Saturday, July 8

Upgrade Complete

My new constant companion.

In the spirit of the Re-quel (like the recent Superman Returns), I upgraded from my longtime mobile PDA phone, an O2 XDA II Mini to the bigger and quite a bit more powerful O2 XDA IIi. It looks almost exactly like my first PDA Phone, an XDA II (I can tell the difference by looking and finding a little 'i' next to the 'XDA II' name on front). Most of the changes are internal, and not at all superficial.

Anyway, for a while my sister had been asking if I was interested in selling my Mini to them- they wanted to use the multimedia functions of the device as a portable and unobtrusive way of presenting sales pitches/videos for their business... I guess it's hard to lug a laptop everywhere and a bit awkward to just whip out. Towards the end of the week I gave my willingness to sell, gave a price and today I sold it off.

Yeah, it's a bit sad to bid goodbye to the PDA phone that has served me, and served me WELL for almost a year- perhaps the longest I've had a phone. Truth be told, I was quite satisfied with the Mini, from the convenient compactness to the various apps and functions it served me day to day, and the hours of time-killing pleasure it gave me from videos and movies to games and music. The only flaw was, pretty much, a smaller screen (perhaps the limit of good portable video viewing). I still totally stand by the Mini as one of the best devices from O2 and it's prodigious multi-usability... so it's kinda sad knowing it's going to be used for mainly demoing some fruit juice videos. Oh well, in any case I hope it earns it's price for them.

Anyway, with the money for the sale and some extra cash I had lying around The Sanctum, I was free to get a new mobile. I know I mentioned the Samsung i310 smartphone (which came with an 8 Gigabyte Hard Disk), but I eventually realized that all that storage space was useless since the videos would look perhaps half the size of the videos on my former Mini... and that was just too much. I went to Greenhills and looked over the many models and phones available.

Benq P50... interesting form factor, with proportions kinda like one of those old brick games. It has a nice screen (kinda like the Mini) and a full QWERTY keyboard. It used SD/MMC cards and had WiFi. However, the processor was the same as the Mini (416 Mhz) so I got turned off. There are quite a few of these though around, and they look kinda cool. Like grey-black Treos.

Nokia N91... again the Finnish 4-Gig wonder beckons. Again, the tiny screen and the fact that this is a Symbian phone made mainly for music repels me.

Sony Ericsson W900... again, a Symbian OS phone, and the swivel-form factor just screams inconvenient. Plus it looks kinda like a toy. Not the kind I need.

Nokia E61... a Blackberry/Treo-like offering from Nokia, this is strictly a business phone since there isn't even a camera on it. 3G and WiFi are in though, and the screen's pretty big. It would be kind of ironic for me to buy the model that was competing with my Mini for my sister's money. Pass.

Hewlett Packard rw 6828... this is a new PDA phone from HP, which kinda looks like the Mini- same size and form factor. The onboard WiFi and FM radio seemed attractive, but I felt it was underpowered for my needs and it used mini-SD cards.

O2 Atom... I decided that I really didn't like the plasticky, toyish-looking Atom. The 2-megapixel camera with flash and the other perks can't mask the downgrade in power and memory (Mini-SD), and the smaller (slightly) screen.

What beckoned to me then was an XDAIIi being displayed in one stand, which I first saw last week and was still there this week, as if waiting for me. The price was very attractive (big savings from the brand new price of 45K and upwards in most shops) and the device was in pretty pristine condition, and complete box and accessories. After a slight bit of wandering around (who knows, I might have seen something else), I plunked down the cash, set stuff moving and now I had a brand new toy.

Thankfully, after coming home and reinstalling ActiveSync, it only took a few seconds to restore all my Contacts and Notes, Information and Data to my new phone- pretty painless and cool. After installing my Games, Themes and Apps, everything was good to go. So what did I get with my XDAIIi upgrade? Well, the processor is faster- 520 MHz compared to the 416 MHz of the Mini. The onboard RAM and ROM memory is double that of the Mini as well. The IIi's screen is a mammoth 3.5 inches compared to the 2.8 inches of the Mini. While the IIi's camera is also 1.3 Megapixels, it seems to have a better sensor than the Mini, with less if any snow even in low light. That's a good thing. Then there's the nice little new extra that the IIi has WiFi, so now I can actually surf wirelessly in Hotspots without resorting to pricey GPRS. No 3G, but who really needs it? Not me, not now at least.

There are lots of tiny little perks I am discovering... like how the onscreen keypad is better than before (FINALLY a CAPS lock) and there are more detailed stuff to help tweak my mobile. For the most part, it's cool to finally have something new again after all this time.
I guess it's just another way of showing that if you get complacent and content too much, change is needed to freshen things out. Every now and then you should take steps to just make things fun again.

Next project: A PSP loaded with the new Tekken: Dark Resurrection. Hehe.

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