Hotmail has been down!

It was three hours ago when somebody asked me if my hotmail is running. My first respons was, “Are you still using hotmail? Come on!”. My second reaction, I simply went to logon to hotmail and well, it did authenticate me but I got the following message saying “You don’t have an inbox …yet”

What? I dont have an inbox? How on earth? I made this inbox when I was a child. you must be kidding hotmail?

On a serious note, this is not a regional problem. People from UK, US and different asian countries have confirmed the same. I wonder if anyone can successfully login to their inboxes on hotmail?

How to increase Nokia N82’s battery life

Stuffing Nokia N95-8GB’s battery into N82

I have this Nokia N-82 black which usually dies down early in the evening due to a poor battery life. I’m sick of carrying an extra battery in my pocket. I’ve been desperate to find a solution.

I remember the days when I bought a Nokia 6300 with similar battery life issues. In stock, it has a poor BL-4c (720 mah capacity) battery. I was able to find a solution of 6300’s poor battery life. Initially I stuffed in my N72’s BL-5C (850 mah) in it, and later my brother gave me his BL-6C from his old N-Gage QD that I had to scrub off a little and that did fit too. A bump up from 720 to 1070 mah. My phone was like running forever on one battery.

Thinking on the same lines for N82, I decided to look around for similar sized batteries from different devices. Unfortunately I did not find a perfect match. E-51 had exactly the similar battery as N82, that is BP-6MT (1050 mah). That was really depressing for me. E-51 with a smaller screen, no xenon flash, no GPS, 2 mega-pixel camera has the same battery? Come on Nokia, that’s not fair at all!

Then I grabbed that N-95 8GB, pulled off the battery cover and there it is, BL-6F. My observations? Both of them have same voltage as expected, 3.7 volts.

Interestingly, the connectors of both batteries are the same.

I know the size of both batteries is quite different, BL-6F being large enough not to fit inside N-82, but i still decided to give it a shot! I stuffed in the bigger battery into my N82. Well it did not fit in there, so I had to hold it to keep it connected to the power connectors. I simply booted it up and walla! it boots up great. This video shows the process:

Note: Don’t try at home, or do at your own risk. We don’t take any responsibility of any kind of damage to your equipment.

That sure boots up N82 on a 1200 mah battery but using it with this battery is virtually impossible. You can tape it, glue it and an Ugly phone may end up running with this battery, but its not going to be a proper solution.

For normal use, I carry an extra battery but that’s really a pain. If you have any solution to the problem, do let me know.

Google Maps come to Pakistan, Finally

I have been waiting for this moment for long. Google maps mobile have finally added detailed maps for Pakistan. Now i can search for a nihari shop or a fower shop or any other business and Google maps will show me the marker. The navigation part is still missing. Google is still not offering turn by turn directions nor it gives the details like traffic, street view or driving distances, but it is a big welcome change. Moreover, I still cant see the detailed maps on PC version. I’m sure PC maps are following its mobile counterpart but there is an obvious reason why mobile maps have come first.

Pakistan is a big market for mobile Google maps. Pakistan has more than 90 million mobile users, vast data network over GSM/GPRS/EDGE and absolutely no other street navigation system at all. Does it get any better than that?

Actually it is a community effort using Google map maker on PC. Map maker allows users to add roads, streets, businesses, crossings and everything else for areas for which there are no maps defined yet. Then other users approve or disapprove there additions and changes. Eventually a map comes into being that is eventually supposed to be posted to Google maps and Google maps mobile. So the Google maps mobile we see today for Pakistan, has all the maps that were made on map maker and have been moved to main Google maps for mobile and I’m sure Google maps for web will be updated soon.

This move by Google will not only increase the usage of their product in Pakistan but a big number of software and hardware solutions will now spring up for the local market soon. A lot of people already using GPS enabled phone will put their GPS to use now with this free service. I think it will boost the sales of GPS enabled handsets as well.

Do try it out at from your mobile.

*** UPDATE ****
Google maps for Pakistan are still not available on web as well on wap (google locals). Lets see when they show up there.

*** UPDATE 2 ***
Screenshots for your interest 🙂

I smoked my Toshiba laptop

Literally burnt it!

Well, I keep doing this all the time and I’m sure all you laptop users out there do it too, but this is a strange thing that happened last week. I was copying a file from my desktop onto this Toshiba pro M200 and it was a big file, several GBs. I thought I’ll put it to copying and will go downstairs for dinner. I just noticed the laptop was running low on battery. I pulled out the charger from the bag and like I always do, first I plugged the shoe into the wall-socket (yes power was on) and then I plugged in the charger to the laptop.

I think I heard a very minute spark, and the laptop just died on my face. I don’t believe this. I tried all the tricks like trying to boot withough battery, just on DC and what not, but all my efforts went to trash. Finally I decided to give it for repairs but before that I decided to take the data out. It took me quite some effort and finally a friend helped me out to get the hard-trived pulled out. Like any other SATA disk, it got easily configured with my desktop.

I backed up all my data and sent it for the repairs. They took a few days and I just got a call that confirmed that the laptop’s mother-board and both RAM modules got totally fried. Processor luckily survived, and well, some other parts like hard-disk too.

I have never experienced, nor heard of any such incident before. I do it several times a day. Whenever the PC is low on power, I just plug in the charger into my machine, which is already plugged into wall socket, no harm ever done. If any of my reader has heard, read or experienced anything like this, please do share.

In addition, we also keep doing this with other chargeable devices like cell-phones, ipods, shavers etc. Please spread the word and try not to follow the practice of plugging in powered on chargers into your laptops ( I know its still hard for me to do so).

Last but not least, don’t people at Toshiba put a circuit breaker, fuse or something in the battery charger circuit? Even if i plugged in 5000 volts input to the charger slot, it should’ve smoked one IC or something instead of smoking the whole Motherboard. Am I complaining too much?

Warid – Customer service, a never-ending nightmare

I’m an unhappy customer.

This all starts when I mistakenly decided to port my existing number to Warid Telecom. Yes you heard it right. It is MNP request.

Attempt 1 – March 2nd

I simply walked into a Warid Franchise (Balcom Ltd. Main boulevard, Defence lahore) near my house on a busy Monday evening (That ws 2nd March). I was greeted with a few people occupying the counter and not letting me through, though I succeeded in almost shouting and asking “Can I get my number ported in to Warid from this franchise?” and a nod was the answer. Then I was asked to sit down and wait. I sat down and waited and as I had nothing else to do, I started listening to the requests being made. There were 3 customers on the counter, 2 getting some usual stuff done, and the 3rd one was a “Peer” (yeah, peer in urdu). The guy who was talking and helping peer sahib appeared to be the manager or the senior franchise guy, while the other guys were clearly junior.

After a painful wait of almost half an hour on the bench for me, and same for my wife and son in the car outside, I found a chance to come to the counter and talk to the rep. At the same instance, the manager took the peer sahib and his fellow into his cabin and I was the only one on this side of the counter.

Denial of service and a fight back

To my sheer surprise, when I asked the rep to give me the form for port-in request, he simply refused saying “we are out of forms, please come tomorrow morning”. I decided for a moment to simply forget about porting in, but that was just for a moment. The charm of the bundle sms and mms pushed me again to pursue the chance. I simply walked into the manager’s room and complained about the time I had to waste sitting and waiting just to listen that they don’t have the forms. Well, I was a little loud too. This worked, the manager walked out of his cabin, whispered stuff to the reps out there and instantly everything started working fine, the forms were available, the guy started filling my form, I gave him my NIC copy and showed him the original one, paid Rs. 100 (never got a receipt), showed him my current sim and walla! I got the new sim. I was told that it will be active within a week but it may take a few more days than a week too, so be patient.

I walked out of the franchise with this new sim and got busy with my life.

A never ending delay

I was very patient for 2 weeks and eventually on 15th of March, I called Warid customer support to check the status. I had to wait for a long time ( I did’nt use a stop-watch, must be 15 mins or so) and finally my call got answered. I was told that as an SOP it can take around 15 days to port a number in. So I was told to be patient for a few more days.

Waited Further

I went into patience mode again. And then I was too busy for a couple of weeks to pursue that

Attempt 2 – March 28th

On Saturday, March 28th I called the helpline again to check the status. This time I had a stop watch and it took only 17 minutes to get through to a rep and it really flared me up when he told me that they don’t have any port-in request against this number. What the heck? The helpline told me to simply go to the nearest business center, and not to the franchises to get MNP done. I asked about the franchise nearby and if it will be open and available or not. I was happily guided to Gulberg franchise and I was told that it is open for the service till late evening. I decided to simply go to the business center and complain about this franchise, though I complained to the telephone guy too.

Denial of service, yet again! .. and yeah a fight back too.

I drove to Gulberg business center though I wasn’t that angry by then. I was security screened at the door and when I entered, I was greeted by a well dressed person. He was supposed to help and guide me to obtain a queue-ticket form that machine but when I told him that I’m here to get a number ported-in, he simply excused and told me “We don’t entertain MNP requests on Saturdays, you should come on Monday”. What the heck again???

I told him that the helpline sent me in but he continued arguing. Then another guy came in to get something done to his Blackberry. He was sent in by the helpline as well and he was refused service on Saturday too. When he saw himself getting cornered by two guys who were actually sent to the business center by helpline, he changed his mind and guided us both to respective reps.

I got the ticket, waited for a good 15 minutes and I got my turn.

Finally got the service I was looking for

I was greeted by a very helpful young guy. I told him my story and the first thing I wanted to do was to launch a complaint against the franchise. Apparently the guy knew some people at the franchise and he eventually convinced me not to launch a complaint. He was a nice fellow who excused and apologized for the trouble, filled a new form, saw my documents, took the payment and issued me yet another sim. As it was Saturday evening, he promised that it will be activated on Monday or Tuesday max.

Another promise broken!

Even wednesday’s gone, there’s no sign of number port in. Am I fooled again? Am I asking for a wrong service? Is that how a Telco should behave to the new customers (I don’t care if It is a franchise or not)? Can somebody suggest me where I should complain that actually creates a stir?

In short, if you are looking for some good customer service, my experience is VERY BAD with Warid.

I welcome your comments and feedback and please do share if you had a bad experience with warid.

***** UPDATE *******

Then number got ported successfully within 24 hours of this blog post here and within 12 hours of its cross post on

I wonder if it is the blog power or the business center guy really helped? I think its the biz center guy 🙂