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5 Reasons NOT To Own A Smartphone

5 reasons not to own a smartphone - old phone pictureTo keep a balanced approach along with the previous article here’s five reasons why you shouldn’t own a smartphone.

1. Too complicated, wasting too much time

A lot of people are avoiding smart phones (and other complicated pieces of technology) simply because they’re afraid they will not be able to figure them out. They are certainly right, these phones are complicated, requiring time and patience to understand and get used to the process. This could be time consuming and some people just aren’t comfortable with this.

2. You look too busy when typing away, people don’t think you’re paying attention

We’re all part of our social environment. If you spend most of your time looking at your Blackberry than you are making an eye contact, people would stop any kind of contacts with you at all. Knowing that some avoid using smartphones to prevent loosing other people’s attention.

3. You prefer your smartphone to real world face-to-face contact

This is somewhat similar with the previous reason, but in fact – just the opposite. Why would you waste time on sending e-mails back and forth if you could just meet for 15 minutes and solve all the issues. In fact, from my own experience, a 30 minute meeting can resolve enough issues to save you about 6 – 8 hours of writing e-mails.

5 reasons not to own a smartphone - old phone picture4. Battery life makes you go crazy

Smartphones are hungry beasts. If you used to recharging your phone once a week (light use) or once every three-four days (heavy use) – forget it. Almost every smartphone even with moderate use requires recharging every night. It could hold its juice for over 24 hours, of course, but would you want to be stuck in the boring meeting next day and don’t have enough power to check your e-mail while you’re at it?

5. Your data gets lost with your phone

That’s the most dreaded thing of all. We tend to sidestep required security locks in the names of efficiency and easiness of use. Just imagine if all the data you have on your phone is in some dirty sticky hands. To avoid that altogether is alone a good reason not to have a smart phone at all.

5 Reasons To Own A Smartphone

5 reasons to own smartphone - blackberry bold picture Last couple of years I spent writing a lot about smart phones – likes of Samsung BlackJack, HTC Tilt, Blackberry and even iPhone. Time has come to combine all the thoughts into bullet points, so here I present you – five reasons why you should own a smartphone.

1. You will look more professional

Yes, whether you like it or not, a person with a complicated phone looks smart. That’s one of the reasons they call it a “smartphone”. Another reason is that your phone (like most of your accessories) tell the onlookers something about you. Smartphone tells them you like to keep things in order. True or not, this brings us to

2. Smartphone makes it easier to organize your life

Just compare an address book on your regular cell phone and smart phone. Not only it is easier to type someone’s e-mail or phone on a regular alpha-numeric keyboard (though downsized) than it is on a 11-key phone pad, it is also easier to retrieve this information, view it on a larger and more convenient screen. And when it comes to managing tasks or notes – it usually takes about couple of years to find and memorize a location of task manager or note keeper. With smartp hone all these options are one or two button clicks away.

5 reasons to own smartphone - Motorolla Startac picture 3. Smartphones are a breeze when it comes to syncronizing them with your PC

Be it a Blackberry, Windows Mobile phone or even iPhone – the amount of effort needed to backup or sync your data with your PC is next to zero. Plug it in, click Sync (if even that) – you’re done. With regular cell phone – good luck figuring out which cable and software would work with your specific model.

4. More ways to get in touch

Long gone are the days when you had to keep ringing until someone picks up. With SMS, e-mails and mobile messengers if you own a smartphone – you are just a couple of keystrokes away from your friends or colleagues. Even if they can’t respond now, they’re sure to read that message, e-mail or IM – and get back to you as soon as they can. That is, of course, if they do own a comparable smartphone.

5. More ways to have fun when you have a spare time

Imagine you are on that never-ending line at the airport check-in, overcrowded downtown NYC Starbucks or just waiting for someone to show up for the meeting. With all the news, RSS channels, online music, movies and downloadable games – no line is too long. Imagine, some people are actually reading books off their smartphones (myself included) and feel good about it. My 40 minute bus ride to lower Manhattan could not be more entertainig with all the reading I’ve got.

As you can see, even the dull corporate Blackberry could be tons of fun. Come think of all the cool Samsungs, LGs or shiny HTCs coming up this year – the fun just never ends.

Pandora, Windows Mobile and AT&T

Last week wrapped up with Pandora announcing the release of Windows Mobile client. Everybody cheered – but for less than a day. As it turned out, there’s always a fly in the ointment. The cost of fun is $8.99 per month in addition to any data plan you already have. Even if it’s an unlimited one, like mine.

Outraged just like anyone else, I immediately shot off an e-mail to Pandora’s support.

Hello,
I am a very dedicated Pandora listener. Aside from enjoying Pandora from my desktop I had encouraged a number of people to try Pandora for iPhone – every time with huge success.

Now, I myself is not an iPhone user – for number of reasons I cannot use iPhone for everyday tasks. It doesn’t mean I have extra money in my pocket, it just means that I use devices that benefit me the most.

When I have heard about the discriminatory policy that Windows mobile users must she’ll out extra money for same service everyone else enjoys for free I felt somewhat betrayed. Definitely upset. Outraged.

However, before jumping to any decisions, I’d like to hear from you the reasons behind such discrimination and, if there are any plans to rectify the situation.

Surprisingly, just a few hours later (that is – 3AM Friday night) I got a response.

Thanks for writing us, and thanks for recommending Pandora on the iPhone to your friends! We were very happy Apple allowed us to offer Pandora for free.

Getting a mobile device to support Pandora is, to a very large degree, up to our potential cellular and platform partners.

Currently there are four WinMo devices which, just like the iPhone, support Pandora for free (advertising-supported). Two on Sprint, and two on Verizon.

We’re very happy we were able to work with these partners to reach this agreement.

It’s up to other carriers how to set the pricing and availability of our service on their network and associated devices.

Best wishes,
–Ian
Pandora Listener Support

If all the above is true it means that AT&T effectively taxing everyone who’s not an iPhone user for using data plan they already paying for. Why this is happening – because AT&T thinks they’ve got it all and can get away with anything they want or because of some other reason – I don’t know. There’s a thread on AT&T’s forums, but no official response has been issued yet.

Pandora’s blog has it this way (in response to comments of disappointed users):

…we share your desire to see Pandora be made available for free on our AT&T implementations. In the mobile world, the carrier has all of the pricing power. If you try to go around their wishes they can, and will, block traffic to your application. Our strong preference is for Pandora to be available ad-supported free everywhere and we’ll continue to work with AT&T in the hopes that they’ll come around to the same view for the Windows Mobile phones on their network.

On the other hand, the Pandora application is available from PPCGeeks forum. I swapped SIM card from AT&T Tilt into Samsung Blackjack and testing the app right now. So far the quality is decent (close to FM radio) (as I am sitting home within stable 3G zone) and delay between songs (while the buffering occurs) is acceptable.

In any case, there remains less and less competition in mobile markets and providers are pulling all sorts of unfair deals knowing that customers will either eat it or not, but there’s really no serious alternative between AT&T and Verizon (Sprint and T-Mobile are really not in the same field).