Convergent GSM/GPRS CF Card
One of my biggest gripes and the most hidden secrets I have been living with was the fact that I have not been carrying around an iPAQ for the past 6 months. Yes, I know my site name is Dave’s iPAQ and I am the iPAQ guy, dude, evangelist or whatever you want to call me. But one of the reasons was the fact that none of the iPAQ’s had the capability to connect to the internet without Bluetooth or via cables. I purchased the T68 phone in hopes that I will use it with my 5450 but unfortunately who wants to carry all that excess baggage? Not me! Well say no more. Convergent Technologies has just gotten approved a CF GSM/GPRS card. When I received the email my eyes could not believe it! I actually posted a news brief on the company and also looked into contacting them directly. After speaking to the founder, Dennis I learned alot about his company and also learned that over 200+ of these have been sold already! Many of you have always sent me emails requesting the HP GSMGPRS PCMCIA sleeve but as you know it still is not available in the US. During this review I will go over ease of use, setup and also speed tests.
The box contents consists of a PCMCIA adapter for a laptop also the CF card with a headset to plug into for using the card as a phone. The CD that is bundled with the card comes with IA Dialer and also the setup instructions. I will go over step by step what you need to do to configure this on PocketPC 2003, its really a snap! When I received the card it was nicely filled with popcorn to protect the inner box and also was packed within another box. Convergent really does a nice job on the shipping! Please note I was not able to get the IA Dialer to work with PocketPC 2003 but they are working on a fix. I therefore went to the Mercedes Benz of dialers and purchased Running Voice GSM by Pocket Presence. Wow how does this enhance the experience.
The overall design of the card just screams of pizzaz. Convergent Technology really designed a sleek but small CF card that really packs a one two punch. How does a company cram all that circuitry within this little CF card. You’ll also notice (left) the door that slides open for the sim card. Once I opened the sim door I gently slid my sim inside the chamber and closed the door. The cards also has a earpiece slot for the earphone to enable the phone. Users need to note the slot for the earplug is the same size as all Nokia phones. Some of you might have the Jabra Bluetooth headset so be sure the model supports Nokia earplugs. The top portion of the card is the actual antenna which swings open from left to right. I never really needed to open the antenna but possibly in some rural areas of coverage it might help. The antenna sits snug and seems quite stable, so those who always think small parts will break no need to worry. The card also has 2 side grips for inserting and pulling out the card. One complain of CF cards was that they tend to be a little hard to pull out.