Phones and Annoyances…

My mobile phone died recently, it was old, it was falling apart, and it had finally given up the ghost and just crackled at the poor person I was talking too at the other end. This was a great shame, It’d been dieing for a long time and I’ve spent lots of time looking for a replacement, playing with the phones in the shops, playing with other peoples phones but not one came close to being as usable as my trusty old Nokia 5210.

The features I want are very simple - I want to be able to phone people up, getting their numbers from some sort of directory thing. I want to be able to be able to send and recieve SMS messages - without having to decide if I want to send an email, or an MMS, or some other irrelevant thing. I want it fast, a UI that doesn’t respond instantly is useless to me. I’ve got a Nokia 3650, it’s way too slow (but great for wireless IRC), it’s an old processor I know, but even with the shiny speed of the 6630’s processor sending an SMS still takes about 5 times longer than it should - or indeed does on a 5210.

The Nokia 1100, is pretty good, the UI is fast, it does the jobs well, it has one problem, can I really use it in company? It’s the cheapest phone Nokia does, it’s got big wipe down kid friendly buttons, it’s hardly a fashion item, but I think I’m going to get one, and I’ll just have to live with the sniggers. It doesn’t have the one premium feature that would be useful - bluetooth - but that’s not important enough to compromise every single other feature.

For me, all the mobile phone makers have got it wrong, they’re only interested in the “large screen multimedia device” market, I don’t want a large screen that just makes the phone wide - it doesn’t matter how thin it is, if it’s wider than a credit card, it still doesn’t fit conveniently in the pocket. I don’t want a colour screen, it just makes the UI slow and the battery drain faster, I don’t want a camera, what’s the point in having crappy photos from crap lenses without a real flash. I don’t want calendars and note taking abilities and … the UI is way too slow and the input methods too impractical to even begin thinking about these. All I want is a communication device, but all the companies just want to fight over the teenage coolness market, I think that’s silly, there’s a large market out there of people who are simply not upgrading, because there’s nothing out there to upgrade too.

Of course, phones aren’t the things that really annoyed me this weekend, that was the Pigeon that decided to break into my flat on saturday morning and proceed to shit all over it, it took me all weekend to scrub down all the surfaces of the many places it had shat - I’d never have believed one pigeon could do so much. I have to say though if you ever need to get pigeon shit out of a carpet, I can certainly recommend “Vanish Carpet Cleaner” which did a great job, even if I did use the whole can. So despite having lots to do this weekend, it all got wasted as cleaning took over my life.


  1. Leon Says:


    I completely agree on the problem with mobile phones.

    I have a crappy 6210 Nokia which has a fairly quick UI, although it’s the old mid-range corporate model which means it has some features which sometimes make navigation awkard. (as you have to scroll past them)

    Its best feature is by far the battery life - Even though the phone is 3 years old a full charge can keep me going for at least 4 days good usage.

    Still, it’s a good phone, but it’s old.

    Last year I thought about getting something more up to date, and as I don’t do upgrade my phone regularily I try to get it right.

    In the end I went for the Sony P900 - I was the envy of the office, it has everything you ‘think’ you want; email, web access, Bluetooth, Colour screen, Camera etc.

    However - the battery lasts about 7 hours on average - and although those other features are great - the most important device I need is a PHONE.

    The Nokia sits by my side. The Sony is in the bag - dead battery - like it has been for about 3 weeks.

    Does anyone actually make a good phone today?

  2. Rupert Says:

    Here’s your killer app Jim! Manic Miner on my SPV500.

    Oh, and the phone does a bunch of other stuff too: long battery life, GPRS modem over bluetooth, perfect contact sync with Outlook, real web browsing (if you have patience), and divX and WM9 playback.

  3. Ben Says:

    Right on about the phones. I had to get a new one recently, just got the “free” one with the plan Nokia 3588i? Not really any fancy features at all just a color screen for which it has no features that would need it, but it actually crashes!! thats right it crashes from time to time and I have to turn it off and on again. This especially sucks because it has a boot time!! not just finding a signal wait time either it boots and not very fast.

  4. Jim Ley Says:

    Rupert, the SPV500 is too big, too slow UI, and not long enough battery life. I don’t want to sync with outlook, I don’t want to browse the web, I don’t want to watch video - all these are premium functions that don’t offer anything to me other than the knowledge that I won’t have the battery life to talk to anyone when I need to as I’ve wasted it on a tiny little video… Whilst Manic Miner is funky! It’s not enough :-)

    I got myself a Nokia 1100 - 19.99 in the link at the moment, now I just need to try and convert the phone subsidy I could’ve got into a reduced bill…

    Phones crashing Ben are awful yes, they absolutely should not do this ever, and the simpler phones don’t - Stick with the Nokia 1100 :-)

  5. pq Says:

    spv 500 is great. batt life is good..ui is fast..the 100 and 200 has all the issues you mention but this is much much better.

    it’s not heavy..syncing with outlook not the only benefit..I sync mine with rss and read feeds offline on the train home. also use it for music and lose the ipod / shuffle. tri band for those trips to NY