I now have a ‘smart’ phone

I have finally bitten the bullet, and got a smartphone. After years of just using my phone for making calls and texting, I’m now going to use it for emails, twitter and accessing the web.

Which smartphone? Tricky decision. Because we are talking contracts, it’s a decision you have to live with for two years. That’s a long time.

I didn’t want an iPhone. Just not my thing, and they’re quite expensive. I didn’t want a Palm Pre because while they look lovely, they’re also expensive for what they are. I decided against Blackberry because of the small-ish screen and reliance on a mini-keyboard. So it was a choice between the various android phone options.

LG do an android phone that’s remarkably cheap. £12 a month. But you spend so much time with your phone you don’t want to compromise too much, even if you save some money. People recommended HTC to me, so in the end it was a choice between the budget HTC Wildfire, which is a bit smaller, and the more expensive HTC Desire. I opted for the latter. It’s £32 a month with 1200 minutes call time, and unlimited internet and texts.

I’ll let you know how I get on with it. The only frustration is that it isn’t possible to use any of these smartphones abroad without racking up high costs. So I’ll have to think of a solution for my travels.

9 comments to I now have a ‘smart’ phone

  • Hugh

    Me thinks you will love it. Was dead against, but now would not be without. How else would I read your blog.

  • Hope you’re enjoying the Android experience. Trick when abroad is to get on to free wifi asap to avoid exorbitant data roaming charges. Fortunately, at least in France, there seems to be plenty of free wifi.
    Would recommend that you get the following apps from the Android market to get you started: Shazam, Seesmic, Layar, Goggles, ESPN Cricinfo, Latitude

  • Looking forward to seeing one of those in the wild – they get good reviews… though as a Palm Pre user (and fan), clearly I’d have tried to steer you a different route! ;-)

    Enjoy!

    …and I agree entirely with Charlie’s advice on using abroad – find how to switch off your data/phone connection, so you can simply use it as a wifi device and then find hotels, coffee shops and train stations where there’s free (or, at least, affordable) internet. Worked a treat in Paris last April certainly. What you really miss, sadly, is therefore the ability to use it as your gps-enabled map guide round a new city, since you the phone can’t download the maps as you go…

  • Cleggton

    Jamie,

    The mobile data usage when roaming (abroad) is usually turned off in android devices, stopping the risk of sky high data charges when abroad. As mentioned above the trick is to find your local wifi hotspots, McDonnals seem pretty ubiquitous and provide free wifi

  • Jem

    You’ll just have to go to Macdonalds when you’re away then

  • keith Prothero

    I love my BB and you quickly get used to the small screen and keyboard.In fact I tend to type more emails on the BB than my lap top or PC.
    It is also not expensive to use overseas,as long as you restrict surfing, which I hardly do on the smart phone in any event.

  • Tim Carlisle

    For overseas look at getting a direct debit Virgin Mobile, last time I looked into it is wasn’t too expensive as long as I didn’t call the friends I was with who also had UK mobiles – Virgin to other mobiles can be expensive – doing it overseas twice (France to UK and back again) made it more expensive for both of us.

  • Charles Mutter

    To avoid the extremely irritating “tune” it plays on start-up, get the free app Silent Boot.

  • Stu

    When abroad I tend to buy a local PAYG SIM to stick into my ‘phone. I am now the proud owner of an iPhone4 which has a micro-SIM so this is not an option now.

    I tend to take a second ‘phone for this purpose and keep my smart phone for just piggy-backing off of free wireless hotspots as recommended in earlier posts.

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