⚠️ yo, if you happen to have the original CD that came with the mylo com-2 or any other relevant files saved on an old hard drive somewhere, please let me know! i'm trying to collect and preserve as many mylo resources as possible.
the sony mylo ("my life online") is a series of handheld devices focused around portable web access, instant messaging, and media playback. these aren't smartphones though, as these connect to the internet via wi-fi instead of cellular. sony developed two models of the mylo - the original com-1, and the much improved com-2, which adds custom widget support, a touchscreen, a built-in camera, upgraded wi-fi connectivity, and a variety of other improvements. the com-2 is the model that i own, so that's the one i'll primarily be referring to here.
these gadgets are a perfect representation of the state of portable tech in the late 2000s. web 2.0 had taken the world by storm at this time - everyone was obsessed with instant messaging, online games, and multimedia, so the idea of being able to access that stuff on the go with a pocket-sized device was super enticing. unlike nowadays, smartphones weren't all that popular yet and cellular data plans were painfully expensive, so a portable wi-fi web communicator device that used free public wi-fi hotspots made perfect sense!
the mylo was only ever intended to be a portable web browser and media player, so running custom software isn't something it was ever concerned with. the original com-1 had no way of running extra software at all, but the com-2 let users download custom widgets and place them onto a blank, desktop-like screen (very much like android). the mylo came preloaded with a few basic widgets, such as a google search bar, RSS reader, and facebook notifier, and sony encouraged users to develop and share their own homebrew widgets too.