Categories
Mostly Everything

Pepper Lunch at Rockwell Kills the No Rice Diet

Met up with Fran, Didi, and Sophie for dinner. We had previously come from an event with Juned and AJ and made our way to Rockwell for dinner. The Pepper Lunch craze has really hit town (I even updated their Wikipedia entry to say they’re already in Manila). When we heard that Chuvaness was opening Pepper Lunch in Manila.

As of this writing, I’ve eaten at Pepper Lunch three times (it only opened last week!). I really try to stay away from rice whenever possible, and if I do eat, I only finish 1/4th to 1/2 cup of rice. But it’s really different. My no-rice diet is now a pseudo-rice diet courtesy of their Beef Pepper Rice. It costs about P140.00 for an extra cup of their special rice with crushed peppercorns and the secret butter they add to the middle.

I’m not much of a food reviewer so you can check out the entries of Phoebe, AJ, Sophie and Fran. I did take photos, but probably brought the wrong lens. I took the macro out to see if I could get the steak in detail but realized how hard it was to shoot with smoke coming from all directions. What’s the best way to shoot food that’s inevitably spewing smoke? Items from grills and hot plates are hard to shoot as is!

All I really have to say is that if you’ve had a really crappy day at work, Pepper Lunch at Rockwell can really save what’s left of it. Congratulations, Chuvaness ­čÖé

Categories
Mostly Everything

U Mobile (├╝mobile): Country’s 5th Telco is the Free, Advertising Based Service

EDIT: Erratum on the free load and how it works

EDIT II: Apparently the referral system is now up. I’ll be referring people who want a umobile number. The application requires me to input your name, email and a current cellphone number so if you’re comfy with giving that out to me, send me an email. All info you provide will be held in strict confidence.

EDIT III: Short video walkthrough here

SMART Telecommunications, Globe Telecommunications, SUN Cellular, Bayan Telecommunications. And now there’s room for one more.

There’s a new number in town and that number is “+63999.” Word is out that a telco called CURE which was bought by SMART has been launched for the public, and their name is U Mobile or ├╝mobile, the country’s first free advertising-driven telco. It’s sort of like Inquirer Libre which we get to pick up on the train station free of charge — because everything is subsidized by advertising.

├╝mobile is a brand owned by Connectivity Unlimited Resource Enterprise, Inc. CURE belongs to the family of the 2 leading telecommunication giants┬ŚPLDT and SMART. We maintain our independence as far as strategic business decisions and day-to-day operations are concerned. SMART supports us in our needs especially on network complement. [FAQ]

Is this the telco for the masses? Well no. Not really. Not yet. Currently, applications are by invite only and I heard that people who have been invited to the service (those who went to the launch party a few hours ago) will be able to refer friends who can join up and avail of the free service. I heard as well that there is an allocation of P350 worth of credit per month for users P100 a month for the first 6 months for free. The P350 is the maximum amount of load you can receive by participating in the ad program that is sent to your mobile. We were blown away and I really have so many questions to ask. But as of the moment, that’s all I know.

Commenting on the worldwide telecommunications scene, this is something Google wanted to do – buy their own spectrum and launch their own telco free of charge, driven entirely by advertising. The Philippines is the first in Asia to have an Ad Driven telco and yeah, this is huge. Freakin’ huge. The telco has been in operations for more than a year now undercover and have now launched officially with several partner establishments to deliver advertising directly to the mobile phone.

Ads are purely contextual and users will have to answer a thorough survey which is updated every year in case interests changes. So yes, “contextual” is dependent on the survey as far as I was informed.

Cool beans. Freakin’ cool beans. This is big.

P.S. I won an LG KU380 Phone from the raffle — well I think everyone went home with one! Marketing is surely aggressive. Open bar. Piss drunk. Wheeee!