Re: The Omnigo and WinCE - My experiences over the past 4 years

Steven Hurdle (
Thu, 17 Apr 1997 10:05:03 -0700 (PDT)

> What I've learned from my efforts in the handheld software development
> market is that connectivity to the desktop is an important perception to
> everyone, whether they need it or not, whether it has any value to them
> or not. What's even more disconcerting is that users want to be able to
> run the same app on their desktop as is running on their handheld, again
> As such and unfortunately, I would expect Microsoft's WinCE based
> machines to dominate the market for years to come. Developing apps for
> other handheld OS platforms is risky business and a squandering of one's
> resources at best.

Windows CE machines don't seem to be enjoying stellar sales so far.

I enquired about purchasing an OG120 at a local computer store and
was told they only had OG100s in stock. We talked for a bit and the two
staff mentioned that many people will only consider the more expensive
PDAs because they have this strange perceptions that something has to
cost a lot to be valuable! :(

I would like to see New Deal look into releasing a PDA with New
Deal-authored software. Such a machine would run Zoomer and OmniGo
software but, keeping in mind the price issue, would be a beefier machine
than the OG120. Why not put in lots of internal RAM (which is getting
cheaper all the time) and a faster CPU? New Deal could hopefully be
talked into it by people pointing out that, since connectivity to the
desktop is so important, including software in the PDA that's fully
compatible with GeoWorks Ensemble/New Deal Office 97 can only benefit
NDO97 sales.

So far New Deal has only expressed interest in software development,
but perhaps one of their new partners (such as Brother) could be sought
for this project.

The marketing would be simple: express on the package that it's
compatible with Zoomer and OmniGo software; emblazen on the packaging
that it has great desktop connectivity (and ship it with a cable for that
express purpose, or make it an inexpensive add-on); ship a New Deal
catalogue with the PDA to assist people in getting GEOS desktop software
who want said connectivity, and to help justify the investment in the
PDA; bring current OG developers on-side by advertising their
third-party software in a second catalogue, and selling it for them
through direct sales, to get them excited about the new PDA and to
convince them to continue producing software.


Steven Hurdle,
Member of the Microsoft Resistance Movement.