I finally purchased a new phone last week – a Motorola RAZR V3x . Telstra's decision to cut its $30 prepaid recharge expiry from 6 months to 2 months was the trigger for the change, but I also wanted to explore the expanded features available with a modern phone and 3G service. I considered Vodafone, 3 and Telstra, eventually choosing the latter as I could get the phone and basic service for $20 per month.
I quite like the combination of features on the V3x – 2 megapixel camera, QVGA screen, MP3 player, Bluetooth, external memory and more. Theoretically I can now dispense with carrying a separate phone, digital camera, MP3 player and PDA in my bag, although the V3x does nothing (except phoning) quite as well as the specialised tools. My Zaurus PDA's and notebook computer are still required for typing and working during my long daily commute. Pity that Telstra's data rates are so expensive, otherwise I could use the phone as a modem – the USB cable (standard mini-B) and software are included in the package.
The first video call between my mobile and that of my wife was a very pleasant experience. It was great to see her face on the other end of the "line". I wish the technology had been (cheaply) available when we were dating from a distance. She has a Motorola V1050 with Vodafone. Despite being an older model with slightly lower specs (1.3 megapixel camera, no Bluetooth) I think that both the phone and its interface seem more polished. The interface on the V3x can be a bit slow to respond, with some commands appearing to "time out".
Overall I'm pretty impressed and it's nice to have a new phone after a couple of third-hand models. Interestingly, three out of the four phones that I have owned have been Motorolas, a Jazz (my first phone) and an E360. No particular reason for this, it's just how it worked out.
I look forward to exploring more mobile information technologies in future.