Casual Day 2016 – Upping my game

While I don’t have any sports clothes, I did put on a workout outfit and a natural makeup look (or as natural as I’m willing to go anyway)


Tonight is my older sister’s bridal shower, so fortunately since I already have my workout clothes on, when I get home I can immediately do a 30 min lower body workout, shower and get my glam on. I may update this post later with a photo, although this phone‘s camera is so, so very wack, I prefer not to take any pictures at all.

I miss you so much


This is the one: fitness tracker edition #3 (debate)

I’ve been waffling around on the topic of whether or not to get myself a new fitness tracker. I’ve been happy with my Vivofit (mostly), mainly because it served its purpose, and I’m still on the first battery (16 months later). Since I’m now only using the tracker out of habit, and as a heart rate guide during gym, I haven’t been focussing on these types of devices.

That was before I came across the vivomove in my daily Flipboarding. I was immediately intrigued, and once I saw my dealmakers (fully waterproof and year-long battery) I was hooked.

So of course, during my research for this post, I came across the vivofit 3. Now, when the vivofit 2 came out, the differences weren’t enough to make me jump (yes, a backlight for the screen would have been nice, but I got used to just not looking at it in the dark because duh).

However, the vivofit 3 has MoveIQ, which automatically recognises the activity you are doing (walking, swimming etc) and logs it as a separate activity. Initially, I did try separating my swimming activities from my boxing and cardio activities manually on Garmin Connect, but that grew old fast. Garmin also always classified my boxing as running or walking. The vivomove also lacks MoveIQ, but since I don’t have access to a pool anymore this isn’t a critical feature.

I’m torn at the moment. I like the new sporty design of the vivofit 3, while I like the classic Rose Gold version of the vivomove. Wearing the vivofit hasn’t impacted on the style of my outfits as much as I thought it would though, and the vivofit 3 is half the price of the vivomove. In my new role though, the vivomove would look more professional, and I can get additional sports bands for it.

As I said though, my vivofit is perfectly fine for now, so this debate is more about what I would like to upgrade to eventually. Although now that Nokia owns Withings, I may have to reconsider looking at their products again.


This is the one: Navigation app edition (decision)

Location, mapping and navigation is very close to my heart. Not being able to have one which fulfilled all my needs annoyed me extremely. On my N8 (a phone ahead of its time, which should have been promoted better, and used as the basis for the Lumia line but never mind all that) I used Ovi Maps, which was rebranded Nokia Maps, which eventually became HERE maps.

Navigation on the N8 was extremely accurate, and included offline mapping at a time when that wasn’t a thing, and free turn-by-turn navigation, also at a time when that wasn’t a thing. I didn’t have a car at the time though, so I used the app once every few months maybe?

When I got my Lumia, I juggled Windows Maps and HERE Maps for a while before eventually settling on HERE. As time went by, and the Nokia sale took place with the exclusion of HERE, I could see the writing on the wall.

HERE stopped being a Windows Phone exclusive, and launched on Android. When the Android app surpassed the functionality of the WP app within a year, it was a concern. When I got my Huawei, I carried on using HERE, mainly because all my places from the last few years are saved in there, and it really was so much better to use on Android than WP.

Two weeks ago, HERE dropped support for Windows Phone. I then decided to research my options. Sadly, there is no other option is there?

Google Maps it is. I knew this would happen. I’d switch to Android out of necessity while keeping all the services I hold dear and adding a few more. Now I’ve replaced the Windows Phone launcher with Microsoft’s Arrow launcher, because I can never get my Live Tiles back. I tried to hold on to the best piece of what’s left of Nokia, but I couldn’t anymore.

What if I start using Google Docs instead of Word? I said I would never do that, but I also said I’d stick with Windows Phone to the bitter end. Even worse – what if I join Google+???

As a GIS person, I can appreciate what Google has done in terms of bringing GIS to the masses. I can also resent them for making my job so much harder. That being said, the Maps app is an absolute dream, and when I realised I could draw my own routes online and save them to the phone…


My experience using Windows Phone: An analysis, and why I left

After defending and justifying and praising and sighing for 3 years, I’ve finally let go.

I tried. I really did. From the first time I laid eyes on the Lumia 1020, I knew I needed one. I could live without apps, and did live without apps, for 2 and a half years.

I loved the Modern/Live tiles concept – Windows 8 was refreshing to me, as was Windows Phone 8. 8.1 on both platforms just polished off all the rough edges of 8. In fact, that is what kept me holding on for so long – I quite simply prefer the UX of Windows Phone over that of Android (and I won’t even mention the other one because I would sooner return to a 3310 than cross over).

What it ultimately came down to was, even though I was used to the “app gap” and quirks in the Windows Phone OS, it was the hardware in my phone which caused me to switch. I had this beautiful 41MP camera when Samsung was touting an 8MP camera on their flagship.

I would cringe when trying to use it, because with each subsequent OS/Lumia Camera app update, the camera would become even more unusable. More often than not, it would take about 5 seconds for the camera to spin up. That is an absolute age when trying to capture those “in-the-moment” photos.

The 3 second wait while the phone tried to save the photos was also unbearable. The OIS on my Nokia N8 was better than the OIS in my 1020. I put the blame for all of this on the previous gen dual core processor they jammed in there to power this beast of a camera.

It’s a crying shame. It’s also pathetic that of the apps that were available, one could see which ones were carefully thought through (Fitbit) and which ones were just thrown onto the platform without optimisation (Whatsapp).

When I saw the 950 series, I thought, maybe I can try again. I then realised that I no longer wish to be part of a dying breed.


My experience using Windows 10 Mobile: An analysis.

It sucks. It sucks so badly. The only reason I switched to the Insider Preview in December was because I was sick of the interminable loading dots and app crashes.

Well, on 10 I can say that the dots are still there, though not the app crashes. Whatsapp is as slow as ever. I do like the cleaner look and feel, and the fact that I can now use the Garmin Connect app on the phone, but there is nothing on Windows 10 Mobile that I would recommend above Windows Phone 8.1.

I’ve formulated an opinion, based on some facts and some anecdotal evidence I’ve gathered (partly from my own experience with Windows Phone over the last 3 years, and my family’s experiences). This opinion is that most of the “official” apps for Windows Phone were coded as afterthoughts.

The Whatsapp app should be fast because it’s been optimised for the OS. Clearly it is not. The same goes for Shazam. Although if Microsoft can’t even do it for their own in-house apps like Edge/Explorer or Office, then why would anyone else?

It is frustrating.


I’ve stripped my phone

Seeing as the end is nigh, and I was tired of the bubbling screen protector, last night I decided to remove it from my phone completely. This is after I removed the bulky case two weeks ago.

Of course, I dropped my phone onto the ground outside on Saturday, and was rewarded with damage to both corners on the RHS. It landed on its face as well, but seeing as it’s a Nokia, I have never been worried when it lands on its face.

I know I’ll have to change my attitude once my new phone arrives, but I’ll have to change my attitude about a lot of things once I make the jump.



A surprising discovery in the WP Store: Zapper!

A while ago the SO and I were stuck in a sushi vortex at one of our fave places. When the bill came, there was a Zapper logo at the bottom, with R25 off the first transaction. I ignored it, we paid cash like we normally do in restaurants then left.

So it was to my chagrin that I learnt, while trawling MyBB’s extensive eBucks thread, that Zapper counts as an online transaction, and also they have a Windows Phone app, unlike the other app which is constantly advertised on TV.

I just assumed, based on past experience, that there would not be a Windows Phone app. I have since installed it on my phone, and will definitely be checking it out as soon as possible.