Move over iPhone (for the most part!)

Alison (my wife) always tells me I have an amazing way of talking myself out of purchases. Now, this mainly pertains to clothing (I’m in my standard jeans and t-shirt as I write this). However, when it comes to electronics and gadgets, I’m extra cautious – although you couldn’t tell by my gadget to clothing ratio. Let’s just say I buy more things that plug in than things that hang in my closet within a given year . . .

So, onto this iPhone business. I’ve been back and forth about purchasing this uber-gadget since the news broke over it’s existance. I told myself that my next phone would be able to text and email with a full keyboard. So, when I saw that the iPhone would have an internal keyboard I was, as many other, awestruck.

I really almost bought one . . . I did, honest. But, my cheap self couldn’t bear to pay the extra minimum $20 per month to have the limited data plan that would enable all of the features (like Google Mapping, Visual Voicemail and Email). Also, I’d be locked into a 2 year contract. Of course, the steep price did aid in my thriftiness.

So, I stalled. Then I thought of a phone I had wanted for a while before all of this iJunk started. I’ve always been a fan of Nokia and have owned 2 or 3. Each one was superb in it’s operation and design . . . and each one found it’s way to the concrete or into a water puddle. My last phone was an insurance replacement and was far from acceptable, but locked a year contract in, so I was stuck.

Back to the phone in question. I saw the Nokia E62 at Cingular when it came out last year. I went to the store to hold it. It was cool and did LOTS of things . . . except Wi-Fi, which I really wanted. I didn’t get it though . . . must’ve been meant to be. I just found it again as it’s successor, the E61i (actually, there is an E61 for European markets). This one is sold unlocked, so no carrier sells it with a contract (not necessarily a bad thing, see below).

So, I compared this with the iPhone. It has Wi-Fi (woohoo!), it browses the web as a full page (even though it’s not as slick as the iPhone), it has a GREAT calendar, there’s an active standby, so my calendar info shows on the main screen for each upcoming day/week. It’s EDGE capable (3G too, but in Europe only). AND, it has a dedicated keyboard. So, all I was missing was the slick interface (which is admittedly cool), and visual voicemail.

Also, it will handle all forms of email including POP3, MS Exchange, Blackberry Connect, etc.

But, the main aspect of the phone was that I could get it a good bit cheaper than the iPhone without the extra data plan AND NO contract. So, I’m a free man to move carriers or stay with AT&T and use another phone . . . it just feels good. I’ll also keep my current family plan and not have to fool with new pricing structures.

So, needless to say, I’m excited. I’ll post a review later on to this post to let everyone know how it’s going. So far, so good. Nokia, it’s good to be back!

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