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New 'phone for a traveller.. Recommendations

Discussion in 'Your Questions' started by serfty, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. serfty

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    OK, it's no longer possible to get new batteries for my old mobile. Time to get a new one.

    For you experinced road warriors out there, what type of 'phone should I get.
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    Main requirement is it be usable in the majority of counties around the world?
     
  2. Dave Noble

    Dave Noble Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2005
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    Just get any tri-band gsm phone (which pretty much all gsm phones are these days) . Personally I would go for a Nokia , since I think they make good phones

    Dave
     


  3. QF WP

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    I'd second the Nokia, I've had 4 and apart from wearing out the keypad, never had any trouble with them.

    Depends on where you travel and whether you take your phone, as to whether you need tri-band; but it is useful at least for SMS.
     
  4. arun

    arun Member

    Sep 5, 2002
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    I agree. A Nokia Tri-band.
    If you like to do more things other than speaking, then look for Bluetooth, GPRS, etc. Have a look at the Nokia website and you can compare the phones.
     
  5. NM

    NM
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    I bought a Nokia 6230i earlier in the year (a good deal in KL). Seems to work well and I have used it in many places including USA with great success. Has lots of bells and whistles that I rarely use, like GPRS, Bluetooth, 1.3MP camera, MP3 player and FM radio, speaker phone.

    But for me it is a phone and I use it to make and receive calls, and for that purpose it is good.

    I previously bought a cheap Nokia tri-band phone (3120). It was their entry-level tri-band phone at the time. I was not happy with the audio quality for use as my primary business communication device. Mrs NM is happy using it though.
     


  6. Yada Yada

    Yada Yada Established Member

    Dec 6, 2004
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    I've used Nokia, Motorola and Sony-Ericsson in recent years and of the three brands, like the Sony-Ericsson the best for usability and reliability.

    I've been using an O2 Xda II mini this year and like it a lot. It is a Pocket PC and tri-band mobile phone in one small device. As such it can do a lot of things - there are heaps of PPC software apps out there.

    [​IMG]

    If you are a heavy mobile phone user then this device may not be for you as it has no hardware keyboard and is therefore more "PDA" than it is phone. So if lots of one-handed operation is important, a regular phone with real buttons might be better. Nonetheless the O2 mini can be used one-handed if you take the time to learn a few tips and tricks, and have the right software. I use the O2 b/t headset and it works well. Note that the bigger O2 phones do have slide-out keyboards, as do the HP models.

    The bonus with such a device is the all the PDA functions it can do, and the ease with which you can synchronise calendar, tasks and contacts with Outlook. And it handles email and text messaging much better than a regular mobile phone.
     
  7. bigjobs

    bigjobs Active Member

    Jun 4, 2005
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    like others i recommend any kind of Nokia. the menu systems are intuitive, the chargers are 'almost' universal and the have never broken down on me.

    i recently purchased a new 5140i. it has a hard case and rubber on the outside. i have a tendency to toss it around, drop it, and treat it fairly roughly so this is a good one for me.

    i reckon the phone charger compatability is one of the best features of Nokia phones. i think there is a Nokia phone charger economy going on around the world. for example i lose/leave my phone charger somewhere and need one while on the road so go up to the desk ask them to look in lost property for one that works and then i have a new phone charger. at some point i will lose that one, another will benefit from my loss and i will pick up another. and so the cycle goes. this alone is one good reason to stick to a Nokia i think.

    as well others will most likely have a nokia and you can borrow their chargers ...
     
  8. Dave

    Dave Newbie

    Jan 4, 2006
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    I used to like Nokias, but they're not all great.

    I had a 6225 (same as 6220 but CDMA).

    Somehow they screwed up the user friendly bit on that phone. It took about 10 keystrokes to send an SMS, and many other functions had way too many unnecesary keystrokes.

    Despite being large and heavy by current standards, it has very bad battery life - I had to charge it every day and I'm not a particularly heavy user (about $60 - $80 per month normally)

    The screen was pretty poor quality - black colours were noticibly 'speckled' with random coloured pixels (this is hard to explain).

    It has an FM radio, but you can't change the volume of the radio. Despite having a speakerphone, you can ONLY activate the FM radio with the headphones plugged in. If you turn on the radio and unplug the headphones, you cannot turn off the radio without plugging the headset back in.

    It has a camera which is of ok quality for a camera of its class, but Nokia wanted to charge me $100 for a USB cable so I could actually get the photos off it.

    Although I must say I did really enjoy being able to share chargers with 80% of the population. Especially since the battery ran flat so easily.

    /rant off/

    Anyway, now that i have that out of my system, if you are going to be travelling to Japan as well you will need a "quad-band" 3G-capable phone.
     
  9. oz_mark

    oz_mark Enthusiast

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    I've had a nokia 6260 for the last six months. At present it is:

    Warranty Status: Repeat Failure

    Repair Staus: Awaiting new handset.
     
  10. Mal

    Mal Enthusiast

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    Personally I prefer Sony Ericsson over Nokia any day. Think generally the phones are better quality, better sounds (both Microphone and speaker) and overall good.

    One thing to watch is that if you are a Nokia fan it can take some time to adjust...
     
  11. serfty

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    What I have found interesting over the years with those who prefer Ericsson to Nokia or vice-versa is the seems to fall into two camps.

    IME, the more technically minded people tend to prefer Ericsson's while most others swear by their Nokia's.

    I work in IT and some years ago I was laked into a brand new SOTA Nokia. This lasted for about two months.. I gave it to my M-I-L and went back to my older Ericsson; I have stuck with Ericsson since.

    I just found the Ericsson philosophy with keyboard layout and menu structure more intuitive for me.

    These days with the new 'phone there seems to be some convergence between the brands.

    YMMV.
     
  12. infoworks

    infoworks Member

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    I have used SE for many years, mainly because they had tri-band before Nokia, which I needed in the USA. I have stuck with them since, but recently got a new nokia for my son (forget the model number) but it seems a good phone.

    Next one I get (which hopefully is a while off) I'll consider all options.
     
  13. serfty

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    What about Japan?

    OK, back to my original question.

    I have found this rescource which indicates a tri-band with GSM900/GSM1800/GSM1900 would be the go: Dual, Tri, or Quad Band GSM Phone?

    However, it indicated that Japan & Sth. Korea do not use GSM. Sth Korea uses CDMA. Do any know what technology is used in Japan?
     
  14. infoworks

    infoworks Member

    Aug 11, 2002
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    I understand there are some more expensive phones which can be used in Japan, but you still need a Japanese SIM equivalent. It would depend on the frequency of your travel there or to SK, to see if the cost is jusified.

    I go to japan 2-3 times a year and live with the "no phone" experience for the week I am there. Not surprisingly, the world keeps turning and everyone survives!
     
  15. ioki

    ioki Member

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  16. Dave

    Dave Newbie

    Jan 4, 2006
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    "3" phones can roam to Japan. I'm pretty sure all the recent ones are Quad band.

    A 3G phone is no higher priced than a similarly specced GSM phone, but you can't get a budget, simple 3G phone - they all have cameras, big colour screens, etc. They're a bit chunkier than GSM phones too, but they're getting better (Finally).

    I assume Telstra and Vodaphone's new 3G services can roam to Japan too, but I have nothing to back that up.

    Of course, the call rates when roaming are terrible, but that's the same everywhere.

    Note that 3 now seem to lock their handsets so you can't take out the sim card and put a japanese pre-paid one in there. (I'm sure someone in Akihabara could remove the lock though - but you might need someone who can speak japanese to find them!)

    Otherwise, you can rent a phone pretty easy in Japan - from memory it's not too expensive and you can pick up and return it at NRT. Of course, with these last 2 options you will have a different phone number.
     
  17. I guess there's always going to be a situation where there are faulty individual handsets no matter which brand you go for.

    I've had seven models ranging from manufacturers such as NEC, Motorola, Ericsson and Nokia. My last four models have been Nokia, and I'm set to stay with Nokia. (I like to upgrade phones regularly)

    I've had a Nokia 6260 since December last year, shortly after they were first released (which in itself is a risk) and it's working just fine! Like NM, I probably use only half the features on the phone, but as I have time to play with the phone, there are some things that can be used to improve life.

    In truth, I have a distorted view of Sony Ericsson because of one bad experience. I should get a Sony Ericsson next to dispel or affirm my views, but it's not like trying a new chocolate bar.

    So I probably will stick with Nokia. I have my eye on the Nokia N92.
     
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  19. oz_mark

    oz_mark Enthusiast

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    I had an SE T68i, which had issues with freezing while making phone calls, plus a number of other little quibbles, but I understand they have improved their software since then. I've had a swag of phones as well, the most reliable was actually a Panasonic.

    My 6260 worked fine when you could turn it on and it decides to stay switched on.
     
  20. oz_mark

    oz_mark Enthusiast

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    .....and several weeks later, I am still waiting.

    Not a hope in hell of me ever buying a Nokia again.
     
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