First of all, I have to say that I like the phone a lot. While you may get an impression from the rest of the post that I have a lot of beef with the phone, that’s really not the case. The very fact that I can compile a short, coherent list of things that I think could be improved upon, made me realize how little there is to be wishing for. And none of the problems is a deal breaker. It’s not like the phone is missing Copy&Paste or MMS ;). It does almost all I expected it to do (even in version 1.0), but since a few of my colleagues is looking forward to get one I thought I’d throw in a list of the little annoyances that I have faced using it, so they might verify how important the drawbacks might be to them. I am not sure how many of those can be addressed with third party applications but, for sure not all of them can, and I would definitely love Google to step in and provide a system-fix for them at some point.
The Wish List
Look for wireless networks more aggressively
Basically I find that very often I am still talking to the cell network when I could perfectly well be connected through a Wi-Fi. Turning Wi-Fi off and then back on again corrects the problem. This is annoying on a couple of levels. I have 3G turned off to conserve battery, It not noticing the Wi-Fi actually slows me down quite a bit, not to mention using up the precious data from the data plan (it’s only 500MB on the G1 plan in Poland)
Fix the battery problem
I mean really… 1 day is the best it can do when I do pretty much anything during the day with it. I could live with it being a little bit bigger if I didn’t have to fear it will die on me before the evening. I realize that this is because we have background apps, but perhaps you can introduce a CPU throttle technique that will slow down the operation when the horse power is not really needed. Perhaps something the next gen hardware will have to address.
Allow me to have multiple identities
The first thing you do when you start the phone is linking it to a Google account. That provides you with a really nice integration of Google calendar, mail & contacts. And it’s not just setting up apps for it. The whole system is aware of your identity and any app that wants to (and that you allow it to), might use them as a service. For example, a to-do list is able to schedule events in your Google calendar and setup mail notifications and send over mail invites your contacts to a meeting. It can reserve a time in your calendar for shopping that your wife has asked you to do. that’s great but… why is my phone fixed to a single Google identity? And yes, I realize that I can send email to and from multiple mail accounts and access other calendars through the browser. That’s not the point. I want BE adam.najmanowicz AT cognifide.com when I’m at work and BE adam AT najmanowicz.com when I’m leaving the office. I have a perfectly fine 8GB card sitting idle in it that could easily store a number of identities and swap between them. I want to be able to manage multiple calendars conveniently and have applications like to-do lists tied to them. Come on Google, even Windows 95 could do it! Introduce multiple profiles with easy switch!
Application uninstallation directly from the App drawer
Android Marketplace is a great repository that you can get plethora of apps quickly. It’s a blessing… and a curse. It’s a major pain in the rare to hunt the apps that you want to remove on the mile long list of apps that additionally re-populates after every uninstall without keeping track of where you left off while removing the previous app.
In the perfect word I could long-tap an icon and additionally to dragging it to the desktop I could drag it to some uninstaller corner.
The “Must haves”
That’s as much for anyone else as it is for my reference should I need to reset the phone to factory settings.
A wiki like notepad. Supporting some basic wiki mark-up and links between notes. Brilliant idea, great implementation, perfect placement for a wiki!
This is what you will use to turn your Wi-Fi off and on again when it will fail to connect to the Wi-Fi again.
Versatile and powerful, yet simple and elegant to-do list
Naturally if you are using the Skype network. This is a native and group chat supporting Skype client.
So far my client of choice for Twitter. This is indispensible if you’re a part of the twitter craze.
The weather channel
Weather channel gizmo that allows you to check the weather for any area in the world at any time.
Convert any unit to another.
For the geek cred.
Again, I need to reiterate, this is the best phone I’ve ever had. Having a full physical QWERTY keyboard and a browser with me all the time has definitely changed my life. I’m much more organized. I can track stuff much better and I have my priority list and my schedule always with me accessible from web as well as from the phone. The integration with Google apps is a tremendous selling point and none of the issues is a real deal breaker for me. Yet, this is the stuff that I will look up to in the following system releases.
This entry (Permalink) was posted on Monday, March 30th, 2009 at 9:03 pm and is filed under Android, G1, Gmail, Google, GSM, Mobile, Rants. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response , or trackback from your own site.