New Toys

Posted by Garth on Monday, August 11, 2008

Yesterday, even though my cheque still hadn't cleared, I decided to treat myself to some new toys.  Nothing too major, but I think I'm having tech withdrawal and I couldn't just sit around and NOT spend money on some new tech toy for myself.  At the top of my list were a new cell phone and a basic set of speakers with a sub.  As my loyal readers know I lost my cell phone awhile ago and have been using some POS ancient Nokia from the Pre-Cambrian era.  And as for the speakers/sub, well I just can't handle listening to electronica on my laptop speakers anymore and figure since I'm gonna be here awhile I may as well enjoy my music in the comfort of my room.  So today I was supposed to help one of the girls that works here - Ying - shop for a new phone for herself, and in the process I bought some toys.

First item on my list was a cell phone.  The mall we went to - Central Festival - was cell phone heaven.  They had pretty much everything that's on the market right now.  Problem is that my current dreamphone isn't supposed to arrive until October, so I decided to go a little lower end.  I don't want buyer's regret a few months from now.  So after doing extensive research into both feature sets and prices I settled upon the Nokia 6500 Slide.  A buddy of mine has one and even though it's sitting in his desk drawer he wouldn't part with it and let me buy it from him cheap.  The camera is rated very highly, and performs to my expectations.  After years with HTC phones it's refreshing to have a camera that not only captures great in normal light, but also has an amazing flash that works great on night time shots.  The music player is acceptable, and Nokia PC Suite has progressed a long way since I last used it.  It's actually functional.  Though I'm not using Outlook right now, and as I recall Outlook integration was one of the biggest issues facing its former versions.  I installed an alpha version of MobiReader which I've had great success with on Windows Mobile (MobiReader that is - not this alpha version).  However this alpha version does have some hoops to jump through.  It's not a native Symbian S40 app, it's a J2ME app.  It does work ok, but it definitely seems rough around the edges and crashed on me once with an application error.  But it lets me read books on my phone which makes me a happy camper.

This phone cost me 10090 THB, which equals about $320 CAD.  I checked out Expansys Singapore and Expansys UK to see what they were charging, and they were 539.99 SGD ~= 13000 THB and 209.99 GHB ~= 13650 THB respectively.  Admittedly Expansys isn't the most cost-effective way to buy a phone, but at least it gives me an idea of market prices.  At any rate, I seem to have gotten a good deal.  And I bought a 4GB microSD card for 1100 THB ~= $35 CAD.

The second and much lesser toy that I purchased is a set of computer speakers which included a sub.  They're from some company called Edifier, which I've never heard of.  But they have decent sound and they cost 990 THB ~= $32 CAD.  They sounded good in the store, and admittedly the next model up sounded slightly better, but they were twice as much.  $32 is easy to justify.  $60 is a little more challenging, especially for something that may be a short-term gain, as who knows when I'm moving out of Dos (as in Gringos, not as in boy or command interpreter).

At the end of the day, Ying didn't even buy a phone.  But I did, so the trip was definitely worthwhile.  And as of today my cheque is finally cleared!  Yee haw!  Though apparently it's Mother's Day in Thailand today which means finding alcohol is going to be a challenge.  A lot of places aren't selling it and a lot of restaurants aren't serving it.  But I'm sure there'll be some around somewhere.  Just not sure if I'm up for partying today for some reason.  Very groggy.  Must be new toy hangover.


Vinhsanity said...

I'm glad to hear that amidst this voyage of boozing and unemployment, you were able to take some time out and reward yourself for all your fine efforts. You deserve it!

Gillian said...

Woo! Cleared cheque!

Gillian said...

Oh, let me make that even easier for you:


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