Print 24 comment(s) - last by bugzrrad.. on Feb 21 at 11:31 PM

A prototype phone running Microsoft's new Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system was reported stolen.

Mere days after it was unveiled to the public for the first time, a phone loaded with an upcoming version of Microsoft's operating system for "Windows Phones" was stolen right out of the pocket of a Telstra executive.  The prototype HTC smartphone was loaded with Windows Mobile 6.5, which features an improved user interface and a much friendlier user experience.  DailyTech covered it earlier this week, and it has since met with a generally positive welcome.

The theft took place at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2009, which was held at Barcelona this week.  The MWC is an annual convention where the latest mobile and wireless products and trends are being showcased by device makers and Telcos.  Other handsets shown with Windows Mobile 6.5 at the MWC include devices from phone maker LG.  It is not known whether the pinched device is an HTC Touch Diamond 2 or the Touch Pro 2.

The stolen phone belonged to Telstra chief executive Sol Trujillo, who was testing the device before its release at the end of the year.  It is understood, however, that the device was in the possession of another unnamed Telstra executive at the time of the theft, which has since been confirmed by a spokesperson for the Australian telecommunications company.

New smartphones are typically given out to high-level Telco executives for testing prior to their actual launch. 

Microsoft has played down the implications of the theft in the meantime.  A spokesman said, "Although we regret that the prototype given to Telstra was misplaced, we don't envisage the loss of one Windows Mobile 6.5 phone in Barcelona as impacting Microsoft in any way."

The MWC this year was apparently marred by various pick pocketing, theft and street crime that took place during the congress.  According to The Inquirer, the problem was so bad that GSMA told the mayor of Barcelona that the venue would be moved if the level of theft did not improve.

There were reports of other participants that had their mobile phone stolen while at least one participant was admitted at a Barcelona hospital after being stabbed.

Indeed, a journalist who lost a rucksack containing all her possessions recapped her experience at the local police station.  She said, "There were about 10 of us at the police station, and the victims ... were from different countries and race groups, representing a wide spectrum of ICT companies, all attending the Mobile World Congress."

Assuming they don’t appear on eBay earlier, smartphones running Windows Mobile 6.5 should be released soon.

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6.5? What happened to 7?
By therealnickdanger on 2/19/2009 8:49:57 AM , Rating: 3
I admit that since loading the much improved 6.1 ROM on my phone, I haven't been plugged in too well to the mobile news. The last article I read indicated that WM7 would be the next mobile OS. Hmm...

I don't like seeing phrases like "improved user interface" without "improved performance". 6.1 is pretty awesome, it delivered on both.

RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By phreaqe on 2/19/09, Rating: 0
RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By therealnickdanger on 2/19/2009 9:04:43 AM , Rating: 2
Hmm, my experience on my HTC Touch is completely different. Everything since 6.1 is more responsive and faster than 6.0. Maybe the registry needs to be tweaked to work better with your Treo?

RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By phreaqe on 2/19/2009 9:09:47 AM , Rating: 2
could very well be. i installed it on several of the treos we had at work and it was just terrible. it looked a bit nicer, but ran like crap. it was the version straight from att, so i assume it was supposed to be tweaked for the phone a bit. all the people that had them moved to iphones because they did not like them, but i am still stuck with the treo.

By therealnickdanger on 2/19/2009 11:02:59 AM , Rating: 2
Well that sucks to hear. If you're interested in pursuing an upgrade, I would suggest that you visit if you haven't already. In addition to tweak suggestions, they also have very reliable (and useful) custom ROMs tailored for specific phones.

RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By dani31 on 2/19/2009 9:21:27 AM , Rating: 1
True. WM6.5 will surely suck since it's backwords compatible with WM6.1 (HTC will do 6.5 ROM updates for new 6.1 phones).

RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By omnicronx on 2/19/2009 9:38:28 AM , Rating: 2
Its an incremental update, of course it is backwards compatible, but that in now way equates to it being bad. From what I have seen from Beta 2, 6.5 looks very promising, but don't expect any drastic changes other than the today screen. The good stuff is yet to come in WinMo 7.

RE: 6.5? What happened to 7?
By omnicronx on 2/19/2009 9:36:30 AM , Rating: 2
Did you install a custom cooked ROM, or was it an update from your phone company? Cooked roms don't always work perfectly for everyone, there are many variables such as the bootloader on your phone that could affect performance. WM 6.1 is definitely better than WM 6 which was quite buggy and slow. Cooking custom roms is usually a trial and error process, you can't just install it once and expect everyone to be running smoothly.

The Treo 700w in my area at least comes with WinMo 5 stock, so it sounds to me like you have a cooked ROM as not many carriers offered a free upgrade from WM5 to 6. Which process did you use?

Maybe Barcelona wasn't the best choice
By stubeck on 2/19/2009 8:57:17 AM , Rating: 1
Everytime I've heard people going to Barcelona they've spoken of either being pick pocketed, or having someone try and pickpocket them. Keeping anything in your pocket is just asking for trouble. Maybe some info sharing before they went there of this would have been a good idea.

RE: Maybe Barcelona wasn't the best choice
By Master Kenobi on 2/19/2009 9:21:24 AM , Rating: 1
They need to hold the conference in a location that doesn't have an insane crime rate for this stuff. Clearly Barcelona isn't it.

RE: Maybe Barcelona wasn't the best choice
By Holmes on 2/19/2009 10:03:55 AM , Rating: 2
I lived in Barcelona for 2 years and I can tell you it's much safer than major US cities (I can tell you about NY and DC). By no means they have an "insane" crime rate !!!

RE: Maybe Barcelona wasn't the best choice
By Master Kenobi on 2/19/2009 10:31:05 AM , Rating: 1
Well I'm sure your less likely to get shot in Barcelona than NY or DC, but I bet the rate of theft is considerably higher.

By kkwst2 on 2/19/2009 10:57:00 AM , Rating: 3
Yes. In my experience Barcelona, London, Rome, Florence, and probably Paris are all worse than major US cities for theft, pick pocketing. The culprits usually look foreign though. I've warded off pick-pockets in all of the above cities, usually on public transportation. Guess I look like a tourist. Never had a problem in the US.

By xsilver on 2/19/2009 6:01:34 PM , Rating: 4
lol the way they do it in NY and DC is that they shoot you first then rob you! Hence the theft rate is low :P

By mbayaf on 2/20/2009 4:46:34 AM , Rating: 2
I was born in Barcelona 28 years ago, and there are several things you must have in mind when travelling there.
Theft and pick-pocketting is at the lowest levels seen in years, but is still there.
It is quite safe to walk the street without "loosing" anything in hands of other people if you take care.

If you look like a foreigner professional visiting any of the fairs we have here yearly, you are a target for a theft.
The main thing, please, don't show your pass. Is so easy to understand that you "can" have priceless things in your pockets, so any theft that can be found in the surroundings will go for you.

Wish everyone visiting Barcelona is enjoying its stay!

this really is not an issue
By omnicronx on 2/19/2009 10:36:11 AM , Rating: 2
Its not like the OS on the phone was complete, it was probably the same beta 2 release of 6.5 that has already circled around the net in the last two weeks.

I would be more worried about the phone itself than the OS.

RE: this really is not an issue
By anotherdude on 2/19/2009 3:30:53 PM , Rating: 2
related question:

will 6.5 work on existing winmo pro phones, the HTC 6800 for example?

RE: this really is not an issue
By omnicronx on 2/19/2009 4:52:00 PM , Rating: 2
Chances are no.. 64MB ram probably won't be enough. I tried Beta 1 on my Mogul and it was not a nice experience, my apache was next to useless. I'm not saying it won't work, but you won't have very much RAM left to do pretty much anything else. I barely have enough RAM right now to run opera mobile on my Mogul with 6.1.

p.s Mogul = 6800

No Worries
By Bender 123 on 2/19/2009 8:54:20 AM , Rating: 4
If WinMo 6.5 is just lipstick on the 6.0/.1 pig then I am sure the thief will return it in no time.

Sound likes Espionage to me.
By SpaceJumper on 2/19/2009 9:07:41 AM , Rating: 1
The thief may be working for a competitor.

RE: Sound likes Espionage to me.
By Dreifort on 2/19/2009 10:25:55 AM , Rating: 3
It was Steve Jobs.

He REALLY wanted to surf on (which his iPhone is incapable of)

RE: Sound likes Espionage to me.
By mondo1234 on 2/19/09, Rating: 0
Not stolen at all!
By 4Eyes on 2/19/2009 5:19:12 PM , Rating: 2
A local news report (I'm in Sydney, Australia) this morning stated that the phone was with an associate of Sol Trajillo, CEO of Telstra, who thought he had been pick-pocketed. So it's a storm in a teacup and no security breach or technology leak at all.

stolen from exec?
By bugzrrad on 2/21/2009 11:31:15 PM , Rating: 2
what do you bet this guy just lost it and 'says' it was stolen...?

"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson
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