In step with the release of Windows Mobile 6.5 phones, Microsoft also graduated its My Phone syncing service for Windows phones (6.0-6.5) from beta to a full release. As we reported earlier this morning, most of the new features are premium additions to help you find your phone if it gets lost or stolen. We'll get to these later on. For the most part, the My Phone service acts as we expect it to--as a small app you download onto your phone, with the bulk of the management taking place on your dashboard online.
Sure enough, after downloading My Phone and signing in with your Windows Live ID (or signing up for a new one), you'll pick from a list of data types you want to sync. These include contacts, calendar items, notes, tasks, memos, photos, and videos, songs and text messages, and documents.
Syncing took over a half hour the first time around, but we were on a terribly weak EDGE connection. Let that be a lesson to all. In the style of our times, the online dashboard resembles an e-mail in-box. From it, you can view the contents of your phone, and to some extent manage certain aspects. for instance, you can add a new calendar item and comfortably edit contact info from the desktop keyboard, but we haven't found a way to add a contact or create a new text message. You can upload songs from any desktop to remotely load onto your phone, but My Phone missed the smattering of songs we already had on the phone. The photo sharing feature is more fleshed out, with options to publish images to Windows Live, Facebook, Flickr, and MySpace.
We're bummed that Microsoft hasn't broadened the syncing and sharing capabilities since My Phone's beta days. With so many other start-ups creating fuller featured in-boxes and management dashboards than My Phone, it seems to us that Microsoft has unnecessarily reinvented the wheel.… Read more