Neve Campbell

iPhone 4 – So What?

Last Thursday, I managed to get the boy dressed and out the door before 7am. Why? Because he had decided that he wanted to get an iPhone 4. He’d sold his HTC Desire the week before, so had been without a phone for a week. Let me just say, this is possibly the most annoying thing he could have done. Without a phone, I couldn’t call him to say “I’m here, can you pick me up?”. Couldn’t text to ask him to pop to the shop. Frustrating. All I could do was send him an email and hope that he was paying attention to his iPad.

I wasn’t that fussed to be honest, and had only decided the day before that I would at least try to get a phone. I went to Vodafone at lunch the day before and got them to do a credit check, and gathered up any proof of residence. You know, the sort of thing an overly organised person does.

We got to Cabot Circus Apple Store at about half 7 and joined the back of the queue which was snaking about outside Brasserie Blanc. There was probably about 30 people in the reserved queue, and maybe 60 in the “walk in” queue. The store had opened earlier than the 8am advertised time to allow the reserved people (such as my old colleagues Nick and Martin) to get their phone just that little bit earlier than expected. There was some problem with the system where it couldn’t sell SIM free phones (which annoyed me – a very unApple thing to do I thought!)

By quarter past 8, I was giving up. The queue hadn’t moved at all in the hour we had been there, and even the people who had reordered were left waiting. I left Alex in the queue, and headed towards Starbucks. On the way was the Vodafone store, open and looking pretty empty. I thought I’d pop in and ask on the off chance they had the iPhone4 in stock.

They did, and could even give an estimated waiting time of how long we’d be waiting before we saw someone. I resisted the urge to hug the manager Tony, got tickets for the queue and ran back to the Apple queue. I told Alex I’d reserved two iPhones for us so we walked back at a bit of a pace to Vodafone.

Signing up for my contract was nice and easy. I handed over a reference number for the credit check, and my PAC code. Signed the contract, grabbed my new toy and ran to get a bus. I was at my desk an hour after I’d gone into Vodafone – I dread to think how late I’d have been if I’d had the patience to stay at Apple!

So here’s where the bad bit started. Porting your number from network A to network B typically takes 24 hours. When I’ve ported numbers before, the new network gives the new phone a temporary number so you can still use it.
Sadly, Vodafone did neither. I had a text the next day saying that the number would port on Monday but no temporary number was allocated to me in the meantime. Which was pretty frustrating, since an iPhone is pretty dull without a connection. So I had this lovely shiny new toy but couldn’t do much with it. (OK, so I could do a bit with it, since I also received on the same day a MiFi to trial with “our” iPad from the guys at 3MobileBuzz, but that’s not the point!) Thankfully, the number port was slightly quicker than expected and by 1pm on Monday, I could finally use my phone!

So whats so good about it? The screen. It’s so crisp to read things on the screen, which is especially noticeable when reading blogs and Twitter I’ve found. Its quick to flick between apps (even those not “optimised” for iOS4).
The camera – well, my iPhone 3G thought it was good before, but now its hanging its head in shame. I’ve used the camera so far to mostly take photos of adverts in the newspaper – and the text is still legible. I’ve not yet tried out the video, or the editing, but it looks pretty decent – to be honest, its not something I would see myself using!
FaceTime (oh yes, the iPhone’s irritating auto correction applies to words you’ve not properly capitalised) isn’t something I would probably use very much – I don’t really like using the phone, let alone having to send a video of me! So far, I have only had a few FaceTime calls with Alex – while we were in the same house because it requires wifi (I wonder if it would work with the MiFi? Hmm…) Unfortunately, on one of those calls, he thought it would be a good idea to moon me.

Overall, I’d say that the iPhone 4 is a massive jump from the iPhone 3 – its just so much quicker to do anything now! Part of the reason that I chose to upgrade on launch day was because I had “upgraded” my iPhone 3 to iOS4 on Monday, and was getting annoyed with the slowness of the phone. Would I recommend it? Of course – but then I would usually recommend an iPhone to most people!

For Sale: iBook G4

Since getting my netbook at Christmas, I’ve barely opened my iBook, which is a real shame as this is a great computer. Which is why I’ve decided to sell it.

I’ve had the iBook since Oct 2005, and it’s been with me everywhere. From lecture halls to hospitals, Aberystwyth to Utrecht, it’s worked happily and still does.

It does have a few problems:

It’s a bit dirty. How the hell do you clean white plastic?!

So 2 years ago, I’d just moved to Bristol and invited Dad and Maria over for dinner. I showed Dad something on the laptop when it fell out of my hands and knocked itself. This is the extent of that damage. Its got a bit of a gap between the plastic and the screen.

The wiring on the plug is a bit dodgy. You can buy replacement chargers on eBay but *touch wood* I’ve not had any problems with this, and it’s been in this state for a while.

It’s the last model that Apple did in the iBook range, a 12 inch model with the standard spec. I’m typing this on my iPhone, but will link to the relevant page when I get a chance! Here’s the page from Apple with the full specs.
It was part of the range that had their batteries recalled because they kept blowing up or something, it was changed around Dec 2007. Battery life is reasonable, about 2 hours?

Want it? Drop me an email to hi (at) I’m open to offers, because I have no idea what to ask!

I Is For iPod; P For Progress

So me and Hayley (well, it was me) came up with the idea of guest-posting on eachother’s blog; mine being located at the “it means nothing, honest”

Once this was agreed and WordPress account set up, the problems begin: what to write about? Should it be my take on something on Ceriselle – shoes, maybe, or Bristol – or something common to my site instead?

How about a link to both. Me and Hayley are both Apple geeks. She has, as I am sure you know, an iPhone, and iMac, a Hackintosh or two. I’ve got a MacBook, two old G3 iMacs, a just-about-retro 2nd gen iPod Nano, and a hankering for the rather pointless big-iPhone-without-a-phone iPad.

So. iPods. And progress. Recently, Google introduced us to Google Wave, and Google Buzz (“Twitter but Shitter”). Neither of these have taken off brilliantly fast, especially in the case of Wave, and I point the finger of blame firmly at progressing too fast.

Think about it. Things need to come in stages so we get used to them. Look at Facebook. Every time it has changed to “the new Facebook” it has introduced a few changes that they could have done all at the same time, but didn’t. You may think this is because they hadn’t developed it that far, or hadn’t had this or that idea yet. But if they have, they still would have had to do it step by step, because too much progress in one go scares the fuck out of us.

Back to the iPod. Remember when iTunes store didn’t exist? And when it did they added each function one at a time and told us “soon you can do this, but not yet.” It’s because Apple know that if they had bombarded us with the full functionality straight away, we would have mostly been baffled by it and it would have failed.

If, when you got your first AOL account back in 1997, you could have had 20meg broadband you would have thought “I don’t need this”. If YouTube and Facebook and iChat and Twitter had all been launched on the same day, with all their current full functionalities, we would have balked at it – remember that at this time, AIM was “well futuristic”.

So they like you to think that each innovation is a natural progression. This is where we round off nicely with iPods again. I’ve noticed recently that my 4 year old Nano has developed an alarming propensity to know exactly what tune to play, when. On the way to my brothers it played Dragonforce; when I arrived at his Dragonforce was on in the house. I have a bit of lady-related grief and it plays all the songs we both love. I lit a fag just before exiting the Grafton Centre the other day and was treated to Eminem telling me he’s a criminal. I met my uncle so he could give me a birthday present and as he drove away, his iPod shuffled to the number one from the day I was born.

Where am I, and indeed Apple, going with this? It’s pacing and mirroring, basically. iPods are learning to react to us. And eventually they will start controlling us, little bit by little bit.

Then, Steve Jobs will be able to put an Apple logo on an actual brick and sell it to us for £349.99. And we’ll love it. It’s going to happen. Mark my words.

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