Month: October 2010

Nokia N97 mini Review

Two weeks back i got my first review unit from Nokia. It was Nokia N97 mini, this is a touch screen phone with full qwerty keyboard. So i was really looking forward to using it.

Hardware

This is a solidly built device which is very small even with a full qwerty keyboard. It also has a touch screen and 5 mega pixel camera. It has all the regular features like bluetooth, wifi, gps and memory card slot etc. The qwerty keyboard is revealed when you push the screen to the side. It has a good clicking mechanism to it.

The keyboard is a quite good to type on, it also backlight which is nice to use during night times. The camera is a 5 mega pixel one with flash, which took good photos up close even in complete darkness. It has up to 8Gb of internal storage and a memory card slot. The speaker on the device is quite loud, which is nice to listen to music. All this in a very small package.

The device on the hardware side didn’t disappoint, it was solidly built and felt very solid while using it. More detailed spec here

Software

This is a touchscreen phone, so i was curious to see how well nokia implemented this. The touch screen on this device is pretty good, but when you compare with the device that are coming out now, it feels kind of slow. It runs symbian series 60 5th edition, which is not well known for its touch screen user interface. But they have made quite a bit of effort and made the icons and buttons big to click. Nokia N97 mini customized the home screen with some widgets. These widgets make the home screen more modern and quite usable. You can put shortcuts to apps, contacts and also display tit bits of  information using these widgets. It come with quite a few apps like calculator, voice recorder and a podcasting app etc, which is nice.

With Ovi store you can get more apps from nokia’s app store. The app store only shows the apps for your device so you can install all the apps that you see in the store. Unlike other phone app stores. It has quite a few apps on the online store, most of the them are free to use.Then there is Ovi music and Ovi maps which are good implementation, but need quite a bit of polish. The Ovi maps was quite slow to use compare with google maps. But these are free services. For Ovi music you can get coupon codes which will allow unlimited amount of music downloads. But my device didn’t work with music store as i didn’t have the coupon codes. Its a nice deal if you can get the unlimited download because it has all the latest indian music.The music and video player work quite well with the device. The music player is just the basic one you see on all nokia devices with a bit bigger buttons for touch screen use. It comes with Real player for video playback which supports quite a few formats. But couldn’t play podcast that i download using the in built podcast app.

The messaging and mailing apps. Its one single app for all your messaging features. You can get free acccess to yahoo mail, gmail, ovi mail etc. It has a setup wizard which will automatically sets up the mail settings which is nice. The email is text only there is no way to see html messages. With the qwerty keyboard this app is quite useful. And the best reason to buy this phone.Camera app is quite fast and with the 5 mega pixel takes quite good photos. Even the video taken by this phone looks very good. Viewing photos on the devices is also quite fast.The browser which i think is what most people will use the device for is painfully slow. Even opera on this device felt slow. I am not sure what the problem was. Even with wifi connection browsing websites was slow on the device.Phone features seem to be the last thing people care about these days. It’s quite good at that and has all the additional features you look for these days. The speaker on this device are quite good and loud.

Conclusion

If you want a touch screen phone with qwerty keyboard this is the only option among Nokia devices. Its priced around 20000 Rs on nokia’s webiste. You can get the device for 17000 Rs in market. Which is quite a good price for a qwerty keyboard touch screen phone. There are not many phones out there with these features.I wish they abandon symbian and go with meego or android. i can only imagine how good this hardware would have been with other mobile OS.

This is how you do charity

Rafael Nadal silently came to my home district of Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh and inaugurated a tennis school. He will be coming from next year on wards for a few days every year and train students at the school. He will also be contributing 50 Lakh rupees every year to run the institute. How many celebrities can do something so big without any publicity. New respect from me for the world n01 tennis player. Leander and Mahesh can learn a thing or two.

Nadal, who lost in the Shanghai Open quarterfinals last weekend, flew into Bangalore yesterday and quietly travelled the 175km to Anantpur in a car, eschewing official security or publicity. He was accompanied by mother Anna Maria Nadal Parera and sister Maria Isabel.After inaugurating the school — the first outside Spain that the Rafael Nadal Foundation has opened — the champion interacted with the 50-odd students and played a game against district collector B. Janardhan Reddy.

Read more about Rafael Nadal tennis school in India

New Macbook Air costs 60000 Rs in india

I too was interested in getting the new macbook air’s that Steve jobs showed in yesterdays “Back to mac” event. If it was priced at the same price its available in USA 999$ (44276 Rs), i would have considrered it. But it will cost 60000 Rs in India. You might ask how did i get to that price.Its quite simple actually, the 13inch white macbook which are priced for 999$ in US cost 60000 Rs in India. So the cheapest 11inch macbook air will cost 60000 Rs and 13 inch will cost you as much as 75000 Rs.If price is not an issues for you, get the macbook 13inch which gives you longer battery life and more screen real estate.If it was priced as much as the ipad apple would have the whole netbook market. But they went for a higher price which will again see not many people getting the air.I have seen the old air in person and was so tempted to buy it, when i was buying my macbook. But 30000 Rs price difference between macbook and air kept me from buying the air. If you get a chance just go and check out the macbook in person its the pinnacle of  industrial design and product design.

World’s 1st 10000 crores house called Antilla

I am really happy that someone like Mukesh Ambani has built a house that costs 10000 crores. It is being opened on October 28th, when our politicians live in such luxuary why not the richest indian who has more than earned it.It will provide jobs to many, it will need 600 employes to run this house. Thats provides much need jobs to many. This will also be an inspiration to every indian entrepreneur. What is the point of wealth if you can enjoy it.Some figures about the house1. 27-stored building is 570 feet high6 floors of parking for 160 cars3 heli pads1 mini-theatre for 504 floors will be occupied for the Ambani’s which is 4 lakh square feet.They are just some stunning figures…Wouldn’t it be cool if Ambani’s invite 100 citizens from all over India randomly to the opening. Can i get one please..All i can say is great some one has built the ultimate House ever and its in India, we all should be proud. Don’t comment saying it waste of money when so much poverty exsits in India etc.We are the same people who watch 100 crore movies and just recently hosted Rs 30000 crore common wealth games in delhi etc. Think about those before you comment. This at least could inspire many to come out of poverty, what did those movie and games do other than make a few people rich.

Google's sms channels in indian labs

Google is testing a cool idea where users can create sms channels in which they can send daily sms’s. This is a cool features for friends and small business.You login with your google user id and make your own sms channel. Once you make a channel you can make it invitation only or public. When you send a sms to that channel, it will be sent to all the people in that channel. You can also send sms’s online without any charges.You can also make a friends channel and make it invitation only and send it to your friends. Once they join if you send a sms it will be automatically sent to all your friends, who joined that group.Small business could use this feature to send special offer etc.Using this channel you can also join other sms channels that belong to your area or your interest like jokes, news, stock tips, quotes etc. And receive sms’s from them free of cost. Even cricket scores are available.Go here to try it out http://labs.google.co.in/smschannelsHere is a cool trick i made a channel with my number and when ever i want to send small amount of text or url etc to my phone, i just copy and paste to that channel. And i get a sms to my phone with that info.

Google’s sms channels in indian labs

Google is testing a cool idea where users can create sms channels in which they can send daily sms’s. This is a cool features for friends and small business.You login with your google user id and make your own sms channel. Once you make a channel you can make it invitation only or public. When you send a sms to that channel, it will be sent to all the people in that channel. You can also send sms’s online without any charges.You can also make a friends channel and make it invitation only and send it to your friends. Once they join if you send a sms it will be automatically sent to all your friends, who joined that group.Small business could use this feature to send special offer etc.Using this channel you can also join other sms channels that belong to your area or your interest like jokes, news, stock tips, quotes etc. And receive sms’s from them free of cost. Even cricket scores are available.Go here to try it out http://labs.google.co.in/smschannelsHere is a cool trick i made a channel with my number and when ever i want to send small amount of text or url etc to my phone, i just copy and paste to that channel. And i get a sms to my phone with that info.

I am canceling my BSNL broadband connection

I am going to cancel my bsnl broadband connection, why you ask?I pay 1650 Rs per month and it gives me only 512 kbps. And half of the time its dead and i have to call the BSNL office and they never respond. Its a post paid connection and i have to pay even when i am out of town and not using it.BSNL 3G data card is much better. I can take it with me where ever i go. Even to other states at no extra cost. Since its a prepaid connection, if i know i will not be using internet for long, i can even take a cheaper packages.BSNL could give me a 8 mbps connection at 1650 Rs and i might think about keeping broadband. But even then i think BSNL 3G data card it more practical and better.At 3 mbps you can stop worrying about internet speed and start using it.After more than 8 years or so i finally will cancel my broadband connection which i never thought would happen.

Bsnl 3G data card the best there is, work on mac

I have been using bsnl 3G data card on my 13 inch macbook for the past two months. And i am pretty happy with it, here are the reasons why.

1. Its Truly Unlimited and not  15 Gb unlimited like Tataphoton and Reliance netconnet highspeed.

2. Its Unlimited even when roaming

3. It works pretty well on a Mac

4. It has 3G network in most parts of India already

5. You can recharge Bsnl 3G data card online using http://portal.bsnl.in

6. No more worry about wires, modems routers. Just plug it in and get internet anywhere.

7. Its cheapest 3G unlimited out there.Just two months back you had to pay 3000 Rs for 1 month for unlimited, now they have dropped the price to 1499 Rs. Which is the lowest i think any 3G unlimited package will ever get. Others might offer cheaper unlimited packaged but they will be crippled unlimited not truly unlimited.

Hardware

It looks like a big usb pen drive with a small removable cover on the back which hides the bsnl #3G sim. There is a slot for a memory card which when inserterd can be used as a pen drive with this bsnl data card. All the other data cards also provide this feature, its a helpful feature which i have not yet used. There is one led light on the device which blinks green when the device is connected to the internet. When its switched off it glows red.The device costs 2500 Rs and comes with a 500 Mb free usage. Unlimited data plan costs 1499 Rs.

Installation

On windows once you plug it in, it shows as a bsnl drive just click on it and the installation begins. Once the installation is done. It will show you the dialer and you select internet and click the connect button that’s it. You are online with 3G speeds.

On mac once you plug it in it shows up as a cd drive. Just copy the mac folder on to your desktop and open the installation file in it. Which installs and puts a blue 3G icon app in the application folder. Just click it and the dialer will load. Wait a few second while the data card detects the sim and show you the network.

On mac you have to manually type some settings in, once you do you are online.Click on the “default configuration” and select edit configuration.Click the “+” icon and make a new connection give it a name, any name.Now put the settings shown in the picture.

Telephone Number : *99***#Username & Password : Leave blankAPN : bsnlnetThe dns settings are not necessary, i use them because they make it a little bit faster. Those are Google DNS settings.Save these settings.Now select the setting you just created and click connect. You should be online.One more thing you should notice this is for both mac & pc’s in settings on the dialer. Select “3G only” otherwise it will keep going to 2G if coverage in your area is weak.

If its on 3G it should show this.

Verdict

If its in 3G you can get speeds up t0 3mbps. Not on all the site or downloads, but most of them. Browsing you will never have to wait for a page load. And youtube standard quality videos can be seen without buffering.You can download5 mb in 1 minute30 mb in 5 minutes100 mb in 15 minutesLast month i used around 60 Gb mostly watching youtube videos and download podcasts. This month its up to 50 Gb and i have 10 more days to go.With such cheap data plans and these speeds i don’t know why any one would look else where. If bsnl can keep up with the demand and speed as more and more users start using this service. Its game over for Tataphoton and Reliance netconnet highspeed.We were waiting for the future and its here. What are you waiting for get Bsnl 3G data card….

Update ….Bsnl has reduced the unlimited 3G plans further to 700 Rs per month. So let the pricing war begin…

Nokia N97 Mini Video Review

Video review of Nokia N97 Mini. This is my first Mobile review so please bear with me.

YouTube – Nokia N97 Mini Video Review