E61i Road Report

Lest you think this humble site has become a travel blog, I’m reporting again today on my Nokia E61i, which continues to impress, and particularly while travelling. Here’s why:

What was my room number again?

Despite its “average” 2-megapixel imager, the built-in camera on my E61i has many practical applications, like remembering your hotel room number when you stumble home to bed, or to MMS your new friends to tell them where the party’s at!

Bircher Muesli & Yogurt

Koru Lounge Decadence

The camera also came in handy to document my dieting triumphs, like the bircher muesli and raspberry yogurt combo I had for breakfast at my Wellington Hotel, and disasters, like the marshmallow coconut & fruit pudding with a side of licorice that I succumbed to at the Koru Lounge during my layover at LAX. Twice.

NZ WiFi Hunt

The second most-used feature of my E61i was the built-in WiFi radio. Nokia thoughtfully put this little alert right on the home screen. I had it running pretty much all day, and unlike my TyTN it hardly drained the battery at all.

Atrium WiFi Card

The bad news was that in most places I had to pay for WiFi access to the internet. The Crowne Plaza in Auckland sold these prepaid cards for $5 NZD. Much like a calling card, you scratch off the back to reveal an access code to get on the ‘net in the lobby and in the adjacent shopping mall.

The Intercontinental in Wellington wasn’t quite as cheap. When I inquired about the wireless network in the lobby the young man at the front desk came to my table in the hotel restaurant and offered to hook me up at the rate of $49.95 NZD for 24 hours, to which I immediately spat out my cup of coffee into his face.


But the wondrous Air New Zealand Koru Lounge was another story altogether. Access to their WiFi network is free, but you must obtain a username and password from the front desk. It changes every month to discourage amateur packet sniffers… Works for me!

No Love with Fring

The only stunt I couldn’t pull with my Nokia was making a VoIP call using fring and its built-in support for Skype. This had nothing to do with the Skype outage of last week and everything to do with fring. Fortunately there are other options available, which I’ll be trying out and reporting on at a future date.

WorldMate Clocks

And finally, flying across 16 time zones was made a little less bewildering by WorldMate (the light version is available free of charge for E-Series users) and by a feature I’ve never seen on any other GSM handset — the ability to auto-magically grab the appropriate time from the local network.

Now if only my E61i could help me with my jet lag…


About Andrew

Mobile phones, Linux and copyright reform. Those go together, right?
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3 Responses to E61i Road Report

  1. Ed Miller says:


    Welcome back! While you were away, they cancelled summer and went right into November. Does your E61i have any way adjusting the weather?



  2. AC says:

    It was a bit weird walking home from Second City last night at the same temperature as Wellington not four days ago!

    So this morning I turned the thermostat on my phone back up to “unbearably humid” for ya. You’re welcome.


  3. Ed Miller says:


    Awesome –thanks! that feature works extraordinarily well, as my laundry will attest.

    Saw this story this morning about the iPhone and the forensic aspects of it:

    I’m not suggesting you or any readers of this blog up to no good, but it did make me think about what personal data I carry around in my PDA and cell phone and how easily someone could hack into it should I lose said PDA or cell….


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