Splashtop has a proven track record of bringing the full desktop experience to mobile devices, and now its expertise has come to Windows Phone 8 with the launch of the Splashtop 2 app. The remote desktop client for Redmond's latest mobile OS is free to download until August 31st, and promises to connect you with any PC or Mac running its Splashtop Streamer software. If you want to access computers on your home network, then a Splashtop account and the right software is all you need, but if want to get at your desktop from the road, it'll cost $1.99 per month for the privilege. We had a brief tinker with the app running on a Lumia 720, so jump past the break for our impressions.
One of WP8's default settings turns WiFi off when the screen sleeps. After a few failed attempts to connect to a Mac, we realized this setting was to blame -- desktop mirroring must kill the phone's display for a nanosecond while it loads. With this resolved, it connected to this editor's Mac quickly, but was very laggy to use. Audio and video can be streamed, but there was too much data loss to enjoy anything. Functionality is pretty limited, too. There are a few mouse modes, a pop-up keyboard, but no Configurable Shortcuts & Gamepad feature that's available on iOS and Android. Reviews on the Windows Phone store seem to suggest users are impressed, and as it's free for now, you can always test it out over your home network and see if you fare any better than we did.