Why smartphones are like Colman’s Mustard

It used to be said that Colman’s Mustard made their money not from the mustard that people consumed, but from what they took from the jar and left on the side of their plate.  After a few months of using a Samsung Galaxy Ace, I’m beginning to think that the makers of some mobile phones work in a rather similar way.  If I get an answerphone message because I miss a call, I have to ring up and collect it.  I try to keep such calls short by knowing which keypad numbers play and delete messages and typing them as soon as I can.  But there’s often an awkward gap at the end, especially if my phone has locked itself in the meantime, so I must type a password and then ‘pull down’ a special screen to end the call. 

2 thoughts on “Why smartphones are like Colman’s Mustard

  1. Alex B

    Well, voicemail/answerphone functionality is down to your network, not the handset manufacturer.

    Your network may allow you to use GSM Feature Codes to disable voicemail for certain conditions. See http://www.geckobeach.com/cellular/secrets/gsmcodes.php for the codes. These codes don’t work for some networks (e.g. Orange PAYG). The most useful codes are probably #61# (disable voicemail when you don’t answer) and #67# (disable voicemail when you’re on a call), as well as the ones beginning *# which (sometimes, depending on the network) give the current status.

  2. Virginia Post author

    I’m not really complaining about the conditions under which I have to ring up and collect my answerphone messages, just that the procedure for doing so is fiddly, which is to do with the handset. The swipe with which I have to answer calls isn’t that easy to execute either, but here it may be that my left-handedness is the cause.


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