The Tyranny of the New

In a world where the average preteen has had more mobile phones than birthdays, one man stood apart, refusing to part with aging technology. Relegated to a primitive past where one could only make and receive calls and texts, he resisted the tide of popular features – such as cameras, video calls, email, web, GPS and apps – until one event changed his mind… forever.

I just noticed that this day, four years ago, I blogged about my new mobile phone, the Sagem My-V76. Back in 2006 I considered it to be quite advanced, with what I felt was a superfluous feature (a camera? why would I need to take photos with my phone?) – but I wanted a new phone since my previous phone was starting to age a bit – I’d bought that back in 2000.

It probably goes to show how much a dinosaur I am to say that prior to 2000 I never owned any phone at all. I still am a dinosaur, I think – I am principally a mid-to-late adopter, when it comes to spending my own money.

So now that I’ve had this phone for four years, I feel it’s time to move on. I have never been entirely happy with its interface – it’s slow and cumbersome, and has some annoying quirks (e.g. if I hit it one too many times, the “Back” button turns into a “Connect to internet” button, which renders the phone unusable for about 30 seconds until it times out). I’d like a new phone, and yes, I am interested in some of the new-fangled features like email, web browsing and 3rd-party apps. While the UI looks great, I don’t like how tightly the apps market is controlled by Apple. I like the idea of the Android, but have no idea which model to get.

My decision will be based on the following factors which are important to me:

  • price (outright $200-$500, or 12 month contract $20-$40 pm)
  • reception in regional WA (probably Next-G is the only option)
  • battery life (i.e. I’d like to be able to use it without recharging for more than an hour)
  • phone calls, texting (low volume)
  • email, web browsing (wifi?) (occasional)
  • Google calendar sync
  • builtin MP3 player
  • expandable memory
  • standard plugs (prefer no proprietary accessories)

I haven’t really got fully started yet in my research. My shortlist has the following entries:

EDIT 5 Jul 2010: added Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 to my list.

UPDATE 8 Dec 2010: Well, my wife gave me an early Christmas present: a HTC Desire, on a $49 plan with Telstra which includes 1GB data per month. So far I’m very impressed!

About Jeffrey Kemp

I’m a Christian, a husband, a father of three, a database programmer and a pianist. I enjoy programming, playing with technology, losing wrestling matches with my kiddies, and long drives to visit the farmers-in-law. My favourite edible substance is Iced Coffee. I also blog about Oracle-related topics at
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One Response to The Tyranny of the New

  1. Pingback: New Fast and Shiny – the Nexus 5 | Jeffrey Kemp's Blog

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