Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Are you a vegetable?

Clinically speaking, you will immediately deny it because if you are a human vegetable, then you couldn't possibly be reading this. However, it is possible for one to be quite like a human vegetable without realizing it. When you stop growing intellectually, you will be playing the same "tape" over and over again.

When one is young and engaged in work, it is possible to have intellectual growth even though it is the same work day in and day out. That is because there are problems to solve and new challenges to face every day when you are at work. However, when you retire, the intellectual challenges slow down dramatically. This is a time when many people live like a human vegetable. Ask yourself: are you a human vegetable? If you are a retiree, have you stopped growing intellectually (i.e. no new inputs, no new experiences)? If you have, you will find life to be an empty void. Then it is perhaps time to read Rick Warren's book The Purpose Driven Life.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Australian apathy towards politics

Many Australians do not take an interest in politics. It is such a shame because excessive amounts of money are spent on questionable projects with no proper public disclosure. In many countries, people's right to speak are muted. As a result, open corruption and chicanery are rife over there. In Australia, people are allowed to speak freely, but most choose to give politicians a free hand. As they say, "power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely".

The title of this blog is from an article published on 28.6.2010 in The Age by Kenneth Davidson. The writer claims to have been sent letter by a senior bureaucrat explaining the culture of corruption in Victoria. To read the article in full, see: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/government-denies-right-to-know-ripoff-20100627-zbso.html

I'll just reproduce a few lines here.
"Premier John Brumby promotes PPPs as a means of both ingratiating himself to powerful business interests and establishing his credentials as a leader in the world of major public infrastructure development and service delivery."

"... that is why the government has frustrated attempts to gain any meaningful information by classifying the contractual detail as ''confidential''."

"It is clear that the procedures are being manipulated to achieve a favourable private sector outcome. The whole exercise is built around the public sector comparator. It purports to show the ''net present cost'' of the project if it was financed by the government so that if the PPP ''net present cost'' comes in below the public comparator..."

According to the columnist, unfortunately nothing can be done about this. The opposition is failing in its duty to report this blatant abuse of taxpayers' money (re: failed myki, overpriced desalination plant, botched health care system, etc), whereas the Auditor-General is only prepared to examine whether PPPs comply with Partnership Victoria guidelines. As for the voting public, they can be easily swayed by small handouts just before the state election.

(One thing we can do though, is to spread the word around and make people aware that the taxpayers' money is being squandered away at a rate that would make even Marcos and Suharto envious)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Cheap glasses - can you see the difference?

There's an article in today's paper talking about the emergence of a number of big companies offering cheap eye glasses. The price difference is a lot; you can get 2 pairs of "cheap" prescription glasses for $179, or pay $500 for one pair of the regularly priced glasses at an independent optometry store. Of course, the cheaper ones do not come with anti-glare coating or correction for astigmatism.

I think it is not right for the higher-priced independent optometrists to run down the cheaper alternatives by claiming the cheaper ones are appalling and are potentially damaging to the health. I am not promoting the cheaper ones either. I think it is good for consumers to have a choice. People who otherwise cannot afford the best would do well to to go for the second best. That's why the market always caters to different levels of affordability. Unfortunately there are policy makers who do not understand economics very well. They make policies requiring everyone to only use what is the very best. For example, childcare centers are very expensive because they have to meet the quality standards (e.g. carer to children ratio), thereby making it unaffordable to those who need this service the most. School textbooks are revised every so often just for the smallest changes. This is perhaps to make sure the previous years' books are not re-used. Councilors raise council rates every year to improve services which may be good for a well-heeled district, but may be an unaffordable luxury for a poorer constituent. Policymakers should understand the needs of the people instead of always promoting the very best.

Friday, June 25, 2010

What's your gadget?

On the radio talk show yesterday morning, the topic was "What's your gadget?" Several people called up to talk about what their favourite "gadgets" . One mentioned that she's got a cast iron saucepan that she has kept and used for 40 years (strictly speaking, I wouldn't call a saucepan a gadget). Another woman said she has an egg beater that she's kept for 30 years and she wouldn't use any other. I think such an attitude of thrift is laudable. People nowadays have a throwaway mentality. They just love to buys things and they love to be able to throw away the old and buy new ones every now and then. The mobile phone, the computer, clothes, the car, the kitchen appliance, and household furniture are just some examples. Therefore it was refreshing to hear on the radio show yesterday that there are people who actually cherish the old and keep on using the same things for as long as possible. We should all adopt that attitude. It is not just the money you save; it is also the time you spend in shopping and trying out new things. We could all live a richer life and be more environmental-friendly if we are less wasteful. We will learn to be more appreciative of the simple pleasures in life that do not come in attractive packagings.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Colour laser printer

Laser printers are great; colour lasers are even better. I have just bought a Samsung printer for $158, heavily discounted from its usual price of $350. I did a test run yesterday. The first page above (click to enlarge) is an automatically generated test page and it gives you details about this printer. The second one is a jpeg file that I printed. I used my camera to take a snapshot of these pages and posted them here. A laser printer is probably more economical than an inkjet for people who don't print often. Ink cartridges dry up very quickly while the toner in a laser printer won't. So if you come across a great buy like this, it's time to replace your inkjet printer. By the way, there are four toner cartridges in this colour laser printer, and they cost $75 each. You might want to look for generic toners.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sold on solar

What a relief to finally see my electricity meter going in the reverse! After installing my solar generator for about a week now, the sun has not been shining very brightly. We have been getting typical winter weather and I have not bothered to check my meter. Just now, while with a slight overcast, the panels have been generating about 550W (peak is supposed to be up to 2000W) and I could already see my electricity meter going into the reverse. See video below. This is not dramatic, but it is quite a sight to behold.

Tips for new migrants: driving

Driving in a new place is not only about knowing the traffic rules. It is about knowing how to avoid a collision, knowing what to do in a collision, and finally how to avoid the fines and summonses. The following pertains to Melbourne. I'll only mention what a seasoned driver from Malaysia may not be aware of.

Traffic rules: Always give way to pedestrians. At the roundabout, always give way to the traffic on your right even if you arrive first at the roundabout. When turning right at a junction, if there is no red arrow right-turn signal, you are allowed to go forward and wait until the oncoming traffic is clear. Then turn right. It is helpful to get just one or two lessons from a driving instructor. At least, read the driver's manual which you can pick up from any newsagent.

What to do in a collision: If no bodily injury is involved, you can pull over to the side and talk with the other person. There is no need to make a police report in this case. Exchange the name of the driver, address, phone, license plate, driver's licence number, and insurance company. If the driver drives off or is uncooperative, the best you can do is to get his rego (i.e registration number or licence plate), and then make a police report. It helps to get the name and contact number of a witness of two. There is no need to discuss on the spot who is in the right, because it is up to the insurance companies to work it out between themsleves. They will arrange for a repairer for you.

Avoiding fines and summonses: Obey all speed limits; speed traps are everywhere. They won't stop you; you'll just get a letter in the mail. Usually your first speeding ticket will be waived if you write in and appeal. In a school zone, the speed limit is often 40kph at certain hours. Watch out! The other place you don't want to get caught are at traffic junctions where both speed cameras and red light cameras are installed. I have seen the camera flash go off very often when waiting at a busy junction. There's a heavy fine and demerit points.
Parking fines are also very common. In areas of limited parking, the parking inspectors are very, very hardworking. People often get a ticket for going over time by 5 min. Be familiar with loading zones, wheelchair bays, no-standing ("S" sign), and clearways ("C" sign). The last two are especially very rigorously enforced. In a no-standing area, you can get a ticket even if you still remain in the car with the engine running. In a clearway, your car will be towed away right before your eyes. There's no negotiation. In addition to a fine, you'll have to pay towing cost and storage charges.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Tips for new migrants: health care

Australia's health care situation is quite "similar" to Malaysia's in the sense that you can choose to buy health insurance coverage, or rely on public health care service. The difference is that Australia's public health care service is by far much better than Malaysia's. Unless you are in the high income bracket, you can safely rely on the public hospitals. Even insured people are ultimately referred to the public hospitals as a final recourse (unlike in Malaysia where many will turn to Pantai Hospital or SJMC if they have the means).

Sign up for a Medicare card as soon as you can. Then you can visit clinics that provide "bulk billing" and you won't need to pay a cent for consultation. If you are referred to a non-bulk billed place for further tests or consultations, you can still get partially reimbursed by Medicare. If you are hospitalized, you are also covered.

Ambulance service is not free. It is best to sign up with Ambulance Victoria as soon as you arrive. You can do that in a post office. You'll never know when you need one and it is very expensive to call for an ambulance.

Dental care is very expensive. A simple filling for a cavity can cost you ten times more than what you pay in Malaysia. It is not covered by Medicare. Plan your treatments to be done in Malaysia if you go back regularly. Or else, buy a "comprehensive extra" coverage, which costs $1k+ per year, and will provide you some peace of mind. Note: this is not hospital coverage. It is only for things like dental, optical, physiotherapy, etc.

Finally, if you intend to buy health insurance coverage anyway, do so within one year of your first arrival. Then you won't be penalized with a hefty premium loading.

Tips for new migrants: buying a car

Buying a car here is an easy process. Once you have decided which car to buy, and if the car is ready for you, you just have to buy a bank draft in order to pick up your car. At the same time when you do that you can arrange for a car insurance on the spot. If the company does not have an in-house agent, then they will provide you with a phone to arrange for one on the spot, and you can drive off on the same day. Your Malaysian insurance record will not help you to get an NCB (no-claim bonus) here.

Who to insure with: Most people would go with one of these two: RACV or AAMI. Call both of them to compare prices. The rate you pay depends largely on the driver's age, the make and model of the car, and the area you live in. I find that AAMI offers the better rate for my car, which is close to $700 for a Toyota Camry.

If you are a car aficionado, then skip this part. If you just want a decent car to drive, the Camry is a good choice: good car, low maintenace cost, good resale value. Some of my friends are satisfied with getting a 2-3 year old Camry, for which they pay anything from $15k-$19k at a Toyota dealer. A new one starts from $25k after adding road tax (~$624) and delivery charges (~$2k?).

To save on fuel cost, some might consider getting a smaller car. In my opinion, it is better to get a secondhand Camry and convert it to run on LPG, since the government is generously subsidizing this now. I paid only $300 for my conversion and have been happily using gas, which is 54c/lit now, as compared to ~$1.30/lit for petrol. Eligibility is only one subsidy per person every 2 years. If you plan to get 2 cars, then remember to register one in your name and one in your wife's name. If you register 2 names on one car, you are only eligible for one subsidy.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Tips for new migrants: opening a bank account

Opening a bank account requires a 100-point check. Since identity cards are not used here, the driver's licence is the usual form of identity. Very often, such as in opening a bank account, you will require more than just the driver's licence to identify yourself. Various forms of ID can be used but they must add up to a minimum of 100 points.

A few tips here about banking:
1. If you sign up for electricity or other utility bills, it is better to put both husband and wife's name. Then when it comes to dealing with the utility bill company, either husband or wife can act. Or else, they will only deal with the nominated person and strictly nobody else. Also, either one can use the utility bill towards the 100-point check if needed.

2. Always use your name consistently. They will accept Anglican name, nickname, or whatever you fill in. It is best to be consistent. For e.g. if your name is Ah Beng, don't put it as "Ah_Beng" or "Ah-Beng" or "Ahbeng" or "John". Be consistent all the time (i.e. school, medicare, income tax, etc) and you'll minimize future inconvenience.

3. The 4 major banks are ANZ, Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, and NAB. Any bank will do but you'll probably want one that is closest to you or has ATM machine convenient to your location. If you go for HSBC, there are very few branches in Melbourne and it gives you no advantage at all in terms of transferring money between HSBC Malaysia and here, if that's what you have in mind. Suncorp, St.George, and other small regional banks also have fewer branches; an inconvenience if you are traveling through smaller towns.

4. Once you've set up an account, you will be providing that to the tax dept, Medicare, Centrelink, your employer, Superannuation fund, utility companies, etc. Plan to have one permanent account that you will use all the time for a long time, and for putting your pay in and paying bills out of it.

5. It is more practical for husband and wife to set up their own account. It makes it easier to work with the automated tax filing system (you'll find out later). You can always set each other up as nominees to operate each other's account.

6. Unlike in Malaysia, you don't need a cheque book account. I don't have one. The only time you'll need to write a cheque is when you buy a house or a car. Just buy a bank draft then. All bills can be paid via Bpay in the internet.

7. The most useful account is an everyday account and a savings account. The everyday account allows you to pay bills through Bpay and withdraw money from the ATM. The savings account is where you put the rest of your money away. You can also get a debit card to work with your everyday account, so you don't really need to have a credit card. Usually there is no charge to have a debit card and it can be used like a credit card. Initially it is hard to get approval for a credit card unless you are employed here.

Tips for new migrants: landline and internet

Check with your internet service provider first whether the area you live in is supported by them. Then only decide which land line to subscribe to. Note: once you sign up for an internet plan, you are usually locked in for 24 months. If you quit halfway, you will still have to pay a hefty penalty equivalent to the remainder of your contract.

Landline: Basically this is monopolized by Telstra and Optus. They usually will try to sell you a bundled plan, together with mobile phone and internet service. Refrain from bundled plans. These days, some people do not even want to have a landline at home, they just go for naked ADSL (which doesn't require you to have a landline). If you are one of these people, skip this. However, if you really want to have a landline, then go for the most basic plan. Mine is a $20/month plan. My landline is only for receiving incoming calls. I make all outgoing calls on VOIP. Hence my monthly bill is a constant $20.

Internet: Again Telstra and Optus are the big boys. However, TPG, iPrimus, and iiNet are the ones I would go for. See http://bc.whirlpool.net.au/ if you want to know more. TPG has the most cost effective plan. Mine is the $49/month plan with TPG. Even the capped speed is a high 1024kbps, which is highly useable. TPG also has naked ADSL if you so choose.

VOIP: This is for making phone calls over the internet. MyNetFone is the best one around, in my opinion. They have a fully prepaid plan that costs you nothing in monthly subscription. Each call you make to Australia landline anywhere in Australia is 12.5c for unlimited duration. Calls to Malaysia are 3.5c per min. Calls to Australia mobiles are 20c per min with no flagfalls. In comparison, the first one minute of call on a prepaid mobile can cost you up to $1.50. In my opinion, everyone should use VOIP. It will save you buckets.

The only reason I still own a landline is because I am old fashioned. I really ought to just go with naked ADSL.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Tips for new migrants: mobile phone

I think I'll start writing a series of blogs giving my own tips to new migrants in Australia. I believe this information will help new migrants to Australia settle down easily and avoid making expensive mistakes. I'll start off with hand phones (Aussies call them mobiles).

Telstra and Optus are the big boys among the service providers. That doesn't mean they have the best deals. Hutchinson "3" and Vodafone are also competitive. Mobile phones that you buy here are usually locked to one of the service providers, although you can buy unlocked phones. Also, if you sign up for a plan with one company, typically the phone has to be unlocked before you can use it with another company. However, your phone number can be transferred.

Common mistakes: (1) "Free" phone plans. Many people are taken in with phone plans because they come with a "free" phone. Believe me, the cost of the phone is well hidden in the fees. For example, a $19/month plan may seem to be reasonable if it comes with a free phone. But the so-called "capped limits" are usually reached very quickly (newcomers take time to wise up to this, believe me). If you are not careful, you might think you have signed up for a "capped limit", but you can easily get slugged with a few hundred dollars in your bill. (2) Bundled plans. Service providers often try to tie you down with several products and services (e.g. landline + mobile + internet). Be very careful! I have often found bundled packages to be more expensive.

Suggestion: Do not subscribe to any monthly plan. Buy a phone outright. There are many inexpensive ones for less than AUD$100. Sign up for a prepaid plan. I am with Optus prepaid. Vodafone prepaid is also very attractive. There are several prepaid options. I go for the low usage option, whereby the $30 is good for 6 months unless you used up the credits. It also comes with 100min of free calls to 5 nominated numbers (all Optus, of course) each time you top up. Prepaid plans are good if you only make calls within the restricted numbers, or only receive outside calls. Otherwise, go for Suggestion #2.

Suggestion #2: If you are a heavy user, it is best to sign up with TPG Mobile. For $15/month you get $300 worth of calls. You bring your own phone. There is no contract to tie you down. I have found that currently this is the best mobile plan around. They also have $9, and $13 plans for different call quota. You can buy any unlocked phone, or any Optus phones (they also work on TPG Mobile). TPG Mobile doesn't have a shop front. Go to their website for detailed info: http://www.tpg.com.au/mobile/plans.html

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Lightroom 3 wins over Capture One Pro 5

That's it. Being a very organized person, the workflow in Capture One is too messy for my liking, not to mention that it crashed once on me. I think I'll stick to Lightroom 3. I've spent a whole day today trying to see if Capture One can actually do a better job at Raw conversion. Well, I really can't tell much difference between the two. To test this out, I used the same images to do the same enhancements on each program, going through several of the tools I am familiar with. While Capture One has a moire tool that Lightroom 3 does not have, and a better set of Style presets, it does a truly horrible job at vignetting. Lightroom 3 has red eye correction tool, gradient tool, and a very useful adjustment brush, all of which Capture One does not have.

What Capture One does poorly in terms of library structure and workspace organization, Lightroom does remarkably well. I love the fact that Lightroom does not create any files or folders in my photo archives until I am ready to export. In Capture One, each time I import an image or start a session, a folder is create in my archive. Lightroom completely keeps of out my archives, no matter how many folders I import into Lightroom to work on.

I love the big Reset button in Lightroom that allows me to immediately go back to the starting point. I love being able to remove any of the changes at any time with gradient, red eye correction, spot removal, and adjustment brush tools. In Capture One, I'll have to reverse my steps one step at a time. Lightroom tools are more logically organized. Hence I spend less time on the job. In Capture One I have to spend more time opening tabs to get to the tools.

I am happy to stick with Lightroom 3 and ready to drop Capture One Pro 5 for now. Well done, Adobe!

Monday, June 14, 2010

My new solar panel

Today the workers came to install my solar power generator. I must say that my notion of a solar generator has been pretty outdated. I confess that I had this idea of a bank of storage batteries to store up the power generated during the daytime, to be used at night. Instead, the panels that you can see in the picture are enough to generate 1.5kW of electricity in the broad daylight. DC current is converted to AC through the "inverter" unit (see other picture). There are no storage batteries; all excess power generated is directly fed back into the grid. Hence, in the daytime if your usage is less than what is generated, the electricity meter will actually go backwards!

Capture One Pro 5 and Lightroom 3

First, I must say I have been a big fan of Lightroom 2. I think it is the best software around for photographers. It is definitely much more useful than Photoshop, unless one is more inclined to do post processing work than actual shooting.

In the last couple of days I had the chance to download the trial versions of a couple of other programs. One is Capture One Pro 5, from Phase One. The other is Lightroom 3 from Adobe. I tried out Capture One Pro first. I immediately liked the ability to shoot tethered. That is to say, I can connect my D90 to the computer via USB cable and shoot straight into the PC. As for other post processing work, Capture One does a beautiful job. The noise reduction feature, especially, works a miracle. Neat Image software used to be the standard-bearer in this area, but now it looks like Capture One can do the job with just a few control sliders. I was utterly convinced that Capture One is THE answer to a photographer's dream.

Next, I tried out Lightroom 3. What do you know - it has more or less the same features as Capture One Pro 5. In fact, since Capture One Pro 5 was released earlier than Lightroom 3, it looks like Lightroom 3 has imitated the feature set of the former. It can do tethered shooting with the same ease as Capture One, and it boasts the same noise reduction capability as Capture One. I find that Lightroom 3 has a much simpler work flow and is less steep on the learning curve. On the other hand I am not about to write off Capture One. I think the tossup between these two wonderful software is in the quality of the RAW conversion. My simple guess is that Phase One knows more about producing the best image quality, while Adobe knows how to make the software easier for people to use. Goodbye, Photoshop.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

What every photographer needs: a reliable display

I thought my D90 was having a problem with getting the right exposure. First, I thought it was due to the camera not being accurately calibrated. Then I thought it might be due to the fact I have started to shoot in RAW and that perhaps the RAW files have not been optimized for viewing. So I lived with the problem for some time, painfully adjusting the exposure in post processing. It was therefore a great relief to find out that when I changed over to another computer, the images now look like they should be. This computer has a good VGA card, while the previous one only had the display module built into the motherboard.

I think I have just learned a very important lesson in photography: you really can't trust what you see on the screen, unless you have a reliable display. It follows that if you can't trust what you view on the screen, you are really handicapped when it comes to reviewing the images you have shot. You will literally be shooting in the dark.

(Perhaps all I had needed was for my LCD display profile to be calibrated, but I had to change over to another computer anyway, so I did not bother to check if the problem would have been fixed by simple calibration, instead of having a good VGA card)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

God save the Queen

This coming Monday is the Queen's birthday. It suddenly dawned upon me that she is also my Queen. As you know, Malaysia was a British colony. The British gave Malaysia her independence two years before I was born, leaving behind many legacies. I admit I always have a penchant for everything English. I used to wish Malaysia was still a British colony. So it is quite an exhilaration for me today when I suddenly realized I am now a citizen of a British colony. What a thought!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A couple of rescued pictures

Here are a couple of pictures that I took at the PMA show. They were technically bad quality shots. Since I liked the pose very much, I turned them into digital artwork. The first picture was grainy and shot at a distance, at ISO800. I cropped it heavily and turned it into black and white. The second picture was badly overexposed. The only processing I did was to use Lightroom to reduce the exposure by 4 stops.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Beware of "double-act" politicians

We have heard of doublespeak (or double talk) among politicians. Less commonly noticed are politicians that actually do what the voting public wants them to do, but in name only. In fact, some even go as far as re-defining the words they use in order to avoid being called a liar. Double talk, double meanings... these are all tools used by seasoned politicians who make a mockery of the public's intelligence.

Double speak, by one definition, is language constructed to disguise or distort its actual meaning. "Double-act" does the same thing, except that instead of talking, the politician is actually doing what the people wants but not what the people think they are getting. A good example is the Malaysian university entry system whereby the marginalized Chinese and Indians called for an end to the race-based quota system in favour of a merit system. Mahathir, the Prime Minister at that time, suddenly announced the merit system. Overnight there was a hue and cry among the Malays and a joyous celebration among the others. Very quickly it became obvious that although a so-called merit system has been introduced, the method of assessing competency was still race-based. Hence, in effect, no change.

Victorian Premier Brumby has mastered the art of "double-act". In giving in to the public's call for a new anti-corruption agency to fight the rising problem of corruption in the state, Brumby did a backflip after six month's of vehemently denying the need. With the state election drawing near, he suddenly agreed to set up one, but in the process, he actually reduced the power of the Ombudsman office, and introduced a complex system that will take the corruption-fighting effort in the wrong direction, according to the Ombudsman (who should know what he's talking about). In the eyes of the voters, Brumby will be seen as having done the right thing, but the few who care to read the small prints will find that Brumby may have pulled off a fast one.

A double-act is more potent than a doublespeak. A doublespeak reveals itself right away. A double-act is a smokescreen whereby the truth slowly becomes visible. By that time, most would have walked away after getting the first whiff, while a few would linger to see what is behind the smokescreen.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Photos from PMA 2010

PMA: Photo Marketing Association. This year's trade show was held in Melbourne last weekend. It was a great opportunity for enthusiasts like me to see all the latest gear in one place and having people to happily demonstrate their ware to you. Apart from product display, I enjoyed listening in to some of the talks, especially the ones on studio photography. Above are some of the fabulous looking models I got to shoot at the PMA. Opportunity to shoot models are hard to come by for amateurs, so I made the best use of it I could. It was difficult to get the best angle, with everyone jostling for space. Just had to keep shooting plenty until I got the occasional good shot or two.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

What I think of the iPad

Now the the iPad has reached Australia, I finally had a chance to try my hands on a display unit at the shops. It really feels good. Great toy. If you want to pamper yourself, go out and get one. It is both useful and entertaining.
a) It makes a great picture viewer. You'll have to spend about $250 to get a picture viewer of the same size.
b) It also makes a great ebook reader. Though I don't read a lot of books, the iPad might just turn me into a bookworm. The thought of being able to carry all the magazines and books in one little iPad is very appealing.
c) Of course, to have the internet access wherever and whenever you feel like it... what more can I say?

Would I buy one now? No. I am waiting to see what all the competitors are going to come up with in the next few months. Particularly the ones based on the Android system.