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Jan 30 2004

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Who designed this phone?

Well, Ginny and I got new cell phones yesterday.

Ginny wanted to get a picture phone … and I thought it would be kind of cool to have one too (ref: future post about camera envy).

I’ve been less than pleased with the SprintPCS so we decided to get Verizon service. Mitch & Steve both have it and have no complaints.

We picked up the phone yesterday evening … as they were programming the phones, I heard this horrible music playing when they turned the phone on and off. I asked the guy if that could be turned off. He said: Of course … and asked if I wanted to be shown how? I replied that as long as it could be done, I could figure out how.

Got the phone home and tried to figure out the process for turning off the music … I found nothing obvious in the manual or on the phone itself.

Additionally, I wanted to figure out how to change the banner display so it would have my name instead of the words “Verizon Wireless”. Since both phones were identical, I wanted some way to clearly identify Ginny’s phone from mine.

I couldn’t figure out how to change either, so I called Verizon’s tech support.

The guy at Verizon said that there was no way to change the startup & shut down music off short of turning off all sounds and the banner text was built into the phone. Well that’s clearly unacceptable. If you’re in the theater and realize that you forgot to turn off the phone the music plays regardless.

So, we’re off to the Verizon store again to return these phones and find new ones.

I’m really not sure who designed these phones … IMHO, it’s very poor design to not include a way to disable sounds. Heck, even Windows lets you change the event sounds.

The inability to change the banner is pretty annoying too … I know that it’s a verizon phone (it’s got a physical verizon logo on the phone itself) … allowing the user to change the banner would be a good idea so they can put their name on the phone’s display.

Although I really didn’t think about it so much when I first looked at the phone, it sure seems like they designed it to be a toy rather than a tool. When I buy a phone, I want it to be a tool … even with a camera.

Oh well, we’ll see what else they have to offer.

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