Archive for the ‘Palm’ Category

Bandwidth speed test comparing DSL, Palm Treo 700p Sprint EVDO over USB and Bluetooth on a G4 Powerbook running OS X Tiger 10.4.7 Aug 27 2006

After upgrading to the latest version of USB Modem (Version 1.5 that now adds support for connection via Bluetooth for Treo 700p), I decided to do a speed test using my regular DSL connection and the two available connection methods for the Treo 700p – Bluetooth and USB. I’ve been using the USB modem connection method and wanted to see if there would be a noticible connection speed difference using Bluetooth instead of USB as the connection method.

These tests were run using a G4 Powerbook running OS X Tiger 10.4.7 and the Palm Treo 700p and USB Modem software version 1.5 connected to Sprint’s EVDO network in St. Louis, Missouri.

Using DSL:

Speedtest.net results

8/27/2006 11:27 PM GMT 2487 kb/s 350 kb/s 138 ms Dallas, TX ~ 550 mi

Using Treo 700p as a USB Modem:

Speedtest.net results

8/27/2006 11:52 PM GMT 1161 kb/s 95 kb/s 262 ms Dallas, TX ~ 550 mi

EVDO speeds are pretty fast, especially compared to an old-school dialup connection. About half as fast as my DSL line.

Using Treo 700p as a Bluetooth Modem:

Speedtest.net results

8/27/2006 11:55 PM GMT 478 kb/s 84 kb/s 280 ms Dallas, TX ~ 550 mi

Using Bluetooth was significantly slower than using USB cable. Nice to be able to connect without any wires though, and still basically fast enough to use. Warning: Nasty Bluetooth Reboot Required Bug When using Bluetooth as the connection method, when the connection gets disconnected or interrupted, you may get a Disconnecting... message that never stops. Apparently this is a known bug for which there is no good solution. After getting this message the only solution seems to be to reboot your computer, which pretty much stinks. This is NOT the fault of the USB Modem software, I found tons of references to this bug dating back to regular dial-up days.

Conclusion

You can now use Bluetooth along with USB Modem software, and it works, but the OS X bug that requires a reboot to connect again when you use Bluetooth makes it significantly less attractive to use this feature.

I plan to continue using the USB cable connection method since it is significantly faster and does not suffer from the Bluetooth bug above. It also has the bonus feature of charging the phone at the same time.

If anyone has a suggestion for a solution to the Bluetooth disconnecting message bug other than this Applescript (didn’t seem to work for me), please let me know via the comments.

Video clips of the stream that runs through Estes Park, Colorado Aug 19 2006

These are clips of the stream that runs through Estes Park, Colorado where we’re staying tonight before we leave to come back to St. Louis. All videos were taken using my Treo 700p.

Also, I’ve updated the Flickr picture set of our entire Colorado trip with new pics. Check it out.

Kristin displaying her artwork at the Letters to Mozart show in Steamboat Springs

Kristin selling her books at the Letters to Mozart show.

Pictures from our hike to Rabbit Ears Aug 3 2006

Check out some pictures taken using my Treo 700p Palm cameraphone on the hike we took today to Rabbit Ears near Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Steamboat Springs from Mt. Werner Aug 2 2006



Steamboat Springs from Mt. Werner, originally uploaded by gserafini.

This is the view we had today from the top of a ski run on Mt. Werner in Steamboat Springs, CO.

Check out more pics from the trip: Steamboat Springs photo set taken with my Treo 700p cameraphpone.

Reason #206 to own a Treo 700p : Be an emergency ISP Jul 20 2006

We had a MAJOR thunderstorm rip through St. Louis yesterday that knocked out power, telephone and other services for much of the entire region. Many large trees were literally snapped in half. Tower Grove Park looks like a giant went through it with a baseball bat and started knocking down trees left and right.

Reason #206 to own a Treo 700p and have Sprint service here in St. Louis:

We’re sitting here in Northwest Coffee in Clayton, they have power (thankfully), air conditioning (it’s supposed to be over 100° F today) but their DSL is down. No WiFi, no Internet.

I simply hooked up my Treo 700p, enabled USB Modem mode, enabled Internet sharing on my Powerbook, and now I’m serving this small corner of the planet as the only Internet connection.

So, if you have a Treo 700p and EVDO service, you too can be an emergency ISP.

P.S. Tip your barristas.

Video of fireworks in Louisville, Kentucky from July 3rd Jul 3 2006

Here is video I took on my Treo 700p tonight:

Listen for the drunk guy praising the fact that we have nukes and that we should bomb them all near the end… Ah, what a country we live in.

How-to: Use your shiny new Treo 700p as a USB Modem for your laptop and get super-fast Sprint EVDO speeds Jun 2 2006

If, like me, you found your new Treo 700p to be AWESOME, except for the $39.99 or $49.99 ADDITIONAL monthly charge to actually USE the Bluetooth DUN feature (that wasn’t mentioned ANYWHERE in the marketing that I saw) so that you can hook up your laptop to it and surf the internet using your phone as a connection, (which I only found out about by calling support and asking why using DUN wasn’t working) then you will probably be VERY interested in this handy $24.95 application from Mobile Stream:


Treo USB Modem software screenshot

USB Modem allows you to use Treo 600, Treo 650 and Treo 700p smartphones as a USB modem for connecting a desktop or notebook computer to Internet. To surf the Internet from your PC you will need only a USB cable and a Treo with GPRS/EDGE service or CDMA 1x/EvDO data plan.

Features

* Support for Treo 600, Treo 650 and Treo 700p smartphones
* Support for Windows XP, Windows 2000, Mac OS X and Linux operating systems
* Support for USB and Bluetooth connectivity
* Support for background mode so it is possible to make outgoing voice calls or perform other activity on the Treo without disabling the modem mode
* Support for Fax modem operation
* Small memory footprint (30 KB)

I couldn’t get the Bluetooth connectivity option to work. The USB connection option seems to do the trick however. I’m now able to use my phone now exactly as I wanted to without paying the extra EVDO connection fees (hopefully).

Also, I found a bug where if you have Menu Meters installed and the Bluetooth indicator in the menubar as well Menu Meters keeps on restarting while you are connected. If you turn off display of the Bluetooth icon then everything is fine.

Hopefully this won’t get shut down, since it basically enables exactly what you want — internet access on your laptop (in my case a Mac OS X G4 Powerbook) using EVDO speeds.

Internet Connection panel showing Treo 700p USB Modem setting

Directions:

  1. First, download the trial of the USB Modem software to make sure this will all work for you.
  2. Follow the User Guide instructions to configure your laptop, and install the USB Modem .prc onto your Treo 700p.
  3. Go to Prefs, click on Networking. Make sure that you are currently disconnected. Otherwise the USB modem won’t work.
  4. Click on the USB Modem application
  5. Click the Enable Modem Mode button. Leave the Connectivity method set to USB, and the Background mode set to checked.
  6. Under OS X, open Internet Connect application, and select the Treo 700 USB Modem option. You should see #777 in the Telphone Number, leave everything else blank.
  7. Click Connect.
  8. You should see it saying Contacting PPP Server… then Authenticating, then Connected.
  9. Use the internet on your laptop to check your email, ssh, surf the web, instant messenger, whatever
  10. When you’re done using the internet, click Disconnect in Internet Connect, then click the Disable Modem Mode in USB Modem. If you don’t do this, the next time you try to sync using the USB cable you will get an error message stating that the connection is already in use.
  11. Enjoy super-fast EVDO speeds on your laptop wherever you go…!!!

I did find that occasionally you will need to turn the phone off and then back on again to reset the internal networking features after you’ve used it as a modem.

I purchased the software since it seems like exactly what I need, and I’d encourage you to do the same. Also, I haven’t gotten my first bill with the new phone yet, so I’m not 100% certain that there won’t still be a charge for using the phone as a modem. But you may as well give it a shot.

I’ll update this post if I see anything on my next bill — I don’t expect to be using the phone as a modem all the time since I’m usually in the vicinity of a WiFi connection.

Update 1: I haven’t seen any additional charges on my bill, so this looks like a pretty great solution.

Update 2: Warning: please see comment #23 below for a problem that David had with this where it “fried” his hard drive. I’m not sure exactly what happened, but please use caution when following these instructions. I haven’t had any problems with it at all, but you may want to backup your hard drive before you proceed.

Update 3: – Jan 28, 2008 – Note: it appears that Sprint / Nextel has changed their terms and conditions to specifically exclude using workarounds like this. Here is the exact text of their current T&C as it applies (emphasis added):

Vision/Power Vision: Services are not available with all Sprint phones. Usage is calculated on a per kilobyte basis and is rounded up to the next whole kilobyte. Rounding occurs at the end of each session or each clock hour and, at which time we deduct accumulated usage from your plan, or assess overage or casual usage charges. You are responsible for all data activity from and to your phone, regardless of who initiates the activity. Estimates of data usage will vary from actual use. Your invoice will not separately identify the number of kilobytes attributable to your use of specific sites, sessions or services used. Premium content (games, ringers, etc.) priced separately. Services are not available for use in connection with server devices or host computer applications, other systems that drive continuous heavy traffic or data sessions, or as substitutes for private lines or frame relay connections. Except with phone-as-modem plans, you may not use a phone (including a Bluetooth phone) on a plan with unlimited Vision/Power Vision as a modem in connection with a computer, PDA, or similar device. We reserve the right to deny or terminate service without notice for any misuse. Availability of downloadable or streaming content is subject to change.


You can read my response below, but basically I think they’re shooting themselves in the foot here. I haven’t heard anything from them about this, and probably they’ll only use that T&C to address specific problem usage (for them) where they have a customer using too much of their “unlimited” data plan. I don’t think it’s a real great strategy to tell some of your most fanatical customers and fans that they are basically screwed. Because heres the thing: we have options, some great ones. It’s probably time to look at shopping for a different carrier if you care about regular computer usage without having to pay their extortionate fees for using your computer with this phone as a modem.

How-to: Get your Treo 700p EXIF tags to show up in Flickr Jun 2 2006

Flickr picture taken on a Treo 700p

If you use Picture Mail or Versamail to email your pictures to Flickr (using the upload via email trick) then the EXIF tags are stripped out of the jpegs that you send.

If, however, you upload your pictures using a Flickr uploading tool from your computer after syncing your Treo 700p, then the proper EXIF tags will be preserved and will be displayed by Flickr. Neat huh.

Here are the pics I’ve taken so far with my new phone:

Pictures taken with a Treo 700p

By the way, if you are using Mac OS X, the pictures are stored in ~/Pictures/Palm Photos/username/Internal/album name. I just drop them into iPhoto (not using iSync… yet) then use the Flickr Export from iPhoto to send to my Flickr account.

I really like the convenience of having a camera in my pocket at all times. The fact that I can instantly publish pictures to both Flickr and my own blog is pretty fantastic.



sell diamonds