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HTC Desire Z & Data Plan On Maxis

Having a smart phone, such as the HTC Desire Z, which I’ve had the pleasure of test driving these last 2 weeks, requires Internet access to maximise its use.

I’m a Maxis prepaid users, so their prepaid Internet access was my first choice.


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A Mildly Heavy Internet User

I email, I surf tons of websites everyday from news, to blogs, to YouTube; and I generate quite a bit of text, photos and video myself, all of which requires a lot of up and downloading.

It was thus not a decision taken lightly, which made me buy the 3GiB prepaid access from Maxis, because I thought for sure I was going to use it all and then some.

It costs RM98 and is valid for a month. I topped up my Hotlink credit via Maybank2U and bought the access via the #100* system. Overall, pretty easy.

A little side bonus is that with this ammount of prepaid credit being topped up, my validity window was also extended until the end of March (a big deal for us prepaid users).

The default settings on my HTC Desire Z was set to use WiFi when available, otherwise GPRS.

Actually, I’m a light Internet user

Well chuffed with my setup I told my friend about it. “What!?”, he exclaimed in surprise, “Why did you buy so much?”

I in turn was surprised at his reaction, because he said he had never used even 500MiB in a month and he doesn’t have another form of Internet access at home other than his mobile phone.

Then I thought about it… I have ADSL with WiFi at home and the same setup at work, and there is WiFi access nearly everywhere you go, so when exactly will I use the GPRS?

So all this week, while I’ve been on the road, I made a point of using only the GPRS and upload a picture of everywhere I go and view many pictures on Facebook, watch YouTube movies, etc. Anything to try and finish my 3GiB access.

Alas, 12 days after I bought the access and following a real heavy usage attempt, I’ve used only 170MiB. Fudge!

The lesson is: if you’re surrounded by WiFi, then perhaps no need for such a huge package… you can always buy more.

After using Maxis’s Mobile Internet for almost 2 weeks, what do I think?

Well, in and around KK the speed is reasonably fast for most things. Facebook is near instant, and a large portion of other websites were also pretty quick.

The only real problem I had where I could see a performance hit was YouTube, but to be fair, this wasn’t all the time.

Uploads were equally quick and pictures uploaded to Facebook, YFrog and FourSquare took mere seconds each.

On the road between Kota Kinabalu and Sandakan coverage was very limited and I often didn’t have a signal at all. But I was driving, so this didn’t bother me too much. It would have though if I was using the HTC Desire Z navigation app, which requires Internet access.

Overall I found the Maxis Mobile Internet experience satisfactory and I think the data amount, price and speed is a good value proposition.

I can’t say I like having to pay more than the contract customers though, but I guess being a prepaid customer you win some and lose some.

But, if I get to keep the phone, then next month I will choose the 500 MiB data plan instead.

This entire post was created on the HTC Desire Z with slide out keyboard on Mobile Internet. All available from Maxis.

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