It was while I was looking for the reason why my USB Broadband Modem wouldn’t connect to my Acer Aspire One, that I found an upgrade to the firmware. Huawei have issued their own, as have operators, and T-Mobile is one of them.
You can find the download page here. Note that T-Mobile advise not to install it unless advised. I’ve no idea if this is to limit uptake, or to stop people bricking their modems by accident (I nearly did). I advise you not to do it either 😉
Anyway – the first time I ran the update, it had trouble detecting the modem, and then when it did, it did fail during the upgrade. Drawing a deep breath, I disconnected/reconnected the modem, and tried again. This time, it did work.
And hey presto – 7.2Mbps!
However – right now, I’m only getting a max of 250kbps on my connection – it’s dog slow! It could be the rush hour, or it could be I’ve just foobared the modem, and this is what they’re warning against. Guess I’ll have to try it again tomorrow.
And I’m disappointed.
After all that waiting for a netbook with built-in 3G (“Mobile Broadband”), that I would be able to open and use anywhere, Tesco finally got the Dell Mini 9 in stock, and I ordered one. It arrived this morning.
So – before even turning it on, I got out the screwdriver, popped off the expansion cover, and…
A big gaping hole, with no soldered socket for an expansion card, and a big ‘WWAN’ stencil just to rub it in.
So, newsflash folks – it seems only the Mobile Operators are getting the 3G-enabled ones.
So I’m now left with a non-3G laptop, that cost #70 more than the equvalent Acer Aspire One. Sure, the battery life is an hour longer, but I can buy a 6-cell battery for less than the difference; and still keep the 3-cell for backup!
Admittedly I haven’t really used it yet, but the AAO still has more of that ‘Apple factor’ when you take it out of the case (it was white; my Dell is black), and the beginner’s UI on the AAO is quicker to boot and use than the tiny Ubuntu icons on the Dell. It seems the user base is bigger and better too.
So I’m torn. The fact is, I bought the Dell because I wanted mobile broadband, and it turns out mine didn’t – only those being sold by the mobile operators have 3G built-in. Given I can get an AAO 8GB Linux for GBP170 at Tesco, where I just bought this Dell 8GB Linux for GBP250, I think the Dell’s going back.
BTW – for a really excellent comparison of these with the eeePC, check here.
Well, the nice man from Vodafone came today and gave me back a new TYTN II, in exchange for my Touch Pro. I’d objected to a clause in my contract renewal, so we agreed to differ and they downgraded my phone.
And… well… is it necessarily a downgrade? As I picked up the Kaiser for the first time, I jotted down my first impressions:
- Compared to the Touch Pro, the Kaiser feels larger, and the screen resolution is definitely ‘less gorgeous’, particularly through the Vodafone-standard screen protector (which I need to replace).
- As always, the box-fresh phone feels more responsive than one that I’ve had for more than a week.
- I’m lost on the keyboard change again, as I’m sure I will be for a couple of days. The keys are larger and easier to press. Also, I’ve just enjoyed my first press of the dedicated email button on the front.
- The snick of the stylus being pulled in by its’ magnet, is also missed.
- But… AHHH! The scroll wheel!!!!! I can scroll!
- And a D-pad that actually works and doesn’t mis-press the whole time!
As for the rest of the Touch Pro features: The touch-wheel and the accelerometer were present, but didn’t really serve any purpose whatsoever. The FM Radio was actually quite nice to have once, but again, I don’t really listen to the radio
In compensation, the Kaiser fits my large hands a little more than the Pro – particularly since the jogdial is far more ergonomic than dragging around the screen with your thumb (if using one-handed). And the D-pad… yes, a flush fronted phone looks nice, but you need to feel your way around it to be productive.
So, in short, I’m not missing the Touch Pro at all! I’ll likely stick with this new Kaiser, and perhaps consider the SE Experia, or Blackberry Storm (still waiting for that)…