Migrating data from Nokia phones to Android; other Android and OS X (Windows virtualization) tips

Today, I've played a bit with Nokia feature phone -> Android migration, file system access and Skype. I elaborate on them, should you face the same problem

Let's start with the second: file system and the phone with probably the best price/value ratio, the ZTE Blade. To make it visible for XP, you'll want to download the file system drivers from HERE. They work OK.

As far as Skype is concerned, it runs just right in the background and is ready to receive Skype calls even on a suspended phone (while it's on 3G). Of course, just like on iOS, you'll need to manually start Skype after booting in. Unlike with, say, FaceTime under iOS, which is always accessible, even if you (brute-)force everything out of memory, which also kills (unloads) Skype - I'll speak more of this all in my forthcoming, partly already finished article dedicated to freeing up as much memory under iOS as possible.

I've spent the most time with the Nokia 2630 (a cheap feature phone) -> ZTE Blade migration. During this, I faced the following problems:
- any native generic app (like Nokia PC Suite for Windows) for Mac OS X with support for cheap feature phones (e.g., the 2630)?
- after realizing there wasn't such an app (at least without adding additional, unofficial plug-ins, which I didn't have the time to thoroughly test), I've looked into the problem of letting Windows XP running in Parallels Desktop 6 access the Bluetooth hardware of my late 2009 MacBook Pro 17”. All this in order to be able to use Nokia PC Suite to fully back up the data on the Nokia phone. (Didn't have the non-standard cable for the phone with me.)
- In addition to making Parallels access the BT hardware, I've investigated the question of direct photo and contact transfer between the Nokia and the Blade over Bluetooth. At this, I had better success.

iSync, the Nokia PC Suite for Windows

First, I've tried installing iSync under OS X to avoid having to mess around with both Bluetooth and the pretty bloated (albeit sill much-much faster and more reliable / better written than Samsung Kies) Nokia PC Suite in Windows XP under Parallels.

I've quickly found out it, as opposed to Nokia PC Suite, doesn't support feature dumbphones like the 2630. After finding this out, I, not having much time, didn't bother with it any more and, consequently, I haven't tested the unofficial S40 plugins (which only work over Bluetooth) either as it has TONS of feedback I didn't want to read through. You, should you want to access Series 40 phones non-present on the official plug-in download page of Nokia (actually, there isn't any S40 phone there) strictly over Bluetooth, start with THIS page. (Another dedicated article HERE. Note that there was a commercial product too, MacMe, but it's no longer maintained and even the homepages [1 [Wayback mirror], 2] of the developer are gone.)

Parallels Desktop and Bluetooth access

Under all versions of Parallels (or, for that matter, other virtualization tools and even Bootcamp; see e.g. the VMWare-specific tutorial HERE), you'll need to install specific drivers to gain access to the Bluetooth hardware of the desktop. For this, you'll need the Apple-supplied drivers from the OS X install DVD. (It's not the Applications Install DVD coming with Macs, but the “true” OS X image! You'll need to open it from Windows, not the Mac, which doesn't see the PC-only partition of the disk.)

To make Bluetooth work, start \Boot Camp\Drivers\Apple\AppleBluetoothInstaller.exe from the DVD. (Note that several articles suggest you'll also need to install AppleBluetoothEnablerInstaller.exe. In my practice, under the latest 10.6.8 Snow Leopard, I haven't found it necessary – BT access worked just fine without it. I may have missed something, though.)

After finishing, just select Devices > USB > Apple Bluetooth USB Host Controller from the Parallels (top) menu, and you're set: BT is working just fine.

(Some dedicated articles: Apple's own page; a German article etc.)

Direct BT connection between the Blade and the Nokia

As has already been mentioned, I've also tested the direct connection – as have did back in the pre-Phone Edition Windows Mobile days when testing strictly Pocket PC phone manager apps accessing phones via Bluetooth (dedicated roundup HERE). Fortunately, as Android's Bluetooth is far less restrictive than that of Apple's iOS, the level of interconnectivity was a pleasant surprise for me.

First, you must enable BT on the Android phone: Settings / Wireless and Networks / Bluetooth Settings / Discoverable. Before the first transfer, you must pair the two phones; you can safely initiate the pairing process from the same Bluetooth Settings page.

I've tried transferring images and contacts from the Nokia to the Blade.

Images

On Nokia S40 phones (at least the 2630), images are accessible under Menu / Gallery / Images. To select the content of the entire folder, select Options / Mark all right there and, then, press Option again and select Send marked. On the Android phone, you'll allow the incoming image stream only once. They received images will be stored on the storage card.

Contacts

Unfortunately, while the same Options > Mark all menu item also exists under Menu / Contacts / Names, you can't mass-send contacts over Bluetooth, only one-by-one (going into the contact, Options and Send in there – as with images.) There is a synchronization menu item on the Nokia but it seems to be meant for PC Suite, not for other Bluetooth phones.

Note that Android only allows the handset to be visible for two minutes; can't be made visible for more time. Therefore, you'll need to make the Android phone visible before almost every (mass-)transfer. (Maybe with a third-party app.)

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