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Tea with AK71: A PDA phone?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Nuffnang is running a HTC mobile phone campaign on my blog for a few days and this triggers something personal in my mind.

Many friends own PDA phones but I have not found the need for one myself so far.  Of course, I have been described by many as an IT dinosaur.  So, I am not a good reference, I guess.

A friend just bought a HTC mobile phone a month ago and he says that it's pretty decent and very useful. Maybe, just maybe, I should consider a PDA phone too.  Do you own a PDA mobile phone? What is your experience with it? Is a HTC good or do you think that other PDA phones are better? I would appreciate any good advice.  :-)


Anonymous said...


After years of using a 2G, dual-SIM phone, I finally ditched it for a HTC HD2 last week. I am quite an IT dinosaur myself, and this is my first "smart" phone. After one week of use, I must say that I am really enjoying my phone a lot more. Take time to read the 300+ user manual though, and you must remember to always charge your phone!


Ps: Congrats on collecting more Saizen Warrants at 7.5 cents today. I will be joining the buy queue over the next few days

Anonymous said...

hi, just to share my experience. I am using a normal 3G phone. I can make/receive calls, sms, which are the two basic functions that I need for a phone. As it is a 3G phone, I can use it in USA, Japan and S. Korea. Portability is no problem. I also use my phone to listen to music so the embedded MP3 player in the phone is also good enough. I can access the internet through GPRS if there is such a need.

One thing that I am lacking is a data plan to allow me to access the internet cheaply. So you have to ask yourself how you will use the phone. If you like the convenience of being able to access the internet everywhere you go, and enjoy reading on a small screen, then yes, you should get a PDA phone. Or you like watching videos while waiting for your friends, etc, you should get a PDA phone too. If not, a simple 3G phone is sufficient. 2 cents from someone around your age :) -W

AK71 said...

Hi AT,

A happy HTC phone owner. Now, I know two. ;) So, apart from it being an energy guzzler, it's really fun to use? Another reason for me to get one. A HD2, you say? I just clicked on the HTC ad here on my blog. The HTC HERO looks cool! I shall go see if I can find info on the HD2. Thanks!

I am going on a heightened accumulation mode for Saizen REIT warrants. April is drawing to an end. I am expecting good news in the next couple of months. ;)

Raelynn said...

Is an iPhone considered as a smartphone or PDA? If it is, I would say that with an open mind, it is a very refreshing change from regular phones that I've had. Typing gets some getting used to. All in all, in terms of touch screen phones, I would say that an iPhone is quite addictive, this is coming from someone who downloaded only Singapore mahjong and facebook as entertainment app. Hahaha. It's something nice to have if you get bored easily and want to reasonably surf the net when away from the computer. But I wouldn't read on it or surf on it for extended periods of time, gives me headaches. The battery can last pretty long if you're not constantly using it for surfing.

AK71 said...

Hi W,

Around my age? Haha... Yes, you are right about assessing my needs. I don't really need to surf the internet on my phone but sometimes I see people doing it at coffee places and I felt like doing it too. Now that I have a blog, I think I want to be online anywhere. ;)

I guess if I get a PDA phone, I would probably learn to use the rest of its features in time... or I might not. Haha.. Thanks for the good advice. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Raelynn,

You are asking me, a techno dinosaur, what is an iPhone? ;) I keep hearing about the iPhone. Of course, now, I keep hearing about the iPad and many friends I know are waiting to get an iPad.

So, the iPhone is addictive. You downloaded mahjong and facebook? So, you can download all these stuff for free? Or if you gotta pay for these, how much do they cost?

If I use a phone for surfing, it would probably be just for checking on the stock market most of the time or for checking for comments on my blog, I guess. Thanks for the info. :)

Dou said...

Iphone is dominating the world and becos of stock rises to all time high

CL said...

black berry bold? so far nt much complains abt tt phone, but if u r into games to kill your time iphone is the best. but wait till the 4 G version reaches SG which will take sometime as usual

AK71 said...

Hi Dou and CL,

More resounding endorsement for the iPhone, I see. Thanks. :)

la papillion said...

Hey AK,

Holding a HTC phone Touch 2 since 1 yr ago. I switched from M1 to starhub and got the phone for free, after signing up a contract with them. It's great - never thought that it could be so useful in my life.

I used the excel function every day. I kind of think that iphone will have more applications in them. Mine is a windows phone, so the applications are pretty pathetic.

Do take note that the battery life is considerably shorter than a low tech phone. That's because of the wider screen and all that. For my touch2, I need to recharge every 2-3 days.

Raelynn said...

hahahaha im considered a late techie bloomer too, i only got the iphone 3 4 months ago when the latest version came out... i got it because i wanted a touchscreen phone for a change, or i would have stuck to sony ericsson for their great cameras. facebook is a free app, but the singapore mahjong wasnt, it's the only app that i paid money for.. according to the recipt that i got in my mail, it was $0.99, forgot if it's USD or SGD. free apps are free but it's only free if you're on the internet/wifi/ to not incur data charges.

strangely i'm not keen on the iPad though.. would rather get a proper laptop.

i agree, if you'll be checking your comments on the blog and the stock market, it would be better to get a PDA/smartphone... my partner has a phone that can go onto wifi, but because it's a small screen (think your regular phones) and the only way to scroll is through continually pressing the main button, it is to me totally not web friendly.

but data plans are usually quite expensive... that's why i usually only use wifi in the wifi hotspots and i switch all the data fetch and push to manual. unless im lost on the road when driving then that's when i usually use the GPRS. with PDA phones, it's really easy to incur data plan charges if you're not careful, almost everything from the weather app to Maps. depending on your service providers, you might have to get an extra data plan just in case.

AK71 said...

Hi LP,

Windows is no good for PDA phones? Then, which OS is better for PDA phones? Free phones are good. ;)

I don't use Excel. So, that's not useful for me but I think I can use a PDA phone for a lot of other stuff. Still collecting information. Thanks for sharing. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Raelynn,

$0.99 per app sounds very affordable. A friend told me he paid $6.00 to unlock a game in his phone or something. That sounds pricey but if it's a one time charge, I guess it's OK. I mean it's pretty useful if I have to kill time while outside to have a game to play on my phone, for example.

As for the iPad, I read in Newsweek that it is so amazing. The entire article was full of praises. For me, the drawback is that it is an Apple and all the stuff I am used to having on my Vaio cannot be transferred to an iPad and vice versa. Hmmm... Making a switch to the iPad is a bigger thing than getting an iPhone in terms of changes I have to make. So, I share your sentiments about not being enthusiastic when it comes to the iPad.

Thanks for sharing so much information. Lots for me to chew on. :)

Raelynn said...

welcome AK71! afterall, like you've mentioned, your blog issnt just about stocks, it can be about life and making friends and acquaintances too =)

Chu Yeow said...

If you're getting your 1st smart phone as I did when I upgraded from an old Nokia phone to an iPhone 3GS, the biggest benefits from the upgrade are probably the ability to get on the internet whenever you want, and how your phone is now no longer just a phone. I use it for news, checking stock prices (I check, getting notifications when I get certain emails, playing games, communicating with people overseas for free, getting directions, tracking my daily expenses, instant messaging, checking Twitter, probably more. I coded a simple app for it too and am now trying to make another.

The main thing that I always tell people who are considering getting a "smart phone" is to get one with an operating system that has a good app ecosystem. Right now that'd be either an iPhone or an Android phone. I'd stay far away from any current Windows Mobile phones.

Personally I'm rooting for you to get an iPhone but if you feel it's a little too expensive or you want to wait for the next generation iPhone, an Android phone will probably be much more affordable.

la papillion said...

Hi AK,

The better OS seems to be google's android. Windows is not exactly known for its stability. There are android HTC phone available too.

HTC phones are lowering their prices to break into the smart phone markets. You can be assured of more low prices to come and remain there for some time.

BTW, I don't have data plans. I only use wifi..haha

AK71 said...

Hi Raelynn,

Yes, this is a personal blog. It is not a financial newsletter. What's that song? "I do it my way!" ;)

AK71 said...

Hi Chu Yeow,

Wow! Your detailed comments make me want to rush out there and get myself an iPhone NOW! You are really THE IT guy! :)

Ok, an OS that has a good app ecosystem. So, you think it's either an iPhone or an Android phone. Er... what is an Android phone?

Windows for mobile phones is really no good, it seems. LP seems to think so too.

Thank you very much for all the details. :-)

AK71 said...

Hi LP,

Ooo, Chu Yeow is also suggesting an Android phone if I am concerned about cost. So, that is an OS by Google? So des ne. HTC has it too and you think the price will continue to fall? I think you are probably right.

Maybe, I shall wait until it's time for me to re-contract and get a free phone! Hehehe... I will make doubly sure I get an Android phone or the iPhone. Me with an iPhone? Haha.. That would really stun my friends! :-)

Chu Yeow said...

Haha I'm just trying to see things from your point of view as someone who has never used a smart phone before, like I was before I got my iPhone.

The thing to bear in mind about the iPhone is that I suspect it's due for a refresh soon, so the next generation iPhone could be out as soon as 2H 2010 to sometime next year.

And yup I think I wasn't very clear on the Android phone thing - Android is basically a phone OS (developed by Google). There're many phones in the market that run on Android. HTC is one company that makes a lot of well-reviewed Android phones. When in doubt or doing research, just do a quick check on Google or with a sales assistant whether the phone is an Android phone.

No problem, always happy to share back what little I can, considering how useful your blog is to me :)

AK71 said...

Hi Chu Yeow,

You would make a perfect PDA phone salesman. Actually, I suspect you would make a perfect salesman for anything to do with IT. You know your stuff! I would have bought an iPhone from you in a jiffy or an Android phone. :-)

It seems like the prudent thing for me to do is to wait and see if new stuff is being rolled out. Wouldn't want to be stuck with old technology (although I am usually more comfortable with old technology... like pen and paper).

Kam siah hor. :-)

Anonymous said...

Hi AK,

The HTC HD2 uses windows mobile 6.2 which is obsolete -- no new applications or software developments for it in the planning. Cos Microsoft is pushing it's windows mobile 7 now.,2817,2361983,00.asp

Anyway, I did the reverse. I switched from a 3G phone with internet, camera, etc.. to a dinosaur-age phone that can only SMS and call/receive. I didn't miss anything. :)


AK71 said...

Hi TS,

Wah, I wonder if the salesperson explained this to AT when he got his HTC HD2 last week! Thanks for this!

You are in the land of the iPhone and you regressed? Hahaha... ;) Ok, I get your message. Just get something that meets our needs, right? :)

raelynn said...

ahhh, chu yeow speaks my mind when i said that the iphone was addictive, i too changed from a SE k800i to iphone 3GS.

Yeap.. it will depend on your needs. if you're always carrying around your laptop already, and dont really focus on the camera (or already have a camera that you're happy with), getting a "dinosaur age" phones a.k.a simple talk and text phones isnt that bad,

1)it isnt as chunky as sony ericsson camera phones or iphones.

2) it usually doesnt have tech/software problems that high tech phones are more prone to have.

3) hardware wise it might last longer (i can always remember my nokias lasting for a long time, it just doesnt die even when i wanted it to so i could change my phone. hahahahha) because talk and text phones usually have a removable battery that you can replace but iphone (not sure about android or htc) doesnt have an external battery.

AK71 said...

Hi Raelynn,

Points 2 and 3 are important considerations. I have heard from my sisters that their phones hang! Well, these phones are actually computers, I suppose. Durability is another issue. I guess we have to take the good with the bad. ;)

Thanks for these gems of advice. :-)

David K said...

I think some of them have mentioned already, but as usual I'd add my 2 cents worth

1. Budget of the phone. There are phones out there with features that would put the Nokias and the Iphone to shame, but never see the light of day because they lack the brand. For e.g there are no "branded" phones with an antenna and can watch TV at the same time. Saw this feature from a friend who visited china and he brought one home.

2. Is brand important. Some folks buy the phone for the wow factor..and right now Iphone is the "in" thing. However there are so many iphone users out there, so it's nothing fantastic about it. Uniqueness if you're into it, is another factor.

3. Lastly and most importantly is what you use the phone for. As yourself what do you use the phone for?
a. calls in coming and out going (% of use?)
b. websurfing
c. texting
d. Reading and downloading emails
e. Watching Videos
f. Listening to MP3.
g. Leisure games.

For me the critical feature is that the phone must be stable, and can take some knocks. If the phone is too fragile and reboots itself or needs rebooting, even if' it's 1K, I'd pass. Basic need is that the phone can take calls n make calls.

If you're a texting person - blackberries, and those with keypads or even those normal 9key phones are sufficiently capable in doing it. Same applies with email. Blackberries allow for push mail, - but you'd need to pay extra for the feature.

Now about watching videos and MP3, if it's casual then it's ok. But if you plan to watch video for like 2 hours a day on the go- most smart phones cannot last that long, and would need a recharge.. Worst thing that can happen is that the phone dies...and u cannot recharge and you cannot receive calls.

On games -well free is best, but I believe iphone users and a few other brands are increasingly paying more for "leisure" features of the phone...the new RPG game etc etc. Same thing eats batteries like a hog, and well might just make us less productive in office. Not something to be seen doing in ofc, maybe in toilet lol.

Right now, I have 2 phones, a Nokia E71 - Bloody stable n tough phone I'd say. And a Palm Pre (parallel imported from UK).both serve their functions, but I feel more safe with my E71 due to its ruggedness. I realized that touch phones are not as "rugged" as just smart phones w/o touch features...the large glass screen is a magnet to finger prints and broken screens.
Hope that helps.

AK71 said...

Hi David K,

You have provided a very systematic framework of considerations. Logical and practical. I am very grateful for this. More to chew on. :)

AK71 said...

A comparison between HTC Droid X, IPhone 4 and The BlackBerry. :)

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