Goodbye, Smartphone and Pocket PC Magazine

It’s a sad day for Windows Mobile: Smartphone and Pocket PC Magazine have announced that they’re suspending publication as of the last issue in 2008.

The magazine – first called Handheld PC Magazine, then Pocket PC, then Smartphone and Pocket PC, has been around 11 years – just as long as we have. The first issue (Volume 1, Number 0) is dated “Fall 1997”, and if I knew how to work the scanner, I’d show our first ad and give everyone a laugh.

It’s no surprise that the magazine is suspending their Windows Mobile publication. Hal and his staff did an amazing job with it. I saw it in every major bookstore, and every airport magazine counter (I always checked). The articles and art were professional, the content interesting, and the information useful.

But that’s not enough to keep a magazine running. Looking back through my archives, the August issue had 26 advertisers. A random issue from 2004 had 52 and one from 2000 had 37. Microsoft advertised in some of these, not all of them, and the more recent issues had almost no hardware manufacturers, distributors or big companies advertising.

In contrast, the latest issue of MacWorld had 81 advertisers, including big companies like CDW, MacMall, Western Digital and other very recognizable names. Apple’s showing TV commercials specifically about the iPhone App Store and adding over 250 new apps each week.

I don’t understand why Microsoft isn’t doing much more to support the Windows Mobile consumer market – the people who have supported their OS for the last 11 years.

Of course the publishers of Smartphone and Pocket PC are going to try an iPhone publication – who wouldn’t, in those circumstances? I hope they have all the success they deserve with it.

And in one other mobile-media related note, if you’re interested in mobile news and analysis, the four new MediaBistro Mobile sites are doing a great job rounding up info I wouldn’t have found anywhere else. Thanks, guys – you’re making my job a lot easier.

12 thoughts on “Goodbye, Smartphone and Pocket PC Magazine

  1. Ricardo

    Sad to hear that.

    I would like to take the opportunity to ask if you have a release date for eWallet for Blackberry.

    It was posted in this blog in mid July that was a “few” weeks away… ?


  2. Adam S

    I just don’t know how any of these magazines are going to survive. In the end, none of them will, given enough time.

  3. Marc

    We were all disappointed when we heard the news. End of an era! Thanks for everything Hal!

    @Ricardo: It’s coming Ricardo. We’ve been working very hard with WebIS to get it done but we hit a few snags that we had to untangle. It’s starting to look quite good but I don’t want to make a prediction beyond “Soon I hope!!”

  4. Jeremy

    Why are these dying? It seems like these are the golden days of All-in-one PIM/Phone/Ipod devices.

  5. Laz

    Definitely sad, but as you say, it’s a sign of the times and the trends. The iPhone is by no means perfect…far from it…but it does more well than any other smartphone I’ve used.

    In fact, the only thing my HTC Wing does better than the iPhone (well, aside from phone calls…fix the reception issues, Apple and AT&T!) is that it syncs my eWallet 🙂

  6. Dwaine Wheeler

    I jumped ship from the windows mobile when the n93 usa came out. Twice the phone/pha than anything available at the time from HTC or really any window mobile manufacture.

    My 2 year contract was finally up on August 13 so I got the iPhone knowing I have 30 days to return it and also not be locked into another 2 year contract… So I’m keeping it. No WM device for me for a while. I think their are MANY people like me.

    Sorry and bye to wm.

  7. T-Will

    I just left WM for iPhone (I’ve been a WinMo user since Pocket PC 2000 and the iPaq) so this wasn’t an easy decision for me, but the iPhone interface and experience is so much better than anything else out there. I’m still waiting for some software I used with WinMo, but I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before the developers fill the gaps.

  8. Pingback: STOPPED: Final Issue of Smartphone & PocketPC Magazine : Personal Website & Mobility Blog Remo Knops

  9. Jackson

    It’s a tough market for specialty magazines like these, even the major papers are having a tough time. Since information is available for free on the internet, and in vast quantities, is the magazine on the way out?

  10. ppc management

    Thanks for the post – it is sad to hear. But I have to agree with the above post, that eventually there just isn’t going to be the magazines, or newspapers. Everyone can get the info they need for free online. And often quicker more concise infomation. I still hate to hear of magazines going under though.

    All the Best.

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