Mobile & Wireless UPDATE, December 12, 2002

Mobile & Wireless UPDATEbrought to you by the Windows & .NET Magazine Network
http://www.winnetmag.com


THIS ISSUE SPONSORED BY

Windows Scripting Solutions


SPONSOR: WINDOWS SCRIPTING SOLUTIONS

WINDOWS SCRIPTING SOLUTIONS FOR THE SYSTEMS ADMINISTRATOR
So, you may not be a programmer, but that doesn't mean you can't learn to create and deploy timesaving, problem-solving scripts. Discover Windows Scripting Solutions, the monthly print publication that helps you tackle common problems and automate everyday tasks with simple tools, tricks, and scripts. Try a sample issue today at:
http://www.winscriptingsolutions.com/rd.cfm?code=fsei262lup


December 12, 2002—In this issue:

1. MOBILE & WIRELESS PERSPECTIVES

  • COMDEX Fall 2002 Report

2. MOBILE & WIRELESS NEWS & VIEWS

  • Bluefish Wireless
  • Gateway Tablet PC
  • New BlackBerry Models

3. ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • The Microsoft Mobility Tour Is Coming Soon to a City Near You!
  • Get the New Windows & .NET Magazine Network Super CD/VIP!

4. INSTANT POLL

  • Results of Previous Poll: Bluetooth-Enabled Devices
  • New Instant Poll: Cell Phone Use in Public

5. RESOURCES

  • Event Highlight: 2003 International Consumer Electronics Show

6. NEW AND IMPROVED

  • Receive Fast Connectivity
  • Extend Security for WLAN Environments

7. CONTACT US
See this section for a list of ways to contact us.


1. MOBILE & WIRELESS PERSPECTIVES
(contributed by John D. Ruley, [email protected])

  • COMDEX FALL 2002 REPORT

  • Last month's COMDEX Fall 2002 show in Las Vegas, Nevada, was the smallest I've seen in the 10 years I've been attending. However, several items are worth reporting. Impressively, Symbol Technologies provided the event a complete wireless network, which covered the trade-show floor and provided hotspot access throughout the convention center. The company built the network around its Mobius Wireless System intelligent switch technology, which permitted the setup of what amounted to wireless subnets: One switch can control several access ports, each of which can control a separate range of dynamically assigned IP addresses. For more information about Mobius, see the following URL.
    http://www.symbol.com/products/wireless/mobius_wireless_system.html

    I moderated a Tablet PC session, which featured devices from Hewlett-Packard (HP), Fujitsu, Motion Computing, and Toshiba. I'd already seen a preproduction sample of the Fujitsu device (as well as the Acer TravelMate C100), but this was my first opportunity to see the others. HP's Compaq Tablet PC TC1000 was the smallest and lightest of the group—particularly with its removable keyboard detached. It was also the least expensive. The Fujitsu's Stylistic ST4000 and Motion Computing's M1200 Tablet PC were larger and included docking stations that hold the unit in Portrait Mode for use on a desk. Toshiba's Portege 3500 was the largest and heaviest but also the fastest. Its convertible design was similar to that of the TravelMate C100. For my beta review of the TravelMate, see the following URL.
    http://www.winnetmag.com/articles/index.cfm?articleid=26688

    The unique tablet form factor presented some challenges for the speakers in the auditorium. We had a typical super-VGA compatible video projector, which all the units can drive through a built-in VGA port, but the projector supported only landscape-mode presentation. One option, of course, was to ask the audience to rotate their heads 90 degrees. However, we had a relatively small crowd, so most of the presenters simply held their units up for the audience to see. At the end of the session, I invited attendees to approach the stage for an in-person look at the devices. All the devices drew positive reactions from the audience.

    One question from the Q & A session bears repeating: An attendee noted that the Portege 3500 had the fastest processor (a 1.33GHz Pentium III) and asked why anyone would want to buy a unit with a slower processor. We'll soon be reading performance comparisons between the various units, but I think such speed discussions will be irrelevant. The processors in all of the Tablet PCs are more than fast enough for everyday use. In my opinion, size, weight, battery capacity, and ergonomics—how the unit "feels" when you use it in tablet mode and in either notebook or docked mode—are far more important considerations in this device class.

    On the show floor, one surprise was my discovery that Windows Powered Smart Display (formerly code-named Mira) devices can operate as terminals in a Windows Terminal Services environment. At the Microsoft booth, 20 devices were running against two Windows .NET Server (Win.NET Server) 2003 machines. Microsoft and its partners are marketing the Smart Displays (which look like Tablet PCs but function as a wireless remote display with touch-screen input) for consumer use. The current units' high price ($999 to $1499, depending on the model) will probably limit their penetration in that space. However, the devices might have a place in small-business and professional applications—for example, in a doctor's office. For more information about Smart Displays, see the following URL.
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/smartdisplay/default.asp

    I was sorry to see COMDEX in such a shrunken state. The entire event—the trade show, conference sessions, registration, and media facilities—took place in the convention center. This small presence was in sharp contrast to past shows, at which the conference sessions were always across town and registration was in a tent on the front lawn. The small size had only one advantage for me as a speaker and journalist: I saved a bundle on cab fare!

    Finally, let me take this opportunity to wish everyone happy holidays, and best wishes for the New Year.

    2. MOBILE & WIRELESS NEWS & VIEWS
    (contributed by John D. Ruley, [email protected])

  • BLUEFISH WIRELESS

  • At COMDEX Fall 2002, I was able to download a complete show guide to my Palm VII from a public infrared (IR) portal off the show floor. BlueFish Wireless, the company that provided the portal, sells a unique wireless Access Point (AP): The device communicates wirelessly with a server, which uses IR or Bluetooth connectivity to provide downloads to PDAs. Besides its support for trade shows, BlueFish offers solutions for education, advertising, transportation, and legal and consulting markets. The technology worked impressively at the show, which is anything but a controlled environment.
    http://www.bluefishwireless.com

  • GATEWAY TABLET PC

  • Last week, Gateway announced the Gateway Tablet PC. The device, which Motion Computing builds, has a true tablet design, with a separate keyboard and a stand that holds the primary unit in either portrait or landscape mode for desktop use. Features include a 12.1" Thin Film Transistor (TFT) display, an 866MHz Pentium III Mobile CPU, 256MB of RAM, a 40GB hard disk, and integrated 802.11b wireless networking. The unit measures 11.7" x 9.5" x .9" and weighs just over 3 pounds. The Gateway Tablet PC costs $2799.
    http://www.gateway.com/work/promotions/notebooks/tablet_pc.asp?seg=sb

  • NEW BLACKBERRY MODELS

  • Research In Motion (RIM) announced three new BlackBerry wireless email devices. The BlackBerry 6750 is compatible with CDMA2000 networks, the BlackBerry 6710 with Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) and General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) networks, and the BlackBerry 6510 with Nextel's high-bandwidth packet network. All three devices provide voice capability and RIM's wireless email service. Pricing and service plans vary by model and location.
    http://www.blackberry.com/products/new_handhelds/index.shtml

    3. ANNOUNCEMENTS
    (brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)

  • THE MICROSOFT MOBILITY TOUR IS COMING SOON TO A CITY NEAR YOU!

  • Brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine, this outstanding seven-city event will help support your growing mobile workforce. Industry guru Paul Thurrott discusses the coolest mobility hardware solutions around, demonstrates how to increase the productivity of your "road warriors" with the unique features of Windows XP and Office XP, and much more. There is no charge for these live events, but space is limited so register today!
    http://www.winnetmag.com/seminars/mobility

  • GET THE NEW WINDOWS & .NET MAGAZINE NETWORK SUPER CD/VIP!

  • Everyone can appreciate a bargain in today's economy. That's why we've introduced the Windows & .NET Magazine Super CD/VIP Web site. You get exclusive subscriber-only access to all our publications through our new VIP Web site. Plus, you get Super CDs delivered twice a year, and we'll even throw in a 1-year print subscription to the magazine! The Super CD/VIP is a $545 value for just $279. Subscribe today!
    http://www.winnetmag.com/rd.cfm?code=wvei272lup

    4. INSTANT POLL

  • RESULTS OF PREVIOUS POLL: BLUETOOTH-ENABLED DEVICES

  • The voting has closed in Windows & .NET Magazine's Mobile & Wireless Solutions nonscientific Instant Poll for the question, "Do you own or use any Bluetooth-enabled devices?" Here are the results (+/-1 percent) from the 64 votes:
    45% Yes
    55% No

  • NEW INSTANT POLL: CELL PHONE USE IN PUBLIC

  • The next Instant Poll question is, "If you could ban cell phone use in one venue, which would it be?" Go to the Mobile & Wireless Solutions Web site and submit your vote for a) Automobiles, b) Theaters, c) Restaurants, d) Schools, or e) Stores.
    http://www.mobile-and-wireless.com

    5. RESOURCE

  • EVENT HIGHLIGHT: 2003 INTERNATIONAL CONSUMER ELECTRONICS SHOW

  • January 9 through 12, 2003
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    The 2003 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) will host more than 250 wireless exhibitors and a variety of wireless training programs. You'll see Smart Phones, PDAs, and other pocket-size mobile communicators, as well as the latest developments in telephony, Bluetooth, 802.11, WiFi (the 802.11b wireless standard), infrared (IR), Global Positioning System (GPS), and other wireless technologies. For more information about this event, go to the following URL.
    http://www.cesweb.org

    For other upcoming events, check out the Windows & .NET Magazine Event Calendar.
    http://www.winnetmag.com/events

    6. NEW AND IMPROVED
    (contributed by Carolyn Mader, [email protected])

  • RECEIVE FAST CONNECTIVITY

  • SMC Networks announced the EZ Connect Turbo 2.4GHz 11/22Mbps Auto-Sensing Wireless Access Point (SMC2455W). The Access Point (AP) provides coverage as far away as 1155 feet and features auto-fallback, so you can connect at 22Mbps, 11Mbps, 5.5Mbps, 2Mbps, and 1Mbps. The 802.11b-compliant wireless AP also features Plug and Play (PnP) support. For pricing, contact SMC Networks at 949-679-8000 or 800-762-4968.
    http://www.smc.com

  • EXTEND SECURITY FOR WLAN ENVIRONMENTS

  • Meetinghouse Data Communications announced its AEGIS software for 802.1x standards-based security for wireless LANs (WLANs). Enhancements include AEGIS client and server support for Cisco LEAP for end-user authentication in WLAN environments, AEGIS server support for the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) on authentication servers, and AEGIS server support for Windows XP and Windows 2000-based authentication servers on wireless networks. AEGIS Server starts at $2500, AEGIS Server with LDAP is $3200, and AEGIS Client costs $39.99 per license. Contact Meetinghouse Data Communications at 603-430-7710.
    http://www.mtghouse.com

    7. CONTACT US
    Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

    Hide comments

    Comments

    • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

    Plain text

    • No HTML tags allowed.
    • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
    • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
    Publish