Got my Nokia Internet Tablet and T-Mobile Dash talking to each other

I had given up on getting my Dash and 770 to cooperate.  The bluetooth PAN/DUN workarounds and fixes were too much effort and honestly a little too scary for me to bother with considering I pretty much would only use the two devices together like that once a year or so.

It turns out that after giving up, an easy, cheap, simple solution presents itself.  WMWifiRouter turns your windows mobile device, in my case a T-Mobile Dash, into a wifi hotspot.  It not only works with my Nokia 770, it works with my laptop, Zune, PSP, and any other wifi enabled device.  If you don’t have a Windows Mobile device there’s JoikuSpot for some flavors of Symbian.  Of course, the symbian devices shouldn’t have any problems pairing with a Nokia Internet Tablet…

I’ve been using WMWifiRouter for the last couple of days and it works well.  It drains the battery of the  phone about like talking on it seems to and the phone gets warm, again, just like it normally does during a long conversation.  I will be using it on my upcoming vacation, where I will likely be disconnected from the net except for my phone.

These applications aren’t free, but there is a 21 day free trial with WMWifiRouter, which is plenty of time to decide whether it’s worth buying.

Cool things you can do with Twitter

Twitter is blowing up right now, and it’s easy to see why.  It’s extremely addictive, and very easy to update assuming you have unlimited texting on your phone.  Not being tied to a computer is, I believe, one of Twitters biggest advantages over similar offerings like Pownce.

But did you know you can do lots of other stuff with Twitter besides keep in touch with friends?  Here’s a short list I’ve put together…

You can:

1. track your gas mileage
2. Read “headlines” in a newspaper-like layout
3. Track packages from UPS, FedEx, USPS, and DHL (thanks John C. Dvorak for twittering this)
4. Use an RSS feed to keep track of high priority websites.  (it doesn’t have to be your website, got something you wish had a twitter feed but doesn’t, like a surf report or local news headlines?  Put their RSS feed into this website and follow them)
5. You can see what people love, hate, wish for or several other options.
6. With a little elbow grease you can know when to water your plants.

Okay, the last one is a stretch, but the first three are genuine useful applications that have surfaced using the Twitter interface.  I love it!

xxx@mycingular.blackberry.net “address rejected” explained

One of the execs at work suddenly stopped receiving emails on his blackberry today.  After some testing it was determined that his blackberry account was being returned with a 550 Address Rejected error.  Thanks to this blog entry I was able to get him going again.

Basically what has happened, if you don’t feel like following the above link, is that AT&T has stopped forwarding mail to mycingular.blackberry.net.  All you need to do to correct this is replace mycingular with att.  Like so, xxx@att.blackberry.net instead of xxx@mycingular.blackberry.net.   Ta-da, email is working again.  Thank you Ken Hanscom for blogging about this, as I’m not a blackberry user and never got the email explaining the cut off date for the mycingular server.

Still happy with T-Mobile customer support

Pretty much every experience I’ve had in the last year with T-Mobile has been wonderful. Each time I’ve spoken to a rep over the phone or gone into the local store with a question I’ve come out of the experience pleasantly surprised. After hearing horror story after horror story about every other telephone company it’s a pleasure to deal with the polite people who are willing and able to help with my questions and changes to my service plan.

I’m going to stop now before this turns into some sort of strange viral commercial. Which it basically is… I don’t have anything important to say or any tips or tricks for this post. I just had a nice experience at a retailer in an industry that is famous for its rude service reps and thought I’d let everyone know.

Yahoo Go! Mobile update

After about a month of playing with the Yahoo Go! Mobile app on my T-Mobile Dash, it turns out to be a neat little piece of software.  It has sped up quite a bit after the first couple of initial uses.  I assume it had to do some caching before it was finally able to get up to speed.

I’ve been using the heck out of the Flickr module.  Despite compressing the photos almost beyond recognition it is one of the best ways to look at your photos on a cellphone.  Much much better than the Flickr mobile site.

The only issue I’ve had in the month of playing around with it is that occasionally, if I have the Yahoo Go! app up and let the phone dim the screen, or turn the screen off completely, half the time it won’t come back on.  It tends to freeze and I’m forced to remove the battery to restart the phone.

All in all I’ve ended up using this more than I expected and feel that it’s a worthwhile download, especially if you have a flickr account.

Yahoo Go 2.0 available for T-Mobile Dash

I downloaded and played with Yahoo! Go for the Dash. It’s only been available for the Dash since sometime yesterday and I gotta say the interface is very nice. Great layout with easy to read text. The downside is that it is slow. Not just slow, but sloooooow. Frequently not responding to inputs for 5 or 10 seconds. I counted. Slowly.

The whole experience is hit or miss, like the nice but slow interface. The Flickr widget is probably the best layout and easiest to navigate flickr experience I’ve had on a mobile phone. Giving quick and easy access to your contact’s photos as well as your own. The problem being when viewed full screen the photos are so compressed there’s noticeable banding and other artifacts.

I’ve only looked at the map and email sections. After about 30 minutes of the awful slow, sometimes not responsive interface I couldn’t force myself to actually try them out. I will at some point, and I’ll post up my experiences with them in the future, but my first knee jerk reaction to Yahoo! Go 2.0 on the Dash is… put it back in the oven, it’s not done yet.

*edit* That’s the problem with knee jerk reactions… this thing is in beta, so it is, in fact, still in the oven.

Nokia 770 and bluetooth Personal Area Networks

They don’t mix.  At least not without a lot of tweaking while in R&D mode.  I really meant to mention this in my earlier post about bluetooth PAN on the TMobile Dash, but didn’t.  I must be getting old.  Regardless, unless you are a linux wiz, or just not overly concerned about hacking the 770, there really isn’t any easy way to get it working with a bluetooth personal area network.  If someone figures out an easy way to do it, please let me know.

Here’s a how to from the maemo wiki if you’re feeling up to it.  Good luck!

T-Mobile Dash, personal area network

I’ve recently had to start utilizing the broadband features of my cellphone pretty extensively.  It’s still pretty slow, especially when using the phone to browse.  For some reason, when using it as a modem for a regular PC it seems to speed up pretty drastically.  So it seems part of the blame for the seemingly slow data connection can be laid at the feet of Windows Mobile Internet Explorer.

Anyway, the main reason for this post is that I’ve discovered when using USB to share the internet connection on the phone you cannot receive calls.  This kills the usefulness of that function if you need to download anything or browse for more than a few minutes.  The simple workaround is to use Bluetooth Personal Area Networking to share the data connection.  Even if plugged in to keep the battery alive you’ll still be able to receive calls.

I  had a hard time finding that information on the web when I was trying to decide whether or not to buy a bluetooth adapter.  So I’m putting it out here for anyone that wants to know.  T-Mobile Dash Internet Sharing via USB = no incoming calls.  T-Mobile Dash Internet Sharing via Bluetooth = incoming calls work great, but may disrupt your data stream.

I’d rather get my calls and have to restart a download than miss that important conversation with the boss or potential client.  After all, what download manager doesn’t allow resuming nowadays?

T-Mobile’s smartphone siren song

I’ve gone back to a T-Mobile device, despite the less than impressive EDGE data speeds.

Let me explain.  For a while now I’ve had issues with the Verizon phone provided by my employer.  It had pretty poor reception at my house, as well as no reception at all in the eastern part of the area I sometimes work in.  Plus no bells and whistles at all, in fact it was the most basic of cell phones.  For the longest time this was fine.  I didn’t really need a fancy smartphone because I was stuck in my little hole all day, easy to get a hold of via email or deskphone.  In fact, I think the only reason my employer continued to supply me a phone is because I had one before the merger.

All this changed a few months ago.  Now I’m spending more time on the road (as evidenced by the fewer updates to this blog) and a phone with at least email abilities would be very handy.  Along with one that actually works as a phone over our entire region.  That’s where T-Mobile comes back into the picture.  They’ve got the same crummy coverage at my home, maybe even worse than Verizon, but T-Mobile has much better coverage in the eastern parts of our region.  Plus I really wanted a Windows based phone so I could use Orb, Shozu, Soonr, and Slingmedia‘s remote player with the least amount of hassle.

If you remove all the Blackberrys (not Windows based) and the Windows based Palm devices (too big, too slow, and in my opinion, too ugly) and all the touch screen, slide out keyboard phones (again, too big, and I plan on keeping this device in a pocket, not hanging from my belt) You’re left with the Motorola Q from Sprint, the Samsung Blackjack from Cingular, or the Dash from T-Mobile.

I’ll tell you right away that the Nokia 770 doesn’t like the Personal Area Network connection that the Dash uses for sharing its broadband connection, but everything else works like a champ.  If any major issues pop up I’ll be sure to post about them, but for the time being, I am very happy with my new phone.

T-Mobile Customer Service = Good

Took the MDA back today during lunch and they didn’t give me any heartache about returning it. I told them I didn’t have any voice coverage at my home (which is true) and they refunded my money for the device and even canceled the activation charge, which I would have been fine paying. After all, they did activate it for me and I did use it while I had it, when I was in a service area. I’m very happy with T-Mobile as a company and will probably try them again if they ever upgrade their data plans to EV-DO and get some better, faster smart phones.