New mobile phone

Because my mobile phone Earthlink-provided, I had to go out and buy my own service for the first time recently. When I first started working in this department, we were using Nextel/Motorola i1000s, which were pretty cool in 2000 when I got mine. Then they decided to cut costs and replaced those with some crappy generic thing with service through Verizon. I don’t have a problem with Verizon’s service, but this phone is a heap of shit. I miss calls frequently, including two that recently that were job interview-related. That I know of, anyway, there could be more. Sarai’s Verizon phone works fine though so I assume my problem is the phone, not the service. My co-workers have similar experiences.

But enough about that, I’ve mentioned all that here before anyway. I shopped around a bit and ended up getting a Nokia 3660 smartphone with service through T-Mobile. It’s based on Symbian OS and can run Java applications. It’s got Bluetooth so I can sync my OS X address book to it wirelessly, which was one of my requirements. I get really tired of trying to keep my phone address book up-to-date. It also uses a SIM card and can be unlocked, so I can take it to another service if T-Mobile ends up sucking. I haven’t had any problems so far though, although admittedly I haven’t used it much yet.

The only problem I’ve had is Bluetooth-related. I bought a Belkin USB->Bluetooth adapter for my iBook because I don’t have it built in. It worked out of the box, with no drivers required. I was able to pair the phone to the laptop with no problem, but I initially couldn’t sync data. It turns out the problem was due to the firewall on my iBook; it synced with no problem (albeit slowly) when I flushed my firewall rules. Bluetooth apparently uses port 3004/tcp, but when I allowed that in my existing ipfw configuration it still failed. Disabling my own ipfw configuration and using Apple’s standard one also didn’t work until I added an entry for Bluetooth on port 3004. Once I did that it worked fine. But still, doing the exact same thing in my own ruleset doesn’t work, despite the output from ipfw list being nearly identical. Go figure. I could always just use the OS X-controlled firewall configuration but I prefer to use my own, as the flexibility of the standard one is pretty limited. In the meantime, I guess I’ll just flush the firewall rules to sync the phone until I get it sorted out. I suppose it’s not that big a deal, as I don’t need to do that often anyway, but it’s an annoyance.

I still think camera phones are a stupid idea and I never would have bought one if I could find a decent phone with the features I want without a camera, but I couldn’t find one and was running out of time to look.