Mobile phone companies are crap

After posting about the iPhone yesterday, I thought I should mention that figuring out what service was best for me was a real pain. It should have been easy, but it wasn’t. Because I had unusual plans — buying a Pay & Go phone and then switching to a 1-month rolling contract — I rang O2 twice before buying anything. I wanted to make sure that Visual Voicemail, unlimited wifi and tethering would work on a non-iPhone contract, and was assured that they would be. After getting the phone, I found that Visual Voicemail didn’t work, and called O2, assuming it was a configuration problem… but no. They said Visual Voicemail and tethering are unavailable on anything other than an iPhone contract, which is not what they said before. I suggested some possible solutions to this: Could you turn on these features without using an iPhone contract? Answer: No. Apparently ...(Read More)

Getting the new iPhone 3GS

Phew.  I feel tired just having written the title. I recently got the new iPhone 3GS. I wasn’t convinced by previous iPhones but this one, and the release of OS3, seemed to fix a lot of the problems with old models — copy & paste, video, HSDPA — as well as being thoroughly good-looking. The one thing I don’t want ever again is an 18-month contract. I think they’re nuts. 18 months of lock-in in a sphere of technology where improvements seem to appear every 6 or 8 months just isn’t sensible, especially in a fiercely competetive market for service providers: I guarantee there’ll be much better tariffs available for new customers in a year than there are now. So, I wanted to get hold of the phone without the contract. The obvious way to do it is to buy the phone on Pay & Go and then take out ...(Read More)