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Thread: PDA

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    PDA

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Gday all,
    I know this is well and truly off topic, but does anyone have any recommendations for buying *a PDA?
    I was initially looking at PDAs, then a few combined PDA/GPS units caught my eye, but I dont have any ideas as to where to start.
    Am I better off staying away from combined units and getting separate items? (Im more interested in the PDA side at this stage, but a GPS would be handy.)
    I know that CSers are a knowledgable bunch (apart from me of course *;D), so I know Im casting the net in the right direction.
    Thanks in advance,
    Steve.

  2. #2
    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Steve,
    My model is a little old now, I have an Imate Jam. Quite happy with it, even though it is on Windows Mobile 3.

    The next model up for Imate is the Imate JasJam I think, which has an integrated WIFI card (it is an add on for the Jam).

    Are you after Push e-mail? If so, that might limit your choices. Blackberry is probably still leading this area, but others are catching up.

    A lot of the Imates, O2s and Dopods are all the same units with different branding.

    As for GPS, I went for a separate receiver (Holux 236 slim - $100 delivered from Taiwan) and TomTom. Works very well for me, but had to buy the TomTom for PDA from overseas supplier as they were not yet selling the product for PDAs here. They were(are?) focussing on selling the stand alone units for a lot more money at that stage. The GPS receiver and PDA communicate via bluetooth, so if you also have a bluetooth headset, that could create issues.

    Hope that is of some help.

    Brett.

  3. #3
    Senior Member speleomike's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Hi Lovey

    It really depends on what you would use it for now and in the future. I have a Palm Pilot and I have at work played with a few others. Here is what I have found.

    The most use for my PDA is for an address book, calendar, and CityRail timetable (local files read by a web browser). More rarely I use a few spreadsheets and have a TODO list and some notes on art and music that I like.

    One finds that one usually use these devices for less than one plans to. Particularly I would suspect that an inbuilt GPS will not be as good as a standalone model with regards to say speed of getting a location and accuracy.

    Also I find the PalmOS interface so much easier than MS Windows. The later is just painfull on small screens. It sucks a lot. Make sure at the shop that you play with a demo one and see how usable the interface is.

    Mike


  4. #4
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    I agree with Mike.

    I used to have an "organiser" pre PDA days.
    Never used it.

    These days my phone is my address book, it is a calendar, I have a copy of the City Rail timetable loaded as a spreadsheet and it has a to do list I never use.

    Im currently looking into adding a GPS function like my son has on his phone but it may not work as he has a model up.

    Do investigate thoroughly what it can do for you and what you will do with it.

    I think some people are PDA people and some arent.
    Im not.

  5. #5
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    Re: PDA

    I was looking for a PDA a year or so ago for the wifes birthday. I was looking for something that gave good bang for the buck. Ended up getting a Palm Tungsten TX. Good features and performance for a good price. It has both bluetooth and wifi.

  6. #6
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    Re: PDA

    My Palm finally died a while back and I am looking at getting either a Palm Treo or a Blackberry as I want to combine the pda and phone.

    I am pretty certain I may be getting a blackberry pearl as I have been told by a few people that they are pretty indestructible (palms arent as sturdy).

  7. #7
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    Re: PDA

    i usea blackberry for work, we dont use them as a phone due to our wonderful application but its been dropped and thrown on the odd occassion and is still going strong :)

  8. #8
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    Re: PDA

    02 XDAs are the way to go - no having to carry a phone and a PDA

  9. #9
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    Re: PDA

    she who has great ideas uses a o2 XDA IIs and uses the applications for work alot and finds the batteries run out pretty quick, thats one thing to look for battery life depending what you will use it for.
    She will goes thru 1.5 batteries per day.

  10. #10
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    Re: PDA

    Lots to consider here Lovey,

    What is going to be its main application etc.

    I have had a Palm Pilot and Imate and looked at Blackberry, Treo, O2, etc.

    I wanted a phone and PC type capability rather than having to carry both.

    Personally I reckon for a PDA you cant go past the Palm, I used 2 variations over a number of years and they were great. Compatibility with Windows based PC was also good as I was using Excel plus data bases so needed to be able to update on both or either.

    When I went to the Imate (which I got for an almost give away price), I am now sorry I didnt spend the extra and get a Treo. The Imate was on CDMA so a couple of months ago just went back to a mobile with some notetaking capability which I can synch with my PC. Still get calendar, to do, contacts, notes so it suits me okay.

    Compromise on fancy bits but havent had to fork out upward of a $1k.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Thanks for all of your replies folks, theyve been very helpful.
    I should have been a bit more specific as to my requirements when I first posted, so here goes.
    The main things that I would be using it for would be contacts and address list, calendars, appointments and schedules, anniversaries (mainly the wedding one *;D), some note/memo taking. This issue came up in Tassie recently, trying to write memos, about the various cafes I went to, on my mobile phone. I had very limited character length for each memo, so I had to come up with some creative abbreviations.

    I dont want a phone included as Ive already got one which has a long contract left on it *::).
    I might do the occassional email checking on it, but Id have to go somewhere a bit larger to use that feature, I dont know if theres any wi-fi hot spots down here. It would come in handy when Im overseas at the end of the year.

    I had to look up what push email was *:-[, and I decided I didnt need that either.
    The option to link an external GPS to the PDA seems like a good idea as well, sort of like having a separate grinder to the machine.
    Ill have to keep looking and checking the reviews.

    Thanks again for your help and suggestions.

  12. #12
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    Re: PDA

    mios are good for inbuilt gps and all the pda functions

  13. #13
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    Re: PDA

    Ive been looking at PDAs for about 4 months and come to the conclusion that what I really need is a UMPC (Ultra Mobile PC) because I need to be able to at least work on it at a pinch. Currently looking at the Fujitsu U1010 but really hoping that you can get a GPS module for it as well.

  14. #14
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    Re: PDA

    Without wanting to go off topic - I hope everyone here buying portable PDA/PC devices are Salary-sacrificing them!

    Speak with your employing organisation as to their policy on these - it could potentially save you almost half of the retail price *:o

    Cheers,

    -A-

    Not a Tax Accountant, but rather a serial Salary-sacrificer *:)

  15. #15
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    At my new place of employment they are salary sacrificing their daily coffees from the on-site cafes.

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    Re: PDA

    Good call Sam - and Yes that will be my method of purchase - no GST either!

  17. #17
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    Re: PDA

    Just recently went through this myself and ended up with a Palm Treo 750. It was about as close as I could get to the ideal unit I was after, as nothing had the exact feature set I was after. The main things it misses that I wanted are Wi-Fi (available as a plug-in card if youre prepared to lose the miniSD slot, which Im not) and a decent camera. One reason I got this was because its described as first a phone then a PDA which was my requirement. Also Palm have cracked open Windows Mobile 5 and done their own work to sharpen it up which the others havent been allowed to do. So you can start typing a name or number from the Today screen and it searches as you type, rather than having to type then click find as the others do I think. Theres also an update to Windows Mobile 6 available now. Plus it works on NextG (HSDPA) if high data speeds and range are important.

    Re s/s, I did that on my laptop but didnt bother on the PDA. New cost was only $700, by the time you take out the $50 admin fee my work charges you dont get a lot of money back and it means you cant s/s something else like a lappie if you need another, on which you may save heaps more. (Well you can but then you have to get in to FBT)

    Greg

  18. #18
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    Re: PDA

    I have a had a few PDAs now, an old ipaq that was used for mapping (when 4x4ing) now replaced by and Asus A636 which is a PDA/GPS combo that is great, though like all 3.5" screen pdas I wouldnt want to carry it with me all day long

    also have a Dopod 838 pro, which really is a PDA with phone tacked on, works great for me as you always have internet access mixed with phone (I normally talk to people more through SMS and email that voice) very versatlie but the camera is woeful compared to most phones

    ppc (so running windows mobile) have a lot more software available to them, which is handy as once you see some of the things they can do you will want more and more from it

    from what you have said you need it to do I think any ppc would suit, even some of the smaller screen ipaqs if your eyesight is up to it...

    depending on what model phone you have an carrier and so on you may be able to use it as a bluetooth modem for the pda, so if you need to access the net or emails you can using a data connection on your phone

    dont worry too much about battery life, they are all hopless :(

    dont discount a better phone to do what you want, there are plenty that will do wat you want really well, including syncing with outlook and so on

  19. #19
    Senior Member Magic_Matt's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Dare I say, wait for the iPhone? ;)

    Dell used to make some pretty decent PDAs, you could probably pick one up second hand for a reasonable price. If youre really settled on a non-phone PDA you cant go past the Palm Tungston TX for bang-for-buck - I ran the tender process for a federal department last year and in the end went for the TX, but only because IT security regulations precluded them from connecting phones to the network. To be honest, youd be much better off with something like an O2 XDA or Atom IMO.

  20. #20
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    Re: PDA

    m@,
    I have looked into the I phone and it seems to be missing a few basic things.

    MMS, non 3G compatible, and some of the other standard mobile phone things. Maybe by the time they get here it may have changed for the Australian market, but there havebeen a few complaints about some of the basic stuff they dont have.

    I already have an iPod, so do not need that function.

    Saying that I may change my mind when/if I see one when they get here.

  21. #21
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    Re: PDA

    Im waiting for the Asus P750 - it seemed to be the ideal phone but I hadnt time to wait for it to come out.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Magic_Matt's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Yeah, Im only kidding about the iphone - just couldnt resist the urge to suggest it and see whether an impassioned debate ensued ;)

  23. #23
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    Re: PDA

    One guy in the office has a Treo 750 which is more solid and has more functionality than my crackberry.

    The crackberry does pull the chick though.

    On the down side, the crackberry has no expandable memory, no facility to watch movies, pictures or edit documents sent by email.

    Go the Treo

  24. #24
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: PDA

    Ive found a couple of models thay look like they might be suitable, being a PDA/GPS combo.
    - Asus A696
    - Mitac Mio P550
    - Airis T620
    Ive managed to find a quite a few reviews of the first 2, with opinions varying wildly (as expected ::)), but not many on the last one. From what Ive been reading, the Airis is basically a Mio 550 clone (it is made by Mio as well), but a lot cheaper.
    Does anybody have any experience with any of these units, or know anybody that does?
    All feed back welcomed.
    Thanks again all.



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