The P1i...Phone

September 1, 2007

With so many Mac geeks raving about their shiny iPhones (and I’m not being sarcastic - it’s one heck of a gadget) I thought I’d go ahead and say it - no, I didn’t get one, I got the Sony Ericsson P1i instead.

Firstly, you can’t get an iPhone to work safely in Europe (short of AT&T roaming, of course). Secondly, and as masochistic as it may sound, I really wanted a mobile device that I could program for. Yes, it runs Symbian, an OS I’ve learned to hate it with a passion, but let’s face it - what are the alternatives?

(sigh…) But yeah, I’m gonna give it another go - maybe things will be different now that I actually have a device to run apps on. I have a Symbian/C++ Advanced course at school I have to finish which I kinda used as a lame excuse to get this phone. :) And at least it’s UIQ and not S60… The coolest project I can think of right now would be somekind of CalDAV conduit… maybe… or perhaps some kind of moblogging thing… with a server-side backend… hmm…

As far as the actual phone goes, I can’t really say much that hasn’t already been said. Feels nice, just as wide as the iPhone but thicker. Crashed on me a few times during initial setup (not cool at all) but has worked fine after that. The hybrid QWERTY keyboard is harder to get used to than it looks.

For iSync you’ll need a separate plugin from SE. The awesome Salling Clicker works well after the free 3.5 update + refreshing the device list. You can even use it over WiFi then. Brilliant piece of software that one. .Mac email works of course through IMAP. .Mac SMTP works if you change the smtp.mac.com port to 587 in myaccount > Outbox > More > Advanced > Outgoing. Incoming SSL works, but outgoing won’t even after importing every possible Apple cert I could find on my Mac.

RSS works, but I haven’t yet found an OPML capable reader (to get all my subscriptions from the Mac).

The standard Opera browser (8.65) is surprisingly crummy. Nokia has ported WebKit to S60 but I’ve yet to find a UIQ version. Using WiFi on a phone makes me feel like the platform might actually have a bright future. :) I was a bit disappointed by the camera’s image quality, but I guess the truth is totally depends on lighting/shooting conditions.

Anyways, exciting times ahead…