Friends, relatives, blog readers, and even co-workers keep asking me if they should go ahead and pre-order iPhone 5 now or should they wait till it arrives to Kuwait? Well, I was kinda asking myself the same question but before I give any specific answers I did my home work by doing some basic research online and offline. First I visited Apple U.K. online store (since it’s unlocked) to check the availability and prices and they were as follow;
16GB version for £529 (KD253)
32GB version for £599 (KD288)
64GB version £699 (KD336)
We can’t order from Apple U.S or Canada since the iPhone 5 will be locked, also you need a mail forwading service (Such as Aramex, DHL, Posta Plus) to deliver it and a credit card that is acceptable in the U.K (Kuwait VISA’s won’t work). Those who managed to order it from the first shipment, their iPhone 5 is expected to arrive to Kuwait from September 24 to September 30, otherwise if you order it today it will arrive early October. Meanwhile, I have contacted several local dealers and carriers (X-Cite, Electrozan, Eureka, iCity, VIVA, Zain, Wataniya) and they were expecting iPhone 5 arrival date to be sometime between 24th September to early October and price range will be KD290 to KD 320 for the 16GB version.
So we can see clearly that the price difference between say Apple U.K and Kuwait (about KD300) for the 16 GB version is not significant here, same applies for the arrival date, also bear in mind that even if those who ordered it online get it first they still have to wait until Nano sim cards are available in Kuwait, cutting existing sim cards simply won’t work. So now what’s your plan?
Google Maps Navigation for mobile now supports Kuwait, it took them a while but it’s finally working, it was there before but it only gave the route on map without specific directions and voice. I have the app installed on my Samsung Galaxy phone, and I thought I’d give it a try to see if it’s really helpful on the road. Hopefully now with this app you can find anything in Kuwait (hospital, fuel station, mall, house) in no time, what I liked about it is that it gives you directions turn-by-turn via voice, and in case you missed a turn then it automatically re-adjusts the route. Another great feature is that the maps are updated regularly for free to include new roads, unlike GPS systems in vehicles which require to have the latest DVD version for Kuwait maps.
The app also provides several alternative routes to your destination, this helps in case there’s a traffic congestion in one of the roads. Also it can be used when the Internet is not accessible based on the stored maps, simply brilliant. The downside is that it consumes a lot of the battery life, so the phone must be plugged in the charger until you reach your final destination.
So iPhone 5 finally was finally unveiled, I had to sit at home and wait until Apple event takes place and the question that we all ask now; is it worth the wait? Well I’m here to help you find the answer. The funny part is that the official iPhone 5 looks similar to the one that was leaked in a video last week, ok so now let’s talk about the specs shall we?
Dimensions & Display: It’s clearly thinner (7.6mm), lighter (112 grams, iPhone 4S weighed 140 grams) because it’s made from aluminum, and taller than iPhone 4s. The screen is bigger (4 inch) and uses Retina display with resolution of 1136 by 640 pixels. They say display will be crystal clear and has more color-depth.
Processor: iPhone 5 uses the new A6 CPU (quad-core) which is faster than the older A5 chip in iPhone 4S. So iPhone 5 will run applications and games faster.
iOS: iPhone 5 will use iOS 6 which will be officially released on 19th of September.
Recall Thuraya satellite phones? I remember seeing their TV ads many years ago but I thought they were abandoned already but today I read on the news that Ministry of Communication has set up a new tariff for Thurarya phones (500 fils/min). I remember Thuraya was first introduced back in 1997 and used satellites to provide phone service in remote areas such as deserts, mid of the sea or high up in the mountains which are not covered by normal telecommunication networks.
I find them useful for those who do long trips, but I wish if the per minute rate was even lower.
iPhone 5 is almost here, I just saw that Apple announced 12th September (that’s a week from now) will mostly be the date for unveiling the most anticipated phone by many, well I’m not an Apple fan boy but I’m still looking forward to it. What are you expectations? Will it beat Samsung Galaxy SIII? Apple seems quite concerned from Samsung lately especially with all those lawsuits.
Update: iPhone 5 even will be start at 8:00 PM Kuwait time.
I got my hands on the awaited smart watch i’m WATCH which has just arrived to Kuwait, first I liked that it has a touch screen and that it has a multi-tasking capability. It can be connected to iPhone, Androids, and Blackberryvia bluetooth and there were many functions like making phone calls, checking twitter account, facebook, read emails, listen to music, check weather, set appointments.
There was an application that is compatible with Instagram that will be released soon, the screen was sharp and based on TFT display and the resolution was good. As for the the size (see below) it was slightly big (I happen to like bigger watches) and weight was about 70 grams.
It supports both Arabic and English and comes in black and white color but they said new colors will be available soon. The shortcomings are that it’s not water-proof and high price tag other than that it’s pretty cool. i’m WATCH is only available at EUREKA, the price is KD169
I got iPhone 4 and my friend got Samsung Galaxy SIII and both of our screens got broken badly, so we went to Hawally to change them and to my surprise my screen costs KD15 while his screen costs KD85, that’s a big difference. Question is; why Samsung Galaxy S III screen costs much higher than iPhone 4S?
Basically iPhone screen comes in two parts; the top glass and the underneath touch panel and they are separated (see picture below), this is why iPhone screen keeps working even after it gets broken whereas Samsung Galaxy S III screen comes as single plastic piece and rarely works when broken badly. I think this is the same reason why Samsung Galaxy screen is more expensive. I hope Samsung will resolve this issue in their upcoming Samsung Note 2 phone.
Finally my iPhone screen was replaced with a new one, though I want to clarify that screens in Hawally are not original.
I’m in the process of making my own business card since I don’t have one yet, but instead of having traditional business card I’m working on a smart one that supports NFC. If you don’t know what NFC is all about, then let me briefly explain; it stands for Near Filed Communication and it allows people to share media files, data, URLS, phone numbers, emails… etc. instantly by tapping any NFC-Enabled devices together. All new smart phones come with NFC-option like Samsung Galaxy S III, BlackBerry, Windows phone, and I’m sure Apple will include it in their upcoming IOS 6 update.
A business card with NFC stores all your information like email, mobile, website, phone, address, P.O Box…etc. and can share them with anyone by simply tapping the business card with his phone or any other NFC-enabled device so all your data will be saved on his device, futuristic. The awesomeness doesn’t end here, imagine you are swimming in the pool or exercising in the gym and wearing a small NFC bracelet that has all your contacts stored so you can share them with anyone near you.
I’m sure NFC technology will change many things in our daily lives, we can use it to pay with our mobile phones or access data from civil ID cards or passports, the possibilities are limitless.