Monday, August 31, 2009

Introducing the Phone Sock

Obviously if you visit this blog frequently you are interested in getting the most out of your phone. It would follow that you then want your phone to last a while. So what do you use to keep your E63 undamaged and looking great?

I am a fan of the "phone sock". Basically it's like a thick woollen/cotton sock made to size for your phone. You slip the phone into it and because it stretches a bit as the phone goes it in stays in all by itself.

- they are really cheap - I got mine on ebay for a few dollars
- they provide good scuff protection if you drop the phone
- they provide good scratch protection against other things in your pocket (e.g. keys)
- they provide some impact protection if you drop your phone
- you can still put the phone in your pocket or bag unlike with belt mounted ones.
- interestly, as you push the phone into them, the material slides over the screen and cleans it for you! And if your screen gets prints/marks on it, you've always got a nice soft bit of material handy

- it makes the vibrating alert less noticable, so you may miss the occasional call while outside walking in noisy traffic.
- the in-and out motion has caused the corners of my screen protector to lift up.

It would also be good to get people's comments on the supplied screen protector. Did people leave it on? Have the corners lifted up on their own? Have people taken it off? Where can you get replacement ones?
I took my screen protector off due to having a phone sock. That is, sliding it into the phone sock was causing the corners to lift up. But on the other hand I figure that the sock will be protecting the screen when I'm not using it, and when I am using it I probably don't need screen protection.
Without the screen protector I've noticed that the screen looks more shiny and reflective. This may make it harder to read in sunlight but I haven't tested that yet.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Shortcut keys for Ovi Nokia Maps

At MyE63, we love shortcuts.. so here are some shortcuts for those using Nokia Maps.

Shortcut keys for Nokia maps

General shortcuts

  • To return to your current position, press 0.
  • To change the map type, press 1.
  • To tilt the map in the 3D view, press 2 and 8.
  • To rotate the map, press 4 and 6.
  • To rotate the map so that North is at the top, press 5.

Walking navigation shortcuts

  • To save a place, press 2.
  • To search for places, press 3.
  • To adjust the volume of the guidance tone, press 6.
  • To see the list of route points, press 7.
  • To switch between night and day display settings, press 8.
  • To show the dashboard, press 9.

Driving navigation shortcuts

  • To repeat the most recent voice guidance, press 2.
  • To switch between night and day display settings, press 3.
  • To save the current place, press 4.
  • To find a different route, press 5.
  • To adjust the volume of voice guidance, press 6.
  • To add a stopover to the route, press 7.
  • To see traffic information, press 8.
  • To check route information, press 9.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

How to get things done efficiently with Nokia Calendar

Our sister blog MyE65 has recently been unleashing the hidden potential of the Nokia PC Suite Calendar application which seems to have made organising life much easier. Some of the highlights of the Nokia Calendar include:
  • Views - You can view the calendar in a monthly screen, weekly screen or a day overview screen. Just like Google Calendar, they also have an Agenda view (called List view in Nokia Calendar) which allows you to see all your appointments line by line. This is especially useful to
  • Duration Selection - If the appointment that you are adding runs for for a certain length, you can select the timeslots that the appointment will take up and press enter to add details of the meeting. eg In the 7 day view, select 4 timeslots in a row to create a meeting 2 hours long.
  • Double-click to edit - To add or edit any entries, just double click the date or timeslot and the details screen will pop up for a new appointment.
If you want to read more, the post is here

Monday, August 24, 2009

Nokia - Why didn't you add this in the E63?

We've been talking recently here about the program Best Profiles so Matthew brought up a good point last week regarding missing features in the Nokia E63. It would be good to hear from a Nokia person as to why some features were not included but are in superceded models like the 6300.

- Countdown timer: It you have a stop watch, why not have a countdown? or a few countdowns? It doesn't seem to be a very complex feature to include in a phone right?

- Snooze options: Yeah, I definitely agree with our reader Matthew on this one. What can you really do in six minutes snooze? 15 minutes would be a great option to have. Does anyone know if later models of Nokia phones have this? I know that the Nokia E75 does not have customisable snooze options.

What other options do you wish Nokia included in the E63? Obviously we would love a GPS but that's what the E71 and GPS dongles are here for.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Best Profiles - the app review and 10 free licenses to give away

While I'm quite a fan of the phone, I feel like there are two very useful features missing from it. And the most frustrating thing about this is that these features were present in the previous two models of Nokia phones I owned! (the 6280 and an older one I can't remember). Talk about technology going backwards.
Here are the two features I missed:
1. Timed profiles: e.g. you set your phone to Silent for a certain period (e.g. 1 hour) and afterwards it reverts to the previously selected profile. This was great because you could go into a meeting knowing that you didn't have to rememeber to take your phone off silent when you came out. Before I discovered this I would often set my phone to silent and only remember hours later with multiple missed calls.
2. Charger profiles: your phone will change to a specific profile (e.g. Silent) when you plug it into the charger. As soon as you take it off the charger it reverts to the previously selected profile. This is great because you can plug your phone into the charger on your bedside table at night and not worry about a) being woken up by some idiot wrong number at midnight and b) forgetting to take your phone off silent in the morning.

So you can imagine my disappointment when I realised my new "smart" phone couldn't do either of these!
Thankfully I've found a way of doing this and more! It's an application called "Best Profiles" by Smartphoneware. It costs a paltry US$10.95 to buy and you can trial it for 15 days first. This is excellent value considering what it does. I would recommend adding this application to the list of "must haves" for the E63. (I almost consider it a "fix" or "patch", seeing as these features used to work before and are now "broken")
The application does even more than the two features I wanted. It lets you assign profiles based on:

  • Schedule rules: e.g Silent between 9:30pm and 6:30am.
  • Calendar rules: e.g. Silent whenever a certain keyword appears in calendar entries (e.g. add "#s" to any meetings you don't want to be interrupted in)
  • GSM location: allows switching profile automatically if the GSM cell serving your phone changes. So you could have the phone automatically switch to a more discreet profile when you get near work! It lets you log these for a while so you can figure out which cell is which.
  • Charger rules: e.g. silent when on charger
  • Timed rules: e.g. silent for the next hour
And it also lets you set priorities for these rules to determine which one "wins".

All in all, a very necessary and useful application and a bargain for the price. I can't believe I've had to wait this long until my phone could figure out how to automatically go silent overnight.

Thanks to Peter for sharing this review. It made me curious so I approached about getting us a few licenses to giveaway. Contribute your thoughts on this blog or help let other people know about MyE63. We have ten licenses of this program to give away at the end of September, thanks to the guys at . You can go to the website to trial Best Profiles on your Nokia E63. I'll be playing with this program as well.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

GPS - Bluetooth adaptor or inbuilt GPS?

Whilst trialling the Nokia E75, I was able to find out which device gets a satellite lock fastest - the GPS dongle for the Nokia E63 or the in-built GPS in the Nokia E75?

The result? The GPS dongle got a lock in a stationary car almost two minutes before the Nokia E75 in-built GPS. To test it, I turned on the bluetooth GPS dongle and opened Nokia Maps on both devices and waited until the bottom right GPS status bar went from a small yellow (and occasional red) bar to a longer green bar. You will know when Nokia Maps has a GPS lock when the red dot moves to your current location.

The bluetooth GPS device that I have is the Freedom Keychain GPS 2000, of which I have two, if anyone is interested in buying. Read more about the possibilities with your Nokia E63
  1. when enabled with a GPS for sports here
  2. a previous article on Google Maps for Mobile 3.2 here
  3. quick look at Nokia Ovi Maps here

Monday, August 10, 2009

Getting DVDs onto E63 - reader post

I've started testing out movies on the E63. I'm hoping this will save me lugging my laptop around to watch battlestar galactica DVD's on the train (no spoilers please, I haven't finished season 4 yet!). I've used a DVD ripper program to transfer an episode to my PC and Nokia PC Suite to transfer it to the E63. However before PC Suite copies it to the E63 it converts it to a certain MP4 format. I was wondering if you knew what format the E63 uses? Because once we nail this down, I can use the DVD ripper to put the file in this format from the start.
Once we've figured out a bit more of this, we can put together a guide for DVD/movie --> E63.
- Peter

Personal Organising with a Nokia E63

Peter, one of our readers has recently been keeping an eye out for personal organising software which would help organise his schedules. He mentioned in an email that the standard calendar/to do note system is OK but lacks a lot of features he wants (at the very least, categories for tasks). Here are a few other project management/organising software titles he's looked at:

NOKIA CALENDAR (the included one)
PROJECKT (someone on your blog mentioned this)
TO DO for Symbian (no trial)

"So far Papyrus, is looking like the best. It's quite powerful."

I personally haven't looked into many of these programs but would like to find out more about some of these programs as well. If you have had any first hand experience, please let us know.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Note: There is no Undo

One interesting thing I found out today is that the Notes on Nokia phones don't have an Undo button. Today, I accidentally pasted something over some text in a Note that I was intending to copy. I realised that there was nothing I could do to undo that mistake. I had lost all the information I had overwritten with one careless copy/paste action.

So just a quick note to let you all know - there is no Undo in Nokia Notes. Perhaps this is why we should be utilising our free QuickOffice licenses rather than using Notes...

SMSDiary Winners

Congratulations to some of MyE63 users such as Luau, Rommel, Pitz, Matthew and Yancey who have won themselves a LEGAL license for SMS Diary! Hope you guys have fun with it and let us know how you found it. If you have a program that would benefit MyE63 readers, let us know as well. We're here to make the most of our E63.

TO read more about SMSDiary go to

Monday, August 3, 2009

Ovi Maps 3.0 - Another look

Ovi Maps in "Navigation Mode"

With the new view, Just been playing with the Ovi Maps. One cool feature is that as you travel along the road, the map view can be configured to always give you a forward-looking view so that when you turn left, the map pivots around to allow you to see what roads are "ahead" rather than leaving those who have little spatial skills from craning their neck to see which way to turn into the street that they desire.

Navigation is still not free on Ovi Maps 3.0 but the improvements on the software are sure worth the download. Remember you will need to install the Nokia Maps Updater, then load a new map using Nokia Maps Uploader.. these are programs separate from the Nokia PC suite.

Nokia E75 - first impressions from a Nokia E63 User

I've just received the Nokia E75 to trial and make comments so here are some initial thoughts, more to come hopefully.

Firstly, the phone looks very sturdy with a strong, solid build. Compared to the Nokia E63, the E63 has a much better keypad and gives more feedback when pressed compared to the E75. It's operating system is similar to the E71 with an in-built GPS and if you press-and-hold the main button, you can see the clock at night slightly illuminated. The QWERTY keyboard slides out to give fatter fingers more opportunity to text. You still can't type an essay on the phone without getting RSI but if QWERTY is your thing, E75 is your friend. There is an an accelerometer installed in the phone but I don't believe it is fully utilised by the phone's programs - perhaps some apps from Ovi Store could utilise the accelerometer a little more. The accelerometer basically allows the screen to rotate to be always right side up when texting with the keyboard or the keypad.

The 3.5mm stereo plug allows normal headphones to be used which is one advantage over the E71. The phone battery did not seem to be as bad as many people have reported. Images do come out quite well on the 3.2mp camera. The photo below was taken with the Nokia E75 using the flash and artificial fluroescent lighting.

Otherwise, there is not much that differentiates the E75 from the Nokia E63. Many would be happy with either phone but for me personally, the Nokia E63 still has its peculiar strengths such as being lighter, the widescreen but the E75 retention of the T9 keypad is quite an advantage for those who have ever tried to text using a QWERTY keypad with one hand.

There IS a GPS! One thing was that the GPS may struggle to get a lock. I turned off A-GPS and network assisted GPS and the satellites finally found my phone, only after I walked outside to get a lock-on. In fact some keen readers may have noticed that I claimed earlier that the E75 does not have a GPS because it was "searching for GPS device" when I was using Nokia Ovi Maps which led me to believe erroneously that there was no GPS. But its there and a lot of fun to use with the Ovi Maps.

So have you tried the E75? what are your thoughts?

Wrong phone? Follow the Nokia E72 blog

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