iPhone gets it about a bit

October 3, 2009

O2 have had an exclusive deal with Apple over the iPhone in the UK, that is all about to change with the news that both Orange and Vodafone have secured a deal with Apple to provider their customers with the iPhone in the next few months.

This may cause extra competition and bring down the price of both the phone and the tariffs and then again maybe not if the demand for the iPhone remains high.

Making the iPhone available on other mobile phone networks will mean that customers (and therefore learners) will be able to get the iPhone (say as an upgrade) and don’t need to change networks or their number. Yes I know you can move your number, sometimes easy and sometimes not.

Over one million iPhones were sold by O2 and it wouldn’t surprise me to see this figure rise faster with the iPhone on the Orange and Vodafone networks.

With the iPhone going to Vodafone and Orange (and thus T-Mobile eventually) it will be available on most networks.

The iPhone is getting cheaper, with more competition it may get cheaper still.

The iPhone is getting competitors edgy and therefore will start to look at how they can improve their products.

The iPhone will get better, the 3GS is significantly better than the 3G in my opinion (and I have used both).

The iPhone may get bigger (ie the Apple Tablet) we need to be prepared for that. Both Apple and Microsoft appear to be edging into the e-book (and e-journal) market after the success of Amazon’s Kindle.

The iPod touch is not a phone, as a result has huge potential in schools who may be concerned about contract costs, etc…

It will be easier more than ever to get the iPhone.

Will it change learning?

No.

Not on its own.

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Got a 3G Dongle? Know your limit!

July 29, 2009

So have you got a 3G dongle?

Do you know your limit?

Do you know how much you will be charged if you go over that limit?

If you’re on O2 and go over by just 1GB you would be facing a £100 bill!

The BBC reports on the issue of 3G bandwidth caps on mobile broadband services.

Mobile broadband users face stiff penalties for exceeding their download limits even though most aren’t aware of what those limits are.

I use a Vodafone 3G dongle and though the Windows software (on a single computer) does measure how much data use the Mac connection software (in other words what I normally use) doesn’t. Generally I guess that my usage is fine as I don’t use the dongle everyday and rely on my home and work internet connections and not just the mobile broadband connection.

However I know some people and some learners have a 3G dongle for their internet and that’s it! Using a 3G dongle everyday would be getting close to their limits if they were downloading podcasts and watching online video.

Do you have a 3G dongle? Do you know your limit?


Nokia N97 – is it something special?

December 2, 2008

Nokia N97 - is it something special?

Nokia announces the Nokia N97:

The N97 isn’t a device that will trigger knee-jerk hysteria, but instead it should breed cool-headed excitement at the prospect of a new era of mobile experience.

It may be an Nseries handset, but the N97 carves a new space in the otherwise blurred realm between smartphone and laptop – a product built on a foundation of rock solid mobile principles, Nokia innovations, and tangible new technologies, pushed to the extreme and embodied in a slimline pocket shell.

I really like the Nokia N95, as a phone it allows me to do lots of different things. The main weakness for me with the Nokai N95 is the browsing experience. More often I will use JokiuSpot on the Nokia N95 and use an iPod touch for web browsing.

I did consider getting the Nokia N96, however early reviews did put me off, though others did like it. Likewise having seen the adverts for the Blackberry Storm on the London Underground I was tempted by that (especially as I am having problems with my work Vodafone N73 which is due for an upgrade) however Stephen Fry put me off that one (and others it would seem). Another choice was Nokia’s E71, as that was getting some positive recommendations.

So do I have the obvious choice, Apple’s iPhone?

No, partly as when it came out it did not meet my needs, no tethering, no 3G, no applications. Even the 3G model has some limitations, in the main the poor quality camera and lack of tethering. With the Nokia N95 I can use it as a 3G modem or as a wireless hotspot, likewise the 5MP camera does make it quite capable of taking decent photographs.

The other issue with the iPhone was that at work we use Vodafone and my personal phone is with T-Mobile, do going with O2 was not really an option.

However I am not a fan of text entry on the Nokia N95, I have never liked entering text via a phone keyboard. The Nokia N97 looks like it could be a real option for me with the slide out keyboard, S60 operating system and touchscreen.

There are some early reviews out now, CNET and ZDNet.

Will have to wait and see how it works for real.


The future is mobile

October 9, 2008

Mike Short from O2 has given a very good presentation on the state of play of mobile technologies in UK (and across Europe) for his keynote here at mLearn 2008.

He gave some interesting statistics like in the UK population, 121% have a mobile phone. In Italy the figure is 154% whilst in France it’s only 83%.

The future is mobile

I enjoyed the keynote, I may not agree with everything that Mike says in terms of the “future” but he does back up what he says about now with some good data from the GSMA.

Of course Mike is from business and though he talks about education and education possibilities, it was obvious to me that business and leisure are the main drivers when it comes to mobile data and mobile devices.

A question to ask is that if we want to move and embed mobile learning into the world of education, how do we work with major mobile data providers and mobile device manufacturers that we are serious about this. Overall our purchasing power (in the UK) must be huge. Is it because it is not the sector which is buying iPhones, but individuals and institutions, which means we have little influence as a sector on the mobile business.

Can we change that model?


iPhone launched in the UK – November 9th

September 18, 2007

Apple have announced that they are launching the iPhone in the UK. It will go on sale on November 9th on the O2 network.

“We picked the best one, the most popular carrier, it’s O2. We’ve since lowered the price of the US phone of the 8GB phone, in the UK the price of the iPhone is £269 including VAT.”

That’s a lot of money for a phone, be interesting to see what the data costs will be?