'Allo, 'allo and 'allo again

'Allo, 'allo and 'allo again
Mr Brian Kow with his three handphones.

SINGAPORE - Mr Lim Chin Poh, 52, cannot imagine life without his three mobile phones: a Samsung Note II, Apple iPhone 4S and a Nokia smartphone.

The director of a construction company carries all three phones every day, with at least two in his pockets.

"Yes, my pockets bulge and the heat from using the handsets makes me feel hot, but I'm used to it," he says. "One acts as a back-up for the other when it runs out of battery."

With three phones, there are three different numbers you can reach him on.

"It is fun to have three phones. I always get tempted by new phone models and want to play around with them. I see it as keeping up with mobile phone trends," he says.

Singaporeans who toggle between a mobile phone for work and another for personal calls are a dime a dozen. Yet, people such as Mr Lim have gone further - with three active mobile phone lines and multiple smartphones and devices. They do so to organise their lives, for security, but also for sentimental reasons.

Mr Lim, who is married with four children, can be considered a forerunner of this current trend, since he used to have four mobile phones 10 years ago: Two for work calls, one for personal use and one that was fitted into his car.

When he sold his car, he passed on the car phone line to one of his children. That left him with three mobile phones, a number he has maintained since.

Mr Lim does not differentiate between the uses of his Samsung Note II and Apple iPhone 4S. While one was meant to be for work and the other for personal use, he has ended up using both of them for e-mail, calls and instant messaging.

He keeps his Nokia smartphone with him at all times, usually in his bag. It houses his first ever mobile line which he used for work more than 20 years ago.

"I'm holding on to this for sentimental reasons," he says.

Separate numbers, separate functions

Mr Brian Kow, who is married with two children, has three mobile phones too. One of them doubles as a walkie-talkie.

The 55-year-old owner of a design-and-build construction company says he uses his Motorola walkie-talkie phone mainly for work, to communicate with his site engineers and foremen, who could be working at up to eight different sites islandwide.

"I use this phone every day. I can't live without it," he says with a laugh, echoing Mr Lim's sentiments about his mobile phones.

But unlike Mr Lim, Mr Kow's three phones have specific and separate functions.

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