17 Dec 2009

INQ Chat Vs Nokia E63

A few of my friends commented that the INQ Chat looks like the Nokia E71 and I totally agree. The E71 is one of my all time favourite phones and I had seriously considered buying it. However it would be wrong to compare the two side by side as the INQ Chat is way cheaper. A better comparison would be the Nokia E63, which costs approximately the same.

Extra feature present in the E63 (not present in the INQ chat) includes Wifi connectivity, FM radio, 3.5 mm audio jack and LED camera flash. On the other hand the most exciting feature on the Chat are the home screen widgets that offer instant links to the social network sites. It also has a 3.2MP camera whereas it is only 2MP on the Nokia. The Chat also has a built in GPS receiver and built in plug n play HSDPA modem and on the basis of those extra features the INQ Chat just edges over the E63.

14 Dec 2009

The new INQ Chat 3G

This is the third model from INQ Mobile – the fully-owned subsidiary of Hutchison Whampoa and thus directly related to the 3 mobile network.

Looking at the features, I won't be surprised if the INQ Chat 3G becomes more popular than the first model - the INQ1. It's not a touch screen phone but it comes with a full QWERTY keyboard, HSDPA and 3G connectivity and a 3.2 camera. What makes this phone different from other offerings out there is the fact that it comes integrated with push email, Facebook, Twitter, Skype and instant messaging.

The phone is obviously targeted at the younger, so called Facebook generation. I am sure they will also love the changeable battery covers - which comes in shiny red, yellow, green, pink or black.

Like the other previous INQ models, you can connect your laptop to the Chat via USB and use it as a wireless modem.

All of this comes at only £99.99 on PAYG or £15 on a 18 months contract with the 3 mobile network.

Data collection woes and unsolicited mails

Like a lot of other people out there, I hate receiving unsolicited emails. unfortunately, this time I am the one that has to send them. This was due to the fact that I still have not reached my targeted number of respondents even after an extension on the deadline (Now's it's the 31st of December 2009. I guess, sometimes in life, you have to do things you hate to achieve your goals or targets.

So for the past week I have been sending out emails to bloggers and blog readers all over the UK via email addresses gleaned form their blogs and elsewhere while cringing every time I press the send button. It was quite risky as well considering that some bloggers can be quite nasty to people and stuff they don't like. I am quite surprised that I have so far received only one email asking me to remove them from the mailing list.

However, I have no choice as my entire PhD research is at stake and I am just hoping that these people would look kindly at this poor PhD student and the fact that this is purely an academic research. Hopefully the holiday spirit will help as well.

Of course there is the fact that a 50p donation will be made to Cancer Research UK for every completed questionnaire plus there's a prize draw for all participants who provide their contact details - an opportunity for you to suggest a donation of £100.00 to a charity of your choice or take the cash prize for yourself (your choice) and 10 other respondents will win Amazon vouchers worth £10 each.

Please feel free to distribute this information to anyone you think may be interested - an email or a mention in your blog would be really appreciated. You can access my online survey here: http://www.surveymk.com//blogs

Thanks and Merry Christmas

9 Dec 2009

Burberry's social media strategy

According to Angela Ahrendts, CEO of British Luxury brand Burberry, their online sales have exceeded sales in many of their flagship stores.

They have also recently launched a social networking site called 'The art of the Trench" which as the name suggests focusses on their iconic Trench coat. They hope to connect with potential new customers - namely the younger generation while maintaining the relationship with existing customers.  Faceboook users can send in pictures of people wearing trench coats. The best pics will then be added to the site.  Users can comment on and even vote for their favourite photographs.

They hooked up with fashion blogger Scott Schuman, also known as The Sartorialist who came up with the initial series of photographs.

Watch Angela's interview with the Financial Times online here.

If you are a Facebook user and a Burberry fan, do check out their Facebook page.

6 Dec 2009

UK Broadband forums

If you are looking for unbiased information on any product, forums are often the best resource. I am in the process of setting up a wired home broadband network and O2, my broadband provider, doesn't tell me much on how to go about setting up the router and other stuff. Even though I have some experience setting up a local area network (LAN), there were some problems getting the new router to work. Tried Googling it and I found some forums discussing similar problems about UK broadband service providers.

In one of the forums, I contacted one of the guys and he was really helpful. He actually emailed me listing down the step-by-step procedure to set up the broadband connection. Since then I have been joining and contributing to various forums and sharing my experiences, as well as queries about problems that crop up and it has been a fairly good experience.

Right now I am going through the UK broadband forum, which discusses various UK broadband providers. The forum seems to be fairly new and when I last checked, they just had only 141 members. There were a few queries about some of the UK broadband providers I was previously with and as far as I can tell from the members' comments, they still haven't improved. I definitely wanted to contribute my two pence worth and decided to join in. Registering on the forum was a breeze and took me a couple of minutes. Best of all, I could start posting straight away.

For those who are interested, the forum also discusses mobile broadband providers in the UK as well.

Also check out the Think Broadband forums and Digital Spy forums as well. The later focusses on broadband internet services from BT, Virgin Media and Sky..

2 Dec 2009

DROID by Motorola

Really looking forward to trying out the Droid when it launches in the UK on the 7th of this month. Running on the Android 2.0 OS, the phone is said to be the true iPhone beater (I know a lot of die hard iPhone fans will disagree) with more than 800,00 units sold in the US since it was launched there on the 6th of November.

The thin full-QWERTY slider phone has a 3.7” 400,000 pixels display and comes with 5.0 megapixel, autoFocus, dual LED Flash and image stablisation camera with DVD quality video recorder and 16GB microSD memory card expandable upto 32GB. best of all, it comes preloaded with all the best Google Mobile Services including Gmail, Googlemaps, calendar, YouTube, etc. You can also access thousands of applications and widgets from Android Market. A really innovative feature is the voice-activated search.

As for battery life, you don't need to be worried. The phone comes with 385 mins/6.4 hours talk and 270 hours/11.25 days standby time.

The phone will be available via Expansys (unlocked sim free) for £449.99 and with service provider T-Mobile Combi for a £35 a month contract. 

And some of my students thought that Motorola only made 2 way radios.