Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Sometimes newer just isn't better

This past Sunday my trusted T-Mobile Dash leapt to its death from the rear deck lid of my Honda as my youngest daughter and I headed off to get a Christmas tree. I really liked that phone. I could access all of my e-mails, contacts and calendars whenever I needed to do so. It wasn't fancy. It didn't have a touchscreen. It had limited memory. And it had a rollerball that worked better some days than others.

As I picked the pieces up off the road I knew I was about to have to spend a chunk of change to replace it. I headed to the nearest T-Mobile store and was pointed toward the new HD7 (Windows mobile) and G2 (Droid) phones. I asked the clerk if the phones would do what my outdated, last-generation phone would do and I was assured that they would.

Figuring that the Windows mobile phone would easily sync up with Outlook (wrong) I went with the HD7. As I got to playing with it I began to get annoyed with it. The virtual keyboard is lousy compared to the actual mini keyboard on the Dash. Sure, the screen was big and bright and I could view websites much easier on the HD7 than on the Dash. But this phone was for business.

I sat down to sync the phone - and this is where the trouble began. When I plugged the phone in, my computer began accessing Zune (not a good sign). I called customer service (since the "owner's manual" contained next to no useful information) and was told that I had to use Zune to sync the phone. (Wrong.)

When I realized that that was not going to do it, I called customer service again. I explained my problem to the girl who answered the phone and she assured me I could sync the HD7 with Outlook. Then she transferred me to tech support - the girl there had little idea what she was talking about and told me that the phone would not sync with Outlook. (Please explain that to me, Bill Gates.)

My displeasure with the phone was now approaching hatred. The camera was awkward to operate and flushed out the subject with light. I could barely hear the person on the other end of the line on speaker phone.  Worst of all? There was no solitaire on the phone. No games at all. If you wanted a game, you had to buy it online.

After court this morning I returned to the office to attempt to make this thing work. I called customer service (again). I was transferred to tech support (again). The guy on the other end walked me through the unbelievable process of exporting my contacts from Outlook.

Easily synch w/ Microsoft Outlook
Stay in synch with your Contacts, Calendar, and Email in Microsoft Outlook

The T-Mobile website was, shall we say, not quite truthful. In order to download my contacts I had to create a Microsoft Live! account. After doing that I was able to access my contacts on the phone. Next came the calendar -- and, guess what, it's an even more complicated process (so complicated, in fact, that I decided it wasn't worth any more of my time).

T-Mobile was just plain dishonest in their claims about the HD7. It doesn't sync with Outlook. It certainly isn't done "easily."

Now it's off to take the HD7 back to the store and exchange it for a G2 - which I am fairly certain will be just as useless.


lyle said...

So what's the verdict on the phone? Does the droid sync with outlook? Can sync your calendar?

Houston DWI Attorney Paul B. Kennedy, said...

I was able to sync the G2 with Outlook -- with the exception of my e-mail. Of course I had to purchase a 3rd party app to do it.

The G2 is light years better than the HD7. It even has a star map.