a beautiful phone with a very sharp QVGA screen (higher res than the Audiovox 5600 that everyone at Microsoft seems to have.) Cooler (for me as the IE guy anyway) is the IE button on the phone. I also liked the music transport controls on the outside of the phone; I had planned to use the phone as my MP3 player.
So, after a few weeks of using the phone, here's what I think.
- The phone is fast. This is a big upgrade from my Motorola MPx200.
- The screen really is gorgeous.
- The transport controls are only of limited use. They don't work normally because I have the phone lock automatically after a few minutes. (I sync my work email onto the phone, so I need to have it locked in case I lose it.
- There is an apparently serious bug where the phone cannot sync music to Windows Media Player over USB. I've read reports of other people encountering this too; so far my attempts to track this down within the company haven't been successful (although I haven't tried real hard yet.) Obviously, this is a debilitating since I want to use this as my MP3 player. Right now I have the pull the mini SD card out from under the battery to sync new music -- a non-starter.
- The camera seems OK, although I haven't really done much testing of it yet. The idea of being able to shoot video with it too is appealing. More on that later, I'm sure.
So, I'm happy I picked up the phone overall; it's a big upgrade from my last phone. The IE button is a big hit on my team, and it serves my needs well. The MP3 sync issue is the only really huge problem, and I wish the transport controls worked when the phone is locked. Maybe Smartphone 2005 fixes that. I'll have to ask.