iPhone 3G – Yes or No ? (The Analysis)

Two days ago , as we all do know – Maxis has launched iPhone 3G and they are taking pre-orders. I was tempted with iPhone 3G (the big hype , the cool phone and not to mention that its from Apple) , so I decided to pre-order it and to my surprise I got a conformation letter from Maxis today on the order.

iPhone 3G Status Order

Since I just booked the phone , I am not sure if I should go with it or just stick with my current phone (HTC P3600/Dopod D810). The iPhone certainly looks cool but I do have an iPod Touch (which is actually the iPhone minus the phone functionality). Okay , that’s for that. Now let me do the maths to see if its really worth the money to buy the phone or not
Firstly , lets take a look at the total payment that maxis will get.

  1. iPhone 3G 8GB Black  –                RM 1510
  2. 24 months * RM 100                     RM 2400
  3. SMSes (around 50 a month)    RM 120
  4. Other charges (i.e roaming)     RM 40

Grand Total RM 4,070
iPhone 3G price (approx) RM 2700
Profit by Maxis :- RM 1370

Now let us take a look if I opt for the free iPhone 8GB by registering with Maxis for 24 months

  1. iPhone 3G 8GB Black  –                RM 0
  2. 24 months * RM 375                     RM 9000
  3. SMSes (around 50 a month)    RM 120
  4. Other charges (i.e roaming)     RM 40

Grand Total RM 9160
iPhone 3G price (approx) RM 2700
Profit by Maxis :- RM 6,460 (thats a whopping RM 6000 profit)

I guess they are just trying to be smart (as usual , if its from Maxis. They’ll try by all means to get you registered. For Instance , their broadband service. Now they are just trying to improve their image by going blog-friendly , trying to convince bloggers that they can just blog about anywhere with their Broadband service ! Oh , its one way for them to roll their capital and in order to stay in business in hard times such as this . As for me ,I am still not decided yet to go for not to go for their iPhone 3G Plans. Its a pure rip off thats for sure and not to mention that you’re unable to roll over your minutes to next month and your data usage (for instance if you haven’t used up your talk time , you can’t roll it over to next month and so on) .
What I would like is your humble opinon from my readers (do I even have a reader ?) on your thoughts. It would certainly taken into consideration

iPhone 3G say hello to Malaysia !

Its finally here and Maxis finally brought iPhone 3G to Malaysia. Its about time that they did and now they are taking pre-orders of their new iPhone 3G. Well , don’t get too excited , I recommend you to take a look at their contract plans here and their terms here.

If you opt for 24 months plan (RM 375 iValue package thingy) , the iPhone is free ! I bet most of us would fall for its trap , honestly thinking RM 375 for some contract plan isn’t worth it at all. Anyway, they’ll be having an official launch of their iPhone 3G event soon. I think its one way of maxis getting back their customers

Fixing WordPress' "An unidentified error has occurred"

Phew , now that was a long title. Anyway , let me get back to my story. As you all do know that I am using this all in one SEO tool that claims to improve my search rankings in order to gain more traffic. In other words , more traffic means more revenue. That is why these days bloggers go crazy on SEOs. That’s a whole other chapter in blogging. So as I was just about to add keywords and title to the SEO boxes (which makes use of WordPress custom fields) , WordPress did shoot me an error saying that “An unidentified error has occurred”.

An unidentified error has occurred - Ouch !

I thought it must have to do with my keywords or something. So I kept on trying and until at point , as I was just to give up – I stumbled across this blog entry in Google (phew , thank god for Google). According to the blog author , it seems that the SQL database needs to be fixed in order to rectify the issue and voila it did the trick. But thats not all , being an analytical person I took a step deeper in knowing what caused the problem and how to fix it. Lets take a look at it shall we  (Oh yeah I am going to do in point form so its easier for people to read instead of me being long winded)
Cause : – Corruption of MySQL Database. Usually the fields are out of sync. It could happen for various of reasons for instance installing new plugins or your host had some issues with their MySQL server. The exact cause however unknown
Fixing the issue :- If you do have cPanel X , then its pretty simple. All you have to do is select MySQL Database in the main menu and then select your wordpress SQL database and hit check first and followed by repair. Usually that would do the trick
Simply hit Check DB and followed by Repair DB in your cPanel X control panel to get it sorted out

Now if you do have phpMyAdmin or other control panel softwares installed. Then kindly check the link out here as I do hope you find it useful
That’s all folks for my WordPress tutorial of the day. So if you do have a problem , don’t fear and don’t panic. Google search first , try narrowing down and finding what causes it and how to fix it. If you have found a way to fix other people’s problem , don’t hesitate to share your findings with the rest of the world !

Streamyx Slowdowns again !

What can I say ?  For the whole night of 8th March 2009 , I wasn’t able to access the Internet. Oh wait , I should say it I wasn’t able to access important sites that we use everyday such as Google , Gmail , Digg and other social networking sites. It seems that streamyx got itself divided with zero. When I checked my connection just to determine that its not my fault . Then I found out who was the culprit , it was TM after all. It seemed that certain IP ranges do have issues after all  as in some of the servers are down and not responding.
So I called up TM to inform them about this issue , as usual I was told that their technicians are working on it to rectify the issue (blah blah blah , the same ol’ story , I am sure that you do know the drill) . Yet they refuse to listen to what I want to say. Talk about customer service. Anyway , I hung up with a polite goodbye after that. There is no point of me arguging to them. As my grandad said once , “If they are fools it doesn’t mean we should be fools as well”.
I think lately TM services are going down the hill and this is because of the fact that monopolize the DSL industry here in Malaysia , you can’t just find a good competitor (some may say JARING , however their coverage is pretty limited for their DSL Service) . What our country basically needs is someone that could stand up and bring Malaysian Internet forward to another level. However , I guess people in Malaysia are too busy with the political arnea which is going on.
I guess even politicans such as Jeff Ooi have tried their best , and yet TM is still being TM. I guess we need to gather more force in order to tell TM what we basically want. As for me , I am pissed off as I can’t even use Google (beat that). Slow speeds are accpectable but this is totally way over the limit. Oh yeah , no wonder most of us (Malaysians) are suffering from high blood pressure. I think I can link the cause it with this. Its going to be so great. Before I do that , i need to gather enough evidence !

Slowdowns & Updates on P1 WiMax

Lately , P1 WiMax isn’t up to its standards. Usually sites would load fast , but then for the past week or so. It has been greatly slow. I am not sure why , but I think it has got to do with their user base (which I think its increasing over the time) or they are tweaking their services again which results in slow speeds.Oh yeah , think of it as my 3rd part of the sequel. If you haven’t read my review on P1 WiMax , kindly do so by clicking here. I recommend you to go through it and read it first !

Oh No
Argh ! - Basically this is how a person would react when their Internet is slow

Nevertheless , let me sum up my experience for the past week. It has been awful , I wasn’t able to connect as in there is an IP conflict every time I connect and at times even though its connected , I am not able to browse the Internet. So much so for devices which just works out of the box. Since I can’t do anything as in to tinker with the settings , there is no choice but to restart . I do hope that they keep up to their reputation and hope that they don’t oversell their bandwidth. Speaking of overselling , its common for ISPs to practice this as they would like to make tremendous amounts of profit in order for them to cover up their losses (if any) and to expand their business ! So anyway here are my rants for this week and how P1 should improve it. Not only in services but in terms of how to handle a customer and how to train an agent/reseller properly !
If you’re having issues/trouble connecting to the Internet with P1 WiMax. Just simply issue this (if you’re on Windows) (Go To Start –> Run –> cmd or type cmd in the search bar)

ipconfig /release
ipconfig /renew

That does the trick. If you’re on *nix like systems , I am sure that you do know how to do it. If there is demand for it , I’ll post it up here. For OSX , just simply go to System preferences and hit Network , simply hit Renew DHCP lease. That seem to fixes  it
1. Improve your customer support service – At first they were pretty goo but lately they sucked. Its like they don’t really know what’s truly going on and they aren’t well verse with the situation yet. I do hope that P1 gives them proper training . Here is a tip for you , try to see how other ISPs customer service does it in countries such as Australia , USA and the UK.
2. Update your site to include downtime , planned maintenance , planned upgrades etc – This is very important in order to build up customers confidence. The reason why people hate TM (streamyx) so much is that they don’t alert their users first if there are going to do some upgrades or not. It will take them at least couple of days before they alert. As for Jaring (the only ISP which I’ve seen that does that) , they do put up in their site if there are any downtime and so on. Please P1 , READ THIS !
3. Proper training for resellers and agents alike – Give them the proper trainning , I’ve seen that some agents are willing to lie to their potential customers such as no data cap and unlimited usages and so on. This is not good as once the customers find out that they have been cheated , they would just keep on complaining back to P1. Keep in mind that its the reputation of P1 that goes down the drain. So its recommended for P1 to give them proper trainning and don’t encourage them to lie on facts. Even if you do , people would start to hate your services just like how Maxis Broadband agents  did on lying to their customers on there is no such thing as ‘data cap’
These are some of my things that I would like to share with you and with P1 WiMax represntatives here. I do hope that they look into this seriously. As for me , I am bit disspointed with the services which they have been providing me lately. Its totally unaccpectable ,and I do pray that it doesn’t turn out to be the next Streamyx !

My Thoughts on Science and Maths in English

Lately , it seems that there are certain group who are unhappy with the teaching of Science and Mathematics in English , especially when they protested today in front of the Istana and to give a memorandum to our King. For me , its fine as this is democracy , folks can have rally to protest and this is what is democracy all about. Police would be there as usual to protect people and to prevent them from going overboard. Not to forget that they too have to protect our King.
Anyway , what I think that is Maths and Science should be thought in English because it provides many benefits for the student. I am not against Bahasa Malaysia (the Malay language) and I do know that its our national language , but what I am saying that if we want to give our students the x-factor that they need when they want to say study aboard – then certainly maths and science in English would do the trick. Plus on top of that , we need folks who are well verse in both of the languages if you want to contribute something to the country. For instance , if our command of the language is poor in Science and Mathematical terms , it would be hard to negotiate a deal or work with foreign clients and so on. As for protecting the Bahasa or the Malay language , I am sure that we do have other ways – for instance History , Geography are thought in Malay. Not only that , basically you can’t forget Malay nor its status would ‘degrade’ as its stated in the constitution  that Malay language is the official language
Secondly there are lots of reference books which are written in English then any other languages. This makes it students easier to refer whenever they want to find something. Its even possible to find YouTube videos on how to solve mathematical question and such. This makes it easier for them to gain knowledge and to understand more.

Maths & Science in English has more advantages then disadvantages

These are just some of the advantages of teaching maths and science in English. What I am suggesting to the government is that in order to satisfy these groups , Maths and Science should be thought in Malay – give it as a extra class for those who think that they want to gain this extra knowledge in Bahasa. It would satisfy both the parties. I’m not sure about you , but certainly I’ve benefited from learning Maths and Science in English. Otherwise , trust me I’ve heard horror stories from my lecturer that students do face the hard time when they are in Universities or in Colleges whereby medium of instruction is in English. These students get confused with the English term as keep in mind that they don’t know the terms in English.
Anyway , I’ll blog about this tomorrow after reading the papers tomorrow on what our ministers and the public say about this. My question is how far do you agree with my statement that Maths and Science in deed do have a lot of advantages and it would actually  make it easier for  Malaysia to be a developed country ?

A New Look

I’ve finally decided to change my theme from something complex into something neater and something that doesn’t hurt the eyes. I’ve found out that my old theme takes a long time for it to load , I think its mainly because of the cute style and cool looking icons. However , I did get some feedback from my visitors saying that it was hard to read and sometimes it didn’t load properly. Today , I took my own advice and redid the site). Took a template from WordPress , modified it and added my own personal touch and some optimizations.
This is just the first phrase of my upgrade and I’ve found out that there are other useless categories which I rarely touch and blog. Instead of focusing on those , I am going to narrow down and turn this into a nice niche blog. I would appreciate if you just post your thoughts here on what should I do next as in redesigning the site.
Oh yeah , I am aware of some of the alignment and I’ll try to rectify it as soon as possible. Oh yeah , let me upload a picture of my old theme/site and I would like to put in a very good quotation by John F Kennedy

A glimpse of the past ! - My Old Theme

Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.
John F. Kennedy


Powering Routers and Modems via USB !

This is a neat trick which I’ve discovered recently. I found out that 5V/DC adapter which came along with my USB Notebook cooler does the trick when you want to power up a device or in this case P1 WiMax Modem and my old 802.11b WiFi Router.  The advantage of doing so is that you don’t have to carry the bulky power adapter whenever you’re traveling especially if you plan to build an in-car wifi hotspot or so. Its a neat project anyway. Alternatively , you may use it to say link it up with your PC or you don’t like to have so much of devices connected to a power output or you don’t have enough sockets to connect these devices. There could be many reasons , on why you would like to set it up this way. Oh ,psst scroll down for the photos which I’ve taken !
If you’re thinking of going green , it would be a great way as you’re saving power by using computer’s power. It just drains couple of extra Watts from your CPU (no biggie). Anyway let us get down on what do we need in order to set this up
1. A 5v USB Coaxial DC Power Plug cable (usually you can buy this from Radioshack or it comes along with certain notebook coolers or certain devices. Check your local hardware/comuputer store if they have this kind of cable)  – Click here to check out the Wikipedia link if you want to learn more or if you have doubts !
2. A Router or a modem which uses the DC Power plug cable (Usually there are lots of routers and modems in the market which uses this kind of cable. For instance , P1 WiMax modem , DSL Modems (such as Aztech 600E) , Linksys WRT54G , Prolink 802.11b router
Important Notice – Make sure the device operates normally at 5V. Not all devices would work at this given output, some would fail to work and others would have to work harder in order to operate at its operating voltage. So just do your homework first (physics kicks in , pretty much basically calculations) to determine if it would work or not. I am not held responsible if your device goes kaput after that !

Woot - P1 WiMax modem is being powered by my Fujitsu U1010 Netbook/UMPC. Isn't it great ?

Its not a gimmick
Its not a gimmick - Its really being powered by my Fujisu U1010 via USB !

It works with my 802.11b Prolink router too !

That’s all folks. Do share your experince here . If you have other cool information to add or if there is anything which I’ve missed out. Please , don’t hesitate to comment or even criticize my post !

TMNet "fixed" Connectivity Issue

Let me quote you from Streamyx’s  site first on this news

Dear Valued Customers,
Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM) is pleased to inform its customers that the restoration works on the Asia Pacific Cable Network 2 (APCN2) between Kuantan – Katong in Singapore and Shantou – Tanshui in Taiwan linking Malaysia to the United States (US) have now been fully completed.
TM has already recovered 100% bandwidth capacity for its Internet traffic to North America to-date. TM Internet and IP services as well as other critical business applications linked to the US have resumed normal operations since Wednesday, 4 March 2009. Therefore, all international links have been fully restored and our services have resumed back to normal.
We would like to thank our customers for their patience during the affected period. Customers can call TM at 100 and select “Internet Services” or e-mail us at [email protected] for any Internet related problems.
Thank You
Source : http://streamyx.com.my/whats_new/whats_new.php?id=article_20090306

Basically TM has said that they have fixed the internet connection here. However I do have reports from my friends claiming that Internet is slow today. I am not sure if they have really restored it or its just a gimmick. As for me , the line seems to be pretty stable and its retaively doing well. You can’t expect much from TM ,can you ? – I am just happy that i am online and msn works for me. Thats important to me , oh yeah wikipedia loads pretty fast. These two things are important to me. For the rest of you , it depends on what you’re using the Internet for !

My Thoughts on DiGi 3G Internet

Wow , now that is what I call Mobile Broadband. It seems that DiGi is the one that is trying to redesign broadband , as their name suggests – DiGi seems to be taking a step ahead of its competitors – mainly Maxis and Celcom. As we do know that Maxis has a limit of 3GB and Celcom has (initally had a limit of 5GB and its possible to purchase additional 10GB bandwidth for an additional fee)

50GB ? Now thats a lot as opposed to your competitors

I took a good look at DiGi Today seems that they are changing at first they were confused on what’s the limit that they should set. After doing their homework (as my lecturer says the more homework/tutorial that you do , the deeper you’ll understand – I think this hypothesis still holds true) , they have raised it to 50GB which is great. Anyway , lets analyze it. I prefer to analyze it rather then just saying it out what’s written there in the site – as basically you could read it for yourself. Anyway I’ll sum it up for you :-

  • Price  : RM 128 (promotional price) – RM 158 (Normal Price) {Price returns to normal price after 6 months}
  • Contact Period : 12 months
  • Download Speed : 7.2Mbps (during the trial period/first 12 months) and 3.6Mbps thereafter
  • Upload speed : 2Mbps (during the trial period/first 12 months) and 384Kbps thereafter
  • Data Transfer : 50GB (and after that you’ll be throttled to 64Kbps up/down)

If you want to know about the rest of the offers , then head up to their web-site and find it out for yourself. I am not going to spoon feed you. Anyway , back to my analysis and thoughts. Lets break in into couple of points , so its easier for us to analyze :-
1. Price Factor – Lets take a look at the price. Certainly , its priced a bit higher as opposed to its competitors. I think its mainly because DiGi offers 50GB of data transfer. If you take a look P1 caps at 20/40GB (depending on which package you take) and Maxis caps it to 3GB for their Wireless Broadband and Celcom at 5GB , but for Celcom its possible to purchase additional 10GB of data for a fee . So far , DiGi is the clear winner in this case in sense that for a Wireless Service Provider , it gives a lot of room for you to download especially if you’re a heavy downloader
2. Speed – Speed is pretty important for us – The higher the speed the faster it takes for you to download , to load a site and to buffer youtube videos. However , it comes with a price , keep in mind that we’re talking about wireless. When we are talking about wireless , the speed isn’t constant and it fluctuates  a lot. At times you may get 1.2Mbps and sometimes it can burst up to say 4Mbps. Its not constant and its very hard to deduce your average speed . This applies to all of the wireless broadband services out there. You need to take this into consideration before applying to any of these wireless service providers. Now for 3G service providers , they’ll have to prioritize between voice calls and data. Usually they’ll set voice calls/sms/mms/video call as their highest priority as data – in other words , if a cell phone tower can support up to 5 users and we have 4 users who are on the phone (as in calling , chit chatting with sms) and one guy with say surfing the Internet. Chances are the person who surfs the net would get low priority and hence lower output as opposed to say a person who is connected to a tower whereby he is the only person. This you can’t help it as telecos are basically generating their revenue from voice calls and SMSes !
As for DiGi , I am not sure if they are going to do such thing but I do believe they would unless they want to focus on Mobile Internet service only for 3G. But this way , they’ll be losing potential customers who would want to jump into DiGi’s 3G line just to experience the D factor !
3. Coverage – Coverage is pretty limited for DiGi as for now as basically they are the new player in the market – which means it would take them a couple of years for them to cover the whole of Klang Valley , Penang and Johor and from there , they would work their way to covering the whole of East and Malaysia. As for Maxis and Celcom , they have covered major parts of our country (Malaysia) with 3G/HSPDA. For DiGi to do , it would take even more time and lots of money to fork out to set it up. We will just wait and see how they tackle on this issue . So for instance , if you do travel a lot from lets say Kuala Lumpur to Penang , chances are you’re pretty much dead with DiGi as this time of writing as their coverage is limited. So , Maxis and Celcom are the obvious winner in this case because of the wide coverage. some may disagree and say its Celcom , because it even covers in kampung areas.
Conclusion :-
Lastly to sum this up. Its too early for me to say anything. DiGi is being nice and highlighting their cap so that users wouldn’t complain on how they were cheated by agents and so on (Read back on my issue on how many people fell for the trap by maxis agents trying to get customers to register the service by simply lying to them that its Unlimited). So DiGi is currently on the right track and I do hope that they move forward and progress on and hopefully really keep up ot their standards and our expectations. Let us just wait and see