something to keep you busy!

I’m not including the iPod Touch since it’s basically an iPhone without a cellular radio…

This post is about the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle

I presently still own an iPod Classic (5th Gen) and an iPod Shuffle (3rd Gen).

Both were gifts from my wife… I still even use my iPod Shuffle for my daily commute since I want to save my Galaxy S6 Edge‘s battery!

I know this post is titled “what would make me buy?” But its more of like “features I wish Apple would add to the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle.”

iPod Nano

1. Video out and ability to play FHD videos.

Way back in the days when hotels provided CRT TVs, I used to load movies on my iPod Classic. Using an Apple Composite AV Cable (30pin to RCA), I used my iPod Classic to watch movies.

The iPod Nano uses a lightning port but it’s not compatible (according to Apple’s website) with Apple’s Lightning to Digital AV (Lightning to HDMI) adapter.

Its technical specs also mentions that it can only play the following video format.

H.264 video: 720 by 576 pixels, 30 frames per second; Baseline, Main and High-Profile level 3.0 with AAC-LC audio up to 256 Kbps; 48kHz; stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4 and .mov file formats

MPEG-4 video: up to 2.5 Mbps, 720 by 576 pixels, 30 frames per second; Simple Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 256 Kbps; 48kHz; stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4 and .mov file formats

2. It should be able to play our Apple Music playlists off-line.

I believe this feature is available for the Apple Watch

3. Manage content using an iPad.

Right now, you need a Mac/PC (using iTunes) to sync songs and manage music on an iPod Nano. It would be nice if you can use your iPad, maybe Apple can release a Lightning to Lightning cable.

Features that will make the iPod Nano awesome.

1. Return of the camera, remember the 5th Gen? I’m not asking for a 12MP camera. 5MP will be enough…
2. Wi-Fi, would be nice for wireless syncing with your iPad/Mac.
3. Ability to answer calls (while connected to your iPhone via BT) and maybe read/reply to your messages.
4. Siri (while connected to your iPhone/iPad via BT)

iPod Shuffle

(As mentioned above for the iPod Nano)
1. It should be able to play your Apple Music playlists off-line.

2. Manage content using an iPad.

3. Lightning Cable

Right now, you will need a USB to 3.5 adapter to sync songs to your Shuffle.

Using a Lightning Cable (instead) should be more convenient (it’s 1 less cable) and will perfectly align with Apple’s rumored plan to remove the 3.5mm headphone jack from future iPhones.

4. Bluetooth

To allow us to use wireless earphones.

Features that will make the iPod Shuffle awesome.

1. Camera. Maybe a HD Video camera? Just imagine clipping the Shuffle on your shirt and using it as an action camera.
2. Ability to answer calls (while connected to your iPhone via BT).
3. Siri (while connected to your iPhone/iPad via BT)

A dedicated MP3/Video player in 2016 doesn’t make any sense (not unless it plays Lossless Audio Codec)…

Apple needs to make the iPod Nano and Shuffle companions to the iPhone and iPad (or maybe even the Mac).

They don’t even need to look too far… All they have to do is look at the Apple Watch and try to move the iPods on the same direction.

Yes, the iPod as we know it (a dedicated MP3 player) is dead… It needs an upgrade for 2016 and beyond.

Tissot Ballade III Automatic

According to Tissot’s Website

Stainless Steel Case
Sapphire Crystal (Scratch Resistant)
ETA 2824-2 Movement

I’ve been using the Ballade III for a couple of months and from the eyes of an average person, it’s a very good watch.

After a month of use, it’s around 2.5 minutes ahead. which should be less than 6 seconds per day.

Tissot Ballade III

The date window is between 4 & 5 which can be a bit strange, but you’ll get used to it. Compared to my Orient and Bulova watches… That date window is a really big plus, especially if you plan to use it as a daily watch.

Tissot Ballade III Bracelet

Tissot Ballade III Showcase

Bracelet is nicely done, no sharp edges and it also doesn’t have a rattling sound.

IMO, highly recommended watch.

Bulova 96A120 BVA Series Dual Aperture Dial Watch

Bought this watch while I was on-board the Mariner of the Seas.

It came in black with a silver strap and brown with a leather strap…

Honestly, I didn’t even notice the black model. The seller just showed it to me as an alternate option.

For me, the brown model stood out, and comparing it to the Stührling (automatic) watches which were also on sale… Bulova looked stunning…

Honestly, the purchase wasn’t easy…

I finally decided to buy it on my 4th day on-board…

 

Bulova 96A120

Click image for a larger photo

 

Watch is 42mm in diameter and around 13mm thick.
Automatic with 21 Jewels…

From the front, you’ll notice that “4” is written as “IIII” instead of the “IV”…

Left dial shows hours in 24hr format, while the right dial shows the seconds.

Date would have been nice, but I’m not complaining.

Behind it is a sticker that says “Japan Movement Hong Kong Brand”

Bulova Watch

Japan Movement makes sense since Bulova is owned by Citizen…

Hong Kong brand? According to Amazon, this watch was initially released in 2011… Either there’s a part of Bulova history that’s not in Wikipedia, or someone pasted the wrong sticker.

Back of the watch is open…

Japan Movement + the Bulova tuning fork symbol can be seen inside.

One of my favorite features of this watch is that the leather strap comes with a Deployment Buckle!

Bulova leather strap

Bulova leather strap with Deployment Buckle

Bulova tuning fork

You’ll need to get used to wearing it… It feels strange at first, but it’s like having the best of both worlds!

I’m really glad I bought this watch!

I can’t believe it took me 4 days before pulling the trigger…

Just came back from a 5 days cruise on-board the Mariner of the Seas from Royal Caribbean.

(Click here for information regarding the ship, thanks to Wikipedia)

It was awesome…

First, a quick look at our room…

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Bathroom only had soap and shampoo… Do not forget to bring your own toiletries.

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There’s a TV available, but you can only turn it on, adjust the volume and change channels… You can also purchase on demand video.

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“Input” button does not work…

Day 02. From Singapore, vessel went to Port Klang.

Since I’m based in Singapore, no sense for me to pay extra just to visit KL.

Still, I decided to leave the vessel to see whats available near the port…

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There was nothing!

After leaving the vessel and passing through all those metal detectors, all you’ll see are 2 (or 3) souvenir shops and a convenience store.

There is also a shop that sells alcohol, but we all know you can’t bring them on-board (there are x-ray machines).

If you have a couple of extra Ringgit and did not avail for any of the Royal Caribbean Beverage Packages… You may want to buy sodas/bottled water/juices… If you’re from Singapore, chewing gum is also available.

From Port Klang, next stop was Penang.

Compared to Port Klang, (Day 03) Penang is a better port.

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We also did not sign-up for any excursions.

Outside the terminal, we found some rickshaws who offered a ride at 40.00 Ringgit/hour.

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We asked them to bring us to those street murals for some photos and later asked them to just leave us where we can have local (Chinese) food.

Here’s a thing about all those Penang murals… Sometimes, there’s a car parked blocking it.

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I also tried the “Penang White Coffee” which tastes like instant coffee from Ipoh… (Tried it from 2 different places, a food stall and a cafe… Both tasted the same!)

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Also, you may have heard that Penang food is totally different… Well, I tried their Kway Teow… Hard to judge since I’m a regular customer of Hai Kee Teochew Cha kuay Teow!

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Next port is (Day 04) Phuket…

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Excellent beach! But thanks to our excursion, we were only able to stay there for an hour.

Vessel did not berth since they did not have any jetty for the Mariners, but tender boats left every 10 minutes.

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If you ask me, signing up (and paying) for the excursion is nice, I’ll never go to those places on my own…

But I’ll never do it again! The beach and the sand are so nice to miss.

Fruits tastes good and there’s snacks along the beach.

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Yes, prices remind you that you’re in a tourist spot, but you’re on vacation!

Next day is (Day 05) Sea Day where we get to enjoy the amenities on-board!

Some things to know when you’re on-board the Ship…

1. Check out the timings of the shows… If there’s only 1 show, it tends to be very crowded. Be there early!

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2. Buying Royal Caribbean Beverage Packages on the first day will mean that your paying for it for the entire cruise… So (if you’re paying for the Royal Replenish Package on the first day, that’s USD 22.00 x 5 days…

You only get the free tumbler on the first 2 days… After that, the tumbler will cost USD 7.00.

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Here’s the catch, during “Sea Day” they will be selling Royal Caribbean cups and tumblers. 6pcs at USD 20.00! Sad part is that the tumbler cannot hold hot beverages making it almost useless for me.

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3. Ice Skating rink normally gets full, queue early.

4. Wall Climbing… There’s are separate queue for those who haven’t signed the “waiver”. Sign it as early as you can!

5. On-board shopping is fun and cheap!
– I bought a watch for my daughter, sadly the watch ran out of battery once we reached home.

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Be early if you want to have breakfast at Rhapsody in Blue

Otherwise, there’s always Windjammer and Cafe Promenade.

Chops Grille… They were offering 20% off at Chops Grill on the first 4 nights of the cruise. During Sea Day, 40% off! I can’t guarantee that this is a normal thing, but if you want steak, try Chops Grill!

Our regular dinners was at Sound of Music , service was excellent! food, I can say OK!

4 out of 5 days, they hosted a BBQ at the pool area! Try to get your seat/table early as it tends to get full easily!

Lastly…

Please bring enough clothes!

Day 02 is formal night and its really sad to see people who can’t follow the dress code.

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Plan to go to the gym/play sports… Bring proper gym wear and shoes!

There’s almost no baggage allowance limit. Our bags were almost 30kg each!

So please! Enjoy yourself and be at your best! Yes, you are on vacation but that doesn’t mean you’re wearing shorts and slippers all the time!

One last thing… Hats off to the guys who provided excellent service while we were on-board. Roque (housekeeping), Biju and Jayesh (dinner at Sound of Music) and basically the guys from Chops Grille!

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(photo from Google’s Street View)

Spent a week (November 2015) at One Pacific Place, Makati.

We also stayed on the same hotel last April, however I was too busy (and tired) to take photos and check out their amenities.

Our room (this time) was twin sharing.

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Beds are small (super single) but sheets are nice and smooth.

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Room is cooled by a split type aircon which has a constant buzz at night.

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The room has a mini bar, fridge and a sink!

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TV (with Cable) and a DVD Player!

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You also get a closet, safe and office desk.

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Strangely they provided LAN connection for your laptop however it’s in between the beds… Not even close to the desk!

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Bathroom is spacious, but they’ll only provide a lotion, soap, conditioner and shampoo.

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Bath towels remind me of the ones they provide in our gym… They’re not the soft and fluffy type, but they do not feel old (ehem, Siloso Beach resort).

On the 7th floor, they have an open deck and a kid’s playroom.

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Here’s a panoramic photo of what you can see from the open deck.

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You will also see the pool area from the open deck.

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6th floor has the pool and gym…

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According to the front desk, free Wi-Fi is only available for 2-3 devices, don’t forget to ask them for your username and password.

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Morning speed is promising… But speed dips at night!

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Breakfast is available (2 complimentary) at the restaurant on the first floor…

I suggest that you check out the spread before paying for that third person… Sometimes, it’s just not worth it… (There’s a McDonald’s nearby!

I have only one complain… Your room’s access card does not give you access to their parking! You’ll need to go to the ground floor and ask someone from their front desk to press B1 or P2 for you.

Other than that, this hotel is so clean, coming back is never a question! For their price, accessibility and facilities, highly recommended if you’re looking for an inexpensive place in Makati!

https://www.onepacificplaceresidences.com/

Other than the McDonald’s, nearby restaurants include New Bombay (Indian), KFC, Yellow Cab (Pizza) and North Park (Chinese).

Ayala Triangle is also only 12 minutes (walk) away.

Family Mart and 7-Eleven are also nearby.

If you’re looking for a massage, Touch & Heal (Leviste) is a good place to visit!

This post is NOT about “How to Install a Car Stereo” on your Mitsubishi Adventure.

But, if you just replaced your battery and noticed that the time on your Adventure’s Car Stereo is back to 1200… This post is for you.

One more thing…

I’m talking about the Adventure Car Stereo with a MMAD

Mitsubishi Adventure Car Stereo

And just incase, an Adventure looks like this!

Mitsubishi Adventure

(Also known as the Kuda, Africar Landio, Jolie, Soueast Freeca and Africar Jockey)

Back to adjusting the clock on your Adventure’s Car Stereo…

First thing you have to do is ensure that the car stereo is turned on… Press then button on the upper left side.

Mitsubishi Adventure Stereo Power Button

Once it’s turned on.

Press and hold the DISP button on the left side.

MMAD Mitsubishi Adventure Stereo DISP Button

Once the screen says “AUX 1 ON“, you can let go of the DISP Button and press the volume knob once.

Mitsubishi Adventure Stereo Volume Knob

You can now adjust the “hour”. To adjust the minutes, press the right “seek” button.

Mitsubishi Adventure Stereo Seek Button

You may want to check out the video below…

After adjusting the time, pressing the knob again will also allow you to change other settings in your Stereo, like the BT Password.

My first 3 “Smartphones” were made by HTC.

The Tanager, XDA II mini and the Dopod 838.

I loved them so much, my wife replaced her Nokia 6610 with a XDA II mini and later an i-mate K-Jam.

Sadly, the Wizard was the last HTC device for both of us.

I later used an Asus P525 and my wife needed something she can use in the US… The Razr.

HTC makes unbelievably great phone hardware.

I remember recommending the HTC One (M7) to my friends and colleagues, but they all decided to get the Galaxy S4 from Samsung!

Why not HTC? Accordingly to them, their Hero, ChaCha and Salsa were really bad phones.

I gave them the funny look and told them it’s not fair to judge the HTC One based on their experience with entry level phones.

Sadly, people they knew who used devices from Samsung (like the Galaxy Ace and Y) did not have the same issues they encountered…

So here’s my point… HTC lost the trust of a generation (I was mostly talking to early to mid-20’s who were on their first jobs). Older guys think their ok, but the younger ones prefer (Android) devices from Samsung and Xiaomi (and lately LG).

For HTC to revive it’s glory days, it needs a device that’s inexpensive. And that device is definitely not the A9!

According to The Verge, the A9 will cost $399.99 that version will have 3GB of RAM and 32GB Storage. However, in the UK, the device will cost £429.99 ($665) for a device that will only have 2GB RAM and 16GB storage.

I wonder how much will the Asian version cost and what configuration will it have…

HTC US also promised Android updates, but again no one is sure if they’re talking about US devices only.

At $399.99, the A9 will be competing against the Moto X Pure Edition, the Nexus 5X and the iPhone 5S.

It’s 2015! You want your device on the hands of rappers/artists and athletes! Since HTC may have budget issues to do that, they can tap another market… High school kids! Last time I checked, they were either using an iPhone (5 and newer), Samsung Galaxy (A5/S4/Note 2 and newer) and Xiaomi!

I would forgive HTC if they made a 5C replica… Like Xiaomi’s Mi4i and sold it for $200.00… An Android One device from HTC will make the world go crazy…

The A9? How the mighty has fallen with no parachute!

Like what I mentioned earlier on my BlackBerry Venice post…

HTC (like BlackBerry) needs to put devices on as many hands as possible, and we’re not talking about a useless slab of glass and plastic! The device needs to be reliable and good…

A mobile phone at less than $200.00 is impulse buy territory and some parents will buy it for their children.

If people realize that the brand is ok, they will start to spend more and consider the mid-range and flagship devices later.

It’s what the Chinese OEMs are doing and maybe, HTC should try to take a peek on that strategy.

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