Last year I ranted about the way Socket handled the drivers for their CF Bluetooth card and the problems I had trying to get it to work on the Sony U. I have a CF card that I have used for a long time with my Pocket PC but could never get it to work well with the Windows XP based Sony. The drivers that Socket made available for download were terrible and the BlueSoleil drivers I purchased from Socket weren’t any better and I finally gave up and got a Billionton CF card which works flawlessly. I was anxious to get the Socket working because the card doesn’t stick out from the slot making it much better to just leave it in all the time without worrying about possibly damaging it. It never worked with all the peripherals I wanted to use so I moved to the Billionton and never looked back.
Lending credence to my observation recently that companies are paying attention to bloggers who write about problems with their products I was recently contacted via email by a Socket representative who wanted to help me with my problem using their card. One of my original complaints was the difficulty in getting up to date BlueSoleil drivers for the Socket CF card because they are produced by a third party company and not Socket. The Socket representative genuinely wanted to help me out and he sent me the very latest drivers which are version 188.8.131.52 for me to try out and see if it solved my problem.
I haven’t had time to install these drivers yet for two reasons- the Billionton works perfectly with the Sony, the ThinkOutside BT keyboard, my Motorola cell phone and the Bluetake mouse; and according to the Socket rep the Socket CF card still does not work with the ThinkOutside keyboard, even with the new drivers. So, when I get enough time to remove the Billionton s/w and install the Socket I will give it a go. It’s just hard to get motivated to do that when I know the keyboard will still not work.
Kudos to Socket for contacting me on their own, I appreciate that they were willing to help fix the problem. The Socket rep did tell me some good news- Socket is working to make their BT cards work with the WinXP SP2 Bluetooth stack which will eliminate most of these types of problems. He did not indicate when that might actually happen or whether it would be a solution for users with existing cards. My bet it will be restricted to new models that Socket will release when that happens.