The Media Guru
Jun 5, 2009



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My coverage of Orange Mauritius Expo 2009.
Well, actually it was a little more that just an expo of old telephones. ;)

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That’s an old General Electric telephone… Compare that to your own phone. :P

Omnia

I'll start off with the mobile phones... If you were looking to a hands-on with the Samsung Omnia or the Nokia 5800 or the Nokia E71, you'll be disappointed that these handsets are actually dummies at the Orange stand! Apart from the iPhone, there were hardly any other smartphones to test.

Nevertheless, there was still a Samsung Omnia HD being demoed at the Samsung booth. The Omnia has the best screen I've ever seen in a device - that AMOLED screen is way too good, great contrast & true black. :)
As for the UI, it's exactly like the 5800 & having a capacitive touchscreen seemed unconvincing on a UI optimized for resistive touch.
Also demoed at the Samsung booth was a waterproof phone – the Samsung Niagra.

Nokia was demoing the 5800... but they missed a great opportunity to present the N97 to the public.
The Sony Ericsson booth was empty. No one bothered to stroll there.

iphone_id

At the Apple stand, there were two things - an iMac turned off & the iPhones.
I've never tried an iPhone before (nor any other Apple product) so I had great expectations of the iPhone. The first iPhone I tried was UTTER CRAP! The touchscreen was totally unresponsive - tapping was hit & miss, sliding half-worked - I had to finger-punch the screen to launch something & the lag was so evident! I fired up Safari & (although it had a SIM), as expected orange.mu never loaded. & what to say of the screen - biggest fingerprint magnet in the world. Was this really the over-hyped iPhone?
Disgusted, I moved over to the Orange stands where the only real phones were SIM-less iPhones. The second iPhone I tried was so much better. How could two similar devices behave so differently? Both were iPhone 3Gs, but I bet they had different firmwares, which completely changed the user experience. Here are my final observations from the ‘better’ iPhone:
- It's a massive fingerprint magnet, not suitable for my fat greasy fingers.
- Capacitive is less accurate than resistive. With capacitive, your touch has to be firm, you con't have half-heartedly touch.
- There is a lag when doing different actions on the iPhone. For me, the animated transitions actually amplify that lag. The iPhone is not a device for frenzied hyper active impatient persons.
Add the fact that there is no app-switching, that was very frustrating to hit Home every time.
- Although it has a low resolution on a big screen, there is no pixelisation thanks to the anti-aliasing & font smoothing.
- After using the iPhone's QWERTY virtual keyboard, my doubts have been cleared. There can be no alternative to a physical Qwerty or T9 keypad. The virtual keyboard just isn't fast enough.
To conclude, without any apps, I was quickly bored by the iPhone. It's a good gadget, but not worth the Rs 25k it's being sold for.

Moving on, there was a gaming section with kids playing games on PCs, plus a PS3.
& something called Orange Sitara doing the background score of the event.
The mini-conferences were kinda noobish – but that’s the point of the Expo, it’s for noobs! :P

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For the My.T/Orange TV, Orange tried to woo customers by putting huge screens playing those 15 channels. But they forgot that these channels are horrifyingly pixelised & the huge flat screens amplified that! That was a big FAIL!

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Cash & Carry in partnership with Orange were offering special My.T+PC/Laptop offers… The total sum for the PC/Laptops at the end of 48 months is around Rs25,000 for the 256k 3GB, Rs 28,800 for the 512K & Rs 38,400 for the 1M. Check it here.

liveplug The Home section was also boring except for the Orange Liveplug – connects your My.T TV network via electrical lines.

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To sum up, Orange Expo was a waste of time, no interesting technology, plastic smartphones on display, iPhone extravaganza, a Home suite straight from France & some conferences-for-dummies. But it's an Expo where models are more attractive than offers - that's why I’m glad I went there, & I would definitely recommend you to go… even if it's only for one thing…. the booth girls. ;)

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Tushal said...

Orange sucks..I won't bother to waste my time in going there..I heard that the girls are awesome..xD

carrotmadman6 said...

@Tushal
Yes, they were... that's why you should waste your time to go there. :P

Yashvin said...

Will check them out tomorrow, hopefully!

I still dont have my tickets, nor a printer to have a hard copy of their downloadable invitation and I dont think I got any entry ticket in the telephone bill! Grrrrrrr! I will have to pay Rs25? :S

carrotmadman6 said...

@Yashvin
Those aged above 60 don't pay. :)

But since that as well doesn't apply to you, you'll have to pay. :P

morinn said...

I think I voluntarily lost the invitation and from what I see, I kind of did the right thing. :P

Anonymous said...

don't think will get time to go to Orange Expo 2009: Projects Pending :)

Mike said...

I visited the expo today and it was useful for me as I wanted to check out what was available in this country. I do not yet have a mobile nor a decent internet connection so it was an information gathering exercise for me. However, I did not jump into any of the offers I first want to check out the competition. The mini-presentations were ok to get initial information on products. However, it was basic and not enough technical info for me but then it is directed at the general public.
I skipped the booth girls appreciation review because carrotmadman6 took care of that.

carrotmadman6 said...

@Mike
Here's a fact: in internet connectivity, for the time being there is no competition. & for the mobiles, those sold at Orange are not among the cheapest (even with this Expo pro). :)

Rite$h said...

Hope you saw beautiful girls as well there, not only phones and internet equipment :P
Btw nice coverage of the expo

Amit said...

Went there today. It was indeed a waste of time. Orange could have done it much better. U'll see useless services such as tv on mobile where u can't see anything on that damn screen, it's not available everywhere and at Rs250/month.
They're offering 50% discount on games which u can download for free on web.. Orange sucks!
As far as the devices are concerned, i was impressed with the Nokia 5800 in Nokia's stand. IMO It is the best value for money smartphone available actually. The Nokia E71, Iphone 3G and Samsung Omnia HD are excellent as well but their prices are exaggerated
Apart from that you can enjoy free internet if u've got a wi-fi device with u and watching/admiring the beautiful ladies exposed there can be a source of fun as well.. :)

Sun said...

Was fun reading this post early sunday morning! :P

To sum up, Orange Expo was a waste of time, no interesting technology, pl...

well... your conclusion was really straight forward! I apreciate. As for me, i would like to own a Nokia5800. its nice.. the price isnt to harsh, its got all the functionalities i want(esp WIFI).. and i'd rather choose emtel, because it has better 3G network than Orange(talking from experience of being a current orange 3G regular user)

Indeed very frank review by the carrot!

Rock ON!!

carrotmadman6 said...

@Sun
Yep, the 5800 is indeed the best value for money phone. Btw if you're looking for a 5800, you'd find it cheaper elsewhere rather than at Orange Expo.

Mike said...

@carrotmadman6
Thanks for your tips. I am going to check out Emtel and see what they have to offer.

Joyshan said...

Ive downloaded the invite card on my ipod and showed it at the entrance... the guy was wow..iphone! yea these chicks were nice ;) the only best part of the expo other wise it was crap, I think it should be named Oranged expo 2k9 :P

joyshan said...

yea before i forget... I was also watching some videos on youtube while taking my stroll there :P Free WIFI FTW!

Anonymous said...

my photographer friend took more pics of the booth girls rather than the products on demo! :D

carrotmadman6 said...

@Asheshr
Good for him. If I had a camera, I would have probably done the same thing. ;)

Yashvin said...

@Joyshan : mega lol @ your invitation card on ipod!

@Carrot : I cannot copy paste :(

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