Our annual Best Software Awards help users select the best Windows Mobile software, while honoring companies that produce outstanding software. Smartphone & Pocket PC ran these awards for 8 years, from 2001-2008.

2008 Winners, Finalists and nominees   

Press release

Results in final scheduled issue of Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine, the 2009 Super Resource Guide and can be ordered as part of the Knowledge Bundle.

How are the 2008 winners determined?
How were products nominated in 2008?
How do judges determine the winner?
Is there an entry fee for nominees?
How can nominees get feedback from judges?
How can I become a judge?
What is the schedule for 2008?
Who’s in charge?

How are the 2008 winners determined?

There have been over 15,000 games, utilities, and applications written for Windows Mobile Smartphones and PDAs. To be considered for the Best Software Awards, developers need to enter their product description in the Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine Encyclopedia of Software and Accessories (free listing). Roughly 20% of the 4000 software products in the Encyclopedia are nominated by the Board of Experts. These experts vote in over 180 Smartphone and Pocket PC categories to determine finalists and winners.

All expert judges are prominent Web Site associates, Microsoft MVPs, support forum contributors, and Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine contributors. These experts are all volunteers and none are employed for the purpose of judging by Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine.

How were products nominated in 2008?

The 2008 Best Software Awards Nominations Manager,  Werner (Menneisyys) Ruotsalainen and our Board of Expert judges selected the 2008 award nominees in May and June 2008 from the Encyclopedia of Software and Accessories. Vendors must make sure their free Encyclopedia listings are entered and up to date by using the submission form.

Werner Ruotsalainen initially selects nominations based on his extensive knowledge of Windows Mobile software. In most cases these nominations include winners and finalists from last year's contest. The 2008 Board of Experts judges are then asked to examine Werner’s initial nominations list for validity and to suggest additions and category changes.

Judges, the public, and software vendors can use the nominations form to nominate products for the awards. Werner and the Smartphone & Pocket PC staff make the final judgment on nominations, giving the most weight to judges’ suggestions.

A great deal of quality time and attention is put into the nominations process. Even so, with so much Windows Mobile software available, it is certainly possible that some excellent products are missed.

In order to minimize the chances of missing great products, the working list of nominees were made public for a 3 week period, June 25-July 16.

The 2008 nominations were frozen on July 21, 2008. Products and versions released by July 21, 2008 were eligible for the voting. It is possible that newer versions of products released during the judging period were considered by some judges. However, this anomaly is a function of the logistics of the process and not from vendor request.

How do judges determine the winner?

The Board of Experts judges make use of the Smartphone & Pocket PC Web voting infrastructure to comment on the nominees and to cast votes. Experts vote for first, and optionally second and third place. Winners and finalists are the top vote getters in each category.

A big thank you goes to Handango, www.handango.com.

Handango works with Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine to provide the Board of Experts with registered versions of software that they need for their judging. Judges are provided the URL to download demos of software Handango doesn’t carry. If the demo isn’t sufficient to judge the product, the judge can E-mail the vendor, copying Hal Goldstein, requesting a full version.

Is there an entry fee for nominees?

Contests such as these normally charge a substantial fee, since the publicity the contest generates benefits nominees. Smartphone & Pocket PC does not require a nominations fee to participate in these awards. In order to defray costs associated with conducting the awards, Smartphone & Pocket PC requests a modest fee for finalist and winner awards graphics and certificates, after the results have been announced.

How can nominees get feedback from judges?

When judges vote, they may choose to comment on individual products, discussing what they like, and offering constructive feedback. Winners and finalists will be sent links to comments. Nominees may request those comments from Hal Goldstein. At the judge’s option, the judge’s name and email is included with his comment.

How can I become a judge?

Publisher Hal Goldstein (hal [at] thaddeus [dot] com) selects the judges. If you feel qualified as a true expert in Windows Mobile Pocket PC or Smartphone software, e-mail Hal with your qualifications or background. Important: Judges must agree to the following:

    • That as a Board of Expert member, I will represent Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine with integrity and civility.
    • That I will not judge any category in which there is even an appearance of conflict of interest. That is, I will refrain from judging a category in which I am associated directly or in any significant way indirectly that could be construed as a conflict of interest. If there is doubt, I won't judge in the category without checking with Hal Goldstein.
    • That I understand that once nominations are closed on July 16, it is too late to add or subtract products. Therefore, I will study nominations before they are closed to give input as I think appropriate.
    • That I will fairly and objectively examine every product nominated for each category that I judge.
    • That I understand that judging and putting products through their paces, takes time, and I will allot enough time to properly judge all the products in each category I select to judge.
    • That I will cast my votes within the time allotted. (Voting will take place in August.)
    • That I understand that by signing up at the Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine forum, I will have access to a private area for discussion with fellow judges.
    • That I understand the purpose of the awards is to provide end-users with guidance for selecting software, and to reward developers for their efforts. I take my role as a judge seriously, and I understand that my votes have economic consequences both for developers and end-users.

What is the schedule for 2008?

Here is the tentative schedule of the seventh annual Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine Best Software Awards. Dates are subject to change.
May  - Experts invited to join the Board of Experts
May  - Initial draft of nominations ready for Board of Experts
May - June - Judges nominate products
June 25 - July 16  - Late draft of nominations available for public input
July 21 – Nominations frozen
July 21 – Last date new release of nominee product eligible
July 23 - July 31 – Handango supplies registration codes to judges
Aug 1 - Sept 3 – Judges evaluate software and vote
Mid September- Nominations published in Oct/Nov issue of Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine
Early October- Finalists and winners announced on-line at this site
November 1 - Winners and finalists published in the Smartphone & Pocket PC Resource Guide

Who’s in charge?

Hal Goldstein, hal [at] thaddeus [dot] com, publisher of Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine, is in charge of the awards.
Werner Ruotsalainen will make final nominations determination.
Werner reviews all judge, vendor, and end-user entries of the nominations form
New Products Editor, Noah Ouellette, is the maintainer of the Encyclopedia of Software and Accessories. www.PocketPCmag.com/encyclopedia.asp from which the nominees are selected. Contact noah [at] thaddeus [dot] com with Encyclopedia entry problems or questions.