Twitter Extending Character Count

7 Jan

The last few days I’ve been reading articles about how Twitter is mulling around the idea of removing the character limit on a tweet or drastically increasing it. Personally I think this is a bad idea and may do more damage to the Twitter brand than help.

Twitter’s entire identity is as a micro blogging service. Granted originally the character limit was imposed because of technological restrictions limiting the number of characters in an SMS message to 160.

As time has gone on at Twitter, users have become much more creative in how they tweet and do whatever they can to make it short and sweet and to the point. If / When Twitter decides to get rid of the limit, we will start seeing blog like posts from every brand and person on twitter gumming up what used to be a nice feed of quick little snippet posts.

If I wanted to read a persons blog, I would read their blog. If I want to read the short and sweet version, I follow them on Twitter.

The limit makes Twitter what it is and removing that limit opens us up to the same spam we see on Facebook pages all around the world.

Twitter removing their character limit turns it into a less interesting version of Tumblr. In fact Tumblr is more feature rich than Twitter and allows for a lot more personalization. So if Twitter is going to jump off the deep end and become another Tumblr, then why not just pack up and move in with Tumblr?

Just my opinion.

 

Why are people pissed about Peeple?

2 Oct

peeplelogoI’ve seen this app show up in my Facebook and Twitter feed numerous times in the last few days and wanted to find out why people have been brandishing pitchforks and petitioning to have it removed from the app stores before it has even been released, so I decided to do some looking around.

The number one issue I see people complaining about is that the app will allow people to leave anonymous reviews of a persons character which would leave them open to being bullied. This argument is relatively weak considering there is absolutely nothing stopping me from creating a fake profile on Facebook and doing the exact same thing! Where’s the petition to have Facebook shut down and removed from all the app stores in which is resides?

To me this app makes absolute sense and I think will be a fantastic tool for people when used properly, and much like any other app on the internet there will be methods of having false comments, and harassing content removed. So why is everyone so worried?

I personally can’t wait to try out this app. I think it will be a great way to get to know people and find out about their character.

Here’s a perfect scenario. You are eyeing something on craigslist and after exchanging contact information, you decide to meet up. You can have a look at this persons name or number on the Peeple app and see just what kind of person you are meeting with. This may very well save you from a precarious meet up and prevent something bad from happening.

I love the idea that profiles can be made on someone else’s behalf because then if someone else has dealt with a sketchy person on Craigslist, they can alert you to scammers, or thieves or any other of the lowlife types that mess with people on Craigslist.

I think this app will bring a level of honesty to the people you see day to day, and the people you don’t even know. I’m all for it.

Power to the Peeple.

The Apple Tax

1 Oct

People that follow me on Twitter or Facebook know that yesterday I had to take my Macbook Air into the Apple store to have my battery “serviced”.

About a week ago my mid 2012 Macbook Air started prompting me to have the battery “serviced”. According to the help article on my Macbook the battery can have several statuses.

Service battery the battery is experiencing an error (regardless of how new it may be) that could result in an unstable capacity. While it should continue to function, it is recommended you have it serviced.

Replace battery soon the battery should hold ample charge to allow you to work, even though it holds less than its original capacity.

Replace battery nowΒ the battery will not hold enough charge to give you ample work time.

No big deal right? I figured I could take a quick trip to the Apple store and they could diagnose and repair the issue.

I was educated

The Apple store representative informed me that basically any battery status other than NORMAL means the battery has to be replaced and since my Macbook is a few years old, it’s not covered by a warranty. This means a charge of $149.

No problem. I tell the rep to go ahead and I’ll pick my Macbook up tomorrow as I didn’t have time to wait for it to be completed.

I received a phone call

The Apple technician that was assigned to work on my Macbook Air called to inform me that they found liquid damage to the case and trackpad and in order to continue repairing my Macbook it would require an additional $300 worth of work.

Macbook Repair Bill
Macbook Repair Bill

Here’s where I am at now. New battery, new housing, new trackpad and a little labour! I asked the tech if they could simply sell me a battery and the answer was no. I asked the tech if they could just replace the battery and the answer again was no.

This pretty much left me at Apple’s mercy as I needed my laptop and couldn’t just buy a battery. This was super frustrating.

After shopping around and trying to find something comparable, I ended up feeling defeated and authorized the work to be done. I can’t go long without a laptop. I run a small business and really need my Macbook to be working.

This is the price you pay to be an Apple customer. Either do what Apple says, or toss your $1200 laptop out the window when something happens out of warranty.

Thanks Apple.

Wind Mobile Reality

29 Sep

Wind Mobile LogoThe reason I’m writing this post today is to talk about the people who try and detract from Wind Mobile who really don’t know what they’re talking about and tend to fire off negativity in the comments section of Wind’s Facebook posts. Here’s what you need to know about Wind Mobile before singing up as a customer.

Coverage

Wind Mobile does not have the same wireless coverage as any of the other carriers here in Canada. If you’re planning to leave ANY other carrier for Wind, you need to ensure you have appropriate network expectations. They are still a young company and have a lot of ground to cover in terms of network. If you are expecting the same coverage you have with your current provider at Wind, you’re going to have a bad time.

 

Customer Service

Wind Mobile does have local customer service reps during normal North American business hours. They have an outsourced call center that takes over the load when the local customer care is at home sleeping. If this is something that makes you uncomfortable, then stay where you are.

wind-memeRoaming in Canada

I’ve seen a lot of people talking about how a rep told them that as long as they were in Canada, there would be no roaming. This is simply untrue and poor training on the reps part. If you’re in Canada and on the WIND network (not WIND AWAY) then you are safe to use all of the facets of your unlimited plan.

If you see WIND AWAY on your device, you are roaming and should try to limit use.

It’s really that simple. I’m not sure how so many people get confused.

Device Subsidies and AWS Banding

Wind Mobile uses a type of spectrum referred to as AWS wireless spectrum. The AWS bands are much higher frequency bands which means that wall and building penetration is not the greatest. Wind has made several improvements to this situation to try and help their customers as much as they can, however they can’t create miracles. What does somewhat frustrate me is the fact that Wind managed to scoop up some low band 700mhz spectrum but has yet to deploy it for customers. This would solve reception issues and network density issues from what I’ve been told.

Now lets talk about the Wind Tab and device subsidies.

A device subsidy is essentially the way a wireless company can offer you a $0 phone. It essentially is an agreement between yourself and a carrier saying Β “Here’s a free phone. Now you keep service with us for X amount of time / days / revenue”. Wind Mobile and even most other carriers have moved over to a model that works similarly. Let me break it down.

  1. Carrier provides you a device at a very small or no upfront cost.
  2. The balance of the value of the device is placed on a “tab”
  3. Each month you pay your bill, the carrier reduces the amount of your tab by subtracting 10% of your months bill from that amount.
  4. Once the subsidy is paid back in full, you are no longer required to pay off your “tab”.

Let’s go through an example.

On the Wind Tab, you can get a Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus for $399 up front.

The actual value of the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge Plus is $949 + tax.

This means your Wind tab balance would be $550.

Each month your bill is $40, so Wind would apply $4 towards your balance making it $546 after month 1.

This means you have a long ways to go before your tab is cleared but here’s where Wind is different. If after 2 years you still have a balance on your Wind tab, they will bring it down to $0.

I hope this helps clarify a few things for people considering making the change to Wind.