Thursday, April 23, 2020

Selecting new phone plan

I use a Reliance Jio SIM as my one and only cellphone number. I used to have another, but I found little use for that. So I discontinued that other SIM card. It was a Vodafone SIM and I had bought it thinking I would be using it when I visit my hometown. Turns out it's not usable there. So adios.
Coming back to Jio, it was working so far so good for a while. And it was quite cheap. Then they increased the fares about 4-5 months ago. And it was costing ~Rs 7 per day. This was for unlimited Jio-Jio calling, ~300minutes free to other telcos, and 1.5GB daily cellular data.
Now I got home internet, so I thought to cut costs on this. The current plan goes for INR555 for 84 days. This includes 1.4GB 4G cellular data per day, 300 min calling to other telcos, and jio-jio free. That's Rs 6.6 per day. Now I'm not even using 30minutes calling per day. And due to home internet my cellular usage has gone down. So I decided to go for some other cheaper plan. This one is INR1299 for 336 days. Comes to Rs. 3.8 per day. So better this way. I'll save 1022 INR per day. That's about a month's broadband bill.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Work from Home Experience

As you all may know India has been on Lockdown from 24March to now 3rd May due to COVID-19 pandemic. My current company has thankfully provided us with Work from Home facility. Things are grim in industry, with many companies cutting work force even though Govt and labor ministry having specifically asked companies not to cut work force.
My company has decided to provide as many facilities and with one hardware setup locally available, and couple more with other peripherals available remotely, I'm having good productivity. Also on financial side, we are not asked for paycuts for at least this month, so it's good going so far. Though I am not sure similar things would continue next few months. Anyway I am prepared with enough finance to last at least 3-4 months.
Few points regarding work from home:
1. Working in office is very comfortable. I don't have a proper desk at home. Or rather the nook I call desk is ill suited for heavy work involving more hardware. It's good enough for single laptop only. So now I have a makeshift setup where the monitor and other hardware is occupying couple of chairs and I have to make do with another chair. It's not comfortable. But thankfully I am taking small breaks to be as much comfortable as possible.
2. VPNs are slow. With everybody logging in remotely, things are slow. But that can't be helped.
3. No power backup. I did not think I would be needing an inverter with some battery backup, since summers are mild here in Pune. (Nature has decided to prove me wrong this year - 40degrees through-out the day has made me miserable these last few days). But my laptop battery being dead, I don't have any power backup. So in case of power-out, I'm stuck, and if it's noon - in a oven. After lockdown, that's something I want to fix sooner.
4. Workload management. Being home we feel like we have much more time, and at times I have been lazy about getting work done. That's something I need to be disciplined about. Because otherwise I'm ending up with a zig-zag pattern where some days are 4-hour days and others are 12-13Hour workdays which completely exhaust me.

That's few things that have been bothering me. Hope I manage things better though. That's all for now. Ciao.

Got broadband - 25mbps unlimited @1250Rs per month (~$17.85)

Last month I finally went for a broadband connection. From 24th March, Lockdown was announced all over India. Thankfully my current company gave us work from home facility. I had this old laptop with few upgrades made couple of months back which was good enough. But I have been using only a cellular data connection since a long time back (almost 5 years now since I moved to Pune from Mumbai). Anyway with work needing more bandwidth I decided to go for a Cable Internet solution.
I had 2 options - Tikona Wireless internet, which has narrow-band connectivity. But I had heard of issues with Tikona's uptime. The other option was local distributor of Fivenet. Fivenet is a cable internet company. I decided to go Fivenet way. Called the local distributor, got cable installed and then visited his office which is nearby. Paid INR1750 (1250per month service + 500 installation). I.e. ~$17.85 per month for 25mbps unlimited service.
Now it's almost a month and service has been great so far. And thankfully I am having great experience working from home.