Excellent - First Class!
Will be popular in the departure lounges at LHR.
More fodder for the netbook doomsters?
32 posts • joined 24 Nov 2006
I've been with Voda since they started in 1985, so you could say I'm a satisfied customer. Or low hanging fruit ripe for picking.
Like thousands of others I travel regularly outside Europe with an iPhone. Up to now I've always set data roaming to Off because of the high daily cost, then headed for the nearest hotspot - not always convenient, or even possible.
With the new tariff I can get push Exchange mail, check stocks and weather, use Google Maps etc. for £3 a day provided I don't leave Maps on constantly.
OK I know roaming charges are a rip-off, but surely this move is a practical response to the way many people use smartphones overseas?
Another satisfied customer, indifferent to where the data is stored.
Real world example: finish work in UK, land in Cape Town and shit, forgot to copy that file to my laptop.
So I can confirm that Restore works as well as Backup. Pity SA comms are still 3rd world though, pull your finger out, Vodafone.
I'm on a South African Airways A340 the week before Xmas. With 12 hours ahead of me I plug my hideously expensive Bose cans into my iPhone 3GS and fire up an old episode of Spooks.
Before the opening credits are through comes the dreaded tap on the shoulder:
"Sir, please switch off your phone now".
"It's in Airplane mode, which makes it an iPod"
"Sir, I know the difference between an iPhone and an iPod and that's an iPhone. Please switch it off".
Not wanting to spend Xmas in a police cell I meekly but grudgingly complied.
But could the flight attendant really see the telltale mic slit in the gloom of economy class, or didn't she know that Pods now look like phones?
Well, nobody gave me a Touch for Xmas, but would it have saved me? Or would that have led to another argument about whether all those WiFi enabled laptops were more likely to bring down the plane than my 3G signal?
When is a Touch a phone? Discuss.
An earlier coward was right to say that Lenovo have wasted their ThinkPad inheritance.
If you yearn for ThinkPad look and feel - and serious quality to boot - look at the Samsung N510. No "is it carbon?" here, just corporate black.
Stuff in the extra 1Gb RAM and you've got a nice clear 11 inch LED screen, solid hardware, good graphics performance and long haul battery life.
And for all Win7 refuseniks out there, grab one with XP while stocks last.
Am sure this is a neat device. But BB messaging only comes alive with a BES sitting in the background. What's the point in having all this fancy hardware if you have to USB to a PC to sync your sent items, contacts and calendar?
For "work phones", OTA sync can usually be assumed, but for Joe Public it means Hosted BES at about £20 per month, plus a real chance of being further screwed by the carriers for BES provisioning (UK Voda want another £25 pm).
Compare and contrast the slew of devices with ActiveSync support, where this highly desirable functionality is already built into every Exchange server, and costs about a fiver a month from most email hosting providers.
I bought a N510 to replace my "ageing" but useful little NC10. I wanted ThinkPad build quality, matte screen, solid keyboard and - yes - XP. You can tell I'm over 25. The N510 does not disappoint. The LED screen is bright and pin sharp with significantly more real estate than its predecessor, plus a long haul battery with minimal weight penalty.
Business apps performance is fine and it's nice to be able to plug it into a big telly via HDMI and stream iPlayer.
The only downside was having to spend the first hour removing bloatware. Blimey, I'd hoped those days were over. Other than that, well done Samsung. 9/10.
In South Africa, all phones are sold SIM free by law. So you pop into an Apple store and buy (not cheap though) a bog standard, unbroken iPhone which works perfectly on any network, anywhere. Other countries have similar arrangements.
Now that smartphones have morphed into little computers, isn't it about time we separated hardware from comms? Would you buy a netbook locked to BT?
Forget the bit about replacing WiFi. If you're a Voda UK customer and you get 5 bars on 3G throughout your house, think yourself lucky, save £160 and move on.
If like most of us, you have to speak near a window when you arrive home, and your cell phone battery gets knackered hunting for a signal, then a femtocell may be for you.
And the more you use your cellphone instead of a landline, the more Voda will love you.
RIM have done well to aim their newer devices at consumers, but their greatest challenge will be in the SME space, where MS Exchange (actual or hosted) reigns supreme.
Now, anyone with an ActiveSync enabled device - iPhone, Nokia, HTC etc. can have a BES type experience (real time push and OTA sync of mail, contacts and calendar) without the cost or complexity of RIM's backend infrastructure.
The carriers are accelerating this move away from BB by charging outrageous fees for provisioning BES (UK Voda want £25 pm on top on a voice plan).
RIM will always say its USP is data security, but leaving aside spooks and paranoid corporate IT types, the rest of us can now enjoy all the goodies that are still the foundation of RIM's business model, without paying for them.
To maintain momentum, RIM will need to change their game.
Join the queue at LHR T1 and watch the laptops being disgorged into the scanner. Last year, Dell, Dell, Dell, Vaio, Mac... This year, Asus, Samsung, you know the rest.
You can tell who's downsized, they walk taller. And they smile more; they run XP.
Yes, the portable computer formerly known as Netbook is here to stay.
Can you imagine the angst in the Microsoft/Intel boardrooms - "we spend billions giving them Core 2 and Vista, and all they're buying is poxy little Atom chips and XP Home. That's my bonus down the toilet. How can they can be so ungrateful?"
Each time I fire up my Samsung NC10 I think - this is not just about back-to-basics computing, it's my little protest at having bloated technology stuffed down my throat for the last twenty years.
Rise up, punters, buy a small, cheap laptop formerly known as a netbook. Join the revolution!
Many people choose a netbook having realised that unless you pay megabucks, the alternative is a big, heavy machine with an underpowered processor, brought to its knees by pre-installed Vista.
I say the netbook's killer feature is not more room in your backpack for sandwiches, it's XP.
It's not just Orange who are having problems with Bold - not a single US carrier has yet released the device, citing "testing issues".
And if this is happening with Bold, which is basically a 8800 with aircon and electric windows, what about the upcoming Storm, the first BB with touchscreen etc? I do hope RIM and carriers have done their homework, otherwise there'll be much crowing over in Cupertino.
All you Bold fanboys must have big hands! I found it heavy, clumsy and the keypad difficult to type on accurately.
Sure it ticks all the connectivity boxes, but even with v220.127.116.11 I was recharging the battery every night.
Generally, Bold looks/feels like RIM's response to iPhone rather than a great leap forward. 5/10.
"But ‘owning’ the device and its platform is now even more important as new mobile services they are developing depend on this to function as designed."
Agreed, look at RIM. But where does this leave WM? When you see what Apple are doing with MobileMe, it reminds you that Microsoft could have done this ages ago, they had all the tools, they perhaps just lacked the vision?
Bad Beaver makes some good points, but this device was never meant for texting teens. The fact that the original Pearl became RIM's biggest seller confirms that there's an attractive market for devices that deliver corporate mail whilst being smaller and OK for the odd MP3 or - as our presenter omitted to mention - video.
I think the 8120 is a decent and mature product, pity that Voda are in denial about WiFi BlackBerries, had to buy one SIM free. Oh well, it'll fetch more on eBay when it's time has come.
I don't understand why the carriers won't sell these devices in UK on a pre-paid basis. Surely ad hoc usage is the whole point?
In South Africa, for example, you can walk into a Vodacom shop, pay about £180, and come out with a Voda branded HSDPA modem with a pre-paid SIM.
It's blinding fast on a good day and the best part is, data costs just 1.5p per Mb.
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