It is with regret that I have to write this report about i-CD/192.com & their UK Info Disk. I have purchased three versions of this software, 4.1, 6 and 7, all standard edition, costing £40 to £50 each, as I can?t afford almost £200 for the professional edition. I have three complaints. Firstly, let me just say that this is a wonderful idea, but like other companies that have a monopoly on a product, the company are very difficult to deal with. Complaint one is that Version 4.1, although very temperamental to run, was brilliant, in that, with difficulty, it could be used to reverse-search telephone numbers. So, I expected to be able to do the same with Version 6, but that feature had been disabled. I was relieved though to find a new feature - neighbour searching, which means that if you want to find out who lives at a particular address, you just need to find one person residing on that street, and then do a neighbour search, and you get a list of everyone on that street. So, again, you would expect the latest version to at least have that facility - but no, again this has been disabled, making version 7 little more than a toy, because unless you already know a persons name and where they live, you have little chance of finding them, unless they have an unusual name. So a brilliant product has become a useless novelty - but still costs almost £50. Second complaint - having bought a product for almost £50, you should be able to rely on it working. If you bought a TV that didn?t work, you would take it back and get a replacement or a repair. Well, i-CD don?t appear to answer technical queries by e.mail, well not in my case anyway. All I get is an occasional message to ring up on a number that costs 50p a minute, and as I have serious problems running these programmes, you can bet it would be a long and expensive call. I have two computers, a desktop running Windows 98 and a Laptop running Windows XP. Version 4.1 will not run
on Windows XP under any circumstances. On my desktop it usually takes around ten attempts to open the programme and it crashes regularly. Version 6, well, the mapping aspect switched off fairly quickly and i-CD would not issue a code to re-install the maps, and I couldn?t install this on my laptop because they only provide support for a year - after that, if you have a problem, forget it. Version 7 - well, what a disaster. I am not a computer programmer, but I can usually sort out my problems. Version 7 will not run on my Desktop. I fathomed out part of the problem, which resulted in a specific error message. i-CD sent me a 1Mb patch via an e.mail, and this patch not only didn?t work, it disabled version 6. Since then they have ignored all e.mails except one asking for the name of a director to write to - and my letter to him went unanswered. So basically, Version 4.1 runs in a pathetically bad way only on my desktop, Version 6 runs only partly on my Laptop and not on my desktop, and Version 7 only runs on my Laptop. I bought my Laptop to replace my Desktop - now I have to run both just to get use out of UK Info Disk. Complaint three - looking at this product in a different way. When you fill in your Electoral Role forms, do you realise that the Government has some kind of agreement with i-CD To let them display your details on the Internet and sell it on a CD-ROM ? The census is supposed to be private information for 100 years, shouldn?t the Electoral Role be the same. Big Brother is watching you. You can apply to have your information made ex-directory, but the form is available on the disk - do you want to spend £50 to buy it?, do most of the population even know about this information - I guess not. You can also apply by fax - £1.50 a minute for this one! Want to stalk your favourite celeb - look him or her up and it is an easy job. Want to look up the school bully and make their life hell - UK Info Disk can help. That person
with the personalised number plate on their 4 wheel drive, who tailgated you for miles - look them up, it?s easy. But just remember, people are looking you up as well. Guess what, the i-CD director who?s name I was given - he isn?t listed ! I would like to discuss all these problems with i-CD, but they won?t. My opinions are my own, you should make your own mind up too.