Tuesday, Day 1
The phone arrives at 2:30pm, brought in a brown box by a courier. He has one of those electronic signature things you do with a stylus and never ends up looking like your signature. I’m working from home, and busy, so a few hours pass before I cut the ribbon. Have a brief freak-out that I had perhaps checked the ‘white’ or ‘purple’ box when ordering, but when I get it out of the box it’s regulation black. I’m struck by how much bigger it is than my iPhone. The screen resolution is superb. I watch this rather disturbing video on how to seamlessly transfer my existing iPhone contacts onto the Xperia. As advertised, it’s a quick and easy process. Although it said it could take up to four hours to activate the new sim, it’s pretty much instantaneous. Make and receive my first phone call. Sign in to Twitter, Facebook and Gmail. Resolve to download Viber, or its Android equivalent. There’s surely an Android equivalent. Right? And what about my AFL, Soccerway and Cricinfo apps? Start to panic. Google search ‘how to put Xperia on silent’ (turn the volume down) and ‘how to turn Xperia off’ (hold the power button and follow the prompt).
Wednesday, Day 2
Arrive at work at 9am. It’s a Sony all-right, it feels like I’m carrying a Trinitron in my pocket. Phone issues a sound I don’t recognise – it’s a retweet from a colleague. Another sound I don’t recognise – an email from a friend. I turn the volume down. A day before my phone arrived I had visited ‘Pimp my Mobile’ at Northland Plaza to buy a case and the sticky screen covers. The shop assistant has sold me covers that are too big (there’s a screen even bigger than a Sony Xperia Z1?). Resolve to wash my hands before using to minimise finger smudge, and to try not to smoosh the phone too deeply into my notoriously sweaty ear. It’s a losing battle. My glorious screen is covered in filth. Feel like I want to cry. Google ‘treatment for obsessive compulsive’. Decide to return purchased covers to Pimp my Mobile on Thursday when I have some down time. My phone has had a green light flashing metronomically all day. It could be a missed call. I hope it’s not from the president, or my Mrs. I Google search ‘flashing green light on Sony Xperia Z1’. No joy. Press the screen in the top left of the phone, and the green flash disappears. Take my first photo with the new phone.
Thursday, Day 3
Drive to Northland again, where a different girl gives my screen a thorough clean and affixes a protective cover. I discover the green light is a notification that I have notifications. By swiping down from the top of the screen I can get a summary of everything that needs attending to – Twitter, Facebook or email alerts, software or app updates, that kind of thing. This is quite clever – I think the iPhone had something similar, but I never used it. Start to feel like I’m making some progress. This feeling is quashed when my screen goes dead – completely dead – in the afternoon, even though the battery is full. I have to Google ‘how to reset a Sony Xperia Z1’ and it still takes me a few goes to perform the hard reset. The screen comes back, and some further online reading suggests this screen death is quite common in the Xperia Z1. Brilliant. In better news, Viber is downloaded so I can communicate with my other cheapskate friends who worry about breaching their plan.
Friday, Day 4
I make a crucial tactical error early in the day by picking up my old iPhone and turning it on. You see, even though the sim has been expired like a T800 in a hydraulic press, when it’s connected to wi-fi, the phone works pretty much the same way it always did, other than it can’t make or receive calls (which, you may argue, makes it perfect). The feel of it in my hand triggers some confusing feelings – like seeing an ex in leather pants. I want it back, but I’ve made my bed and I have to lie in it. Still, I consider ringing Optus and telling them I’ve made some terrible mistake.
Saturday, Day 5
Begin to realise I did not undertake enough research before opting for the Xperia. Its chief selling points seem to be the fact that it’s waterproof (you know, for all those times you drop your phone in water) and that its camera operates at an astounding 20 megapixels. These features sounded fascinating to me when I was in that fevered flush of what I like to describe as ‘techstasy’ – that feeling you get when you browse the reviews and plans on Optus and every new feature sounds so exciting, especially when accompanied by some lovely images. Trouble is, the way they’ve made the phone waterproof is by sticking annoying covers over every port on it. So, if you want to charge or connect to your computer, you have to pick them off. Wonderful. And, after going out with my Mrs and taking a couple of cute pictures she wants me to send her, I discover one of the joys of having a 20 megapixel camera is that messaging or emailing the photos with a 4G connection is next to impossible.
Sunday, Day 6
An annoying trend is starting to emerge. I keep hanging up on people – courtesy of my chin connecting with the ‘end’ button while on a call. One straightforward chat with a colleague sees me call him three times. This is ridiculous, and I have to start chatting with the phone quite a distance away from my ear. I manage to get the photos to my partner by connecting the phone to the computer, dumping the photos and a video to the desktop and transferring the files via our home network. My Mrs has started to make fun of the size of the phone. Seeing me trying to wrestle the ringing Xperia out of my pocket at a café, she remarks: “How are you going with your iPad anyway?”
Monday, Day 7
I connect my phone to my computer and import a couple of Springsteen albums, and The Beatles’ Revolver. This makes me feel a bit better. I’ve got to be honest, it’s been a rough first week with my Xperia. But I’m through it, and I’m starting to look on the bright side: only 103 more of these until I’ve fulfilled my contractual obligations and I can test just how waterproof this thing is.
• Do you have a similar phone-switching horror story? Have tips for other people on how to beat the mobile blues? Leave a comment below