Archive for the ‘Verizon’ Tag

My iPhone 4 And Me   2 comments

Wow, I’ve really had a busy week. I haven’t had time to blog at all until now! So here’s a recap of the highlights…

On Tuesday night, my new Verizon iPhone 4 arrived! The box was so crisp and new and perfect. Do you know that Steve Jobs personally helped design the iPhone box, so that when you open it, the top section slides effortlessly apart from the bottom section to reveal the phone? For you iPhone owners out there, you know what I’m talking about.

The phone itself felt slightly larger and possibly a wee bit heavier than my old iPhone 3 (hereafter known as Gerri). The design is beautiful – two sides of glass, held together by the surrounding metal rim/antenna.

My immediate thought was “Eeeeasy, eeeeeeasy there, be careful! BE CAREFUL!” I didn’t purchase a protective case with the phone (I ordered one online the next day, but it hasn’t arrived yet), so I left the temporary protective plastic on the back. Ghetto, I know, but seriously, I drop everything. If my life were a video game, my clumsiness factor would be set to “demigod.”

With the patience of a Venus Fly Trap just waiting to snatch up my new toy, my boyfriend John calmly waited for me to plug the new phone into my mac laptop and begin what he must have envisioned would be a life-altering experience for the both of us. An iPhone 4! Dinner can surely wait!

I was really impressed with not having to physically leave my house to activate the phone – after plugging it in, a prompt screen appeared in iTunes asking for some info for my new Verizon account. In about 17 seconds, I was up and running. Gerri was quietly crying on the other end of the couch, deactivated, cold, and alone. (Dramatic pause).

The other awesome thing about iPhone? The backup. All my stored info, apps, text messages and contacts were already in iTunes, so once I plugged up my new phone, it all transferred in. This process took what seemed like an eternity (1 minute, 38 seconds), but finally, it was ready for John to start messing with.

The first addition John recommended was Google Voice. If anyone out there has a smartphone, but does not yet have GVoice, GET IT. It’s fantastic! And free! It lets you customize your own phone number with any area code in the country (although all the good ones are unavailable).To me, the ability to choose my own number felt like I’d been given temporary superpowers. Imagine the possibilities! I tried all kinds of number combinations – my name spelled out, my dog’s name, my cell phone number with a different area code. Eventually I settled on a Connecticut number that was similar to my own, with an aesthetic ring to it. It had to be easy to say and remember.

Once that excitement had passed, John helped me configure the settings and add credit. International calls with Google Voice are supremely cheap. Like, two-cents-per-minute-to-Australia cheap. I had to call mum and test it out. I put $10 on the account, figuring that should last me a while. Mum answered with her professional work voice, so was totally surprised to hear me on the other end. Up until this point, we were one of those families that would reverse charge the national calling company, and then make an excuse as to why my parents couldn’t accept the call, and hang up. But would then call me back straight away with their cheaper calling card. Now I don’t have to cheat the phone company! Thanks, Google Voice! Talking to mum and dad that night cost me 14 cents. You can’t even buy a lollipop for 14 cents these days! Yes, you heard it first here – Google Voice: Cheaper than lollipops.

Anyway, it’s now Saturday and I’ve been using my iPhone 4 for four days. I absolutely love it, and I’m so glad I made the switch from AT&T to Verizon. I am supremely happy! My reception service has been fantastic, I’ve had no dropped calls, the clarity of voice is great, and most importantly, the phone is lightning fast! When I open an app, it responds immediately! Just last week, I was living in a world where I didn’t think immediate response from an app was even possible. The iPhone 4 camera also takes very crisp pictures, and video! I haven’t tried that out yet (remember, I’ve had a very busy week). Oh, and there’s a new feature called Face Time, which seems cool. I haven’t tried that yet either, but you can basically call a friend (who also has an iPhone 4) and video chat with them. Sweet! The only thing I’m still not sure about is the staying power of the battery. I’m going to have to wait and see how it does over the next few weeks. Oh, and I still haven’t dropped it. Aren’t you proud of me?!

~C

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Posted February 19, 2011 by Elfawin in Random

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What Do You Meme, Meme?   3 comments

Have you ever heard someone mention the word “meme”, but weren’t sure what they were talking about? But you laughed and nodded with enthusiasm anyway? And then went home, grabbed your laptop, and isolated yourself from all other humans until you were fully versed in all things MEME? Yeah, me too.

Memes (rhymes with beams) have been around for a very long time – before the Internet, for sure. Before your were born. Before your parents were bor…well, you get the picture. According to Wikipedia, meme is short for mimeme, meaning “something imitated”. They are essentially the spreading of ideas throughout cultures. Some memes are stronger than others, representing the value system of an entire country. Other memes are more localized. But the point is, they’re everywhere, and they’re fantastic! Check out this little video for a well detailed history of memes. For a different take on memes, check out this other, funnier video on the ever popular #FAIL meme:

But what I love more than ANYTHING about memes, is how they’ve taken on new meming (sorry) through the Internet and social networks that are capable of making ideas, pictures, phrases or videos go viral. Any online community that has user-submitted content is doubtlessly inundated with meme-worthy (and unworthy) contributions on an hourly basis. YouTube, Reddit, 4chan (nsfw), Facebook, Twitter – just five examples of massive online meme-havens.

Remember when Kanye West stole Taylor Swift’s microphone when she was accepting the MTV VMA for Best Female Video in 2009?

Yo Taylor, I’m really happy for you. I’mma let you finish, but Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time!...”

And then every person you know wouldn’t stop saying it for weeks after, but with their own subtext? That was the birth of the “Interrupting Kanye” meme! In the hour after Kanye’s interruption, over 300,000 people tweeted about it. This particular meme went viral instantly because the VMAs was televised live, and was viewed by millions of people. Other memes are a little slower on the uptake, but their staying power is legendary. Remember that 1999 movie Office Space?

Umm, yeah, I’m gonna need you to come in tomorrow.”

Twelve years on, and I bet right now you’re thinking of Lumberg holding a coffee while leaning against a cubicle. Like I said, memes are fantastic. Fantastic!

For the very best, the latest, the most wide-reaching global Internet memes you’ll ever hope to find, one website has it all: Know Your Meme. This is your one-stop shop to stay current with memes. Not only does this site show you the meme (typically in picture or video format), but they also list each meme’s name, origin, “birthday”, additional resources, and relevant tags. They even show a chart graph of each meme’s analytical journey from referential obscurity to revered memeness!

From another point of view, memes can help (or hurt) commercial businesses in the online social foray. Have you ever experienced “The Blue Screen of Death”? It’s the fail screen that some Microsoft users see when their computer crashes or has boot up issues. It’s also the color of IBM’s logo. Having a negative nickname become a household phrase for your company’s failing product does not make for happy marketing meetings. On the other hand, some companies have skyrocketed into meme royalty. Think of that Verizon commercial with the dude on the phone.

Can you hear me now? Good!

– I, for one, would always say that phrase when on the phone in a dodgy wireless reception area. And because I’m an AT&T subscriber, every time I say that line, I think of how much better my coverage would be if I was with Verizon.

For the most part, memes are to be shared and enjoyed. Here’s one of my favorite memes from the Demotivational Poster series for you to enjoy. And share. πŸ™‚

Finally, if you want to create your own picture meme, you can visit Meme Generator, of course!

~C

Smartphone War   3 comments

Photo via simply-communicate.com

I’m currently an AT&T account holder and I use the iPhone 3G. My contract with AT&T ran out yesterday. Woohoo! Free agent! Naturally, I’m having serious thoughts about switching providers and phones. I’m not rushing into a decision, because I have much to consider before I make any changes. Here’s a rundown of my current situation:

1) I’ve had the iPhone 3G now for more than 3 years. It’s not the 3Gs, nor it is the 4. My iPhone runs very slowly and doesn’t operate efficiently on the 4G network. Typically I catch it running on the geriatric EDGE network. *Cringe!* My iPhone often takes several seconds to open an app, and 5-10 seconds longer for the app to become functional. Even if I just want to make a phone call or text someone, I find myself waiting for an eternity. I’m long overdue for an upgrade.

2) I spend a fair bit of time in the downstairs level of my house. Unfortunately, my AT&T reception does not extend to the downstairs level of my house, which means I get a lot of dropped calls, if I even get service at all. I have to go upstairs before I can make phone calls or send text messages.

3) As an AT&T customer, I’m the frequent recipient of dropped calls, wherever I am. The AT&T network just doesn’t seem to have saturated coverage. And as for calling themselves the “fastest 3G network”, refer to my first note about app loading speeds.

4) If I switch to Verizon, I won’t be able to use a phone if I go home to Australia (or any other international destination) for a vacation. Verizon’s network is currently incapable of global roaming.

4) I like having an iPhone. I like the user-friendly touchscreen technology. I don’t really want to use a phone with a keypad again. I’ve done that in the past and I’m not going back to it.

5) There’s no doubt that, regardless of provider, I’ll be upgrading to a new smartphone. The question is: Do I stick with AT&T and get an iPhone 4 for only $50? Or do I switch to Verizon and pay $200 for the iPhone 4 (which we all know is soon going to be replaced by the iPhone 5)? Or do I get a Droid? Or something else? My friend Mallory (check out her blog here: http://strategystrange.blogspot.com/) is with Sprint, and she loves it.

Smart phone features I cannot live without: The phone has to fit easily in my jeans pocket (so it can’t be clunky), a decent GPS app, a good Facebook app, customizable ringtone ability, a decent photo camera, ability to shoot video, and finally, a minimal amount of clicks to use any/all phone features. Is all of this too much to ask?


The folks over at Engadget have created a handy comparison of the iPhone 4G on both Verizon and AT&T. After reading the comparison and following comments, I gather that the phones are pretty much identical. The only different is what each network can do for me. So what do I do? Sigh. Does anyone have any suggestions for me?

~C

Posted January 30, 2011 by Elfawin in Social Media

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