Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Party Line Service

Last night, I went to Nokia's flagship store in Manhattan for the Webby Awards' People's Voice voting party. I've enjoyed being -- and been honored to be -- a member of the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences for many years, but to be totally honest, my attraction last night was this: Everyone who went to the party was given a free N95.

And it's amazing. I've never paid money for a mobile phone, always accepting the free starter phones they give you with your plan. That means I've been stuck with a no-frills LG and a metered data plan that hampers use of the mobile Web, much less SMS. Word is that the N95 I was gifted is prepaid through June 15 -- whether it's unlimited until then or if it's a set payment I can burn through before then, I don't know. At that time, I'll consider changing service providers in order to continue using this mobile.

So far, I've installed the Gmail and Google Maps apps (love the GPS even though it's accurate to 1,700 meters or something), and I've started looking for solid news and weather sites and apps to use frequently. I can access my work email and calendar via the phone, which is way handy, and I'm even impressed by one of the demo games; the graphics of the car racing game are quite impressive.

I've yet to fully explore the camera and video camera capabilities, but Robert Scoble and Steve Garfield seem to have embraced the N95, using services such as Qik to stream video live from the phone. I'll have to check that out, next.

But I'm really writing this post to turn to you, Media Dieticians. If you use the N95, what tips and tricks do I need to know about? How do you use it? What apps and services do you think I should check out?

I really like this new phone. Thank you, thank you, DMD and the IADAS!

To learn more about the history of party lines, which have little if anything to do with this blog post, read the Wikipedia entry, as well as this telephone history from Privateline. Not to be confused with for-pay party lines.

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