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6 posts

Wannabe Geek

Topic # 25005 9-Aug-2008 12:05
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I'm crossing borders in a couple months to New Zealand, and I'm going to pick up a phone with me before heading over.  I have 1 requirement, I want to be able to send texts back and forth to my friends / family back in the United States.  Out here my buddy has a sidekick / hiptop phone which has an always-on AIM client so when I text him or send him a AIM message his phone beeps and he gets it. I don't know much about the smartphones and how they go about doing business, but do they operate the same way?  Or do only certain models, like Blackberry Os, Palm, or Windows? 

Lots of questions, but I keep bouncing around trying to figure out what phone to snag.  I've been looking at the HTC TyTN II, BB 8310, etc. 

** Also (sorry for the long thread). 

Are these phones an overkill, is there a way I can AIM on just a regular phone (non-qwerty / basic Nokia / LG candy bar).

I'm trying to avoid the .20c fees to send texts back and forth, as my friends in the States are too cheap to respond.

Cheers and thanks for the help!

- Mike

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  Reply # 155400 9-Aug-2008 14:28
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There are a lot of applications for smartphones and PDAs to install and have your IM account always on and running. that would inlude AIM, ICQ, MSN, Yahoo and jabber.

I belive there are J2ME applications for ordinary phones (which support java), installing them your also woule be able to send IMs to your US friends...


However, the only concern is DATA :) it's very expensive here in NZ, but still cheaper then sending international txts :)


It would help if you state your phone and I'm sure I could find something suitable for you :)



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  Reply # 155408 9-Aug-2008 15:07
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As noted you'll need a data plan - having said that if you don't have a data plan Vodafone customers will go into the $1 a day for 10 MB casual data price. After this it will be $1 per MB.

If you use more than $15 a month and never more than 10 MB a data (I doubt IM will use that much) then you may start thinking of a 100 MB plan and up...

The problem with plans is that these operators here want you to sign contracts. Not user friendly.

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Wannabe Geek

  Reply # 155528 10-Aug-2008 04:05
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Kobiak -

Thanks for clearing that up, so it sounds like I possibly should be able to get by with either a basic phone.  (Whatever the freebee of the month is) as long as it has J2ME.  So I'd probably take a Nokia or a LG.

As far as smartphones I was looking at the HTC TYTN II (We call it the Tilt / Kaiser) on some networks.  I was also considering the blackberry at one time, but it sounds like the windows mobile might be better.  As nice as the iPhone is, I just can't justify the NZ price for it! :)

Frietasm -

I didn't know you could do the $1 / MB without a plan in NZ.  Makes me wonder why people pay the $35/mo for the 10MB Blackberry data plan.  Unless there's something else that I don't know included.  Would I need to have a contract to pull off the $1.00 a day plan, or that's just tacked on.  In the states if you have your own phone, you can usually just pick up the plan without contract.  They do push, in the US cell phones, electronics, and probably anything else, all sales people are on commission.  They get more commission the bigger the warranty, contract, etc.  Whether you need it or not, they're happy to have you sign up a new one, and push hard to do so. 

The good news is, it sounds like I just need a phone that can support J2ME or a smartphone, and I should be able to statisfy my overseas nonverbal communication needs. 

- Mike

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  Reply # 155541 10-Aug-2008 08:19
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The $1 a day for 10 MB is a casual data rate. It applies to anyone who uses data without a plan.

In New Zealand the operators are in a fight - Telecom is coming to the GSM camp so they want to keep customers locked in. Even if you bring your own handset you won't be finding anything without a contract. It seems the regulators don't have a problem with that.

As for the J2ME application. check that the handset allows you to configure multiple data connections (APNs). If you are using a feature phone instead of a smartphone chances are you will be using the WAP APN and this may not work well with IM. Ask around here in the Vodafone forum which feature phones people have used that work with IM.

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