Archive for the ‘W800i’ Category

Two mobile applications no W800i should be without

January 1, 2007

Over the past year, I’ve been a very active user of my W800i mobile phone. I find that it is one of the best consumer electronics devices I’ve ever owned. It is a very good music player, overall good phone, and great camera (for a phone) – all in one compact 2×5.5×10 cm / 99 grams package. (More on that in my 6 months on review of W800i.)

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The size of this phone and all the features it offers means that I can do stuff I simply couldn’t before. A few of my favourite examples include:

– Lighting up the dark path in the woods or finding the right cable connections at the rear of my receiver using the camera light

– Listen to music while walking without being concerned about missing calls or texts (the phone automatically pauses the music for me when something happens)

– Do document scans anywhere – need a copy of that A4 sheet? Just photograph it!

Mobile phones today are really small computers – increasingly similar to the general purpose computers most of us use daily. My two favourite applications are brilliant examples of this trend.
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Gmail on my W800i mobile phone

April 26, 2006

I had a slight struggle making Gmail work on my mobile phone, and thought I should tell the world about it.

In short, I’ve used the e-mail program on the W800i for a long time without problems, but when I added a Gmail account and tried to use that instead, I got a TLS/SSL certificate problem. Gmail requires that you use a SSL connection, but this means that the certificates stored on your phone must recognize Gmail as a trustworthy source. The certificates already on my phone didn’t, so I had to find a new certificate.

This thread about the K750i and Gmail on the Esato forums was really helpful – it’s got all the information you need. In brief though, you need to download this certificate, which is issued by Equifax, and transfer it to your phone. You’ll probably need to right-click on the link and save it on your drive somewhere.

Then, using the Sony Ericsson File Manager application that comes with the phone (and can be downloaded off the internet) you drag the .cer file onto the phone. I dragged it from the explorer window onto the W800i icon in the SE File Manager. Then, your phone will ask you if you want to install the certificate. Confirm, and you should be good to go. Naturally, you’ll need to connect the phone and the computer to do this :)

Of course, there are other things that could be wrong. Remember,

  • The settings for data traffic on your phone must be correct (check with your service provider)
  • The e-mail settings on your phone must be correct (Gmail settings here)
  • POP must be enabled in your Gmail account (under Settings => POP/Forwarding)

E-mail everywhere – yeah!

Sony Ericsson W800i – brief review, six months on

March 23, 2006

Thanks to WordPress’ stats tracking system, I’ve noticed that most people accidentally coming in here are looking for information on the W800i “Walkman phone”. Since I’ve had this phone for about six months now, I thought it could be useful for some of those still on the fence to get a honest evaluation of the phone from someone who’s used it very actively for a while.

In this “postview” I’ll focus on the downsides of the W800i, mention some of my favourite features, and try to compare it to upcoming phones from Sony Ericsson and Nokia. Read on!

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Sony Ericsson’s lousy Update Service software

March 21, 2006

Note to new readers: This post is from March 2006, when I was using a SE W800i phone. Today I am using a Nokia N82, and I haven’t used my W800i for about a year. A lot might have happened with the SE Update Service software since then – keep that in mind when reading about my experience with the software. However, with that said, comments indicate people still have issues with the Update Service similar to those I had back in 2006. – Are, 19.01.2008

A few days ago, I decided to go ahead and update the firmware of my Sony Ericsson W800i mobile phone. I had an old version – L1R002 – dated August 2005. From past experience, I know that updating firmware – that is, changing the program code running the operating system of the phone – can be risky. If something goes wrong during the update process, you could be left with a non-functional device, which must be repaired at a service workshop. Thus, I approached this procedure with caution.

However, seeing that Sony Ericsson had launched a new version of their phone software update program – Update Service II – reassured me a little bit. Mature software is usually better than immature software. I’ll quote from their UK Update Service page:

No user data will be lost, and you will be guided smoothly through the update process.

Judging by this, there shouldn’t be any problems, right? Especially not for a computer-literate consumer. Well…
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Sony Ericsson W800i / K750 HPM-70 handsfree update

March 6, 2006

In an earlier post, I mentioned my problems with the handsfree set for the W800i mobile phone. Poor build quality eventually caused its wires to break. Today, I got my replacement, and I have happy news to report:

It appears Sony Ericsson have changed the material used on the cable – it’s a lot softer and the handsfree set as a whole feels a little more solid than the previous version. The cables, especially those used on the earbud part, are still awfully thin. It’ll be interesting to see how well they hold up.

Anyway – people out there with HPM-70 problems should have them swapped for new sets. It’s basically a production defect, and the replacement kit (provided you get the “new” version) feels a lot more reliable.

Sony Ericsson W800i / K750 HPM-70 handsfree troubles

February 21, 2006

Today was spent helping people with SQL in class and travelling by metro to have my mobile’s handsfree set replaced. As detailed in this thread, I’ve had the cable to one of the earbuds break. That happened before Christmas; I switched over to using only my separate headset. (The handsfree consists of two parts – the main cable, integrating microphone and a 3,5mm audio socket and the pair of earbuds.)

About a week ago, I started having trouble with the main cable too. When bending it slightly I’d lose sound on one channel. Incredibly annoying, when you use the phone as a music player regularly, as I do. Thus I went out to SIBA at Trosterud, which is where I bought the phone back in August. Fortunately, Anders joined me, so the trip was less boring than it could have been. (In retrospect, I wish I’d bought it someplace more central – of course, the only reason I bought it out there was because they were the only ones stocking it at the time.)

I was halfway expecting an argument when I started talking to the SIBA guy, but this seems to be a well-known issue. He agreed to have it fixed straight away (meaning it will be replaced), but they had to send it in to the SE repair shop, who will send a replacement back to them, hopefully within a week. I’m happy I didn’t have to make a fuss about it, though it’s still incredibly annoying to have to wait a week.

The big question here is why the handsfree set is so fragile. The plastic encasing the cables is so crispy, it’s not surprising it breaks easily. Why not use a more robust type of material? I’ve never had a pair of earbuds or a headset where the cable or connector have been anywhere near being a problem. Of course, this was the first walkman phone – hopefully they are learning.

Now I’m pondering what I should do to avoid the problem repeating itself. Wrapping the most vulnerable areas of the cable in tape could help a bit. Problem is, the whole design is just badly thought out. Stiff, thin and crispy cables do not go well with being pulled in and out of pockets and being used on the move.

Crossing over into the important paragraph of today’s post: The news that should not be missed today are, I guess, the most recent bombing attack in Baghdad, causing at least 22 deaths (BBC) and reports that the capture of war criminal Ratko Mladic might be coming closer (BBC). Fingers crossed.

PS: Today’s amusing event of the wry kind was an argument between shop assistant and customer I overheard at SIBA. The issue was a D-Link wireless router, which unsurprisingly had caused the customer plenty of problems. I have to say that my cumulative experience with D-Link products (2 bad routers, 1 bad WLAN-card, 1 good WLAN card) is not good. I really felt for both customer and employee in that situation – they should’ve just returned the product to D-Link and given him a Linksys or something instead. I think in the end he left with the router and a D-Link WLAN card, which was supposed to “work – guaranteed!”. I’m crossing my fingers there, too.