Well, I for one don’t normally care about birthdays. I tried to stop counting after reaching 19, but eventually someone always reminds me that I’m close to twice that now (ah, hell, I AM twice that now… dammit). And although it’s a week since my birthday, yesterday I had a belated get-together with Nita and Sudhir, who treated us to dinner at a rockin Japanese restaurant called Goyza King, which I swear was transplanted directly from the more traditional regions of Tokyo.
That would have been enough, but their present blew my mind. Nita recently got an iPhone4, so they gave me their iPhone3.
Now, keep in mind that I only had a first gen iPod Touch before this (now Gillian’s), and I already was drooling over what it was capable of – it being basically an electronic swiss army knife. Now I have one with a camera and microphone built in, at least doubling it’s potential usefulness.
We already have one phone whose bills cost like 40 bucks a month, and I don’t want to get saddled with another bill like that, so I probably won’t use the phone features of it just yet.
However, there is a great cheap alternative. Both Skype and Gmail allow you to effectively use the internet as your phone, call any landline phone (in the case of Gmail’s app, it’s free to call anywhere in Canada). The downside is it’s outgoing calls only. So I can call anyone when I’m in a wireless area, but I can’t receive calls.
Both of them DO have a feature to allow people to have an incoming phone number, but neither work in Canada. In the case of Skype, for example, it’s a problem they have with the CRTC. Skype doesn’t allow for 911 calls to be made, and the CRTC pretty much demands that option be available before they will allow the service. That sucks, because while not a true replacement for a phone, the Skype alternative is a very cheap solution that would work most of the time.
BOO CRTC! First you want to charge me internet by the byte, now this?