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Tuesday, May 03, 2005

SOTI -- Remote Control Your PDA

SOTI Professional Controller
By: The Editor
SOTI Inc. has just released Version 5.01 of Pocket Controller Professional.

For anyone who's never heard of it, Pocket Controller is a desktop application that allows you to view and control any Pocket PC or SmartPhone with either a local or remote connection. And at below $31.00 USD, anyone can own a license for business or personal use.

Admittedly, this is a product that was built mainly for corporate use. Because of its Internet connectivity, it was designed for technical support of large deployments of Pocket PCs and SmartPhones. It does this very well by the way and is the best tool I have found for this type of work.

However, the personal uses are only limited by the imagination of the user. (continued...)

For example, I personally use it as a remote keyboard entry device because it allows me to use my notebook keyboard to enter data directly onto my PDA. This works great for times when you may need to do a lot of text entry but don't want to look at the small Pocket PC display screen. Believe it or not, some development tools for the Pocket PC only work on the device itself. The development tools are great but trying to work on the small screen for hours is difficult. Pocket Controller makes this task much easier...even fun.

And if you think working on a 240x320 PDA screen is a chore, try doing something like that on your tiny SmartPhone screen.

It also allows you to capture screenshots and videos for either email or web display. This means you can share what you are doing on your device with other people via the Internet.

The only thing that I would caution against is using Pocket Controller with a slow connection like Infrared or a slow Internet connection. There is a visible delay when typing and movie capture is all but impossible. Other than that, it does a fantastic job of controlling and capturing from your device.

There are too many features to get into each one in detail but here is a list:

Feature Summary:
- View and control your Pocket PC or Smartphone from your desktop, using your desktop screen, keyboard and mouse. Enter data at high speed using your desktop keyboard
- Enlarge or shrink the Pocket PC screen to suit your taste
- Create recordings suitable for software training or demonstrations
- Use the Remote DOS Box tool to remotely execute DOS commands
- View your Pocket PC in a skin. Skins for most Pocket PCs are available
- Full Screen Background Mode, allows users to use solid color or HTML backgrounds, ideal for presentations
- Wysiwyg printing, print screens in 1X, 2X, 3X, landscape, or in a skin
- Capture Pocket PC screens and save them to disk
- Save Pocket PC screen to desktop computer clipboard
- Integrated Clipboard, transfer data between Pocket PC clipboard and the desktop clipboard. Automatically Synchronize desktop and mobile device clipboards.
- Explore Tool, allows file transfer with ActiveSync or TCP/IP connection
- User Security, create administrator and user accounts, allow/deny privileged, allow users to accept/reject remote control session requests, Authentication, Encryption
- Macro Recording/Playback, record keystrokes and mouse events to a macro file that can be played back. Macro files are text files that can be edited and customized.
- View Pocket PC screen in portrait or landscape modes
- Activate/Stop applications and processes, view detailed process information (i.e. DLLs loaded, threads information etc.).
- View Pocket PC utilization and system information, from your desktop computer
- Can be configured to automatically start/stop when you dock/un-dock your Pocket PC
- Full keyboard support, including support for hardware "Application Buttons"
- Online documentation
- Connect via ActiveSync or Wired/Wireless TCP/IP
- Configure multiple Connection profiles, multiple TCP/IP addresses, control multiple Pocket PC devices simultaneously by running multiple instances of Pocket Controller
- Support for English, English(UK), French, German, German(Swiss), Portuguese(Brazil), Spanish(International), Spanish(Latin American), Swedish, Danish, Finnish, Dutch, Norwegian, and Italian keyboards.

In conclusion, I can only say that if you're looking for software to give you an alternative and often better way of controlling your Pocket PC or SmartPhone either locally or remotely, you should seriously consider Pocket Controller Professional.

PDA and Mobile Today Reviewer's Rating ****
(4 out of 5 Stars -- 5 stars is best)

2004 Pocket PC Magazine Award Winner

Click here to download the Free Trial and judge for yourself.