Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Tablet Saga

17th August, 11:30 pm
My client is on my ass for a clump of articles that I have been promising for the past month or so. I gulp my dinner and finally sit down to finish them off. All I need is 2 hours of uninterrupted silence so that she leaves me in peace for the next few days.
I know, I know, I have been procrastinating but there was much to do in office. That ass of a boss, Malhotra has been keeping me on my heels for the last few weeks and I couldn’t be seen doing freelance work there! I need the money so I can buy myself a proper laptop. Plus, the tablet “could do light work”, the girl at the electronics store had said. All I needed was to type in a few hundred words.
11:40 pm
I switch on my tab. Or rather, try to. I have been pressing the ‘Switch’ button for the past couple of minutes. Nothing. Dear Lord, please help. I paid 15K for this tablet and it’s not even been a month! Of course I could call their customer support; I called them the last time. They sent me a long email citing technicalities I did not understand. I press the button hard another time.
“Zzzzz”, the tab groans back to life. I sigh and get back to work.
12:00 am
I have 5 tabs open in my browser. I need to consult various websites for writing. But as soon as I open one of those tabs, everything I had typed in the other tab vanishes. Like magic!
‘No, no, no, no, no, no……”, I scream, “Come back, come back, back, back”, I cry out in terror. I had pressed ’Save’, but where did all the data go? Luckily I remember most of what I had written and I am able to reconstruct it. Well, somewhat. But the keyboard is hung. I type and type, nothing happens. So I wait patiently while the tab takes a nap, like a lazy pot-bellied government officer. After about 5 minutes, the words appear. There are spaces where I had not put any. Is my tablet possessed?
But no time to think of it now, my client just messaged me on my phone asking about the articles. The exorcism will just have to wait till another time.
I finish the articles and press ‘Send’, all the while chanting prayers. Thankfully, my tablet doesn’t throw any more fits.
18th August, 7:00 pm
So Tanya said she had uploaded our photos on Facebook. Even asked me to check what Rohan had commented. Something about my hair. Dimply curly-haired Rohan? About my hair? I can’t wait. As I throw my bag on the bed and take out my tablet, I am bursting with excitement. I unlock it and…unlock it and…unlock…why wouldn’t the darn thing unlock? I slide the ‘Lock’ symbol again and again but nothing happens. Damn you, silly tab, I could be in a smart-ass comment thread flirting with my love interest right now if not for you!
I throw the dumb tool on the bed and grumpily watch Arnab screaming his guts out. Someone should put my tab and its makers on that show. Would serve them right.
19th August, 3:00 pm
I logged into Facebook during lunch today. So Rohan likes my hair, hmm.  I wonder how I will wear it in the next office party. May be I’ll part it to the right. Or no parting at all. “So Miss Dasgupta”, a voice booms from behind, “Where are we on the content requirements?”.  
I almost fall off the chair as my arch nemesis, the Amrish Puri to my love story, the Voldemort to my Hogwarts: my boss, asks cheerily. “Client to revert”, I gasp as I barely close the window.
“By the way, nice hair”, the voice of Doom smiles before wandering off to the far side, presumably towards the direction of Rohan’s desk. Rohan’s desk! That cheeky devil. Reason why I never surf Facebook in office. Thank Heavens; he’s not on my friends’ list. Even so, he has now seen Rohan’s comment.
I need to be more careful.
And get my tab fixed. Today.
7:00 pm
“Madamji, hum sirf laptop aur computer thik karte hain”, the shopkeeper says in his heavy Haryanvi accent.
“Kar dijiye na bhaiyya, please?” The desperation in my voice is apparent.
He pulls open the rear cover of the machine and fidgets with a pin. If my tablet could feel, it would be feeling a lot of things right now. And it would know better than to ever cross me again.
As if it could actually hear me, my tablet trudges back to life. I swear I haven’t been this happy since my dentist fractured his hand in 2006.
I check my mail. Rohan has just sent me a PDF file. The subject: For You. I download the attachment but it won’t open. I try a variety of software programmes, even download the Adobe Reader but apparently, my tablet is too snobbish. At this point, the only thing keeping me from throwing the tablet away on the dusty roadside is the faith that someday, all of this will make sense. And of course, the obscene amount of money I paid for it.
I call their Customer Support again. They ask me to bring it to their nearest service centre. Which is 2 hours away.  I don’t have the time.
They have sent me a mail again. A longer one, this time.
As I begin to read it, my tablet shoots a warning sign. 4% battery left. 4%? Impossible. I haven’t even used the tablet for 2 days. But, even though it was hung over, the battery was ‘on’. So the power has depleted even though I haven’t used it.The tablet reminds me of a pet elephant; it takes more than it gives. Much, much more.

All I want is a tablet that will not die down on me. Is it too much to ask for a decent battery life even when all you use, consist of Whatsapp and Chrome? Here’s a revolutionary thing for a tablet to do: reading documents!
And when a tablet has aced these basic functions in an overcrowded but below-average Indian tab market, I’ll think of outrageous things to do.
Like illustrating ideas. An orangutan smoking cigarettes, a cat flying, a fish sitting on a tree branch, a chihuahua taking on a great dane.
And checking mail in the crowded Bandra local. And while taking showers. (You never know when an important notification might come up!)
I want a tablet that can do freaking handstands. Because really, why would you need a cumbersome keyboard when the best things come in small packages? And of course, it would help to have a stand mode for the recipes when I'm being the next Nigella in kitchen. I wouldn't want to serve ham in plum cake again.
I want to be able to lay my tablet down, without bothering about the sleek screen the next time nosy Sarita Aunty decides to sneak a peek at the community gala. (So I am a bit of a showoff, sue me.)
It would also be amazing if I could click photographs while skydiving. (Why not?)
From what I hear, the new Lenovo Yoga Tablet is pretty kickass at each of these things. Three modes, the stand, tilt and hold make it a versatile user-friendly machine. Coupled with a good battery life, the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor and Dolby enhanced speakers, this tablet is a power-packed toy of fire. I was going through and the discussions there seemed pretty interesting. Lots of people, same as me, totally clueless and disappointed with their tablets have found this a fun forum to share their woes and queries with the Lenovo team giving prompt replies.
I wish I could teach my tablet to read and aspire to be more 'yogic'. Sigh. It might be late for me, but as they say in 'Yoga', 'never lose sight of hope'.