Monday, 20 July 2009

A Samsung Omnia morning

Last month I blogged about my Samsung Omnia phone and how diabolical it is; well, now I'm ranting about it again because it really is the sort of phone you don't want around you in any kind of emergency.

If, God forbid, I was involved in an air crash and was, for whatever reason, the sole survivor, clinging to the tailplane as it is gently washed ashore on a desert island, I would, no doubt, be overwhelmed with joy to discover that I still had my mobile phone on my person. I would be elated if I then discovered that I had a signal and more elated still if there was power left in the battery.

On wading ashore and finding a shaded spot under a palm tree, I would reach for my mobile, dial home or the office, tell them what had happened and get them to organise a rescue party.

"Hello? Yes, it's me. I've been involved in an air disaster, looks like I'm the sole survivor and I'll be late home tonight. Actually, I won't be home at all unless you can organise some kind of rescue party as I'm stuck on a desert island, just me and the tailplane."

Well, yes, if I had a Nokia or a Sony Ericsson, maybe, but not if my phone just happened to be a Samsung Omnia. In fact, the realisation that I was a Samsung Omnia owner would, quite literally, induce suicidal tendencies I didn't know I had as I realised I would be stuck on the island for all eternity and would have to resort to remembering what Bear Grylls had taught me from his programme, Born Survivor.

Touch wood, I haven't been involved in an air crash or any other kind of disaster. All that happened to me this morning was that I discovered I didn't have my debit card in my wallet when I went to buy a ticket. This, of course, is worrying as I started to wonder whether I had lost it, dropped it or just left it in another pair of trousers or the breast pocket of yesterday's shirt.

Fortunately, I was still able to buy a ticket because I had my trusty credit card with me, but I thought I'd better call my wife and let her know the situation before she put yesterday's clothes in the wash. Not a problem, I would simply whip out the mobile, press the speed dial button and hey presto! My wife would answer the phone. All would be well with the world.

But no. I'm a Samsung Omnia owner, which means that life is anything but simple. Get this: my phone is on, it had been on all through the night and there was still enough of a charge on the phone to be able to make calls. I hadn't received the usual warnings about power being low and please charge your phone. Everything was fine. When I depressed the keys they made a noise, the home page was before me, I could access my stored numbers. There was nothing to suggest that anything was wrong, so I pressed speed dial, found 'home' and pressed the button.

Hold on a minute! What's that? The phone is switched off? Eh? How? If it's switched off, how can it tell me it's switched off? If the phone is not on, how come I can dial the number, how come I can see the ****ing home page, how come? Ah! Of course, the Samsung Omnia does a really good impressions of being on, when it's off! I should have known!

A speech bubble has appeared. It says that the phone is switched off and would I like to switch it on? Just press the yes or no button. Well, that's easier said than done. I press Yes. Or rather I try to press yes using the Samsung's pen. Nothing happens. I know, I'll press the No button as the Omnia is like that, you press the key NEXT to the key you want and you might get the key you want. Good idea. But it doesn't work. The phone is on but it is telling me that it is off and would I like to turn it on. I press the yes button but it doesn't work. I press the no button and it still doesn't work.

I know! Take the battery out of the phone and effectively re-boot it, like pulling the plug on a frozen computer. That'll work! So I dismantle the phone and take out the battery. Now the phone is DEFINITELY off as there's no power. Phew! That was easy, I think to myself. Now, put the battery back in, turn the phone on in the normal manner and all will be well with the world.

I switch the phone on, the words Samsung Omnia appear followed by the dainty oriental sounding greeting tone as if a Geisha girl is standing in front of me, bowing politely, and handing me a working phone. Within about 15 seconds I'm back at the home page, I press the speed dial button and then I press 'home' and guess what? "This phone is switched off. Would you like to turn it on?" Off course I want to ****ing well turn it on. I want to call my wife to tell her to have a look around for my debit card before some bastard tries to use it and nick all our money!

I dismantle the phone half a dozen times but the same thing happens. The phone is switched off, despite the fact that it is clearly very much on. By now I'm getting flustered. I look for and find a pay phone, which doesn't work, and then I get on the train and fret about the situation. There's nothing I can do. I am completely powerless. I can't do anything until I reach Richmond station and then I can use a call box on the platform. This is what I do and then things are fine, but no thanks at all to the Samsung bloody Omnia.

Over the years I have had many different gadgets: mobile phones, Walkmans, radios, hifi systems, Tama-fucking-Gotchis, you name it, and none of them, none of them at all, even the Tamagotchi (my son's) that often woke me up in the middle of the night because it needed a shit, even that was not as infuriating as the Samsung Omnia. I'm so annoyed with it that I'm now going to write to Samsung in the UK, tell them what a useless lump of plastic their Omnia is and well, that's not the end of it. I might even direct Nokia and Sony to this blog and tell them that their phones are a million, trillion times better.


I had an idea! The phone was getting a little low on juice. Perhaps it needed to be charged. I plugged it in to the mains. Surely then it won't insist that its off when its on? Well, yes it does still insist its off. There's nothing else for it, I'll have to dust off the old Sony Ericsson and insert my simcard into it.

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