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Summary:

As if Microsoft didn’t have enough to worry about, with handset makers dropping Windows Mobile right and left, phone maker i-mate has shut its doors. The company produced i-mate branded handsets running Windows Mobile from its headquarters in Dubai. Reports had the company instructing employees to […]

i-mate 6150As if Microsoft didn’t have enough to worry about, with handset makers dropping Windows Mobile right and left, phone maker i-mate has shut its doors. The company produced i-mate branded handsets running Windows Mobile from its headquarters in Dubai. Reports had the company instructing employees to take a two month unpaid hiatus, yet the employees returning for work the next day found the doors locked and the company totally shut down.

Retailers waiting for orders to be filled by i-mate are understandably concerned with the sudden shutting of the operations. The company’s web site is still operational, but I wouldn’t be ordering any phones from them.

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  1. GoodThings2Life Friday, September 18, 2009

    There’s a lot to consider with news like this.

    First of all with regard to Palm– Pre has two big problems, poor marketing (who doesn’t find the Pre commercial spokeswoman creepy?), and a suffering network. I love Sprint, I’m a customer, and I really like them, but they don’t market things very well, and they have too many detractors right now to get people buying. It’s obvious that Palm would drop WinMo in favor of WebOS, but the fact that they’re slowing down makes me wonder if they’re not trying to stave off defeat as long as possible.

    Second, I’ve never even heard of i-mate, so that explains why they’re going out of business, and it may have an impact on Windows Mobile, but I doubt it’s as bad as it seems given that most people would be like “i-mate? Is that a new iPhone?!”

    Third, Microsoft knows it’s hurting on the Windows Mobile front. It’s not exactly NEWS, folks. Microsoft has to make damn sure that WinMo7 is as good for smartphone market as Windows 7 is for the desktop/mobile market. No surprise there.

    Even so, this leaves Microsoft with a handful of very strong vendors, any one of whom are great candidates for a Microsoft-branded Zune phone with WinMo7 on it, and since the HTC Leo is featuring a capacitive screen, guess who that vendor might be?

    Bottom line, never ever count out Microsoft until the Ballmer-man sings, because they always have a way of sneaking up on the competition when those competitors get fat and lazy.

  2. Well they never ever produced any device… they pissed of HTC by claiming that THEY invented the whole windows mobile thing … in reality they were found by a person that was just a Product Manager at one of the early adopter companies, they used his knowledge to take the products into the Direct supply domain with the logo iMate, but still all the work was done by HTC.

    Story goes (or so i’m told) they promised HTC part of iMate, but he did not pull through, HTC got pissed off and the Chairman’s wife setup the HTC brand …. and kind of squashed iMate, who went looking for another OEM… and the rest is history..

    Moral…. if you are on to a good thing don’t piss off the 800 pound Gorilla, or they will stomp on you … lol

  3. I liked their water proof, dirt proof, shock proof demo they had.

    Win mobile phone with touch screen, and all the goodies

    Too bad they didn’t come out with it, I
    would have liked to have one, as I work around
    water, dust, dirt, and fall down from time to time…

  4. Well, iMates been in trouble since they lost access to HTC Handsets two or three years ago.

    Having based their whole strategy on providing the latest smartphones to the Middle East and South Asia, they were stuck, and even when they introduced a few new models from another OEM, they were nowhere near the quality HTC was shipping at that.

    At the same time HTC begin marketing directly in the whole region, and as a result currently dominate the local smartphone market along with Blackberry.

  5. Don’t be surprised if WMg is next to go. HTC will have a pretty big chunk of the smartphone market with Android/WinMo, and they keep spitting out better and more expensive handsets.

  6. On a lighter note, it would be better if HTC can buy Windows Mobile from Microsoft :-) Then, u can be rest assured Win Mobile 7 will rock !

  7. My only experience with I-mate, or rather should I say knowledge, was back when I was looking at the I-Mate Jasjar…does any one remember that phone? It was around the same time HTC came out with the T-Mobile Vario, and Att 8125 (the very first in the slider PDA handsets)

    The Jasjar was a re branded version of the “HTC Universal”
    I bought the “O2 Exec” version which has a nicer color scheme. I really wish they would have progressed the design and made its way to the states. Go ahead and google it, it has a 3.5 inch VGA screen, with a screen that swiveled for tablet like use, or laptop use(with a huge very comfy keyboard) it used a full SD card slot, 624mhz proc, and a front and back cameras….its was the Cadillac of phones! One of the first with UTMS 3g data.

    If only that phone worked in the US with data, I’d still have it…it had WM5(wow that’s old)so it was upgradable. Better then the HTC Advatage IMO

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