Monday, 13 October 2008

Push Email: from T-Mobile to Vodafone


One of the most fascinating aspects of these new phones of course, is that it takes you away from that horrible sitting position behind the keyboard. If you are anything like me, you get ideas in the most unsuspecting places. To that end, the mobile network you are with is the most important element in communication. That is why I chose Vodafone. They were the first and they have masts all over the place. It is the only network that works well in the kitchen, and downstairs bathroom - two of the most inspirational areas of the house! So you can see how important it is to get ones fingers and thumbs to work right away, and respond to whatever; be it a piece of news you browsed by with your left hand, when you were in the kitchen munching away on a kebab or fish fingers. I won't go into the other inspirational areas just mentioned, but you can get my drift.

The one thing that the networks all go on about is Push Email. You get the feeling that it could be and is really quick. Hmm, well it depends. I switched recently from T-Mobile because the reception was so bad. I still have the Blackberry 8310 on the T-Mobile, and it was an absolute nightmare trying to make it "instant email". Bascially you have to forward your email, be it gmail or your own domain to the T-Mobile instant email account, and then they relay it back to you. That is pretty quick. At best it is 15 seconds, and 15 minutes at worst.

As you know WM 6.1 comes with "pull mail" or the usual old way of getting the mobile's outlook to access Gmail or other email server. That system cannot be set to poll faster than every 5 minutes. So you would think that the Push Email is better. Well with Vodafone, they give you a simple software to install, and then they don't ask you the detailed POP IMAP or SMTP questions. The software tries to guess it, and inevitably gets it wrong. Not all servers are pop.xxxxx.com. I had to call customer service, who are not really that trained in this sort of rubbish, and then you have to wait to speak to their level 1 technical, who after a little persuation got around to look at the settings that were automatically set wrong.

You would think that Vodafone would send you a test email to see and time it to see whether it worked, and it was fast enough. Luckily for me, I was put in touch with Tony Dawson who like me was "driven like a Terrier" and a Palm user, to get this thing sorted. First it was the fact that the server had not taken my password, and then there was some authentication detail that was wrong. Beyond me, but the lads at Vodafone Business section had taken the trouble to actually simulate my settings and see what the f... was going on. It had driven so many and so many phones mad.

So a well done to all. I think then if we can just tweek the servers a little more, to make the push email at Vodafone a little faster, then we are very cool. At the moment it takes between 5 to 10 minutes to get the email. Just Ok. It would be nice to get it under a minute. Anyway if you know anything about Astrology, (as I do) then you would know that Mercury retrograde really finds all these communication problems, and we will get to the bottom of this by Thursday.

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