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Choices and Introductions

December 3, 2007

3 SkypephoneFirstly I wan’t to say I’m really sorry for the rather long entry that ensues, I’m new to this whole blogging lark but I hope someone, somewhere will find this handy 🙂

So, having been after a new mobile for a while to replace my now ageing (though still working perfectly fine) Sony Ericsson w800i I came across the new 3 Skypephone.

Now, Skype isn’t something that’s ever really caught my attention as I was a child raised on MSN and ICQ.

Recently though I’ve been asking friends for their MSN at which point many have replied “You can use my Skype instead” which usually ends up with me replying “Why do you bother with Skype anyway when you can just use MSN?” to which I usually get some reply about phoning far off relatives in distant countries, which is a problem I’ve luckily never actually had to deal with.

Now, being a bit of a geek (ok a lot of a geek), and in my early 20’s, I like my toys and gadgets, though I don’t tend to buy them as a fashion statement but more of a technology piece that I can actually get some use out of, so naturally phones with converging technologies were striking pretty high on my list of possible replacement candidates.
The trouble is they usually end up being some sort of PDA-Like device that chews through batteries like a small child eats candy and they tend to also be the same weight and size as the afore mentioned small child, and then they are attached to contracts with prices which equal the GDP of a developing country, which I couldn’t really be dealing with.

One thing that I stipulated that I wanted from a new phone and provider was reasonable call and text prices, the option of data that didn’t cost an arm and a leg, and the ability to MSN/Instant message and maybe the odd bit of internet browsing for finding things with stuff like Google maps while I was out and about.
So, I set about my yearly (ok, probably once every 18-monthly) trawl for a new phone and contract that wasn’t going to suck the money out of my bank account like.. some very sucky thing, that also met my list of must-haves.

Now this is where I actually get to my point out of all the haphazard switching of topics…
I managed to actually find a phone that fits the bill (and the price I was willing to pay).
That phone, is the new 3 Skypephone.

In fact I was so impressed with the details that I ordered it within one day of thinking about it which is very much unlike my, “have to think this through and do a mountain of research before I even think about dropping one penny on it”, self.

Features of notable worth:

* 200 Hours-ish standby
* 86g
* Comes in white (yes I’m a sucker for white stuff, though by no means an Apple fanboy)
* Skype!!!
* MSN!!!
* Web Access!!!
* Doesn’t look like either something that would be found dangling from the neck of a well paid American rapper (or your average British chav) in other words, minimal bling
* Doesn’t look like a brick that came from some time back in the late 80’s
* also;Doesn’t cost much.

Now, while this feature list may not seem impressive for most, to get it all for the tiny sum of £49.99 on pay as you go is actually pretty damned good from where I’m sat, that and as it’s my first foray back into the world of Pay as you go services in the last 3 years it had to be pretty cheap anyway.
“You get all of that (though not the data, that’s extra) on pay as you go for 50 squids? There must be some catch” I hear you cry.

Well yes, kind of.

To get the full unlimited use of Skype-to-sky calls (which are free) and Skype messaging I have to top up with £10 a month, which may seem like a fair bit but the equivilent contract costs just about as much with the same kind of minutes that £10 would give me anyway.

The best part here though is that if I can’t actually afford that £10 this month or don’t use many minutes I don’t have to pay for it, sure I will loose Skype calling and messaging on the phone untill I next stick £10 on there but I think this way I will be more in control of what I’m actually getting for once unline my previous £15 a month for a handful of minutes contracts.

The other great thing is that 3 are pretty cheap on their costs, 12p per min to any phone (mobile or land line) and 12p per texts, which is a little pricey I guess but it’s not too bad, and for £5 I can get data for the month which would be rather handy when I find myself out and about without a net connection but want to use the laptop or my Nokia 770.

Anyway, enough sounding like a salesperson, and more about mission-statementy stuff to do with the blog.

The plan is essentially to detail my experience with the phone so that those of you thinking of purchasing one in the future may perhaps find a useful resource of information about the phone (as they are lacking at the moment) including my ups and downs of using it in real world situations.

Now, enough of my aimless twittering and I hope to be able to post back with initial impressions.
Oh yeah, and it’s set to arrive on Wednesday (the 5th December 2007)

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