[kwlug-disc] android phone, anyone?

Khalid Baheyeldin kb at 2bits.com
Thu Dec 17 15:10:24 EST 2009

If you ever travel, specially outside of Canada/USA, then GSM is the
standard to have. If you have a handset that can do GSM (tri-band or
quad-band) then you are good for most of the world.

What this means is that you can buy a local SIM card and pop it
into your handset and you are good to go.

Prices are far cheaper in other parts of the world than here, for example
I am told that a SIM card (effectively a phone number and a prepaid plan)
is 10 LE in Egypt (that is CAD $1.92), and you can load it with 25 LE (that
is CAD $4.81!) for 100 minutes.

This beats roaming charges which can rack up in the 100s.

Only Rogers and Fido have world standard GSM in Canada.

A new player that opened for business yesterday is WIND Mobile. I was
initially happy to hear that a new entrant is coming the the market. They
are backed by an Egyptian magnate who made lots of money putting cell
phone networks in many parts of the world.

My enthusiasm was dampened after I found out that they operate in the
AWS spectrum which is non-standard in the rest of the world (i.e. not
GSM compatible). What this means is that unlocked phones will not
work with them, meaning they have less handset choices and you have
to buy it from them (something that is totally alien elsewhere).

It is good ot have competition though. Perhaps Rogers will lower their
prices eventually.

For handsets, there is a new Android "Droid" phone that is getting good
reviews. There is also the Nokia N900 which is Debian Linux.
Khalid M. Baheyeldin
2bits.com, Inc.
Drupal optimization, development, customization and consulting.
Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability. --  Edsger W.Dijkstra
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --   Leonardo da Vinci
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