Posts Tagged ‘mobile phones’

Maps on the internet…

February 18, 2014

Google maps, google maps,
Where have I been?
On my way to my destination,
The whole world I’ve seen.
When there is, to journey’s end,
A short road, straight and true,
Google maps ensures that I
Travel an extra forty-two…

Nokia maps are better by (to use an apt word) far!

How Airtel “helped” me…

February 8, 2014

Since yesterday, the internet on my mobie has not been working. Several calls to tech help etc did not help. I am doing a night bus journey tonight, going to Manipal, and returning by night tomorrow. I thought I ought to get the problem rectified.

So on the way back this evening, from a church wedding, I went to the Airtel office, reaching at 6pm. They said the SIM card was “damaged” (apparently they gave me a cut card instead of a proper microSIM) . The guy said they would give me a new SIM, and when the new SIM activated, it would deactivate the old SIM. I told him that I didn’t want to be changing micro SIM cards on a running night bus, and told him I’d come back on Monday. This was 6.45pm.

I came home and at 7.30pm when I decided to call my friend Prabhakar, at Manipal, and tell him I was leaving, I found to my horror that the SIM had been deactivated,and I could not make any calls…not even the “emergency” ones that are supposed to be allowed. Tomorrow is Sunday, so there is no way my SIM will be activated (assuming it can be.)

The IDIOTS. Now I have borrowed my friend My3’s that I am not familiar with. I will get my internet and mobile connection god knows when on Monday. Thanks to that fellow’s ineptitude, I am totally disconnected, with two night bus journeys to do alone. Thank goodness, My3 was nice enough to lend me her phone.

I am very angry…but I can do nothing.

I am on BSNL dongle on my laptop in the bus’s working very well. But I want to murder that guy at Airtel, who could at least have given me the new SIM….


March 29, 2011

That’s the past tense of “simplicity”….

Yes. Simplicity is a word with only a past tense…I can’t believe that for YEARS I did not have a mobile phone, and did perfectly well without it!

After much rooting around in “my” mobile shop (around the corner!) we found that the Nokia E 63 has fallen in price from X to less than half X, so my nimble-fingered OPS (Old Phone Stealer) has, instead of making me incur an expenditure of Y (it would have been a small “y”, too!)… has made it 8Y…because now I will have to change my mobile service provider plan to include internet.

The good thing is, the E63 has Nokia maps, as well as email and green tonsils and blue tooth and all those et ceteras..and has a qwerty keyboard instead of the detested-by-me “full touch” where I have no idea what key I am typing.

It will no longer fit into my jeans pocket the way the Old Inexpensive phone used to do….and it served me beautifully for so many years too. Bye-bye, old phone…*wipes away a tear for the simple old days”.

I expect to look back at this post when I am ninety, when I will blog that I now have to get the latest brain-implant chip, and wipe away a tear for the good old days…

An Utter Pain…

March 29, 2011

Losing one’s mobile…and trying to get a duplicate SIM card…is an Utter Pain.

But all of it has not spoilt the serenity and beauty of the Nimishamba temple in Srirangapatna, that Vittal took me to visit, today. More about it later…back to the STUPID paperwork right now!

I think it’s a basic fallacy…

February 18, 2009

Disclaimer: I am no expert; my views are possibly simplistic.

One of the basic mistakes that I think the capitalist model of business rests on, is the concept of infinite increase.

This is the concept that the customer base, the demand, the need for the product, can be made to increase continuously, and without end.

How can this be? At some point of time, the curve *has* to flatten out, the supply will keep up, if not overtake, the demand. Saturation will happen. And the problem is that the economy, and the companies fuelling it, don’t think of it at all. This causes a lot of problems in the market and the economy…people seem to think of demand as a graph line going straight upwards, when I feel it’s more like a wheel, going up and coming down by turns.

Even where one would think of ever-increasing demand….real estate, for example, or mobile connections…a cyclical slump in the development of the businesses that keep the city’s demand for these fuelled, will have repercussions on the demand.

Land, and housing, is definitely a finite-supply commodity; so logic says that the prices will only go one way…up. But with the downturn in the IT sector, one is seeing a slump in real estate, too. Of course, the slump never seems to bring back prices to the pre-boom rates; a certain amount of escalation is always present..but certainly the high prices have been tamped down sharply. This is reflected in the fact that builders are bringing down their prices, and there seem to be so many housing developments that have been stalled. Rentals, too…”to let” boards springing up everywhere is a sure sign of the shrinking demand. In my own apartment building, where rentals and sales would happen quietly, there are now several flats vacant.

But sometimes, even before saturation in terms of demand occurs, the supply peters out…a classic case in point is the mess that the mobile service providers seem to be in. Their idea is to get as many customers as possible, through aggressive marketing..then, for those hapless customers, the woes start. The network is saturated, calls drop repeatedly; prospective customers are told that their area cannot support any more numbers…a sure recipe for disaster. In the old days, this is exactly the kind of lousy-service scenario that Indian Telephones got away with…because they were a monopoly. Today, customers will migrate to the rival service providers.

To an extent, the mobile phone mess is a reflection of what we see in Bangalore. Too many customers (citizens)…a creaking infrastructure that doesn’t beging to cater to their needs….patchy improvement plans that are short-sighted and do not, ultimately, solve the problem at all…. a situation where no one is happy.

I am beginning to think that what happened to Calcutta in the 70’s may be, after all, the best thing for Bangalore, too. Calcutta collapsed in its own inefficiencies, and business fled the city and the state. Then, the city was able to breathe and take stock, and is slowly building itself up once again.

Perhaps, this kind of collapse in Bangalore will make a kind of self-limiting remedy to the woes we see all around us. No more of our forests and wildernesses will be converted to housing layouts, transportation and roads will improve, not being under tremendous pressure; and who knows, Mr and Mrs Bengaluru Vaasi may have life a little easier…

A couple of years ago, I already found that in Kuala Lumpur, the government was moving its offices to Putra Jaya, forming the nucleus of a new satellite town. I wish, at least, that Bangalore would adop this policy and shift to a satellite town like Kengeri whose potential has never been developed.

Oh well…random thoughts while I cook….!

The Paining of Complaining….

December 23, 2008

As long as things go smoothly, our system works. But let there be a problem and one is up against the most people-unfriendly scenario possible.

Our mobile bill (my mobile phone is an add-on to KM’s) was vastly over what’s normal, and we have given complaints twice, and both complaints have been registered on the Airtel site.

Now every day, several times, honey-voiced “customer care executives” call up on either phone, asking why we have not paid the bill. Increasingly, we are irritated by having to repeat our complaint, which the Airtel people say is not showing up on their system, so “could you tell us the problem, please?”

Yesterday I finally told one operator that I had no intention of wasting my time repeating the details of how we have been overcharged, to every Tom, Dick, and Harini who calls. If our complaint, which is registered, is not showing up on their system, that’s their problem, too, not ours. I asked her to set right the overcharging and call me back.

Silence so far.

But…I don’t want our mobile phones to be cut off, so today I will probably have to go and stand in a loooong queue at the Airtel office and meet someone and reiterate my woes all over again….


For goodness’ sake, please do not….

August 7, 2008

You know you shouldn’t be driving gas-guzzlers. But did you know that you should also not drive cell-phones?

Just stick to eco-friendly cars! And in any case, how many passengers do you think you can fit into your mobile phone?


June 9, 2005

Went for a road trip to Munnar in Kerala, with 2 other families….the Mahindra resort is very plush, but lacks a good place for a daily walk. The interesting thing is that mobile phones don’t work there. It was a revelation watching the other adults coming to terms with non-communication for 4 days…absolute withdrawal symptoms!

A lorry driver has practically totalled our Honda City this evening, trying to go to the left from the centre of the road, and increasing the damage after hitting the car by trying to straighten out….he then ran away while my poor spouse was trying to park the car at the side and catch him. No police presence or help….the tyre burst, too, and it’s going to be a long haul with the insurance and repairs….