gordon.dewis.ca - Random musings from Gordon


Mobile phones

February 20, 2007 @ 22:46 By: gordon Category: General

I’ve had a cellphone of one sort or another continuously since September 1991. My first cellphone was an analog Oki carphone. Digital phones were not generally available then and the digital network footprint was quite small. By the time it was decommissioned, the call counter was registering in excess of 30000 minutes. That sounds like a lot, but you have to consider that any call less than a minute counted as a minute and the timer started when you hit send, not when the call was connected. Ok… it is a lot.

I have had a number of mobile phones, too. One of the first was a first generation digital TDMA phone, made by Nokia. It was replaced by a PCS digital phone, also by Nokia. When GSM appeared on the scene in Canada, offered by Rogers, I quickly got a Motorola T193. This was a barebones GSM phone. It occasionally had to be rebooted (powered off and on) and the interface was not the same as the Nokia phones that I’d had.

It lasted me until I went to England one summer and picked up a Nokia 6310i from my friend Rob. The Nokia 6310i is probably the best phone I’ve ever had. It has a beautiful form factor and an amazing battery life. The interface is quite intuitive in terms of navigating through the menus, etc and it was one of the first phones to have non-green backlighting. Both the display and the buttons are illuminated by white LEDs. I was also able to have a custom network logo on it (it shows a dragon when on Rogers) and create custom ringtones. Even though I’ve since replaced it with a Nokia 6620, I still use it occasionally when the 6620’s battery has died or when I need a less bulky phone for some reason.

The Nokia 6620 has a big colour display that’s easy to read under most lighting conditions. The battery life is pretty good and it’s running a Symbian operating system meaning I can load custom applications into it. It also has a little camera in it, which is handy when geocaching, and it can have custom ringtones. The web browser does a fairly decent job at surfing the net. But, while it’s not as long as the 6310i, it is a little thicker and wider. I’ve had it for a bit less than 2 years. For the last few months the END button has been flakey meaning it’s sometimes problematic to end a phone call.

I’ve been looking for a replacement for it for quite some time now. One of the overriding criteria is that I want a phone made by Nokia. I’ve had several Nokia’s now and been very happy, overall, with their quality. The phone I’d really like to have is either a Nokia N90, N91 or N93. Both of those are flip phones with lots of snazzy features. I don’t really care whether my phone can act as an MP3 player, but I’ve resigned myself to the fact that almost every phone on the market it one. But neither the N90, N91 nor the N93 are available in Canada yet, and they’re still quite expensive in the UK or I’d ask Rob to pick one up for me.

Instead, I called Rogers up today and talked to them about phones. I ended up ordering a Nokia 5300. It looks like a fairly robust device and as it’s running a Symbian operating system I’ll be able to load the widgets I like to have. It isn’t a flip phone, however, though the keypad retracts into the body of the phone. I’m a little concerned about this because it’s a spring-loaded thingy that I imagine is the thing most likely to break. But, the person at Rogers told me that as long as I don’t use more than 30 minutes I can return it within 30 days and try something else.

So, I’m now awaiting the arrival of it. They said it could take as long as a week, but I’m hoping that it’ll arrive by Thursday and I hope I don’t end up sending it back.

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