Is iPhone a good Psion replacement? - Scion

This is a discussion on Is iPhone a good Psion replacement? - Scion ; I find myself wondering if perhaps the iPhone would be useful as a Psion replacement. Let me set up a comparison between the two. I am going to list the Psion app or feature as a heading and then provide ...

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Thread: Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?

  1. Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?

    I find myself wondering if perhaps the iPhone would be useful as a
    Psion replacement. Let me set up a comparison between the two. I am
    going to list the Psion app or feature as a heading and then provide
    the iPhone equivalent. These are the apps that I use on my Psion 5mx
    (items marked with * are some of the add-on programs that I use).

    These days I'm using my Psion less and using Google Calendar more. In
    fact I'm not really maintaining my Psion calendar anymore. I no longer
    enter things into it, but I still rely on it for those items that are
    already in there. Without having actually decided to, I am making a
    soft transition to Google Calendar. The drawback is that the Google
    Calendar is online only and does not easily sync with my Psion. It is
    technically possible but only by jumping though some hoops and using
    MS Outlook in between.

    But I still hang on to the Psion, mainly for it's great text entry,
    and I've used it as my morning alarm clock for 10 years. Can an iPhone
    really replace it?
    ______________________________________
    Word
    The iPhone has not built-in text editor but Google Docs might be
    acceptable for infrequent use. It's obvious that the Psion keyboard
    immediately wins any text-entry comparison. If text entry is
    important, don't go iPhone (I wrote this whole post on my Psion!). The
    iPhone cannot use a Bluetooth keyboard! (http://forums.macrumors.com/
    showthread.php?t=400790)
    ______________________________________
    Sheet
    iPhone loses. See Word.
    ______________________________________
    Contacts
    iPhone equally useful. Contacts are rarely edited so iPhone text entry
    is not a serious issue.
    ______________________________________
    Agenda
    iPhone wins on bidirectional Google Calendar syncing. But the Psion
    Agenda has much better views (week view, busy view) and provides only
    those fields you really need.
    --> to be tested: how well does the iPhone handle recurring events,
    reminders, and snooze?
    ______________________________________
    Email
    iPhone wins on bidirectional Gmail syncing and Internet connectivity.
    I never used Psion Email.
    ______________________________________
    Calc
    I'm sure the iPhone can do this well enough.
    ______________________________________
    Jotter
    iPhone has Notes, so that's a tie. According to what I've heard,
    iPhone Notes are not backed up though?
    ______________________________________
    Spell, Thesaurus
    Not provided. However, Google Docs provides proofing and you can find
    a thesaurus online, too.
    ______________________________________
    Data
    Irrelevant. I never used this, apart from contacts on my old Series 5
    that did not have the Contacts app. So it doesn't matter whether the
    iPhone has this. Use Google Docs if need be.
    ______________________________________
    Time
    Specifically, the Psion alarm clock is supremely useful, and the world
    clock is very handy too. I've seen that the iPhone has a neat alarm
    clock but more investigation is needed.
    --> to be tested.
    ______________________________________
    Sketch
    I only used this a handful of times over the last 11 years. Can't be
    that critical. I haven't seen what the iPhone offers.
    ______________________________________
    Copy/Paste
    WTF? iPhone can't do this?! Let's hope that will be solved in the
    future, perhaps with add-on software.
    ______________________________________
    Syncing
    iPhone wins. The PsiWin software is good and handles the entire office
    suite, but if you're not on MS Office/Outlook then there is nothing
    for you. I'm not entirely sure what iPhone can sync with, but it's
    enough for my use that it can backup to PC and sync with Google
    Calendar.
    ______________________________________
    *Twinkey
    This Psion add-on allows you to type two characters and have them
    converted to something else, so "oe" becomes "". Useful for foreign
    languages that I use a lot.
    The iPhone has a sort of "AltGr" feature on the regular touch
    keyboard, but more investigation is needed.
    --> to be tested.
    ______________________________________
    *Converti
    This Psion measurement conversion tool is handy but not essential, and
    I'm sure there is or will be some iPhone add-on that provides the
    same.
    ______________________________________
    *Ebook reader
    I have read many classic works on the Psion. I'm sure there is or will
    be some iPhone add-on that provides the same.


    In closing:
    This is my take on the iPhone as a Psion replacement. I'd love to hear
    your thoughts and comments! I'll try to update here as I learn more.
    Thanks for reading this!

    --
    Torben G-B

  2. Re: Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?

    > I find myself wondering if perhaps the iPhone would be useful as a
    > Psion replacement. ... I'll try to update here as I learn more.


    I've come to realize so far that if you plan on writing while on the
    road (letters, blog, plans, whatever) then iPhone is not the best
    choice. For a Psion user who is used to typing a lot (because you
    can!), the iPhone is not the ideal device because it does not support
    typing any longer texts. It still is an impressive device but aimed at
    other uses. In short the iPhone seems to be made for media consumption
    rather than content creation.

    What other choices are there? The Asus Eee PC and the new "netbook"
    market it pioneered is getting a lot of press coverage. It's a
    different matter though, because a netbook is definitely not
    pocketable although it does provide just what the Psion offered. It's
    actually a decent Psion Series 7 replacement.

    The Eee comes in Linux variants that seem to be useful for their
    simplicity like Psion's EPOC operating system. I'd go for that if not
    for certain road blocks: I want to use a USB HSDPA modem but there are
    only Windows drivers available. On the other hand, going with Windows
    brings on the whole wealth of PC complexity that we don't want, so
    it's a dilemma. And if you're going with Windows after all, then you
    might as well consider a bigger laptop in order to make more use of
    the system. One drawback with most "netbook" products is a very short
    battery life, to the tune of 1,5-2,5 hours -- the Asus Eee 901 being a
    notable exception with claims of 7 hours.

    What to do? Still not decided. Comments still welcome!

    -- Torben

  3. Re: Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?


    Replace a Psion S7 => ASUS EEE PC like device with Linux
    Replace a Psion S3/S5 => no solution so far.

    There are better hardware (iPhone 3G, HTC Touch Diamon Pro) but nothing as
    good as the old Epoc32/Sibo OS.

    Perhaps there are solutions: www.umpcportal.com

  4. Re: Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?

    Amrein-Marie Christophe wrote:
    > Replace a Psion S7 => ASUS EEE PC like device with Linux
    > Replace a Psion S3/S5 => no solution so far.
    >
    > There are better hardware (iPhone 3G, HTC Touch Diamon Pro) but nothing as
    > good as the old Epoc32/Sibo OS.


    yeah, and I'm still waiting for something that can go 20 hours on a pair
    of AA cells.

    7 hours battery life on an eee? Seems a bit sad by comparison.

    Frank

  5. Re: Is iPhone a good Psion replacement?

    In article
    ,
    TorbenGB wrote:

    > I've come to realize so far that if you plan on writing while on the
    > road (letters, blog, plans, whatever) then iPhone is not the best
    > choice. For a Psion user who is used to typing a lot (because you
    > can!), the iPhone is not the ideal device because it does not support
    > typing any longer texts. It still is an impressive device but aimed at
    > other uses. In short the iPhone seems to be made for media consumption
    > rather than content creation.


    I tried a MacBook Air as a Psion 7/NetBook replacement. Same instant on
    features. Good range of software. Reasonable battery life (not as good
    as the Psion 7). Weight is reasonable compared with a Psion 7, and feels
    even better than it is. When I am travelling by car, or by air it is
    great. But you can probably do the same with any of the modern small
    laptops.

    Just recently I signed up for a 16 day trip (by air) in a light
    aircraft. There isn't the space in the cabin nor the weight allowance
    (we may be down to a total luggage allowance of 7 kg each, and cameras
    will feature heavily) for even something as small as a MacBook Air.

    To my considerable disgust, I also still haven't seen anything as easy
    to use as Psion Agenda (more powerful I can find, clunkier I can find).
    Nor can I find a decent replacement for ABP (A Bank Program) (some
    potential accounts programs are not sold for Macintosh in Australia, as
    they have never been customised for here. I am also not as keen on
    desktop spreadsheets, powerful though they are, but that is probably
    just because I am not looking forward to converting all the formula in
    my Psion spreadsheets.

    I am trying the Apple iPhone as a Psion 5 replacement (partly because my
    Ericsson SH888 died, and that connected to my Psion). The iPhone is not
    there as yet, with much of the problem being the lack of keyboard. I am
    not as concerned about the lack of Psion equivalent programs. It seems
    to me that the new Apple App store sales model will encourage software
    to the extent that Psion equivalent programs will eventually appear.

    I suspect my travel model this time will be do as much as possible on
    the iPhone, and have the Psion 5 along for taking more comprehensive
    notes than I can manage on the iPhone.

    > What other choices are there? The Asus Eee PC and the new "netbook"
    > market it pioneered is getting a lot of press coverage. It's a
    > different matter though, because a netbook is definitely not
    > pocketable although it does provide just what the Psion offered. It's
    > actually a decent Psion Series 7 replacement.


    The size of the Asus Eee PC means that you will not just stick it in
    your pocket the way you would say a Revo, or even a Psion 5mx. My
    partner has one of the original Eee PC, and although it is an
    interesting toy, in general it does not get used to the extent her small
    Dell laptop or her Nokia 6120 Classic phone get used. Also the original
    EeePC doesn't get great battery life. It is like a laptop - just holds
    its breath between power points.

    > The Eee comes in Linux variants that seem to be useful for their
    > simplicity like Psion's EPOC operating system. I'd go for that if not
    > for certain road blocks: I want to use a USB HSDPA modem but there are
    > only Windows drivers available.


    In Australia, you can get a stand alone HSPDA modem, with Ethernet and
    WiFi. Should be able to be used by any device that runs WiFi.
    Disadvantage is that it is another (large) gadget. Plus it needs mains
    power. OK if travelling by car and setting up in a hotel room or office,
    and has the advantage that several people can use it as a wireless
    access point. I haven't tried, but I'd imagine I could power it by
    inverter while in the car. However it is a no show if on foot, or with
    limited luggage.

    --
    http://www.ericlindsay.com

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