IT LOOKS like everyone knows I own a piece of hot property.
And everyone has been asking me the same questions: Is the Google
Nexus One (N1) better than the iPhone? Why should we bother about
Google’s first own-brand smartphone when there is the iPhone?
In my opinion, both are wrong questions to ask.
In terms of device specs, the N1 beats the iPhone 3GS hands down.
The N1 has a higher resolution screen of 800 x 480 pixels (or twice
that of the iPhone’s), 5-megapixel camera with flash (3-megapixel and
no flash for the iPhone), twin microphones for active noise
cancellation to block out background noises and a much faster processor
(1GHz vs 600MHz).
That the N1 is the smartphone with the best specs around is only
because it is the latest. In the ongoing brutal cellphone war, the next
big phone (think iPhone version 4 or N2) will surely be even better.
The right question to ask is: ‘Which mobile platform do I want to
support – the Google Android or the iPhone’s Mac OS?’ This is because
chances are, once you are on one platform, your future phones will go
on the same platform too due to familiarity.
Many of my friends who are already on the iPhone were not convinced
about the N1. Rightly so, because they are already used to the iPhone
and the user interface on the N1 is, at best, comparable.
What makes the Android different from other mobile platforms is that
it is, in spirit, a Web phone. The reason is simple: The meteoric
growth of Google’s online advertising business in the PC world has
slowed down and mobile advertising is its next frontier. To succeed,
Google needs users to go online and, hopefully, eyeball the ads. That
is why the only thing you need to key in when you start up a new N1 is
your Gmail account information.
Immediately, my Gmail, Google contacts, Google calendar, Google Talk
and even photos previously uploaded on Picasa Web were synched with my
phone over the air, in minutes. I use the word synched, not downloaded,
because in the Google world, your data is stored in Google’s Internet
cloud and not on the handset.
But a combination of fast 3G speeds and excellent software from
Google means that you will not be able to tell the difference. The flip
side of having data stored on Google’s cloud, however, means that
Google can access your data, through software bots trawling your
account to know you better – and push targeted advertising to you. (We
trust Google to live up to its motto and do no evil.)
The iPhone is a very different creature. It started off as the first
iPod with a phone line and, today, is best described as a hybrid. You
can get e-mail over the air, download tons of apps on the fly and still
cable-synch your iTunes music library, contacts and calendars between
phone and PC. The iPhone is not a full Web-only device.
So if you already live in the Google world like me, Android is the
best choice because Google’s own apps like Gmail and Google Talk work
best on this OS.
But if you love your iTunes music library and cannot live without
your iPod, or if you are uncomfortable with storing most of your data
on the cloud, then without a doubt, go for the iPhone.
seriously doubt their ability to tackle problems to resolve foreigners
to enjoy the fuel subsidy. I have a few ideas which will definitely
curb the fuel subsidy, but hey they already have a great few nuts
sitting up in the sky thinking of all the ways to curb foreigners.
People in their own world never think holistically when curbing one
problem, They only think of the 2 steps but not till the end of the
I would foresee a huge mess this coming May, anyway do
enjoy the article written by Tan Poh KHeng on the latest topic on the
tip of most SINGAPOREAN tongue:
By TAN POH KHENG
Come May 2010, make sure you have your MyKad with you when you visit
petrol stations to top up the tank (editor’s note: MyKad is Malaysia’s
smart identity card).
Because without the smart card, you will not get a drop of petrol even if you have cash or credit.
I have no idea whether we’ll also need to swipe our MyKad to buy sugar, cooking oil and the like in the future.
Somehow, the Malaysian government may be the only one in this world
that needs to verify a buyer’s identity before he fills up his petrol
This reminds me of communism, where the people needed to show their
identification before buying a loaf of bread. But then that was an era
At a time when the Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations)
members and China are opening up their markets for one another, showing
proof of identity for purchase of petrol seems backward.
I cannot fathom whether the move is supposed to show off MyKad’s
multiple functions or to stop foreigners from buying cheap petrol here.
If the former, then we should rightly feel proud as a pocket-sized MyKad can accomodate at least eight different functions.
Any data, from personal particulars to whether the cardholder is
suffering from sexually transmitted diseases as well as his wealth and
other private details, will be unreservedly exposed with a MyKad reader.
But privacy remains of secondary importance. Worse still, there is no product assurance on the extremely vulnerable MyKad chips.
Imagine you are in a hurry for work, school, or some business
meeting, but you’re stuck with an empty tank in a petrol station. All
because the MyKad reader refuses to accept your identification.
Such a possibility is very real. The National Registration
Department (JPN) has urged the public to replace their chips if they’re
There would be chaos if half the country’s population rush to JPN to replace their MyKad just to fill up their petrol tanks.
If the new policy is a counter-measure against foreign car owners
who have exploited loopholes in the earlier policy of allowing
foreign-registered vehicles to fill up their petrol tanks with a
maximum of 20 litres of petrol, then by all measures it is a very poor
Foreign vehicles, especially those from Singapore, have brought much
bigger economic benefits to this country than the profits they have
sneaked away from our petrol allowances.
Inconveniences experienced at petrol pumps will only drive them away.
If we do this merely to stamp cross-border smuggling activities,
then the anti-smuggling squads should work a lot harder to check their
activities instead of transferring the hassles to motorists across the
It is necessary for us to prevent foreigners from enjoying our
petrol allowances, but not to spend huge sums of money acquiring MyKad
readers and inconvenience motorists.