Saturday, September 24, 2011

More Smartphone help

Dear Old Dad is walking Baby Chloe around my apartment now. She refused to sleep all day yesterday, and cried and cried and cried last night into the early hours of the morning for no reason at all -- she was fed, burped, changed, swaddled and cuddled. God knows what was up. Poor Marc the Metrosexual had a long day at work, and then no rest. Even though I tried to keep Chloe in the nursery and shut the door of our bedroom to let him sleep, it was no use.
Anyway, now that Grandpa's here, she's fine. He's like the Baby Whisperer.
Which is why I want to get him a phone as soon as possible -- he deserves better than what he has. His old black and white Nokia is a shame. Now its on/off button has broken, so it's perpetually on. 
Dad has decided, thanks to all your comments, that the iPhone may not be right for him. He's considering the Samsung, as many of you suggested, or maybe the Nokia N8.
The plus of the Nokia is that it has a 12 megapixel camera vs. the Samsung's 5 megapixel camera. Dad really wants to get rid of his old digital camera, so this is an important point. He wants a camera that takes photos of printable quality. He doesn't care much about apps or anything fancy.
My concern with the Nokia is that it uses the Symbian operating system. Is it user friendly? Easily compatible?
Dad uses Windows 7 on a PC laptop. He doesn't use a photo manipulating program -- he just wants to upload the jpegs so he can print them or email them to friends.
Thanks again!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Smartphone help needed

Dedicated grandparents like this deserve a better mobile phone. This is a day after I gave birth, wearing the world's ugliest hospital gown. I have, for the record, deflated somewhat since this photo. Chloe looks tiny here.

Dear Old Mom and Dad have been wonderful in helping to care for Baby Chloe. Mom's been bringing  Tupperware containers of healthy food, since I haven't had time to cook. And Dad's really got a way with kids -- he sings Chloe lullabies and she calms down in his arms. They are just as good with their other granddaughter - my brother's 10-month-old girl.
We don't often thank the grandparents enough, and my family are not big on lavish gifts. So, for their anniversary, we said we'd buy Dad a new smartphone. His current cellphone is really out of date.
Initially, he said he wanted an iPhone, probably because that is what Marc, my brother and I use. But it makes sense for us, since we are all Mac users, with iPods, MacBooks and iPads. But I wasn't sure if the iPhone was the perfect choice for Dad, popular as it is. (Dad's a PC user). There are many other options on the market.
Joyceyland readers know how helpless I am in the face of technology. So maybe you guys can make some suggestions. I am not worried about price.
Here are the requirements
* The phone must be durable. Dad is not faddish. He does not want to replace or upgrade his phone all the time. This phone should last years, and be able to endure a good amount of being carried around and banged up. My most durable phone was a Nokia that worked for five years.
* It must have a decent camera. Part of the reason Dad wants a smartphone is because he's sick of carrying around a phone and a digital camera. Are there smartphones that take pictures with good enough resolution that they can be printed out as normal snapshots?
* It should have WiFi so Dad can check email.
* It should be loud and clear. Dad spends much time in noisy places, like dim sum parlors, MTR trains and malls. So he has to be able to hear both the ringing, and the voices on the other end.
* It should be easy to use, with a relatively big screen and keyboard for typing SMSs.
* It has to be compatible with both Australia and Hong Kong, since he spends roughly equal time in both places. I know it's cheaper to buy an iPhone through a provider like 3, but that locks you into a HK phone contract, doesn't it? Dad needs to be able to switch SIM cards back and forth between two places.
* The phone does not have to be fancy. Dad doesn't care much about videos, music, games or tons of apps. He also doesn't use the phone much for IDD or roaming.
* Random issue: My iPhone connection is not very good -- conversations often blank out. Other times, it gets  hard to hear the person on the other end -- there's tons of static.  I don't know if this is an iPhone problem, or if it's because our West Kowloon flat is in a mobile connection black hole. It also often happens when I'm in cabs -- but I'm usually crossing the harbor, so maybe it's blanking out because I'm in a tunnel.
I read that iPhones don't do well in humid climates. If that's the case, it might not be the best choice for Hong Kong.
Any advice would be appreciated.