Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Equipment, Travel > Communications

Communications Connecting - internet cafes, laptops, Palm devices, cell phones - how to connect, use, which one, and Bike to Bike and passenger intercoms.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Calendar Contest Voting is now CLOSED. Results to be posted shortly.


Like Tree8Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 6 Dec 2013
*Touring Ted*'s Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wirral, England.
Posts: 4,284
Netbook, laptop, tablet or smart phone ??

I've always liked to travel with a netbook. But there is no denying the weight and space in your luggage is SIGNIFICANT..

I'm determined to do my next trip SUPER LIGHT but I really want something that I can use wirelessly in a hostel, cafe etc. For checking mail, writing blogs and booking flights, transport etc.

I'm swaying towards another small netbook......

However, tablets are really powerful these days. Lack of proper qwerty puts me off though..


Any suggestions or ideas ??

Cheers, Ted
__________________
www.TouringTed.com
1994 XR650L
2001 NX650 Dominator.

BMW Dealer Technician
Welder/Fabricator

Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
South America 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 6 Dec 2013
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Bermuda
Posts: 113
I've just bought the Macbook Air 11-inch - thin and lightweight but still has the features of a laptop.

I used an iPad on my last trip but I found it lacking for any lengthy typing and also it had some other limitations.
__________________
2014 overland adventure to Russia and Central Asia in Land Rover Defender www.bermudarover.com
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 6 Dec 2013
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: near Munich
Posts: 30
I always have my Smartphone with me. It is multi useable as a phone, navigation system, wireless computer.....
Skype, Internet, Mail, data backup, reader....
The only disadvantage is that I do not have the possibility to install any Windows program on it.
Stefan

Gesendet von meinem GT-I9300 mit Tapatalk
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 7 Dec 2013
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: RTW
Posts: 377
I have Macbook Pro 13".
I chose this computer mainly because of aluminium covers = robust.
Changed normal HDD to SSD.
13" because I want to see my photos from a big display (well, I would prefer 15", but that starts to be too big).
This computer is not light, but it has served me well in the past 17 months. For shorter trip, I would select something smaller and lighter like Macbook Air 11").
__________________
www.whereishemuli.eu
Riding round the World

Facebook:WhereIsHemuli
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 7 Dec 2013
mollydog's Avatar
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: california
Posts: 1,866
I'll be watching this thread to get ideas/feedback on this. I'm leaning more towards the iPad Air. Used an iPad 2 for a short trip and found with the little stand, it was OK typing once you got used to it. Takes a few days. Does most all what a computer can do, AFAIK.

More and more capability on the latest version iPad, now with Cellular and better WiFi ... so connectivity should be pretty good ... can be used as a phone with an App. Seems well set up for travel.

I've traveled with lap tops. They are good but just a bit large/ heavy and some can succumb to vibration. Also, target for theft ... but I guess they ALL are.

I'm amazed how tough the iPad is. It can take a drop or five and keep going, can be hidden in back pad pouch of riding jacket. My friend's kids (11 and 13) have had a iPad for over a year and can't break it. To me .. says a lot.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 7 Dec 2013
g6snl's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Halstead, Essex
Posts: 169
I thought about exactly this subject and wasted a long time looking at various options. Finally I spent a week noting down what thought I might need "techwise" while on the road (I spent a week as you always think of something later) Having decided what I needed to do, I looked at what was the smallest package to do it all. In the end I settled on my current android smart phone which had cost me £90 with appropriate "apps" ( most free ). It amazed me what apps you could find to do the most unexpected things.

It charges easily from the bike, even while stopped with no problems of flat battery. App for sky scanner for flights is good. Booking.com app or similar for hotels. Wifi no probs. (There may be a blog app) Stick in a plastic zip bag to keep dry. Wrap it in you pants to keep it safe from knocks if you have too. Most take mem cards so you can transfer photos from cameras for blogs, if the built in camera is not good enough. Some cameras have wifi connectivity so link up easily ( prob an app for that too? )
And of course you can make a phone call, store music or "local" language lessons as I do ! ( there is an app for that)

Security wise it is one less thing to worry about, just stuff it in your pocket.
Back up sat nav if required. ( there is an app for that )

One of our trips we took an ipad mini. It was ok but every time we left the bike somewhere we had to carry the thing about with us and constantly think......oh where's the ipad. The little phone did all the ipad could anyway, so we leave it at home now.

We don't blog or facebook or any other "keep home informed of what I'm doing" type thing, other than email which all works fine for us with what we now carry. People do blog using phones so it can be done ok, but its what you find you can get on with.

Yes the keyboard may be an issue for some as it's "virtual" but I did get used to it quite quickly. I have seen flexible roll up/ fold up keyboards which may be an option? All this tech stuff moves so fast these days, so much so, you don't actually need a keyboard any more. Voice recognition is now quite standard on smart phones so you may well find just speaking you blog is an option. There's prob an app for that............

I did post this using a PC and key board, but I do have an app for this
__________________
Regards Tim

Learning my craft for the big stuff, it won't be long now and it's not that far anyway
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 7 Dec 2013
Super Moderator
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,724
Talking

180 Grms of smartphone + Monterra. Job's a gud'un
Throw in a few lightweight tools, Ti cookware.... Not quite the bare minimum... but now down to luggage AUW of 22Kgs from an over indulgent 51Kgs!

Last edited by Bertrand; 7 Dec 2013 at 18:49.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 7 Dec 2013
colebatch's Avatar
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: London / Moscow
Posts: 1,658
Quote:
Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
... I really want something that I can use wirelessly in a hostel, cafe etc. For checking mail, writing blogs and booking flights, transport etc.

I'm swaying towards another small netbook...... .
I sway the same way you do. For detailed blogging on the move and cataloging and storing pics its hard to cut to anything less. When you are storing video too, and needing to pass video files from go pros and other video cameras into external hard drives its essential.
__________________
__________________________________________________ ________________
"Do NOT go wherever the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path, and leave a trail"



Sibirsky Extreme - Adventure Motorcycling Guide to Siberia and Mongolia - on Facebook

Click here for Sibirsky Extreme Trail DVD Trailer
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 7 Dec 2013
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Vancouver, B.C. Canada
Posts: 87
I've used a couple of netbooks for travelling; a Compaq (taken over by HP) and lately a Gateway (part of the Acer empire). These things always sounded better in theory than they functioned in practice and I would not recommend them as lightweight travelling devices.

The price range and size may be attractive but this is one of those cases in which you do get what you pay for. They are not that light, have puny processors and in both of mine I found the keyboards awkward and irritatingly glitchy.

The oft suggested alternatives, the Mac Air and the Microsoft Surface Pro, can cost nearly four times the price of a netbook but I do keep noticing lower end quasi ultrabooks from name manufacturers which are reasonably priced.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 8 Dec 2013
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Somewhere in the Americas
Posts: 151
I've just moved from a 13" MacBook Pro to an 11" MacBook Air.
Saved over a kilo and the more I use it the more I love it. Travelling with it in bubble wrap and a double large ziplock bag makes for light waterproof protection.

PN
__________________
When you come to a fork in the road…take it!

BLOG: paulnomad.blogspot.com.au

FaceBook: www.facebook.com/PaulNomadRTW
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 8 Dec 2013
*Touring Ted*'s Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wirral, England.
Posts: 4,284
I've got an android smart phone and yes, you can do most things..

But they're crap for web browsing... And yes I've tried.

Trying to book a flight on a smart phone on dodgy wifi will have you ripping your hair out..
__________________
www.TouringTed.com
1994 XR650L
2001 NX650 Dominator.

BMW Dealer Technician
Welder/Fabricator

Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
South America 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 8 Dec 2013
Super Moderator
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,724
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post

But they're crap for web browsing... And yes I've tried.

Trying to book a flight on a smart phone on dodgy wifi will have you ripping your hair out..
Not a problem when the screen is 14cm diag

"could it be all about the right tool for the right job?" as my old mentor used to ask
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 8 Dec 2013
*Touring Ted*'s Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Wirral, England.
Posts: 4,284
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bertrand View Post
Not a problem when the screen is 14cm diag

"could it be all about the right tool for the right job?" as my old mentor used to ask
You got a 'Phablet' ???


I was looking at a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 with it's huge screen but still no good for typing I guess...
__________________
www.TouringTed.com
1994 XR650L
2001 NX650 Dominator.

BMW Dealer Technician
Welder/Fabricator

Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
South America 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 8 Dec 2013
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Australia.
Posts: 666
I recently tried a windows tables and to me it's the holy grail. I'm no windows fan, but it's compatible with everything else, small, no hdd, expandable memory, plug and play, hdmi and usb ports often, works perfectly with android. With map source, base camp, oziexplorer, etc you could even full an entire TB external hdd with vector maps and sat imagery to plan or adjust your route each evening for the next day.

Just make sure you can charge it with a 12v adapter. My acer can't (no connector adapter) but my Mrs' samsung can. I think an 8" is coming out soon.

I recommend taking a true bluetooth mouse or stylus with it. The desktop bit of a tablet isn't designed for fingers.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 8 Dec 2013
casperghst42's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Posts: 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulNomad View Post
I've just moved from a 13" MacBook Pro to an 11" MacBook Air.
Saved over a kilo and the more I use it the more I love it. Travelling with it in bubble wrap and a double large ziplock bag makes for light waterproof protection.

PN
I've been using an 11" Air for a couple of years, and nothing beats it ... actually there are a few things which does; Samsung and Asus have similar computers (13" though), more options and more ports....

Just a small hint for protecting an 11", get a book book cover, and an 8L Sea to Summit bag - it fits like a glove.

Casper
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Smart Phone VS Garmin et al as a GPS tool seouljoe Navigation - Maps, Compass, GPS 163 11 Jan 2014 23:05
Satelite phone, Thuraya SG-2520 MUST GO!!!! biciclown TRAVEL Equipment for Sale / Wanted 0 10 Nov 2012 16:24
hard drive backup for your laptop dstehouwer Communications 10 12 Oct 2012 14:28

 
 



HU DVD Spring Special!

Buy the Achievable Dream Collectors Set and get Road Heroes Part 1 FREE!

Achievable Dream - The Whole Enchilada!

Cooped up indoors in crap weather? Binge watch over 20 hours of inspiring, informative and entertaining stories and tips from 150 travellers! Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to order them both and use Coupon Code 'BoxSet+' on your order when you checkout.


What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders


contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!




New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.



Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!






All times are GMT +1. The time now is 22:03.