Thursday, October 18, 2007

Hello? Is this thing on?

Me, taken by me with the new cell phone.

For the last few years, since I lost my old samsung cell phone, my current LG phone has been less than great. Talking on it was fine but I found that I'd miss calls because I couldn't hear it ring. I could also hardly feel the vibrate mode. This week I had missed a few calls from Greg at TellAVision for work so I decided to get a new phone.

I was in the area of Fairview mall today after meeting up with Linda for lunch. We went to the Phoenix and the Firkin, a burger, pasta type restaurant located near the Fairview mall about an hour and a half commute via the TTC. The bus ride was grueling.

I have not shopped for cell phone technology in a while so I was surprised that buying a phone would be so difficult. I had three criteria. A) It had to be a flip phone, B) I had to be able to hear the ringer, C) It had to have a vibrate mode. While these three things were the bare essentials for me to get the phone I suppose I could have put a few other things on the list.

Why is it that cell phones have to take time to boot up and why during boot up do they have to play a stupid tune that lasts for 10 seconds? For that matter why do they have to play a tune when you turn off the phone. For me seeing a screen go blank or come on is enough for me to know what's going on. I suppose having a melodic tune would be good for blind users but why can't I turn that crap off. On my old LG, to turn it off I would take off the battery just so I could turn off the phone without letting everyone else know I was turning off the phone. I got good at this and it was faster then holding down the power button and waiting for the OFF music to play.

Whatever happened to having a cell phone that was just a cell phone, a phone that worked well. While looking at all the options at the Telus booth, I noticed most of the phones had web browsing, MP3 playing and even camera capabilities. Buying a cell phone has become purchasing a mini entertainment system.

Why would I waste my communications battery on playing MP3s and shooting photos (with a proprietary battery). As it turned out the only phone to meet my three criteria also had a crap load of features I didn't want. I ended up picking up the LC chocolate flip phone. I had won out of the motorola razor or krazor because it had come with a standard headphone and ear phone adaptor and a 1 gig micro CD card. While I believe the motorola was probably superior in quality overall I do not support proprietary items if I can at at help it. Didn't Apollo 13 teach us anything?

After having the phone for a while I started playing with the features. While the resolution is crap compared to my Nikon D200 I couldn't help but play around with the camera a bit, fiddling with the still and video modes. I went through all the phone features. Surfing the web, emailing photos, text messaging, playing MP3s, heck even using it as a phone. It was nice to be able to actually hear the phone ring for a change. I had even downloaded the Thunderbirds theme music. The Quantum Leap tune from my other phone or contact information could not be transferred as the telus booth people did not have a phone cord for my phone. It took me two hours to manually reprogram the new phone with the old information.

The built in video cam actually came in handy later on. There was this song that kept coming on the radio, a catchy tune that Linda and I had heard. One of those tunes that they play over and over again to brainwash you but the DJ doesn't tell you who the artist is or the name of the song. One day while driving it played on the radio. I pulled the car over and managed to record part of it so I could aggravate other people by asking them if they knew the tune after hearing the tinny recording. One person thought it was a guy singing.

The song was Bubbly by Colbie Caillat.

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