Monthly Archives: October 2011

3G service to kick off on November 1st

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Lebanese Minister of Telecommunications launched the 3G service officially today at the AUST University in Achrafieh. Aside from the babbling and the false hopes given to the Lebanese about becoming the leading Tech country in the world, here are the 3G rates as announced by Minister Sehnaoui:

– 19$/month for 500 MB
– 10$/month for 100 MB
– 60$/month for 1 GB ( Not confirmed though)

The prices are reasonable but the caps are honestly ridiculous specially if we are planning to use the 3G connection as a wireless connection. You can barely check your email, upload few pictures and play few YouTube videos with 500 MB!

3G services will be provided as of November 1st in Beirut and its surroundings before gradually becoming available all over Lebanon.

Vote for Jeita for free (+10 cents)

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I got this SMS yesterday from the Ministry of Tourism:

“Vote for Jeita grotto. Send the word “Jeita” to 1070. The ministry of tourism is offering this sms free of charge, however a cost of 10 cents will be charged by the organizers of the new seven wonders competition”

What exactly is the MOT offering free of charge? Can someone please explain?

As for the new seven wonders competition, I will refrain from commenting on the whole issue until the voting date is over but I myself will not vote.

3G to be launched officially today?

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Update: Minister Sehanoui will hold a press conference today at AUST to explain the different phases and pricing. [Link]

Update2: 3G service will be offered for as low as 19$ for 500 MB. 10$ for 100 MB also available. Prices are ok but cap is ridiculous.

I heard the MOT minister is going to launch the 3G service officially today and that prices are going to start at 20$.

Noting that the test phase is almost over now, I hope we won’t have to wait long before the new plans are announced.

Things you need to know about the iPhone 4S if you’re in Lebanon

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I’ve been using the new iPhone for a couple of days now and these are somethings you need to know if you’re planning on using it in Lebanon.

Siri speaks and understands both English and French but not Arabic. You can’t speak both English and French to it at the same time, you have to decide which language you prefer and select it from the Siri menu.

You also need to have internet on your phone to be able to use Siri, even for simple tasks like setting the alarm. This is where 3G plays an important role since it speeds up the response time for Siri. With a regular Edge connection Siri isn’t as responsive and you won’t enjoy using her.

A big issue I have with Siri is you can’t teach it where your home or office is. For some reason Siri uses Google Maps addresses to learn these locations and Google Maps addresses is currently only available in the US. I don’t understand why Siri won’t learn based on my GPS location. If you’ve been using iOS 5 recently you might have played around with the new Reminder App. In that App you could teach it locations using GPS for example you could set a reminder that once you get home you need to walk the dog or once you get to the office remind me to call a supplier. So why Siri can’t learn locations with GPS is confusing specially if another app already does it.

The iPhone 4S is like the previous iPhone 4 with the biggest differences being Siri, a better camera and a faster chip which you will only notice when running games. If you want to see how better the new camera is download the two images below and compare:

Low light with iPhone 4S
Low light with iPhone 4

Beirut #1 Party Town in the world

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That’s some great news but a bit hard to believe to be honest. I wish they could provide more information as to what criteria are being considered when ranking those towns?

According to this list, Beirut is ahead of Las Vegas, Rio de Janeiro, Ibiza, Budapest and many others.

But in spite of its history of violence, Beirut puts great stock in having a good time. And there’s no shortage of trussed-up beautiful locals keen to be seen in Beirut’s bars and clubs.

Don’t even think about going out in Beirut before 10pm – and even then, it had better be for dinner. Dancefloors are dead until around 1am.

While there are a raft of upmarket clubs around town – such as Sky Bar, the ultra-glam venue affording a panoramic view of the Mediterranean coastline and boasting a filthy rich clientele of local celebs – we prefer the quirkier nightspots. [TNT]

How to get things done in Lebanon

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Nadine Labaki proposed a very efficient way to settle our differences in her latest movie “Where do we go now?” and I think this is another smart way to incite politicians and men to get things done.

The women of Barbacoas, Colombia have ended a three-month, 19-day “crossed legs” strike of sexual abstinence aimed at getting a road to their isolated town paved, after officials pledged to invest in the project. [Naharnet]