Friday, February 13

Less is More, Part Deux

Sony Ericsson W890i.

It's been more than a week since I traded in my Nokia N96 for a new W890 Walkman phone, and I have to say I'm still in honeymoon phase with my new mobile. Despite not being a smartphone, the ultra-slim W890 is awesome thanks to the ease of use, great keypad, nice camera and cool games (Tennis is awesome, if freakin' hard). The screen, while tiny compared to my iPod Touch, is so bright and colorful and makes pics and images light up so nicely. The most fun I am having though with it is the customizability... as with most Sony Ericsson phones, you can create your own themes (thanks to an easy-to-use Theme Creator software that's available free for both PC and Mac). So I can fashion my own complete graphical look for the phone, complete with wallpapers and backgrounds for various screens as well as a message alert tone straight from the game. And since the phone supports animated pics, I can use moving GIFs as cool screensavers as well. So now, just a click can shift my phone from being a Metal Gear Solid 4 (complete with Codec alert tone and Gekko attack screensaver) phone to a Tekken 6 phone or a Final Fantasy mobile. Awesome for an OC fanboy like me.

I guess it's partly culture shock for me to have so much fun from such a slim, tiny device when I once sought out the thickest, most tech-heavy cellphones I could get. And maybe it's also because it's such a freakin' gorgeous and awesomely cool little phone. Sigh. Anyway, enough gushing I guess... gotta make another theme. Heheh...

Sunday, February 8

Less is More

Sony Ericsson W890i.

Yep, I've upgraded again to a new phone. Well, not exactly- it's not an upgrade since I'm actually shifting to a less-flashy mobile to my now-gone Nokia N96... and it's not new either since the Sony Ericsson W890i I have now was released early last year. No, I'm not reverting or anything. It's all in becoming more compact and less redundant with my gadgets.

Of course, it all started with my old iPhone last year. I loved that device (and my Mom still loves it today), but I just had to upgrade eventually. I didn't want to get the iPhone 3G, so I got what I thought was the next best thing- a Nokia N96. On paper, the N96 sounded good. 16GB memory, 5 megapixel camera and high quality video recording, dvd-quality video playing, games... it even kinda-sorta looked like my old iPhone. So I jumped back into Nokia's camp. Unfortunately, it only took a couple of days of me trying to (unsuccessfully) convince myself that the N96's relatively small screen was in any way a nice replacement for the massive real estate that was the iPhone's screen. As a mobile video enthusiast, it was just asking too much.

Less than a week after I got my N96, on a whim I ran out of the office and got myself a new iPod Touch. My 32-Gig 2nd Gen Touch is awesome to this day, and is my portable gaming, video, image and music center. Which means... I didn't need my actual phone to do the same thing any more.

To be fair, I really like the N96... it looks great (one of the really slick Nokias), the overall quality and feel is high, and the tons of vids I can put in the 16 Gig memory is great. However, managing two different devices' worth of media is just too much. Plus the phone's much-touted camera just doesn't stand up to my standards of quality for video and pics... I'd much rather lug my Canon Ixus if I'm gonna snap pics or shoot vids. So... well... all we're left with is a big black block whose talents are inferior to other, nicer gadgets. So something had to give.

So I decided, I have my iPod for games and media as well as a proper digicam... all that's left is just... a phone. So I decided to get the slimmest phone I could get. The W890 ended up being the winner- it's slim and light but feels reassuringly solid in the hand. Plus, it's no slouch in functions (3G Quad Band, Walkman phone, 3.2 MP Camera) and it's very easy to use. Also, using it is far faster and smoother than the sluggish soup that was the N96's interface (slooooow as molasses). So, here we are.

After more than a couple of years of having chunky, do-it-all phones... it's kinda refreshing to have a small, slim and light mobile. Yeah, I still have my iPod, but it's pretty slim too, so the overall feeling is like I just cast off a heavy load. I think I done some good with this configuration... a commuter-commando like me needs to move fast and not be too bulky. And after all this time, I've realized all-in-one devices are just... overrated. At least, up to now. I think I'm at a good balance. Everything's copacetic. Okay, gotta go play with the new toy, er, phone again...