Upgrade Agony

Spent a solid portion of Saturday lurking around mobile phone websites seeking out some kind of bargain. Any incentive to upgrade my phone would be nice, but I failed to find anything to tickle my fancy. O2, my current provider, hollers that it treats new and existing customer alike – presumably to offset the old complaints from existing customers that newcomers got all the incentives and discounts. However, I want to feel special – I want O2 to reward my loyalty and willingness to stick with them through thick and thin. I don’t want to feel they consider me as important and trustworthy as someone they’ve never done business with before – where’s the benefit?

Seems the whole mobile market took a knock with the proliferation of the smartphone, because the whole data deal seems to have dropped through the floor. You can’t move for companies flogging unlimited texts and endless hours of calls, but with data use limited to 500Mb or whatever. Data comes at a premium.

I have considered sticking with my contract, but that means finding a new phone – and that’s a tough call, because those things don’t come cheap. The iPhones seems to be like the Volkswagen Golf of the mobile world, hardly depreciating from the day of purchase. I could throw all caution to the wind and try the roulette of eBay, but I’m not sure I’m that desperate just yet to pick up some cracked and chipped third-hand mobile – or, for that matter, spending a lot of money on a half-brick in a box!

I suppose I can stick with what I have now, but like computers mobiles go out of date very quickly and older models fall out of support. I have watched as the first generation iPhone and older iPod Touch fell off the support wagon, and with iOS4 it feels like the 3G might be next. Apple created the new operating system without much regard for the 3G and my phone currently runs like a two-legged dog with a limp. Simple tasks, like opening an email, can take forever. I sit and ponder as the screen sits blank – reminded of my last desktop computer when it too had fallen out of warranty, support and everything else. If it ran on Windows, I’d expect a visitation by the Blue Screen of Death by now.

Maybe I need to start participating in magazine competitions and telephone quizes in the hope I can secure a new phone for free?


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