A few months ago, I tried to get my Mudita Pure to work as a phone in the US, failed, and decided that it might make a good travel alarm just the same. This month, I had a work trip in Europe, and I brought the Mudita along. I’d planned to try it out with a European SIM as well, but as it turned out I was put to work as soon as I arrived and didn’t have time to experiment with a possibly-unreliable phone.
The alarm itself is great. I like the buzz and the gradually swelling music. The business of setting it up was a little hard to figure out due to the way the keypad is configured (I can’t quite get used to the backspace button being on the number sign), but ultimately not bad. The big problems are battery life and, most importantly, size. I pack light and the Mudita is more than twice the size of my usual travel alarm (a cheapo clamshell digital clock that was $1 at a garage sale and that I can easily tuck into my laptop case) and heavy to boot. It weighs as much as a light book.
The battery life really is bad - I’m not sure if this is an issue with just my individual Mudita or with the Mudita in general. I know the days of the week-long charge may be gone forever, but my everyday phone in the US (a recent, 4G phone) reliably lasts at least forty-eight hours with regular use. The Mudita was almost empty after eight, and since it’s not a phone, it was mostly just sitting there - who knows how quickly it might have gone if I’d actually been able to make a phone call on it… I had to keep it plugged in at all times. This didn’t make it useless, just cumbersome and slightly stressful.
The one thing I did use a lot and enjoy was the meditation timer. I used the chimes-at-intervals to keep me on task when I was back at my hotel room working alone, and I found it fairly helpful. But I don’t know that it was helpful enough to justify the space it took up in my luggage, and I probably won’t bother to pack it next time I travel for work.
Too bad! But I may still take it out for a spin as a music player, one of these days.