If you're a mobile professional or PC enthusiast who's curious about the exciting new Pocket PC platform, "The Pocket PC" is the book for you. This pocket-sized guide to the Pocket PC demonstrates how to get more done and have fun on the run with a Microsoft "RM" Windows "RM" CE-based handheld PC. Detailed instructions show how to use your Pocket PC to connect to the Internet or other network with a wireless modern or cable, use e-mail, surf the Web, listen to music, play games, download and read books with Microsoft Reader, and more. This pocketbook also provides a fast, fascinating look at popular Pocket PC software such as industry-leading personal information management programs, Microsoft Pocket Outlook "RM", and Microsoft Pocket Office. It's the ultimate guide to entertainment and productivity on the handheld PC. Best of all, its price is just right for your pocketbook!
|Product dimensions:||5.52(w) x 8.44(h) x 0.56(d)|
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The PC in Your Pocket
What Is the Pocket PC?
Pocket PC Hardware
Pocket PC Software
Out of the Box—Now What?
Setting Up the Pocket PC for the First Time
Finding Your Way Around
1 The PC in Your Pocket
When personal computers (PCs) began to gain popularity in the late 1980s, they were monster machines with little computing power, especially compared with today’s standards. Since the introduction of the PC, however, the personal computing industry has worked to shrink the size and increase the performance of the PC.
When I graduated from high school, I received a laptop as a graduation gift. At the time, it was a top-of-the-line model—a whopping 386SX with 12 MB of RAM! I’m amazed when I think back to that laptop and realize how computing devices have morphed from desktop to laptop to even smaller computers. Today my wristwatch probably has more computing power than that laptop did. (OK, I’m exaggerating—but you understand what I mean.)
Even with the popularity of the laptop, people still searched for a smaller computing device that could handle their needs. The personal digital assistant (PDA) was created to help people access information at any time or any place. A number of companies have released several iterations of the PDA, most of which are limited to personal information management (PIM). PIM software allows you to record your contact information, appointments, and small tasks. However, as people become more mobile, they want their PDAs to have much of the functionality offered by their desktop PCs, such as the ability to send and receive e–mail and to browse the Web. One PDA offers all these functions and a whole lot more: the Pocket PC.
What Is the Pocket PC?
In general, the Pocket PC is a personal computing device that allows you to keep track of your personal information, such as contacts, appointments, and tasks. But the Pocket PC can be used for more than just PIM functions. The Pocket PC also brings you a multimedia experience like no other. You can listen to digital music, play videos, and read electronic books on the Pocket PC. In fact, you can even listen to digital music while you’re reading an electronic book or scanning for upcoming appointments in your calendar.
In size and shape, the Pocket PC resembles a large calculator, not unlike the scientific calculator you might have used in college. All the Pocket PCs available today come with an instruction manual and a CD-ROM that contains Microsoft ActiveSync software and other software goodies. Pocket PCs use Microsoft Windows CE as the base operating system, offer a touch screen to enter information, and have external hardware buttons that can be used for fast access to programs on the device. Pocket PCs also offer some method of expandability, such as a CompactFlash slot, and have docking cradles that allow you to connect your Pocket PC to your desktop or laptop PC and synchronize data between the two.
Pocket PC Hardware
Several original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), such as Casio, Compaq, Hewlett-Packard, and Symbol, build Pocket PCs. Although different models of the Pocket PC are available, the basic operations are almost identical. Where the Pocket PC varies between models is in the hardware. Some devices are slimmer than others. Some might have more memory or execute programs faster. The screen technology might also be different.
The various models range in processing speed from 131 MHz to 206 MHz. The memory can range from 16 MB to 32 MB, which allows for a lot of on-device data and application storage. All models have touch screens for basic user input and navigation instead of a mouse and a keyboard. You can use your finger to tap the screen to navigate, or you can use a penlike apparatus called a stylus, which comes with every Pocket PC. With the stylus, you can write on the screen of the Pocket PC in your own handwriting, using electronic ink. You can also use an on-screen keyboard called a soft keyboard to enter information. In addition to using the touch screen, you can navigate between programs with hardware buttons on the exterior of the Pocket PC. The hardware buttons are preprogrammed for different program functions and navigation.
Unlike a desktop or laptop computer, the Pocket PC doesn’t contain a hard drive. Instead, all information, including the operating system, is stored in memory. The Pocket PC actually contains a series of circuit chips, together called a module, onto which Windows CE has been "burned." What I mean by burned is that the operating system has been downloaded to a read-only-memory (ROM) module at the factory. This is typically a one-time burn, which means the download is permanent. You can’t lose portions of the operating system—or the entire operating system itself—as you can on a desktop PC. The likelihood of a corrupt file in ROM is minimal because the operating system is somewhat protected from the rest of the memory on the device. When the operating system is in ROM, you can quickly open and close programs. The device also starts, or boots, quickly.
Upgrading a Pocket PC is a matter of removing the ROM chip and replacing it with an updated version. As simple as this sounds, it might not always be easy because your particular model might not be upgradable. (The OEM that made your Pocket PC will have information on whether you can upgrade your Pocket PC.) The Compaq iPaq model is nice for upgrades because it has a flashable ROM chip that can be reflashed several times with different updates if and when they become available. Flashable ROM is similar to burned ROM in that flashable ROM can be upgraded by the Pocket PC user. You can also flash this kind of ROM several times, whereas burned chips can be modified only once at the factory.
Now that you’ve learned a little about ROM and how it’s used in the Pocket PC, let’s talk about random access memory (RAM). RAM is similar to ROM, but RAM allows the operating system to add and remove files, while ROM allows the operating system only to read files. On the Pocket PC, all your personal data is stored in RAM. The programs that you install on your Pocket PC will also be stored in RAM unless you store those programs on a memory storage card. (See Chapter 2 for more information on using memory storage cards with the Pocket PC.)
Feeling confused about ROM and RAM? Just remember that ROM is where the operating system and other programs included with the Pocket PC are stored. RAM is where your data and the programs that you install are stored.
Pocket PC Software
Software on the Pocket PC is essentially the same on all models. Windows CE 3.0 is the operating system that controls all the functions on the Pocket PC. You might think that Windows CE is similar to the Windows operating system on your desktop PC. Well, Windows CE is similar in appearance, but it’s quite different in architecture and functionality.
Popular applications such as Microsoft Pocket Word, Microsoft Pocket Excel, Microsoft Windows Media Player, and Microsoft Reader are available on all Pocket PC models. Pocket PCs also have ActiveSync, a software program that lets you synchronize data between your Pocket PC and your desktop or laptop PC.
By connecting the Pocket PC to the desktop PC, you can transfer data between the two and update both. For example, if you have a meeting with new clients, you can use the Pocket PC to collect their contact information. When you get back to your office, you can connect the Pocket PC to your desktop PC and transfer the data. Likewise, when you update or add an appointment, a contact, or a task to the desktop PC, the data will be updated on the Pocket PC. This happens automatically when you connect the two devices and either the Pocket PC or the desktop PC detects a change in data.
ActiveSync is also the main software program used when installing programs and viewing content on the Pocket PC. (I’ll discuss ActiveSync in greater detail in Chapter 3.)
Out of the Box—Now What?
If you’re like me, you probably couldn’t wait to get your Pocket PC out of the box and turn it on. In fact, you probably have it all set up and are now listening to digital music. In case you haven’t, though, I’ll show you how to configure the Pocket PC for first-time use and then tell you how to use the device.
Setting Up the Pocket PC for the First Time
To begin, turn on the Pocket PC. Because the location of the on/off button is different for each model, you might need to refer to the instruction manual for the exact location of this button. The first screen that appears is the Welcome Wizard, which does two things. First, it configures the device for initial use. By following the instructions in the wizard, you’ll align the screen and set the time zone for the device. Second, the Welcome Wizard helps familiarize you with some of the basic operations of the Pocket PC, such as tap and hold.
Where’s the Right Click?
Unlike your desktop PC, the Pocket PC has no mouse or mouse cursor. Your stylus or fingernail takes the place of the mouse. You tap an item on the screen, such as an icon for a program, to start it or open it.
By clicking the right button on a mouse, you can open a shortcut or context menu in Windows or in a program running in Windows. This ability is called secondary click, or right click. The equivalent of the right click on the Pocket PC is tap and hold. Depending on what program you’re using, you’re presented with a shortcut menu to several quick functions when you tap and hold. For example, when you’re in Notes and you want to delete a note, all you have to do is tap and hold the note to open a shortcut menu. Then, on the shortcut menu, tap Delete.
Finding Your Way Around
Some Pocket PC features are similar in look and function to desktop and laptop PCs, while others are different. For instance, you can access just about everything you need on the Pocket PC from the Start menu, such as programs and settings for the device. Unlike the Start menu in desktop Windows, however, the Start menu on the Pocket PC is located in the upper left of the screen.
In addition to Programs and Settings on the Start menu, you’ll see the programs and features that are installed on every Pocket PC, such as Calendar, Contacts, Internet Explorer, Notes, Tasks, Windows Media, Find, and Help. Many of these programs and features will be familiar to you because they’re similar to programs and features on your desktop PC. We’ll explore them in more detail in later chapters in this book. Right now, let’s look at a few things that are different about the Pocket PC.
Moving Programs on the Start Menu
After you add a program to your Pocket PC, you can usually find it by tapping Start and then tapping Programs. However, you might want to access your most frequently used programs directly from the Start menu so you can get to them faster. To move programs on the Start menu, tap the Start button and then tap Settings. On the Settings screen, tap Menus. On the Menus screen, tap the check boxes next to the items that you want to change on the Start menu. Selecting a check box will add an item to your Start menu; clearing a check box will remove an item from the Start menu.
Using the Today Screen
The Today screen, which you can access from the Start menu, allows you to see at a glance what you have planned for the day. You can also open the Calendar to see the agenda for the current day, but the Today screen has your upcoming appointments and tasks all in a single location.
The Today screen is customizable. To add and remove items from the Today screen, tap the Start button and then tap Settings. On the Settings menu, tap Today. From the Today settings screen, you can change the appearance and the order in which the items appear on the Today screen.
One of the things I like best about the Pocket PC is the ease with which you can enter information. Yes, I enjoy listening to recordings and reading electronic books also, but entering information is so simple that it has become one of my favorite ways to use the Pocket PC.
On the desktop PC, the most common way to enter information is with the keyboard. The same holds true for the Pocket PC except that you use an on-screen, or soft, keyboard. The soft keyboard offers the same layout and functionality as a full-size one. To access the soft keyboard, select the keyboard icon in the lower right corner of the screen. If you don’t see a keyboard icon, tap the arrow in the lower right corner, and then tap Keyboard on the menu.
Another way to enter information is by writing. With the Character Recognizer on the Pocket PC, you can use handwriting as a method of input. The Pocket PC converts your handwriting to plain text almost as fast as you can write on the screen. Unlike other personal digital assistants (PDAs), the Pocket PC doesn’t require that you learn a special alphabet. Granted, your handwriting must be somewhat legible. When I first used this feature, I needed to modify my penmanship a tad for my Pocket PC to accept all of my handwriting. Now I can enter information faster by writing than I can by tapping individual letters on the soft keyboard.
Another way to enter information is through the Transcriber. The Transcriber is a natural handwriting recognition utility that you can install from the CD-ROM that comes with your Pocket PC. You can find it in the CD-ROM’s Extras folder. The Transcriber reliably recognizes words and phrases in cursive, print, and mixed cursive and print styles. By combining the soft keyboard and the Character Recognizer, the Transcriber allows you to make drawing strokes on the screen to backspace and remove characters without having to hit the backspace key on the keyboard. It also provides several options for you to customize the color of the ink, the width of strokes, and so on.
The final method of entering information is sound recording. Using the Notes program on the Pocket PC, you can record sounds with just a tap on the screen. You can then save that recording and send it to a colleague through e-mail.
Tapping the Record button on the screen is one way to make a recording or a voice note. You can also use the external hardware buttons on the device to make a voice note. The voice-recording button is usually on the upper left side of the exterior of the Pocket PC. By pressing and holding the button, you can make a voice note. When you’re done recording, release the button; the voice note is stored in Notes as Recording1, Recording2, and so on. Tap and hold the file to rename it or change the storage location. You can also delete the file by using the same tap-and-hold feature. The purpose of the voice recorder is to record quick thoughts, so be warned that the more recordings you make, the more memory is consumed.
After learning about all these ways to enter information, you might expect the Pocket PC to translate speech to text. I hate to disappoint you, but it can’t. Give the Pocket PC a few more years, though, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see this happen.
The Pocket PC is a powerful device that offers you the basics of personal information management plus a lot more with Microsoft Internet Explorer for the Pocket PC, Pocket Word, Pocket Excel, Microsoft Money for Pocket PC, Microsoft Reader, and Windows Media Player. The Pocket PC is also expandable and customizable to your needs. As you’ll see in the next chapter, the Pocket PC can be expanded to allow you to access the Internet or customized for more specialized purposes such as reading bar codes.
Table of Contents
|1||The PC in Your Pocket||1|
|What Is the Pocket PC?||2|
|Out of the Box--Now What?||5|
|2||Expand Your Pocket PC||13|
|Adding Components to the Pocket PC||13|
|Types of Connections||20|
|Using Your ISP to Connect||41|
|What You Need for an ISP Connection||42|
|Connecting to Your ISP: Step by Step||43|
|5||Remote Synchronization with a Modem||55|
|What You Need for Remote Sync with a Modem||56|
|Setting Up Remote Sync||57|
|Troubleshooting Remote Sync with a Modem||59|
|6||Remote Synchronization via Ethernet||61|
|Using Ethernet Sync||62|
|What You Need for Ethernet Sync||62|
|Configuring Your Pocket PC for Ethernet Sync||62|
|Setting Up Ethernet Sync||64|
|Troubleshooting Ethernet Sync||65|
|What You Get with Wireless||67|
|Configuring Your Pocket PC for a Wireless Connection||71|
|8||Exploring the Web with the Pocket PC||75|
|What Does Internet Explorer for the Pocket PC Support?||75|
|Browsing the Internet||76|
|Sending a Web Link in E-Mail||78|
|Customizing Your Browsing Environment||78|
|9||Using E-Mail on the Pocket PC||87|
|What Kind of E-Mail Can the Pocket PC Send and Receive?||87|
|Configuring the Pocket PC for E-Mail||88|
|Sending and Receiving Messages||92|
|Synchronizing with ActiveSync||94|
|10||Using the Calendar||97|
|Adding Appointments to the Calendar||97|
|Changing the Views in the Calendar||102|
|Creating a Contact||105|
|Sending a Contact to Another Pocket PC||110|
|Task vs. Appointment||113|
|Creating a Task||114|
|Sorting Your Tasks||117|
|Completing and Deleting a Task||117|
|Sorting and Moving Notes||122|
|Removing a Note||123|
|14||Microsoft Pocket Word||125|
|Creating a Document||126|
|Using a Template||128|
|Saving Your Document||129|
|Cut, Copy, and Paste||130|
|Working in Different Modes||132|
|Formatting Your Document||133|
|Documents in E-Mail||134|
|Sending a Document Through Infrared||135|
|15||Microsoft Pocket Excel||137|
|Creating a Document||137|
|Formatting Your Document||138|
|Viewing Your Document||147|
|16||Microsoft Windows Media Player||149|
|Music Formats and Storage||150|
|Creating MP3 and WMA Music||150|
|Downloading Music to the Pocket PC||151|
|Creating Custom Playlists||154|
|Downloading an eBook to the Pocket PC||160|
|Reading an eBook||161|