Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Hardware

Its been a while since I last updated this blog. I recently got some “new” hardware (an HP TC 1100) and upgraded my cell phone to a Samsung Omnia.

The TC1100 was a pre-Christmas purchase from e-Bay.  This is THE classic convertible PC design able to separate fro its keyboard and become a slate.  Its small and relatively light and has OK battery life (approx 3 hours on a new OEM battery).  Its great for using around the house in slate mode.

Unfortunately my trusty XV6700 Windows mobile phone became unusable due to a problem with the headset jack.    When driving I use a headset adapter which allows me to use a standard PC headset with the phone.  This provides a mute switch as well as a volume control in the headset cable that I can control via touch rather than using the controls on the phone screen.  When I unplugged the handset the small mechanical switch inside the phone did not switch on the phone speaker which meant I couldn’t hear anyone when I answered the phone. Given the option of spending over $150 for a repair I took advantage of Verizon’s upgrade plan and got the Samsung Omnia.

I’m still getting used to some of the differences between the XV6700 and the Omnia.  The loss of a physical keyboard is taking some getting used to but is only a minor inconvenience.  The biggest issue I am having is that my primary purpose for having this device is to have a phone, but the default user interface doesn’t lend itself to making phone calls using a predefined list.  When I press the “call” button I am presented with the dial pad and a list of my most recent calls but no way to open my contacts or show a “favorites” list.  The default interface for Windows Mobile is Samsungs Widget application.  Its taking me a while to get used to the touch interface and using a finger swipe to scroll.  The biggest issue it that to use an application you have to move it from the widget bar to the desktop in order to run it.   Due to these two issues I’ll be looking for a replacement interface/shell to use on this phone.

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