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Old 03-19-2010, 11:06 AM   #1
john_b
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Default Cell phones again

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I get a little confused about CSS with forms too, but I usually can find a good example, and just copy it. That works for search boxes and other small forms — just don’t get too ambitious in the beginning!
I sometimes feel that this 'ere technology malarkey is starting to leave me behind...;-(

...small success last week, though, I bought a mobile phone that, ahem, you can use to make phone calls! No camera, radio, GPS, touch screen, Google maps, weather forecast...

Just GBP5 and it does what it says on the tin! Brilliant!!

John
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Old 03-19-2010, 12:18 PM   #2
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Congratulations!

I have been thinking of trying one of those mobile phone things myself, but haven’t mustered the energy to actually do it.

When I was called to jury duty in January I saw a warning in the notice: No public telephones available (meaning, I guess, bring your own phone). So I panicked and started looking at cell phone options, but then they court said my services would not be needed after all, so I stopped thinking about it.

Maybe one day.

   
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Old 03-20-2010, 02:31 AM   #3
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I have been thinking of trying one of those mobile phone things myself, but haven’t mustered the energy to actually do it.
I doubt I make more than a dozen calls a year on it but, on those occasions, the ability to make the call has more than covered the modest cost of the phone. You know, a car breakdown in a remote location, or serious delay, or whatever...

Maybe there are technical issues on your side of the lochan that make the equipment more expensive and/or unreliable? My phone will work in Europe, but it certainly won't work in the US...

...oops, I think I may be guilty of thread-drift...;-(

John
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Old 03-20-2010, 09:02 AM   #4
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Maybe there are technical issues on your side of the lochan that make the equipment more expensive and/or unreliable?
More a case of too many choices. I wish our cell phones worked the way they do in your neck of the woods. Most come with two-year contracts, and I don’t want to do that. There are no-contract phones, and I need to choose one of those. Someday (I do agree they can come in handy, especially when on the road.)

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...oops, I think I may be guilty of thread-drift...;-(
I’ll fix that.

   
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Old 03-20-2010, 09:26 AM   #5
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John

Care to tell us what's the make and model of the phone, and how/where you got it for a fiver?

I've always taken a phone for free, every time my supplier wants to lock me into another contract. It used to be 12 months; now it's 18; and for the iPhone it's up to 2 years!
I've still never had a phone that makes an actual ringing noise like a phone when it is called.
However, I have enjoyed the last three phones I've had (Nokia), mostly because they sync with my Mac, so I can backup my phone numbers and keep a portable copy of my diary (with alarms to remind me!).
My tariff charges extra for using the internet, but as the screen is so small, it is pretty pointless trying. But for just phoning and texting, I'm on a very low rate.

That having been said, I am tempted by the new range of "smartphones" that have come out. Say what you like about Apple and the iPhone, but imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and every phone now looks like an iPhone clone.

For me, the ability to store and read loads of PDFs - books, documentation, research info, etc, would be very handy. The internet and email would be nice, too; and any "apps" for one thing or another would be frippery really. However, I'm not sure whether the tariffs that they charge are worth it.

Seemingly, in London, everyone has an iPhone. I've been in rooms where no-one talks to each other, but just furiously dribbles their finger over the phone.
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:28 AM   #6
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Care to tell us what's the make and model of the phone, and how/where you got it for a fiver?
It's a Samsung E1120 and about as basic as they come. It has a colour screen which is a step up from my last - and now spare-and-living-in-the-car - phone. ASDA (=Wallmart in the US) had shed loads of them for 10 quid, but that included a 5 quid talk time voucher. They were locked into Orange (pay as you go, no contract), but I couldn't pass up an offer like that...;-)

I'm sure that iPhones are great pieces of kit but, as you say, you're tied in to a contract and that just doesn't work for me.

It seems that this new breed of phones really needs 3G coverage to allow you to use all the whizzy bits. In our area that's simply a non-starter...

...but here's what I don't understand: my other half just bought a new phone with a nice touch screen. It's not 3G but it does allow her to access the internet, not at any rapid speed, but you can check emails and so on if you need to. Now I've seen pay as you go USB dongles that allow your laptop to access the internet at a reasonable lick, but I've never seen any equivalent non-3G 'dongle' that allows you similar access, albeit at a more leisurely pace. Do such devices exist?

I like your picture of someone who "furiously dribbles their finger" over the phone...;-)

John

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Old 03-20-2010, 03:29 PM   #7
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I'm sure that iPhones are great pieces of kit but, as you say, you're tied in to a contract and that just doesn't work for me.
It seems that this new breed of phones really needs 3G coverage to allow you to use all the whizzy bits. In our area that's simply a non-starter...
You can get an iPhone on pay-as-you-go, though you have to buy the handset at full price. You can always use Wireless instead of 3G.

I'm tempted to get one when my current contract runs out; though I'm going to be a little more reluctant before signing up, hopefully to squeeze some more out of Orange...
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:54 AM   #8
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You can get an iPhone on pay-as-you-go, though you have to buy the handset at full price. You can always use Wireless instead of 3G.
They are indeed not inexpensive and I haven't seen any on offer in ASDA yet...;-)

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... to squeeze some more out of Orange...
Nice one!

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Old 03-20-2010, 06:09 PM   #9
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3G is just the latest/greatest way to access the internet. There are other technologies. EDGE is one. And some carriers, at least, act more or less as a dialup modem connection.

There were similar gadgets for laptops before 3G came out, but I'm not sure what technology they used. Expensive though.

And with some phones you can tether them to your PC (via USB cable) and use them as a modem of sorts.

   
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:43 AM   #10
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There were similar gadgets for laptops before 3G came out, but I'm not sure what technology they used. Expensive though.
Well the going rate for these 3G dongle thingies seems to be about GBP20 per month, pretty well unlimited access.

I'm really thinking of those times when I'm maybe away for a week or two but, as I say, my feeling is that 3G coverage can be fairly patchy.

If, however, there was some other gadget that could be used to let your laptop access the internet using an 'ordinary' wireless phone connection - as you suggest - then I'd surely be interested in finding out more.

I suppose ideally, I'd be looking for a doo dah that lets you have 3G access if it was available but defaulted to 'ordinary' access if it wasn't.

Ever the optimist...

John
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