A love letter to Android

My first smartphone was a Palm Treo 600 and I loved it, when it worked.  It would randomly meltdown require a full restore from backup.  It drove me nuts.  I went to get it repaired but the cell phone repair guy said it just wasn’t worth it.  The hardware was horrible, so I got a blackberry.  I never liked as much as the Palm but it was certainly more durable.  It worked and I even upgraded to a better blackberry but last Christmas I lost it.  It was precious to me.  I picked up a used Windows Mobile  phone, a throw back to my old Palm, but before I could even use it a family member had pity on me and bought the latest version of the same used unit I bought.  Last summer gadget lust overcame me and I ordered the Google Nexus One.

With all deference to the Motorola Droid the N1 was the first phone that truly placed itself in the league of the iPhone.  Despite my distaste for Apple  I might have got one if I didn’t have to use Rogers and its absolutely pathetic coverage in Saskatchewan.  I had my N1 in hand when Sasktel launched its 3G+ network.  I haven’t regretted it one little bit. 

A lot of things I love about my Android are applicable to the iPhone but not all.

a) It’s fast, very fast especially with Android 2.2.

b) Grooveshark : Unlimited music from almost all artists for $3 / month. 

c) TuneIn Radio : I can listen to internet radio from around the world.  Oddly enough I pick stations fairly close to home.  Thank you 92 Citi FM in Winnipeg and kRock in Edmonton for just existing.  I like to make fun of Winnipeg but they have great radio.

b + c = I NEVER EVER have to listen to Saskatoon’s terrible radio stations.  Even Regina’s station’s are better and that’s just not civilized.

d) A great gmail client and integration with google calendar, talk, maps, contacts and even google reader. 

e) The WeatherEye app

f) 5 megapixel camera takes pretty good shots

g) Portable Wifi-hotspot.  I can access the Internet through my phone using a Wifi connection.

h) If I wanna see what is playing at the Galaxy I use the Flixster app, where I can also see the Rotten Tomatoes rating.

i) The LED flash can be used as a Flashlight

j) GPS and whole host of apps that use the GPS to tell me where I am in several different ways.  Use Open Street maps for free offline mapping.

k) Skype.  I can call long distance for 3 cents a minute.

l) Several different keyboard options

m) Voice search and commands.  Last week I pressed the voice search and said “call Moxies Saskatoon” and it looked up their number on the Internet and called it. 

n) Voice dictation : ever wanted to just talk to your phone to complete a text message, Android does that.

m) Nice bright high resolution screen

o) The twitter app, not I don’t twitter but I do follow Sasktel to find out when they will finally expand their network to the Pelican Lake First Nation.

p) Google listen: download podcasts straight to my phone.

q) Web browsing with a standard browser like Skyfire or a mobile browsers like Opera Mobile. 

r) The Facebook app, when I’m truly  and horribly bored and I’ve exhausted other options. 

s) I get the latest upgrade to Android when it is released, not when the carrier decides to upgrade me

t) My phone is unlocked so I can use it with any carrier I want.

u) A bandwidth meter shows me how close I’m getting to going over my limit

v) I can customize my home screen with widgets and live wall paper

w) I can run as many apps as I want at the same time

x) I can expand the memory

y) When the warranty runs out I’ll have all the freedom to use alternative and enhanced versions Android

z) Steve Jobs didn’t get anything from me when I bought it.

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