cell phones, notebooks, and commutes
Thu, 25 Jan 2001 11:01:03 -0500
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We've tried them all and Cincinnai Bell Wireless (AT&T) is the best around
here for coveage (fewer dropouts and dead spots). But that doesn't mean
AT&T is best in your area.
> I'm using my new Sprint PCS Samsung SCH-6100 cell phone now in
> preference to the old Nextel Motorola i1000plus. I'd hoped it would
> be an improvement, but it has not proved unequivocally so.
> It is pretty cool in some ways --- there's an earphone/microphone kit
> I bought for it for $15, and being able to call Jamie by pushing a
> button and saying "Call Jamie" is pretty nice. Except that it doesn't
> work four times out of five --- it usually recognizes the command, but
> when it attempts to connect, it ends up merely echoing my voice back
> at me until I hang up and try to call again.
> Still, it doesn't seem to drop calls all the time like the Nextel
> The coverage is about the same as the Nextel phone, and worse in some
> places --- in particular, it doesn't work in my bedroom or my office,
> while the Nextel phone works occasionally in the office and always in
> my bedroom.
> The phone is prettier --- everyone oohs and aahs at it, and it's about
> half the size of my old phone. Derek says that everyone knows
> cell-phone size is inversely proportional to penis size, so I suppose
> that means my penis has just shrunk by a third, since I'm now carrying
> both phones.
> I've been using it an average of 41 minutes per day, which is bad ---
> I signed up for 1000 minutes per month for $100, which is 32 minutes
> per day. If I continue this pattern, I will have used up an extra 279
> minutes by the end of the month, adding another $100 to my bill.
> The phone software is much nicer --- much easier to use than the
> i1000plus. But it still has some irritating drawbacks --- there
> doesn't seem to be any simple way to get the keypad to illuminate when
> in the middle of a call so that one can, for instance, find the 7 key
> to delete one's voice mail.
> It doesn't have a speakerphone feature, which is a bit of a drawback
> --- although people always complained about the Motorola phone's
> speakerphone voice quality, it's invaluable for waiting on hold.
> The Motorola phone is impeccably designed physically, perhaps because
> the design engineers don't have to labor under the SEI CMM level 5
> processes the Motorola software team used to produce such an unusable
> phone. The Samsung phone has a terrible physical design; for
> instance, if it falls face down on a flat surface, most of the weight
> of the phone is supported by the clear plastic covering the screen,
> which I fear will make it quite prone to scratching.
> I think I will get rid of the Sprint PCS service at the end of the
> month, or possibly keep it for another month; I've heard Verizon is
> considerably better, and I'm planning on trying it out.
> I've been reading and writing all my non-work email using some
> software I wrote on KnowNow's Dell Inspiron 5000 notebook computer
> while commuting on the train and the bus; this is quite nice, I think.
> I spend about two hours each direction, which is just about right for
> the volume of email I read. I'd rather be using an iPAQ, though. If
> I have the spare cash, I may spring for one.
> The things that had been weighing me down for a while --- laundry and
> delayed mortgage payment --- have finally been taken care of. Now I
> just need to figure out how to get more done at work (the last couple
> of days have been incredibly productive! I hope Ben and I can
> continue to be so productive) and spend more time with Jamie.
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