It should make us WinCE

I can’t bear it any longer. I can feel the rage building as I push forward through the crowd, people jostle and I duck a stray elbow. I catch a glimpse of him through the pressing bodies. I can’t believe no-one else has noticed.

Most people seem enraptured, but some seem distracted. One man steps aside clutching a copy of Macworld, confusion in his eyes. Another holds up a Nokia, caressing the buttons in amazement. Perhaps the spell is breaking.

I step out of the crowd into the path of the procession and point an accusing finger at the audacious pink monstrosity atop the imperial coach. Microsoft PocketPC stares back in disdain as I finally voice what we must surely all be thinking.

“He’s got no clothes on!

A murmur passes through the people; eyes blink, the mists begin to clear. They have put up with the lie for so long. A woman falls to her knees, and a PDA Phone drops from her fingers. It lies on the cobbles revealing a badly rendered web page, the shame of the woman’s browsing experience plain for all to see. An older man stabs defiantly at his new HTC Touch, only to cry out in despair as the attractive HTC software fades away to be replace by ugly grey scroll bars and an illsuited Start Menu.

There are many people here, yet the crowd is not as big as it might be. Many people have failed to turn up because their diaries haven’t synched properly. Others tried to arrange to meet friends, but were let down by badly designed Contacts and GPS integration. Even cut and paste is not standard across applications.

The truth becomes clear – this operating system, this archaic throwback, this black sheep – it is a total shambles.

The crowd grows ugly. A rumour is started (although it’s tied to one network and is appallingly expensive over a 18-month tie-in period), there is a new boy in town, someone with a iSuit tailored for his form-factor. The copy of Macworld is raised in defiance.

Excited whispers pass from ear to ear. There is more news. Google is coming.

PocketPC falls from the coach, naked and ashamed. How could we have lived in darkness so long, how could we not have realised. We bought Ferraris driven by monkeys, and wondered why they crashed so often.

The crowd is now a mob, PocketPC is as good as dead even before he hits the ground. Yet I feel uneasy as the mob closes in. We can’t blame the capitalists, we can’t blame the ordinary phone users, and we can’t blame Symbian (after all Psion and Palm have been trying to tell us for years).

This was our fault. We bought the thing.

Shame on us.