Why pay for software when you can get your hands on smartphone conversion freeware? It is completely free to download and use, expanding the functionality of your smartphone well beyond the factory specifications. Ever feel that your smartphone was lacking a particular program or perhaps you're frustrated that certain video files are compatible with your smartphone? Look no further!
What's So "Smart" About a Smartphone?
Before we get started, perhaps we should briefly discuss what exactly is a smartphone. Smartphones and PDA phones are different from regular cell phones in that they run like a computer, meaning that they are able to run third-party applications. Think, for a moment, about your home computer. When you first bought it, your PC came with a fairly basic suite of programs. Later on, you may have purchased anti-virus software, an accounting program, or perhaps the Mozilla Firefox Web browser. These are all "third party applications" because they were created by a company other than the one that made the operating system. The same can be said about smartphones.
There are many different operating systems for smartphones, but the most common are Palm OS, Windows Mobile, Symbian and Linux. For more on these platforms, check out our article on Smartphone Software.
One major distinction must be made between different versions of Windows Mobile, however. If the software says that it is for Windows Mobile Smartphone, that would mean that it works with phones that do not have a touchscreen. Applications designated for Pocket PCs are for handsets that do have touchscreens, like the T-Mobile MDA, AT&T 8525 and other PDA cellular phones.
About Smartphone Conversion Freeware
When it comes to smartphone conversion freeware, there are many different kinds of applications available. There is software that will help you convert video files to best suit the mobile viewing environment, programs that will help you quickly calculate tips at a restaurant, and all sorts of other software packages that will maximize the use of your smartphone. Here are just a few examples of what they can do and where you can get this smartphone freeware.
Video Conversion Software
There are countless different types of video files out there and most are designed for use on a home computer. There's the RealMedia format, Quicktime, Windows Media... the list goes on and on. Unfortunately, not all of these files are compatible with Windows Pocket PC phones, and even if they are, the files are oftentimes far too large to be used with such limited memory.
Generally speaking, there are two formats which seems to work best with smartphones. 3GP (which is also the primary video format for conventional mobile phones) and MP4 (which is the same format used for video on the iPod and Sony PSP). Both of these video formats typically offer smaller file sizes, and thus, will fit more easily on your memory card.
The single best video conversion program that I have encountered is 3GP converter. This smartphone freeware is very easy to install and easy to use, but also comes with enough features to satisfy savvy users who want to customize their mobile video-watching experience.
Freeware programs like these are particularly useful when you find yourself in a foreign country. Not sure how many miles there are in a kilometer, or how many pounds there are in a kilogram? Worry no longer, because with Unit Converter 1.0, your Windows smartphone will be able to translate all sorts of different units, including length, weight/mass, volume, and temperature. Going from metric to imperial units and back again was never so easy and so portable.
Where Else to Find Smartphone Freeware
There are all sorts of free converters out there for you to consider and you can thank the huge "homebrew" community for this variety. Some of the better websites that offer freeware for smartphones are:
- Freeware PocketPC: Catering more to the Pocket PC market than the smartphone market, the free software found on this website comes with rating systems from prior users, giving you an idea of how good and how user friendly a particular piece of software is. The Currency Converter is particularly handy.
- Download.com: While this website is better known for offering software for your home and work PCs, there is also a section dedicated to mobile software. Break it down by your platform -- Palm OS, Pocket PC, Symbian, etc. -- and then search for what you need. Be sure to use the pull-down menu to select free software only, rather than the ones that are only "free to try."