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Sharing Photos between a Digital Camera and Your Pocket PC

In order to work with digital images on your Pocket PC, you first have to move those images from your digital camera to your Pocket PC. This can be very simple in some cases and very difficult in others, depending on a number of hardware and software factors. For example, in some cases, you may be able to simply share a memory storage card, while in others you may even need to bring your desktop PC into the act between your Pocket PC and your digital camera.

Most digital cameras store images in JPEG, BMP, or TIFF file format. Of these, JPEG is often better to work with on a Pocket PC than the other two if for no better reason than the fact that JPEG images are generally compressed so they take less storage space.

Sharing digital images on memory cards

The most straightforward method of sharing digital images between your digital camera and your Pocket PC is to use a memory storage card that is compatible with both units. If this is an option, you can typically just pop the memory card out of the camera, plug it into your Pocket PC, and you're ready to go -- almost.

Your Pocket PC generally needs a bit of help finding files that are stored on a memory card if those files aren't stored in a folder called My Documents. Digital cameras, of course, typically have no need for folders, so they often store image files on the memory card without using any directory structure. Therefore, you may need to explicitly tell whatever software you're using on your Pocket PC to look on the storage card for image files because they won't be stored in the Pocket PC's preferred location.

Of course, life is often more complicated than you may like. Not all digital cameras use the same types of memory cards as the ones that may be compatible with your Pocket PC. And even digital cameras that do use the same type of memory card as your Pocket PC may not be able to handle a memory card with as much capacity as the ones you can use in your Pocket PC.

If you want to share memory cards between a digital camera and a Pocket PC, you may want to spend some time researching memory card compatibility before you buy a digital camera. Then get a camera that uses the same memory cards as your Pocket PC. Of course, if you've already got that digital camera, you may just get lucky and find out that it can use the same memory cards as your Pocket PC.

Connecting to your digital camera

As an alternative to sharing a memory card between your digital camera and your Pocket PC, you may want to transfer images another way — by connecting your Pocket PC and your digital camera. This, however, may be even trickier to arrange than sharing a memory card.

Here are some possible ways you may be able to transfer images by connecting your Pocket PC and your digital camera:

  • Some digital cameras also support sending images via infrared. This may or may not work with your combination of digital camera and Pocket PC, but it's more likely that the two are compatible if they're both from the same manufacturer.

  • Finally, the one foolproof method of transferring image files from your digital camera to your Pocket PC is to first transfer them from your digital camera to your desktop PC. You can use the software that came with your digital camera to do this. Then use ActiveSync to send those files to your Pocket PC. Of course, this sort of defeats the whole idea of using your Pocket PC as your digital camera's companion, but it is a sure-fire approach.

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