Tuesday, January 25, 2005

[Personal] Management change

There we have it, yet another management change. This time the big and bigger boss went over the fence and cut all links with us. I don't think I care about this kind of shuffles anymore. Perhaps it's for the better in the long run.

[PDA/Cellphone] Xda II Mini vs HP6315

I have had the O2 Xda II Mini (equivalent to iMate Jam) for a few weeks now, it's about time I do a small subjective review of it. Since I am kinda lazy, I thought it would be a time-saver to do this in comparison to my "old" HP iPaq 6315.


With only Bluetooth and GSM to manage, the Mini appears to be more stable than HP6315 in changing wireless modes. The HP6315 would sometimes get stuck while trying to turn off its cellphone mode; the PDA functions still worked fine, it's just that it would be stuck "in-between" wireless modes unless I soft-reset it. I suppose I can't blame HP though, it does have to manage more combinations between Bluetooth, WiFi, and cellphone.

In terms of PDA functionalities both HP6315 and Mini were quite stable, i.e. I only remember cellphone related crashes/hangs on both.

Winner: Mini


Nowadays I make more phone calls on my Mini since I started getting T-Mobile coverage at home, but then I used to surf at home using HP6315's WiFi too, so I guess the daily usage was about the same on each. This battery life comparison is light years from being scientific, but I FEEL that HP6315's battery lasted longer and I didn't have to charge it as often.

Winner: HP6315


HP6315 has a slower processor in order to save battery consumption, and its effect can be felt.

Winner: Mini


My HP6315 was the third unit I tried after returning the previous two defective ones, so I could say that generally HP6315's cellphone voice quality were not as good as Mini's. I could always hear some background static while making calls on the HP6315. This static is absent on the Mini, and both were used on the same T-Mobile network in the same region.

Winner: Mini


The Mini has Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition while the HP6315 only has the Windows Mobile 2003. Other than the screen orientation feature, there aren't much observable differences between the two OSs on these two machines. I have seen some other changes but nothing that really improves my user experience.

Winner: Mini

Bundled Backup Software

HP6315's bundled backup software is far advanced than Mini's. With HP's built-in software I can completely backup and restore everything according to checkpoints. Today I just had the "pleasure" of using Mini's built-in xBackup software, and I think it didn't backup data files at all, making ActiveSync delete all its My Document files and forcing me to recover them from trash. Mental note, next time do a My Document backup before using Mini's xBackup restore functionality. And xBackup is extremely slow at backing up the same amount of data compared to HP6315.

Winner: HP6315

Dialer utilities

HP6315 has none. Mini has the Smart Dialer, Photo ID, and T9 input.

Winner: Mini


Both screens have the same QVGA resolution, but the Mini's screen appears sharper because all those dots are packed into its 2.8-inch screen vs HP6315's 3.5-inch. It took me half a day to get used to Mini's smaller screen, but overall I am not complaining about the size difference. Besides, HP's screen has a yellowish cast which is only more apparent next to the Mini.

Winner: Mini


No competition here.

Winner: Mini


HP6315 has every thing one would need to get online. The Mini is lacking in the WiFi department. The Mini does have some software advantages, but that's it.

Winner: HP6315


HP6315's camera is crap. Mini has a 1.3 megapixel camera, and its picture quality is better than that of HP6315. Still, both are made for novelty purposes. The Mini has better camera software.

Winner: Mini


While the HP6315 has WiFi and slightly better battery life, it just isn't enough to beat Mini's small size, better software, and higher quality hardware. I don't think it's a surprise since I have already ditched the HP in favor of Mini. Trust me, size does matter when it comes to PDA phones!

Saturday, January 22, 2005

[Moblog] Frosty enjoying the car ride

[Moblog] Frosty enjoying the car ride

Friday, January 21, 2005

[PDA/Cellphone] T-Mobile improved coverage

Two days ago we started getting signals on our T-Mobile phones at home. The carrier is ATT Wireless, so I could use voice but not GPRS. I called T-Mobile, but this time actually delighted, and was told that it's a new agreement between T-Mobile and ATT Wireless. Guess the Cingular/ATT Wireless merger does benefit T-Mobile customers after all.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

[Automobile] Bad parking

My wife and I would always criticize lousy parkings when we see them, and that's a common sight nowadays. Those drivers always make it more difficult for others to find usable parking spaces. I am glad we are not the only ones complaining about it.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

[Personal] Credit card scam

Today I found a weird charge of $9.95 by "EADENSSOFTCOM" on one of my credit cards. We didn't make such a purchase. Needless to say I called up the bank and had a credit issued. I didn't change the credit card number as according to the dispute lady, it might be a keying error and not a fraud. Curious, I then googled "EADENSSOFTCOM" and found this. Apparently this is already a popular credit card scam. I changed my card number on the second phone call to the bank.

My impression of the bank's service? The operators seem to want to end the call ASAP. On my last call I told the lady of the scam and she quickly said she would report it. I just didn't sense the sincerity in her tone - she didn't pay much attention to my research and didn't say she would report this to the fraud department although she acknowledges that only the fraud dept knows about this stuff.

[Personal] Jet lag

I thought I wouldn't have jet lag this time since my sleep schedule for previous two days were pretty normal. Not so for last night. I went to bed at slightly past 12am in anticipation of an early morning. Too bad both my wife and I woke up at 4:30am and couldn't sleep there onwards. After some quick snacks and TV, I at least managed to catch another 30 minutes of Zs before getting up at 8:30am.

It's going to be a long day ahead...

Monday, January 17, 2005

[Personal] Back

My flight landed in SFO at around 5pm on Sat Jan 15, 2005. Everything was relatively (but not 100%) smooth so far, and now I am back at work. I have already finished processing the backlog emails...I think. Though I feel a slight headache coming on.

Friday, January 07, 2005

[Personal] Routine updates

It has been a while since I posted anything here, mainly because I couldn't stand the 56k dialup connection. This is a quick summary of what has happened with/to me:
  • I caved in minutes after seeing the O2 XDA II Mini in person and vowed to get one. About 3 days later stocks finally arrived in Singapore and I grabbed one. Man, what an improvement it is over my old HP iPaq 6315! I will probably do a mini-review once I get back to the States. While the Mini is times better, unfortunately it has left me with a bad reputation of changing PDA/phones within the short period of 3 months.
  • My friend informed us that the mouse problem has resurfaced in our apartment in US. She is helping us to contact the apartment manager to get rid of it.
  • Frosty caused some headache for his petsitter. We are going to send him to a professional petsitter. There goes some hard-earned $$$.
  • I met up with some Singapore friends to catch up on the old times. It's fun to be my rowdy NS self.
  • I followed the Asia Tidal Wave news almost faithfully everyday. I will make some donations once I get back to the States.

[Moblog] Sentosa Siloso Beach

Sentosa Siloso Beach

Taken using my brand new O2 XDA II Mini at Siloso Beach at Sentosa, Singapore.