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Treo Card Reader Software

Treo Card Reader SoftwareNearly every Treonaut that I know owns at least one memory card which they use to store work files, photos, music, movies, games and more.

Naturally, in order to copy/transfer these files to/from your PC to/from your Treo you’ll need either a card reader software or a card reader accessory.

Until recently the most popular Treo card reading software had been Softick Card Export II which made it possible to view and access any memory card inserted in your Treo as a disk on your Windows desktop by simply using a sync cable such as my preferred SPE Retractable S&C Cable below.

Treo Card Reader Sync Cable

However another application by Mobile Stream called simply Card Reader has now become the bestselling option (screenshots below) with many people raving about its “superior” performance.

 Treo Card Reader Software 

The fact is that using Card Reader is indeed extremely straightforward.  Just install the sofware on your Treo, insert a memory card of any size (if not already inserted), connect the sync cable to your PC, launch the application and click “Enable”.  After a few seconds reading the card its entire contents will become available to view/edit on your desktop.

Card Reader offers a few more options which you may or may not want to enable:

"Try to connect on launching" - when checked, this option will make Card Reader attempt to automatically connect after launch to the PC host if the handheld is in the USB cradle or sync cable is plugged in. [This option works great on my Treo 680.]

"Enable power off if no I/O activity" - when checked, this HIGHLY EXPERIMENTAL option will enable automatic power off if there is no read/write activity.  It might help to prevent battery draining after a long copy operation without human control.  [Considering that my sync cable also happens to charge my Treo I choose not to use this option.]

"Permit backlight disabling" - this EXPERIMENTAL option, if checked, will turn off the display backlight if there is no user activity for one minute to save the battery power. This option is ignored if Card Reader works in background mode. [I don’t use this option either.]

Additionally, what I really like is that Card Reader allows you to exit the application without automatically disconnecting your data transfer by giving you the option to choose “Background” mode (screenshot above right) and thus provides you with the ability to access other programs while still keeping the memory card accessible on your desktop.

No matter how much I might like a card reader software option, the fact is nonetheless that I would never go anywhere without its physical equivalent.  I’ve had a preference for SanDisk card readers for years now – the ultra-portable MobileMate SD+ (below left) has worked perfectly throughout this time and will read memory cards up to 4GB in size.

Treo Card Reader Accessory

Software vs. Accessory
An important, often overlooked, point to consider when choosing between the card reader software or accessory is the data transfer speeds that you will be able to achieve.  Leaving aside its convenience, for some reason the software option is unfortunately _siginificantly_ slower as you can judge from the transfer times of a single 435MB file below:

1. Card Reader sofware: 13 mins 49 secs
2. SanDisk card reader: 4 mins 16 secs

Overall, if you find that you need a card reader to copy only small files and would like to access your memory card quickly without the need for a separate accessory then the software route will undoubtedly be an ideal option.  If however you find that your daily data transfer needs will be in the hundreds of MB or even full GB range then there’s no doubt that you’ll be thankful for the significant added speed that a dedicated card reader accessory provides.

Treonauts always know how to read their cards

Posted by Andrew on June 13, 2007 at 10:48 AM

Treo Software | Utilities

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by BenJoe | Jun 13, 2007 11:07:32 AM

Seems like a great program but it always wants to connect via bluetooth for me and I can't switch it to USB.

by tien | Jun 13, 2007 12:25:52 PM

Of course, there's the other option for the 700 / 650 users to simply use a SD USB where the card'll double up as a USB drive. No need to bring extra cables or readers. However, you do have capacity limitations.

by Frank DeRosa | Jun 13, 2007 1:15:02 PM

I think you should have run the same speed tested with Softick Card Export II to see what advantage if any Card Reader has.

by Lyn | Jun 13, 2007 1:21:51 PM

I ordered this program from another Treo site which shall remain nameless (mytreo.net...oops, did I say that out loud?), but it didn't work properly on my 650. The primary problem was that when I transferred a picture from the Treo to my main computer, all access was denied to me. I couldn't even delete them! They damned things are still there---I just made them invisible so that they didn't irritate me every time I opened the folder.

I contacted Mobile-Stream Support, who told me to ask for a refund from the merchant. So I did. I never got my refund---or even the courtesy of a reply! It was an inexpensive program, but it's the principal of the thang, y'know?

Treonauts for me from now on, babies.

by David | Jun 13, 2007 1:50:38 PM

I thought you meant *business card* reader

.. so I could take a picture of someone's business card and have it scanned to my Contacts. Like the CardScan scanners. I saw a Samsung phone with this. Anyone want to develop it??

by Dave | Jun 13, 2007 2:56:14 PM

"Of course, there's the other option for the 700 / 650 users to simply use a SD USB where the card'll double up as a USB drive. No need to bring extra cables or readers. However, you do have capacity limitations."

What am I missing? Do the 700/650 have some unique ability in this regard? It would seem that unless you have either a) a SD->USB card reader or b) a Sync7Charge cable and card software, I don't see how you're going to be able to read the SD card...

Where to the capacity limitations come into play?

by RichC | Jun 13, 2007 3:43:48 PM

Nice review Andrew. Thankfully my notebook has a built in SD card reader ... it is super simple to pop the card back and forth. Next investment is a quality 4GB card that works as well as the smaller ones that I currently use. (the current 4 GB I purchased is obviously not 150x although does work for most data ... just slower.)

by tien | Jun 13, 2007 4:01:27 PM

Dave, shown below is a link to the 2GB SD card that I use. The SD card is built such that you can pull off the end of it and plug it into a USB port enabling the SD card to work just like a USB drive. No cable or card reader required.

The capacity limitation is that I've only seen these types of SD USB cards in up to the 2GB capacity. A treo 700p with the MR can handle up to (i think) 8GB using a SDHC card.


by Edulabbe | Jun 13, 2007 11:28:31 PM

I use Card Reader and it works great. It's true that it's not the fastest option, but it's a stable program and the Bluetooth FTP mode works fine to me (for small files).
I prefer a software solution over the card reader to transfer my files, because I don't like removing and replacing the SD card all the time.

by Dukat | Jun 14, 2007 5:33:44 AM

Dave, Tien,

I'm also a big fan of those SD+USB combos - far more convenient than simple SD cards. I also prefer the Sandisk SD Plus cards - they don't have a loose cover.


by CaptainCanuck | Jun 15, 2007 6:26:53 PM

Dave / Tien,

Are those SD+USB combos avilable in a MiniSD format w/built-in adaptor to SD?


by nick sciarrone | Jun 30, 2007 11:45:04 PM

Can someone please tell me why my 700w wont accept a 4GB sd card? I bought one when they first came out on this site and it didnt work. Then the site stopped selling them so I tried another 4GB card and it still didnt work. The company I bought it from said that the 4GB card doesnt work with Treo's but I see posts that people are using them. Any suggestions?

by ortega9 | Jul 2, 2007 12:21:42 PM

I have a tre 750 and was using a 2gig SD card. my laptop has an SD card slot built in. with my last phone I could just transfer the card and contents from phone to pc no problem... but with the 750 the pc had to reformat the disk and I was fine with that until it froze and now I can't use it on my pc or phone? my question is... what happened? how can I prevent it from happening again?

by deepak | Jan 24, 2008 5:19:09 AM

i want it

by amart24 | May 12, 2008 1:43:08 PM

hi!! hav a treo 680.. can't download song into my treo so bought an SD card still can't download?? it won't download to SD card, it always download on my phone?? need help...i was thinking maybe use a special adaptor for my sd card for my comp (don't hav an sd card port on my comp) and do it that why??? maybe it'll will work.. can i do it that wa???thanks

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