Photo by Fiona SchweersI have switched. For just over two years I have faithfully carried an iPhone 3GS in my pocket and it has been my (mostly) faithful companion. But the time had come to make the switch. Did I switch up to a swanky new iPhone 4S? Nope. Did I join the mass exodus over to Android and get a Galaxy Nexus? No (as nice a phone as it is). Did I get lobotomised and now think that I should get a Blackberry? No way. The only blackberry in my life is the jam I have on my toast of a morning. No, I chose the road less travelled and went with Windows Phone.

So, what exactly did I choose? I now have a very nice Nokia Lumia 800. I wont bore you with specs as they are very readily available elsewhere on the Internet. I am not even going to get bogged down in a technical comparison. What I do plan on doing is share some of my thoughts, over the coming weeks, of living with Windows Phone. Because my experience is isolated to the Lumia (apart from a brief Samsung encounter) I will not be able to separate my experience of the software from the hardware or vice-versa. That said, the first post will be about the hardware (which is fair enough, the first experience of any device is the hardware as you unbox it). Expect part one to land in about a week (or so).

NB: If you are interested in a raw technical comparison, check out vsChart.com


Church in the clouds


For those Star Wars fans among you, you might immediately think of Cloud City, but strangely enough(?) that’s not what I’m talking about here (although I’d like to).

In these days of public and private clouds, 3G and 4G data, iPhones and iPads does it still make sense to for churches to have offices equipped with traditional PCs (Mac or Windows) for pastoral staff? Sure for administrative staff, that make sense, but does it for our pastors?

Here at Crossway I’m currently smack-bang in the middle of three IT projects of varying sizes. We’re upgrading our servers (and adding several tonne more storage space), replacing about a third of our PCs (and equipping our media & communications peeps with shiny new Macs), and expanding our Wi-Fi to cover the whole campus.

All of those projects have caused me to reflect, are we doing IT all wrong? Should we get rid of half our PCs and equip our pastoral staff with iPads and get them out of the office to where the people are?

What’s your church doing? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.

I have joined the club


Well I’ve done it. After waiting to see if Mr. Jobs would announce any new iPhone hotness along with the iPad I’ve gone and got myself an iPhone. In fact this very post has been written on my iPhone using the Wordpess app.
So as much as I would have liked to wait to see what WinMo7 hotness MS brings to next months Mobile World Conference, I really need to follow the herd on this one. We probably have about a third of our staff with iPhones now and for me to not have one (from support perspective) just didn’t make sence anymore. So, here I am, iPhone in hand, ready to save the world… Is there an app for that?

Has the new Microsoft got it right?


Bing-iPhone In case you haven’t heard Microsoft has released Bing for the iPhone*. Personally I like the new warm fuzzy Microsoft, where their products work with other peoples’ without you having to do any hacking.

While I’m sure this exactly the right thing to do regarding promoting Bing, is Microsoft doing the right thing by releasing applications for a competing platform while Window Phone struggles?

This would never have happen before King Bill gave up his throne.

*Also available for Windows Phone, Blackberry and Sidekick

Disappointed Samsung


The inevitable is going to happen. I will get myself an iPhone. On one hand I want one (let’s face facts, it’s a very very good product), on the other hand I don’t want fall into the Steve Jobs reality distortion field.

I was holding out hope for the Samsung Omnia II (Omnia Icon in some markets). It sounded like the Windows Mobile to have (aside from coming preloaded with WinMo 6.1). I recently had an opportunity to play with one in a Telstra T[life] shop and I was very disappointed. Samsung’s TouchWiz UI shell didn’t impress me (in fact it just made me think I was using their low-end F480 which everyone who’s had one seems to hate). And compared to the other smartphones around it, it’s AMOLED screen didn’t look special at all. I played with it for all of 2 minutes, got depressed, and went to see what other toys I could play with in the shop.

For comparison’s sake I also played with a HTC Touch Diamond2 which seemed to be running bog-standard WinMo 6.5 (IE without HTC’s TouchFLO UI). This is the first time I’ve played with a 6.5 powered device (although I have played with it in the emulator) and even though I know that clunky old Windows Mobile lurks just under the surface, I was pleasantly surprised as to how the new welcome and start screens worked (smooth, responsive, easy). There may be some hope for WinMo 7 after all (if MS and their OEM partners can get it right).

For now it looks like I’ll lock into an iPhone for 24 months. By then WinMo 7 will be mature and maybe the Marketplace for Mobile will have (almost) as many apps as Apple’s App Store. Or maybe Android will have taken over as mobile king-of-the-hill.

%d bloggers like this: