Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Mini Multi Mega PDA Gadget

When it comes to actual buying new technology items, I think I belong to the (impossible?) category of "the late majority / early adaptors". Having an IT background by education (pre-PC era) I have always been very skeptical at what is technically possible in relation to what is really working and "needed". I only started on mobile phones when they started to give them away for free (Postbank). Off course, I keep a keen eye out on new technological developments, but when it comes to actual buying, I put in a "delay".
In 2003, while in the US, I was "shocked" to see a kayak guide talking for hours on her mobile phone with her boy friend (while setting up camp) and me wondering how that would run up her phone bill (and keep him off work...). Then she told me that she had an "unlimited plan". Apparently there are only so many minutes in a month...

This year I thought it would be the time to buy car navigation. I have to drive more and more for business to "random" places. Saving time and high fuel prices would by now "pay" for the cost of car navigation.

Before I knew it I was lost in the "maze" of function packed Personal Digital Assistants (PDA's) and talk-time plans. The phones are generally "for free", but off-course there is no such thing as a free lunch. Offsetting the price of stand-alone car navigation to the monthly payments of talk-time plans. Dazzling...200712130000L.GIF

And there you have it... Last week I bought the HTC P3300 mini-multi-mega PDA smart-phone gadget. It has built-in GPS, TomTom Navigation, WiFi, FM Radio, MP3 player, 2 mega pixel camera, voice recording/recognition, touch screen and Windows Mobile 6.0 with Mobile Office. And before I forget, one can make phone calls with it. The plan it comes with allows for unlimited internet access (while in the Netherlands).

The HTC P3300 is not of the very latest technology (it came to the market a year ago), but I am happy that it works, and even better than I had hoped for.

There is off course that BIG question of: "Do I actually NEED all of this gadgettery". Is there not a better (smarter) life without it? Having spent days on fiddling, tweaking and updating and correcting my Outlook contacts to synchronize with the PDA, I could have been in the outdoors instead.

I also set-up mobile news feeds of my favorite blogs.

Thinking of my old-time favorite science fiction TV-series Star-Trek, I haven't yet found the type-II phaser button or a transporter function... Energize !

Or on a more personal note: would I today wish for a Tricorder?

A star fall, a phone call,
It joins all,

(The Police)


Axel said...

Some technical stuff:
1. Only the English version of Windows Mobile 6 has handwriting recognition software included. Apparently that is language dependant (English-only).
2. The MicroSD memory card is maxed-out at 2GB, because the more recent (up to 8GB) MicroSD cards use a different format (HC) that is incompatible with the HTC P3300. This would only be an issue when downloading lots of music. The TomTom maps of Europe take 800 MB of my 2GB memory card.
3. There will be (are) faster processors in the next generation of this type of PDA/Smart phone. I have experienced no problems with speed of operation.
4. The latest smart phones come with 5 mega pixel camera's; but then also need lots more storage.
5. The TomTom navigations works flawlessly even with only the internal GPS antenna.
6. Google Maps works like a treat. If Google Maps would have spoken directions than it would compete with TomTom (only when having free unlimited internet access).

derrick said...

What did you say?? LOL! Man, I swear it's a secret plot to keep us all indoors by keeping everyone fiddling with settings. . . Good luck with that. :)

DaveO said...

Many of us here in the US would love to have a phone that you could reliably place a call on and not be dropped cut off, etc. We have a camera, MP-3, gps, and movie capability but only about a 75% success rate on actual phone calls! I'd rather be paddling!