My next mobile?
After more than a year and a half, I'm still with my O2 XDA IIi, which has served me well and continues to be my all-in-one device. I really don't see myself changing phones, but in the case that I suddenly have a windfall or my lovely IIi is snatched from me by an army of assassins armed to the teeth, I should think about a possible replacement. After all this time, I really don't see myself going to a 'regular' phone, or even a smartphone of Symbian OS. I'm a Pocket PC phoner through and through, so any upgrade will be in that vein.
I finally found a desirable option in the O2 XDA Flame. The phone, which is roughly the same size of the XDAII series I've been using, sports a larger 3.6 inch VGA-quality screen, 2 GB of onboard flash memory (in addition to 128 Ram), 2-megapixel camera with flash, 3G and Windows 2005 OS. It also sports a video chip which on paper gives it as much graphical power as an Xbox. That's hot. On the sound side, it's got what seems to be surround-sound. Sounds good!
While the phone's use of a Micro-SD card irks me (WHY NOT FULL SD?!? WHY, Gaddemmet!!!), the built-in 2GB alleviates this, along with a new USB-to-go feature, which basically allows you to link the phone to any flash device (including those nifty small flash drives) via a nice adaptor cable, and then transfer files as you please on the spot. That basically gives you even more memory expansion possibilities.
And then there's the TV-Out feature, which lets you view documents, videos and anything on the Flame's screen on a TV via a cable. Now that is awesome. All these amount to a phone that just screams ME ME ME.
Problems? Well, it's mighty blocky and bulky-looking... even more than my already pushing it XDA IIi. But given the features, I can live with that. But the rich features also seems to translate to poor battery life... nothing a charger at the office can't help (but that's a definite problem). Then there's the cost. A brand new Flame may cost upwards of 50k. Steep, but well... after a PS3 and HDTV, this doesn't seem too bad.
Learning about the Flame makes me glad that I didn't get fixated on the Dopod 900. This phone looks like the real deal for me. But I'm not in any hurry. For now, I'll enjoy my XDA IIi a little while longer.