Sunday, April 13, 2008

A Huge Mistake

Vero Beach

Last week I went out shopping for new cell phones. I wanted a second phone for Libby (she never had her own phone before), and I wanted a more modern phone for me. I had visions of being able to compose blog posts on the phone and sending them to without having to start the laptop.

I carefully checked out the offerings of the three major suppliers, Verizon, AT&T and Sprint. Sprint offered the best deal. Part of the appeal was a special deal on the latest greatest PDA/phone. For only $100 I got a new Palm Centro PDA with phone, plus a free case, a 12v adapter, and a bluetooth ear piece. It sounded great.

It had the features I wanted.
  • Basic phone,
  • speaker phone,
  • email,
  • Google Maps.
It also had a lot of stuff that I have no interest in.
  • IM,
  • business card beaming,
  • calendar,
  • still camera,
  • video camera,
  • MS Word,
  • Excel,
  • Power Point,
  • Outlook,
  • web browser,
  • MP3 player with Itunes,
  • live streaming TV.
It even supports the very new and trendy real time blogs like Twitter. With the phone I could post a real time blog of my life including text, voice and video.

Amazing. All this in a tiny little package less than half the size of my old phone. Technology really is amazing. The monthly charge for use of these digital things was $15/month.

Now, after a few days, I hate this phone. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. The problem is fat thumbs.

My friends and family often point out how remarkable is the strong resemblence between me and my father (now deceased R.I.P.). My father's hobby was watch making. He had a great talent for manipulating those small gears and screws almost too small to see. I inherited none of that talent. I can't make my fingers work with small delicate tasks. If I focus all my attention trying to fine control my hands and fingers, the result is trembling. Now, couple that with a phone with a tiny keyboard, a tiny touch screen, a stylus, and worse of all a 5-way joy disk allowing one to move up/down/left/right or to select, and you see that this phone is just wrong for me.

I'm simply unable to work those tiny controls without constant errors. After three days, I looked in to the call log and found dozens of outgoing phone calls I never intended to make. The calls occur as I try to scroll down through the list of contacts in my address book using that dang 5-way thing. My thumbs are so clumsy that I wind up calling every name I try to scroll past.

I also tried writing a blog using the email thing. Oh my god, how painful and unproductive that is with my fat thumbs. It's not for me

Tomorrow, I'm going to grovel, go back to Sprint, and trade in that fancy PDA phone for a simple basic phone with big buttons and large print. Maybe they have a model for seniors.

1 comment:

  1. Why don't you give Libby the fancy one and you you use her simple one.

    She would probable love it and have no problem using it. LOL

    Bill Kelleher


Type your comments here.