MSS has promised to give me a new cellphone for Christmas and in the meantime I’ve been busy scouring the shops to fit the $200 budget. Cellphones are quite expensive to have – the good ones would fall within the $300 to $500 price range – yet it’s amazing how people would splurge their entire bonuses on these gadgets. The wise among us would surely find this appalling (as opposed to appealing, hehe) A money-conscious geek like would rather invest in jewelry which appreciates over time than a spanking new mobile phone which depreciates after two months (!!!! – note the exclamation point) . Here are the factors I’ve been considering in my search for a new cellphone ~ who knows you might find them useful too:
1. What do I need the cellphone for?
– Most of my friends are lugging the 9500 Communicator which is quite bulky for me. They’re raving over the fact that it works like a laptop and lets you stay connected anywhere especially with the growing number of outlets now offering free wi-fi.
But even though I am tempted with the idea of push email, I realized that what I really need is to get connected off the internet. My routine is home-office, office-home and I already have an overdose of connectivity in those two places… so why bother??
2. Do I need the cellphone to keep up with the Joneses?
Sadly some people waste their money on new cellphones to keep up with like-minded show-offs. In Manila, it’s not surprising to see peeps sporting pricey gadgets like the P900i or Nokia’s N models while riding the jeepney.
It is perhaps my way of rebelling against established norms that I – a
hotshot tech writer kuno – am sporting the basic Nokia 6030 which I bought on loan from my company. It’s your entry level phone but I just love those Nokia fonts and very tactile keypad.
3. What has been your cellphone usage for the past 6-12 months?
Some peeps require a hardworking phone because their work requires them to. Others prefer the games and stereo. On the other hand, my usage has been moderate at best and my friends know that I’ve turned out to be such a lazy texter (does this go with advancing age? lol..) I rarely make calls, unless of course you’re using your own to call me. And of course there are other ways of staying in touch such as the landline,YM or email.
4. Check out what other gadgets you have and see if they duplicate the features of what you’re going to buy to save on cost.
In my case, I don’t really need a phone with an MP3 player since I already have a mini IPod (which “hangs” by the way, ugh!)
5. Write it down before you act.
Having said all these, here are my requirements for that much-wished for new phone:
camera – at least 1 megapixel; I still have my 3.2 mp cam reserved for other uses
little or no video capability – I am not yet a video junkie
games? – i don’t use these at all.
capacity for contacts, at least 500; extra memory slot preferred for storing text messages and everything else
radio – for when I go to the gym and too lazy to bring along my music player
has bluetooth for downloading pics from the phone to the PC
good calendar/to do/ alarm function to remind me of important appointments
Security – since I am fond of leaving my phone in office corners, I have my doubts about owning another monobloc or candy bar phone where my incoming calls or messages can easily be seen; maybe a clamshell (fold-up) or sliding phone would be less prone to “intrusions” from other people.
Cost – definitely not too expensive and not too cheap as my present one either. It’s always good to work within a budget. And just in case, it might be necessary to ask yourself ” how prepared am I to lose this phone?” knowing how cellphones have become the most targetted item for thieves in Manila. Sometimes its wise not to be attached to your cellphone because it might cost you your life!
I recently reviewed the Nokia 6111 slider which is really pretty but found the keypad to be not amply spaced to maneuver in. I am more inclined towards the orange, Walkman SE 550i but I’ve had problems with the SE interface and signals in the past.
Sigh! you’re probably laughing now over how I can agonize myself just buying a cellphone within the $200-$300 category but that’s how the decision-making goes. Your feedbacks/ recommendations would be appreciated.