I bought an iPhone about 2 months ago. I had never touched one before, I had never seen anything but some online videos and some information about the phone. My old phone was crap, had no features, couldn’t connect to the internet, and it got shitty reception in the area of my new apartment. So, I knew I had to get a phone. I thought, since I saw refurbished iPhones for $99, I’d pick one up. I like it. I like it a lot. I can do all sorts of things I could never imagine doing with my old phone.
I wanted to go with a Rhapsody-capable phone from Verizon, as I have a Rhapsody music account, and I could listen to my music anywhere. You can do the same thing with the iPhone, but iTunes is crap- when software can turn deleting music into a confusing ordeal in itself, you know you have a loser on your hands. When I sync my phone, videos and songs I deleted before get added back on. It’s an annoyance to go in and uncheck everything you don’t want synced- a nice windows-like folder layout that would, I dunno, simply show the contents of my iPhone’s storage would be MUCH too easy. (ugh)
The iPhone’s application store is nice, and it’s something you can’t get on a lot of phones. People are more apt to create all sorts of applications for this phone as opposed to many others on the market. That’s a plus.
The announcement of the new iPhone today is- well, it’s a joke. It’s an offensive joke that angers me. Steve Jobs is a not only a weird looking turtlenecked geek, he’s also a jackass. What does the new iPhone offer for $800? Well, you can record video now. Well, my $15 phone from before recorded video all day long! It can also send picture messages. My $15 phone could do that as well! They will eventually roll out the 7.2gb network that will more than double the current 3g speed. Okay, fine. But after looking over the reports today, it seems the two biggest changes are the video recording and the MMS. Apple truly has some chutzpah. Jobs and his pals decide- what the hell, let’s release a NEW iPhone, charge $800 for it, and it’ll merely do what the ORIGINAL IPHONE SHOULD HAVE DONE IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!! Are you f’in kidding me turtleneck boy?!
And AT&T is no better. The monthly plans for the iPhone are absurd. I pay nearly $87 for the cheapest plan (450 anytime mins and 5, 000 nights and weekends), with the iPhone you MUST pay for a $30 data plan, and I pay $5 for 200 text messages a month. Yes, you heard that right, text messages, in the eyes of AT&T aren’t considered “data.” You get “unlimited data,” except if the data comes in the form of a text message. Even though a text message is NOTHING BUT DATA! Yes, it is, indeed, a lowlife move that is meant to do one thing- rip the consumer off. Unlimited texting for the iPhone through AT&T is $20 a month. That means their cheapest plan with the least amount of mins, the data, and the unlimited texting will run you nearly $100 a month. Imagine if you talked on the phone a lot and were forced into paying $20-40 more per month for more minutes. $140 a month for a cell phone? Ridiculous. Especially since bandwidth and cellular network prices are going down overall!
Like I said, I like my iPhone. But, I don’t doubt I’d also like any number of other phones out there. Apple is, for the most part, clueless…which is why they will never have the market share that Microsoft, for example, enjoys. Try buying a mac laptop…when you realize you can buy any number of MS-based laptops for $500 yet a macbook will cost you three times as much, you get an idea why Apple will never come close to MS. Who wants to pay three times as much for basically the same thing just to have the desktop completely backwards? Wanna close a window? Forget clicking one X, this is a mac, you’ve gotta do ten things from left to right to get it closed! Aren’t we Apple guys clever? (ick)
So, is the iPhone utlimately a great phone? I’d say, ‘no.’ It’s a good phone, but if it takes 3 tries just to get the basics right (basics that even free phones have built in), you’re either dealing with a product that isn’t all it’s cracked up to be or pure greed on the part of a confused company that tries so desperately to be “different.” Or maybe it’s a bit of both. Maybe I’m the idiot for buying an iPhone to begin with?
Netflix, which I have used for over 3 years, has an option to use different profiles on your account. You can assign a DVD to each profile…for example, if you have the 2 at a time unlimited plan, you can assign each of 2 profiles to get 1 DVD. That way, you can have a father with 1 DVD at a time out from his very own queue and a son with his own favorite movies in a queue with 1 DVD at a time out. This was nice for me because the queue’s are limited too 500 movies, so I added more movies to my second profile I created but didn’t assign it any DVD’s (I’m currently on the 1 DVD at a time plan anyhow).
This move seems odd, especially considering Netflix’s EMail I just got about it:
Important News Regarding Netflix Profiles
We wanted to let you know we will be eliminating Profiles, the feature that allowed you to set up separate DVD Queues under one account, effective September 1, 2008.
Each additional Profile Queue will be unavailable after September 1, 2008. Before then, we recommend you consolidate any of your Profile Queues to your main account Queue or print them out.
While it may be disappointing to see Profiles go away, this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.
If you have any questions, please go to http://www.netflix.com/Help?p_faqid=3962 or call us anytime at 1 (888) 638-3549. We apologize for any inconvenience.
- The Netflix Team
The bold text above sounds like code to me. Code for- we have a dumb reason for doing this, but we’re going to pretend it’s going to add some improvement to your experience, except we can’t tell you anything about this supposed improvement. It’d be nice if they’d share what sort of improvement this could possibly bring.
I’ve seen many many people who are very upset over this already on various sites around the net. I can imagine few are going to be happy with this move. Will families start opening multiple accounts and pay more money? I can’t see that happening. Will some people choose to scrap one or two of their DVDs and go to a smaller plan? I can see that happening for sure. Why, with that knowledge, Netflix would make this decison, I’ve no idea…Seems dumb all around.
Watched a movie with some good folks last night…and they used something called RiffTrax to accompany it. It was Fantastic 4 Pt 2: Rise of the Silver Surfer- a downright horrible film with absolutely no redeeming qualities at all. Bad all the way through. I’d never heard of it before, but RiffTrax are commentary tracks you download from RiffTrax.com- they’re from the guy who hosted Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Mike Nelson) and the guys who did the voices of Servo and Crow do commentary here as well, just not as the characters they played in the Sci-Fi Channel series.
You download the track (after paying $3.99 for this particular commentary- I think $3.99 is the highest level for the movies, many are $2.99 and some even lower)…then you play it on your PC or MP3 player or whatever else (the mp3′s have no rights management, so you can download them to anything) and sync it to the DVD you rented (via instructions given in the track). So, it’s like watching an episode of MST3K but without the breaks or their heads at the bottom of the screen. Well, that and they use their regular voices and don’t play the characters I know I grew to love.
Very cool idea…glad I discovered it. I came home from work tonight and downloaded the commentary for Halloween (the original). They have an impressive catalogue or new movies and some terrible low budget films, some classics like Jurassic Park where Weird Al joins in the commentary…tons of stuff. They even started doing a few of their own videos, but I didn’t check any of that out yet.
Highly recommend. Check their site to see what movies they have commentaries on, go rent that movie, and enjoy the laughs.
Okay, I just don’t get PSA’s. I’ve seen close to a hundred million of them in my lifetime, but I don’t ever remember one truly having an impact on any of my behaviors (especially as a young person). They’re all just too silly to me. Or maybe I’m just old and jaded or old and grumpy or something close to one of the two.
So, we have young and hip teen girl speaking a mix of english and spanish (it’s what the hip urban-types do, no?) to a friend on her cell phone. Somehow this friend got a picture of her sent to her cell phone, and we can bet it ain’t purty! Chica gets the pic sent to her own phone, and it’s clearly some nude or semi-nude, or something along these lines sort of shot of her. This must have been taken Saturday night- she was soooo high.
So a few things we learn from this ad. 1. Hips teens are mutli-lingual. 2. EVERYONE has a cell phone, and they’re constantly using it to talk to people that aren’t right next to them. 3. Teens love weed. 4. Teens love to take pictures of themselves or others (or both) in compromising situations. 5. No one can keep a secret, and nude pics of someone get sent to everyone on earth, no matter if you know the person or not. Random texts with pics of classmates in the buff are totally a good idea and so completely recommended.
I’m all for staying away from drugs, and it’s something I practice 100% myself, but I’m not so sure this is going to make any young people stay away from the stuff. Hell, today’s up-and-coming young hipster might smoke some weed in the hope that this video will be even funnier during their high. Then again, when it comes to funny videos while high- I’m pretty sure those canadian accident PSA’s would be high on the list for that activity.
Apologies for the issues with the website. The pages and sections that use sql have been very slow lately. Off and on for months. My host has had nonstop complaints lately. I’m looking into a new host, so hopefully that will resolve any issues.
I’m also planning on opening a new horror genre website. Covering horror movies, books, magazines, comics, TV, etc. I’ve always been a big fan of horror movies and books (Stephen King was a childhood favorite)…so, we’ll see about that. I wanted to start a local blog, but not sure if that’s going to pan out or not.
For now- I’m starting on the PC here. I’m working on transferring all my files over to the 160gb hard drive I bought at Wal-Mart tonight. I will do that and format the drive, do a fresh install of windows…maybe I can get my friggin tv tuner card to work in the process. It’s gong well…so far I have nearly all the files off my PC and have saved all the settings I need for various programs.
I’m off to bed for now though…
The iPhone. Oh my gosh, it’s here, it’s here! The hype on this thing is astounding.
I personally think it’s all pretty absurd. A phone for $600?! Does any normal person on the planet need a phone that costs $600 simply because it has a small hard drive ipod built in (as long as you have the $100 contract active!) and a touch screen?
There were people camped outside the AT&T store the day it came out to get their phone! Some local guy who basically begs for publicity started his ‘camp out’ at 6AM while the store was open (the store was open until 6PM, when they closed to ready the stuff, then reopened into the night.) Can I offer you a life, sir?
From what I’m reading, it will cost nearly $100 to replace the battery if you need to (you have to send it to Apple and pay a large fee and shipping charges.) Sounds good for the phone that is over half a grand!
Seems you also have to backup all of your data before shipping it out to Apple. Heaven forbid the $600 phone actually backup the data itself! That and all of this means you will be without a phone for 3-5 days! Wait, where’s my $600 phone?
I should mention, my phone (the samsung t-509) works just fine. It makes calls, sends texts, has various ringtones, alarms, calendar options, net access, a camera, a voice recorder, etc. It was free with my 1 year contract. The phone plan with unlimited nights and weekends, unlimited calling within my 5faves, and 400 monthly text messages is $50. That is too much for what you get in my view to begin with. Net access is an extra $20 a month, I think. Pricey in my book, but nothing close to what you will pay for the iPhone for some added, and somewhat useless bonus features.
Then there’s the cancellation fee of $185 according to the Boston Globe.
The top tier plan, from what I can figure from researching the issue, is $220. The complaint many seem to have with this is that even at this price, you don’t get unlimited text messaging. You pay $220 for unlimted internet and phone, but only 200 text messages! For extra texts, you have to pay at least $20 for only 200 more messages. $40 more a month for unlimited. Unlimited texting from tmobile is $15, just to compare.
If you wanted an internet PC, this might make sense. Well, probably not even then…as my cable connection running at over 10Mbps download is only $39 a month! Even after the higher price- you have to deal with the issue that iPhone runs on the EDGE network. It’s old, and it’s very slow.
Here are some complaints from various media outlets who say using the iPhone to get online makes them yearn for a dial up connection!
When it comes to basic features, the iPhone is missing some rudimentary options. You cannot even send pictures via texting. This has to be done via E-Mail. Remember, this is a $600 phone that can’t do with most free phones (free with a 1 yr contract) can do with ease.
I’m just not seeing the appeal here. At all.
Now, I’m all for new tech. I’m all for new features added to old tech that can make things better and easier or both. I don’t see how the iPhone can do that…and especially not at this absurd price. The phone itself costs way too much. The plans cost way too much. The internet speed (which is the only thing this phone seems really good at- connecting to the net in a nice format with unlimited data) is slow as a snail.
Hopefully most people will have the sense to blow past the hype and wait for a device that doesn’t literally cost an arm and a leg. I’m sure Apple will take body parts in lieu of payment, right?
HERE ARE MORE ISSUES from the site engadgetmobile
The mobile version of OS X or whatever it is the iPhone runs takes up 700MB of the device’s capacity. Damn son!
There’s no way to cut, copy, or paste text! WHOA! Big, big mistake.
No A2DP support. That, friends, is such a huge bummer right there.
Sorry, music can’t be used as a ringtone — even if it’s just a raw MP3. No additional ringtones will be sold at launch.
Adobe Flash support is officially out. It’s just not in the browser. Neither is there any other kind of embedded video support. Sorry everybody, that’s that.
It will take snaps, but won’t record video. How can Apple love YouTube as much as it does and not realize cellphone-shot movies make up a sizeable chunk of the crazy crap you find on there?
First off, let me say that I LOVE Amazon.com. It is, by far, the best website on the planet. A store where you can buy almost anything you could ever imagine. It started with books and CD’s, then went into every category you can think of. I have spent a lot of money with this fine company over the years and have been satisfied 99.9% of the time.
They now have a service called subscribe and save- it’s for items you need on a regular basis. Groceries, hair care products, soaps, toilet paper, paper towels, medicines, etc. You sign up to subscribe that you want X amount of product A, B, and C delivered at a regular interval. I think you can choose every 1 month, 2 months, 3 months, or every 6 months.
Better yet- you get a 15% overall discount on top of the discounted price you would get just by buying one of the products. Amazon.com has discounts on most items. I just subscribed to get 2 cases of 12-bowls of Chef Boyardee beefaroni. Lately, I have been staying at work for lunch and eating the 14.5 oz bowls of these things. You nuke them for 1 min 30 secs and you have lunch. Easy, quick, and cheaper than even fast food which would usually be around $5 for me for lunch. So, I will have 24 bowls a month automatically billed to my credit card ($25.50 total a month)- that’s fairly decent savings. Right around $1.00 per bowl (beats the supermarket), and it’s delivered to my door which is an added bonus. Free shipping as well.
I ordered that and I placed 1 regular order for the following:
* 1 of: Kellogg’s Family Assortment, Individual-Serving Boxes, 1.02-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 72)
* 1 of: Kool-Aid Drink Mix, Sugar Sweetened Strawberry, 19-Ounce Container (Pack of 4)
Sold by: Amazon.com, LLC
The total for this order was $30.54 with free shipping. So, I now have cereal for at least 2 months and a bunch of kool-aid mix (I love kool-aid). That’s lunch covered for 1 month and breakfast for 2 months for a total of around $46 right? Not too bad if you ask me. I’m looking to save money, so this works for me. Tho, I’m sure I will soon grow tired of beefaroni and cereal! I will buy yogurt as well- that stuff is cheap at Wal Mart. That and bags of salad with the italian dressing spritz on dressing.
Dinner is another thing altogether which I will look into. I might look into those services that have the trucks that drive around and sell you stuff door to door a lot of the time…
Any ideas? Suggestions? I’m just trying to save money (aren’t we all?) And I’m trying to make lunch a smaller meal, as opposed the regular fast food junk which I get and always buy too much of for 1 meal.
I was searching for free software that would allow me to do voice posts from a phone to my website ‘blog’ (wordpress). I never found that software yet, but I did find this page here that lists a number of cool cell phone tricks, services, and more. There’s a service that you can use to identify songs you hear- just put the cell phone up to the speakers for 15 seconds of the song and for $3.99 a month you can get the title and artist of most any song you want. This site is called 411 Song. I tested it out (the 1st song ID is free), and it worked. I just hit play on EVERYTHING from Michael Buble, it sent me a text a min or so later telling me the song name and artist, tho it only said “Michael Bubl” without the “e” at the end there.
I also found Jott which allows you to call in voice reminders to yourself. It will translate the voice to text and E-Mail you the reminder/thought/note of interest, etc. Interesting idea, especially for me, because I always want to remember things but never have a good way to do so outside of texting myself which is a pain (and quite slow for the most part.) It looks like Jott might be free, but I haven’t tested it out yet or finished signing up, so I’m not positive.
Might try to find some other cool items and list them here later if I find any of value…
ONE THING I might mention. Personally, I find the net and the massive influx of info. in the past decade or so very confusing. Well, confusing in the sense that- in some aspects, there’s an overflow of information. I have probably (literally) 20+ E-Mail addresses, all that serve different functions sometimes…I have accounts at every site on earth (most I forget about and hardly use.) I get so many newsletters, spam, alerts, news notices, and so much more in Hotmail (my main E-Mail account) that I have over 16, 000 messages that I can never seem to make my way through. So…maybe all of this stuff isn’t making things easier. I’ll keep using most of it though. What other choice is there really?
I’ve never had a dedicated MP3 player before. Never really had the need for one. I drive to work while listening to CD’s, the morning FM radio show, or XM radio (same for my drive home for lunch and back and my drive home)…I don’t work out often enough to need music or an audio book or anything. I work in a job that doesn’t allow me to sit at a desk doing typing or anything like that where you might listen to music or a book.
Anytime in the past that I wanted some music to go- I took my PSP with me. It has some built in memory (never bought any extra storage for it) that I could put some songs on…so that worked well.
But, I decided I want to lose some weight, so I want to start walking (and some other stuff eventually) for that purpose. I decided to head over to Wal-Mart to pick up a cheap MP3 player. I found a great deal in the Sansa c240. Despite some not-so-glowing reviews on CNET.com for this device- I like it a lot. It’s a great value for the price that’s for sure…
First off- it’s small. It’s semi-sleek looking (I like the look of it at least), and it has a nice set of features. It’s only 1GB, but for my purposes, I can load stuff via Real Rhapsody (I upgraded to the $14.95 plan which allows you to download most of their content to go- very simple process and pretty fast as well). I have also used Windows Media Player to rip some books on CD from the library to load to the Sansa. This process was also fairly easy. Just drag and drop to the device.
So it plays MP3′s, of course, but it also has a nice FM tuner built in. Unexpectedlt, I can pick up most stations anywhere in the house- even the basement…I was down in the basement testing it out, and I get nearly all the channels I can even think of, when the receiver in the basement won’t pick up a thing. It seems to automatically finely tune into a station when you punch a station in- maybe I’m imagining that, tho. You can record FM, and it even has a built-in mic which allows you to easily record your voice. It has a dedicated record button for voice recording, which is nice. The sound quality from the mic is exceptional from such a small and affordable package. I should mention the 1GB version cost me $79.
Further- it has a micro-sd slot for more storage space (I see 2GB cards at amazon.com- which would make this a 3GB player total), and a handy “hold” button (actually, I usually find this button worthless)…volume control on the side, headphones (not the best, but they work), and a proprietary USB cable which you use to connect to your PC AND power up the battery (which lasts 15 hours according to the reviews I’ve read.)
You can view album art, and you can download pics to the small screen. I wouldn’t use it for this, and I doubt many people would- but it’s there if you want it. The screen is very small (1.4″), but it’s for music not video or pictures, so who cares? The CNET review was negative on this aspect, but I don’t see why I should care what the screen on my MUSIC player looks like. (??)
Finally- you can make playlists from what the screen shows- I haven’t tried this yet, and I probably won’t use it myself, but there seem to be a few options for playlists and even FM presets.
It seems to be built solidly, which is always a plus in my view. It’s small enough to fit in your pocket, and it’s packed with decent features. The price is the best part of it, though, and I recommend the player for value from the start. If you’re looking for a player for video or tons of storage- this isn’t it. If you’re looking for a great music player for a great price- this is a great choice.