Rants on Mobile Technology

Three Mobile Devices?

I was flying to a conference and was approaching airport security. I put my laptop bag down to be scanned and then started placing all metal objects in the tray. The airport handler’s eyes popped a bit when she saw me place an iPod Touch, cell phone and a Win Mobile PDA in the tray. She asked how many phones I needed.  Well, each item has a purpose. I like the iPod for the applications, entertainment and the music. The PDA syncs with my Outlook account perfectly so all my contacts, tasks and emails are stored locally. My cell phone is for – well, making calls.  Why not get an iPhone and get rid of the other two devices? Good question. If I’m on a flight to the west coast and I use my iPod to watch a movie or play a game, chances are the battery would be dead before I arrive.  If I had an iPhone, that would mean I have no phone. I know Steve Jobs claimed you can get up to 10 hours of listening to music. Well, I get a low battery warning after about 1.5 hours of some intense playing of Zombieville.  So I travel with three portable devices (four if you include the laptop). Basically I like to have the right device for the job.

No iPad?

When Apple released the iPad earlier this year I thought it was neat but wasn’t really blown away. I should let you know that I have no interest in getting an iPad.  While there are several reasons why I don’t want an iPad, the main reason that has set me against using the iPad is how it is being marketed. In the commercials, Apple talks about how you can experience the entire Web in your hands. Well no. About 75% of the video online can’t be played on an iPad and not a single SWF can be played on an iPad. This isn’t a knock against Adobe as almost 50% of the SWFs are generated by non Adobe applications.  That’s a lot of content that you no longer have access to. So when I’m in a public forum and the topic is raised, I express my opinion and let people know that the ads are misleading. Looking forward to getting an Android based tablet for Christmas.

The New iPod.

I couldn’t watch Steve Job’s presentation live when he showed the new iPod Touch because it was only streamed to Mac devices. So, I’m left reading the news and other sites about what was said. I have to say I’m now tempted to get the new iPod Touch so I can run Face Time. Think about this. Using a WiFi connection, you can connect to other iPhones or iPod Touch devices and have a face-to-face video conference. The really neat part is NO CONTRACT – NO MONTHLY FEES.  As more and more WiFi centers open up, this means less need for cell service. The Federal Canadian government announced an initiative to ensure every house had high speed access. Companies are not going to be laying copper (or fibre) to remote locations. Rural areas are getting their high-speed connections via powerful WiFi. So, if I have an account with the local carrier for my WiFi, then I can use that same login for my iPod Touch and now I have a video phone with no contract. Now it doesn’t mean I’m going to throw away my cell phone any time soon but it will be interesting to watch how all this plays out and how telephone companies will scramble to save their market.

End Rant

Now that my rants are over, I’ll go back to eLearning. I may be posting some “how to…” for a few apps like Dreamweaver, Flash, 3D Studio Max and Photoshop. Stay tuned.

(you can follow Phil on Twitter @CanadianPacMan)

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