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27 years of CE

Handheld PC News

Posted 6 months ago | News | Chris Tilley 3 comments

Microsoft Windows CE 1.0 Logo
This week marked the 27th birthday of the original unveiling of the first generation of Handheld PC and what would quickly become known as Windows CE 1.0.

Revealed to the world at COMDEX 96, Windows CE formed the basis of Microsoft's mobile device strategy right up until its replacement with the modularised NT kernel in 2013. Despite its relegation to Microsoft's least favourite child, as reported here on HPC:Factor in October, Windows CE clung on as a product right up until 10th October 2023 when Windows Embedded Compact 2013 (Windows CE 8.0) was finally transitioned to end of life.

So as we roll around another year, we note that it is a shame that CE was unable to hang-on to life for another month to see its 27th birthday. So instead perhaps you'll raise a glass to all that was over this weekend and wish Windows CE a happy birthday - now gone, but not forgotten.
Posted on 18 November 2023 at 11:38By Chris Tilley (C:Amie)

Comments on this article

pacmania1982's Avatar pacmania1982 23 November 2023 2:29:53 PM
I've shared this video before (and no I don't have a higher quality version - this was from a cover CD from back in the day). Here's a Windows CE 1.0 demo:


I have a soft spot for CE 1.0 as it was what I had and used for years. I just got a Windows Mobile 2003 PDA delivered this morning that I won on eBay for £5. I still love CE to this day.
WallyB110's Avatar WallyB110 29 January 2024 9:09:53 PM
My first CE 1.0 unit was a Philips Velo 1. Then i got a HP 300 LX (sadly no backlight). But i got a free windows CE 2.0 upgrade card for the Velo. I liked CE 2.0 much better. I also owned for quite a while early on a C120 with 4mb card and modem. Of all these early ones i had, the HP 300LX was the best for my fingers. I miss the days when these were all over the place and i felt like a nerd much more than now.

What was your first CE device folks ?
WallyB110's Avatar WallyB110 21 February 2024 11:25:24 PM
I was just thinking about the first time i saw a Windows CE device. Id seen Sharps units and Psion units but i remember going over to my buddies house and he had a Compaq C-120 with a 14.4 PCMCIA modem and he was showing me different things and i just remember being blown away that they had gotten Windows on such a small unit and it felt so familiar oppose to say the Sharp models and Psion models that are great units, I still own a few. But i just remember the familiar feel the Compaq had and i couldnt wait to get one. As i mentioned in my earlier comment my first unit was a Velo1.

When was the first time you saw one of these in person and what model was it ? Would love to hear stories of how people discovered these or first saw one in person etc. :-)
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