Pocket PC to make phone calls

Microsoft is to announce an application that lets manufacturers add wireless access for data and voice calls to Pocket PC devices.

Microsoft next week will announce an application that will let manufacturers using its Pocket PC 2002 operating system add wireless access for data and voice calls to their upcoming devices.

The announcement will be made in Cannes, France, and the application will be called Microsoft Phone Edition, sources said. The software will allow handhelds to access data and make wireless voice calls. The first devices to support Phone Edition will run on GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) and GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) networks and will be a new class of devices from manufacturers supporting the Pocket PC OS.

Sources said other manufacturers are expected to introduce next week new handhelds using Microsoft's Phone Edition application. At this year's Consumer Electronics Show, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates briefly demonstrated in a keynote speech a Hewlett-Packard Jornada device using the software and another from AudioVox using an application from Sierra Wireless.

Product launches for devices using the application are expected to be for Asian and European markets first, with US launches set for later this year.

News source: ZDnet Australia

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