When I started DSRPTN a few months ago I wrote here about start up tech all for a little over £500 and promised to update in due course. I was prompted to do this update as I’ve recently filed my first VAT returns and in the course of doing so was looking through the various expenses incurred over the past few months.
Rather staggeringly my total outlay on mobile phone so far has been the sum total of £35 since March. This included the once off fee of £15.00 for the SIM card and £20.00 of top up (of which I still have £8.00 remaining). I took my old number with me, didn’t have to sign a contract and can leave any time.
My Freedom package from Ovivo Mobile gives me 150 minutes, 250 texts and 500MB of data at no cost. The only advertising I have to deal with is the first landing page when I am searching the web. This offers up an advertisement that lasts for 4 seconds and then disappears. No different to what you experience in YouTube and it doesn’t bother me – a fair exchange is no robbery as they say.
I don’t use a landline for business and with the availability of WIFI I have not gone over my free allowance at all. The only reason that I had to top up for £20.00 was because I had to dial into a conference call to an 0800 number which was outside the scope of the freedom plan. I have, on occasion, experienced network problems (Ovivo buys wholesale from Vodafone) but then who doesn’t experience occasional problems with signal? So big thumbs up for a cost effective option from Ovivo for a start up in relation to mobile phone bills and I think I mentioned before great customer service - I love that I can contact them on Twitter.
Phone choice itself was Nexus 4 and the first time I broke away from the Apple family. I’m enjoying it a lot. The screen beats my old Iphone hands down (much bigger and better for web searching) and I like the way Android automatically updates everything for you. The only problem I’ve had (which is a minor one) is that it’s sometimes hard to see where your missed calls are listed – but that’s probably me being one of those people who rarely reads a manual. The battery life is great and I’ve also purchased a Just Mobile charger from Gum Plus which also works for Iphone (for any of you laggards still using those) and it’s fantastic. Don’t leave home without it.
But now to the Samsung Chrome Book. I had high expectations. Its lovely and light and that’s important because when your laptop comes everywhere with you weight does matter. And its really fast (boots up quicker than anything else I’ve tried). It’s just that its, well (sigh) hard. I do quite of lot of presentations and I just don’t like the Google presentation slide option. I find it unwieldy to use and not the best in design terms (doesn’t come close to Keynote). Also when you arrive at a conference or event with a Chrome Book the technicians all go a little pale. They are used to dealing with adaptors for most laptops and Macs but Chrome Books seem a little challenging (and didn’t behave very well when I last spoke in Dublin at the Digital Ireland Forum). And not being able to store on the desktop or use Word was also a little difficult and in the end I simply missed my old MacBook Air so the little Chrome Book is gathering dust and I’m writing this on the MacBook Air I bought about five weeks after writing the last post.
So I guess I’m slap bang in the middle on things. I’ve fallen out of love with the Iphone and embraced the Nexus 4 with gusto. I’ve fallen out of love with the Chrome Book and gone back to the Mac. The next challenge is testing out my new email provider Hushmail which I have just configured to work with my domain in less time that it takes to say gmail because going back to my point about a fair exchange being no robbery I’m thinking I’m grown up enough now to pay for my email in return for my privacy.