Integrating with Windows Mobile and the hardware

The mobile device is usually packed with useful hardware and operating system features like telephony, GPS, SMS, and Bluetooth, just to name a few. You can use the libraries in the .NET Compact Framework and the open source Smart Device Framework to access a large range of such functionality from your application.

Looking at an example of how this can work with your sales force application, consider phone number displays in your application. As you saw earlier, you will be creating a reusable PhoneNumber usercontrol that allows users to easily place a phone call or send an SMS message.

You will learn how you can call the Windows Mobile classes in the .NET Compact Framework libraries to achieve this. Most of what follows in this section refers to application features discussed earlier.

Detect incoming phone calls and SMS

We will in fact extend this functionality further using the .NET Compact Framework Message Intercept classes to detect incoming phone calls and SMS. You will see how you can use these events to automatically generate historical log entries for every lead. This allows the salesperson to see a comprehensive history of all correspondence with a particular lead.

Integrating with the Windows Mobile Calendar and Contacts book

If you recall, we had to implement a lead and opportunity-specific task list in this application. What is also unique about this task list is that a copy of the tasks will be automatically pushed to the Windows Mobile Calendar. This allows you to tap into the reminder services in Windows Mobile to remind the user of an impending task. You will learn how to integrate with the Windows Mobile Calendar and Contacts services using the .NET Compact Framework libraries to achieve this functionality.

The benefits are twofold. In addition to not having to reinvent the wheel, this sort of integration opens up a host of functionality behind the scenes. For instance, by placing a copy of the lead- and opportunity-specific tasks in the Windows Mobile Calendar, the user will be able to eventually sync them to Microsoft Outlook on his desktop PC via ActiveSync. This feature is immediately available to your users without having to write any additional line of code!

Data exchange using Bluetooth and IrDA

We will also explore how we can transfer the lead details from one device to another directly using both the device's Bluetooth and IrDA (Infrared) capabilities. You will learn how you can efficiently package and compress XML-based data for transmission across these channels.

Capturing handwritten input

When new buyers sign up for a subscription to the game, Tomorrow Inc. needs their signature for record purposes. We can implement signature-capturing functionality using the Smart Device Framework's signature control. The signature will be captured as an image and saved together with the customer record in the database.

In Chapters 3 and 6, we will cover more ground on file attachments and how they can be alternatively stored outside the database in the local filesystem. You will also learn of the different options available to the developer to sync files to a remote server.

In Chapters 3 and 6, we will cover more ground on file attachments and how they can be alternatively stored outside the database in the local filesystem. You will also learn of the different options available to the developer to sync files to a remote server.

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