(Although the notes below are pitched at a Psion PDA
owner, much of the content applies equally to a Palm OS PDA)
||Symbian devices sport the new 'Unicode'
version of the EPOC operating system. Instead of using just 16 bits per text
character, with different code pages for each country, you now have 32 bits of
data per character, the same set for every market. While this benefits the
manufacturer, it's a pain for you, the user, as it means that all text created
on an earlier, 16-bit character palmtop is now incompatible and needs to be
converted. The best path for each data type is determined by the application
concerned, as you'll see below.
||One thing you'll obviously have to get
used to is that all your old Psion CF cards and accessories are totally
incompatible with the P800/P900/P910. On the plus side, Memory Stick Duo cards
are now ridiculously cheap and many of the connectivity accessories for the
Psion aren't needed anymore because everything's now built-in.
||Unless you're trying to run all the most
ambitious games, you shouldn't get hit too hard by RAM limits. Just be aware
that opening up something memory hungry may cause apps in the background to
save data and close down, meaning that you'll have to wait a few seconds next
time you want them.
On the newer P910i, of course, there's a lot more RAM,
so you won't hit any limits.
||If you've got less than 20 or 30 entries
in the next year, it's quicker to re-enter them on the smartphone than to mess
around trying to convert anything.
If you have more than this, beg or
borrow a copy of Microsoft Outlook, re-install PsiWin 2.3.3 if needed, sync
over your Agenda entries using Psion Synchronizer. Check Outlook has your
Agenda/Calendar information intact, complete with entry notes, and then do a
similar sync between Outlook and your new UIQ smartphone, a process which is
normally pretty solid. If you're not an Outlook user, you can always junk it
after this one use if you really want to. Do make sure you use the very latest
version of Sony Ericsson's Connect suite - check their web site before
||These are best synced across from
Outlook, as mentioned above.
||Very similar to Agenda, by far the
easiest way to move everything across is to use Outlook synchronisation,
described above. Again, check that notes on individual entries are preserved
and that all fields are carried across.
If your Psion contacts were in a
Data file, you can always use the DataContact utility first.
If all else
fails, or if you have relatively few entries (less than 50?), just take an hour
or so to beam each contact across by infrared. It's more or less foolproof,
just a bit tedious!
||To get your Psion Word/Sheet files
across, you'll be hit by the Unicode thing mentioned above. So you'll have to
go via your PC, with PsiWin handling the character conversion as the files go
through Word/Excel formats on your PC hard disk.
The P910i comes with
Quickoffice installed, but it's easy to add to previous UIQ devices. Once
installed, you should be able to open standard Word/Excel files on the
smartphone. Don't rely on the awful and slow Viewer app that comes free with
earlier UIQ devices.
||Unaccountably, Sony Ericsson specified
the P800/P900 without a port of Symbian's Data, but there are several databases
now available to help fill the gap. I like Epocware's
Databank. Getting your data out of Data will involve using 'Export as text
file' on the Psion and then importing using the PC-hosted Handy Databank
||There's no easy way to convert Psion
Sketches, but there's good support for displaying all standard image types
||Although Program (the OPL
editor/translator) wasn't included by default, you can add it
easily to Snoy Ericsson
smartphones, giving you the ability to create your own applications and run
dozens of others created by people like... err... me.
||Essentially just a freeform database on
the Psion, you'll have to export content as text. What you do with them next is
up to you, I recommend using extra folders in Tasks, with one entry per note,
as detailed in my UIQ tips page.
|Third party software
||One of the strengths of the Psion world
was the thousand (literally) or so freeware, shareware and commercial programs,
ready for downloading and using.
Although the number for UIQ is much lower,
perhaps not much more than a hundred, bear in mind that because the device can
do more, quite a few of the old Psion programs aren't needed anymore. Then take
away programs that were essentially duplicates and the numbers aren't too far
Most importantly of all, quite a few successful shareware (and many
freeware) programs, especially those created in OPL, have been converted into
UIQ-compatible form. You may even be able to persuade the author/developer to
give you a free 'upgrade' registration code for the UIQ version, although it's
also common to pay an upgrade fee, typically half the original purchase