Top 10 Gadgets for Expats

When I first came to Thailand there wasn’t much when it came to English language media or entertainment. This was before Internet and cable television. Movies at my local cinema were always dubbed into Thai  though if I took a two hour bus ride to Bangkok I could find a cinema showing the movie with the original soundtrack. While there I would visit one of the few branches of Asia Books to browse their selection of overpriced English language books. On Khao San Road the price of a second-hand novel was almost as much as a new one back home. I rented a VHS video sometimes but only if I could find one that had original soundtrack. Most were dubbed. Communicating with the folks back home meantexpensive phone calls on birthdays and Christmas Day. Letters sent via the post office was the norm though we had to wait a couple of weeks for a reply.

Now, of course everything has changed so much. The Internet and then emails certainly made a big difference to us for communication. Then along came satellite TV with first IBC and then finally TrueVisions. Also, more of the terrestrial Thai tv channels started to programmes and movies with soundtrack if you have an appropriate TV set. New shopping malls started to be built in the suburbs and upcountry. With them came multiplex cinemas with more choice of foreign movies. The new malls also meant more branches of Asia Books. When DVDs came along, it meant that most movies being sold now had both Thai and original soundtracks as well as subtitles.

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