A Droid in the House

Bitter just got herself a Droid. Playing with it, I think it is in many ways inferior to the iPhone, but there are a few very key things about the Droid that have the potential to make it more useful:

  • It’s on Verizon’s network instead of AT&T. It’s amazing how fast browsing was compared to my iPhone.
  • It’s an open-source platform without the crazy control freakishness of the Apple platform.

I’m relatively happy to see Adobe is developing a flash plugin for the Droid browser. Although I really hate Flash, there’s a lot of stuff on the Internet that doesn’t work without it. In theory, I’ll be able to use Bitter’s Droid to watch Cam & Company on the road. I figure if I find myself having to keep borrowing Bitter’s Droid because it’s more functional, that’ll be my signal to ditch the iPhone and move to Verizon.

7 thoughts on “A Droid in the House”

  1. T-Mobile has a few Android phones, and ATT should be getting at least one within a year.

    …so, wait and see if you’re itching for an Android-based phone. i believe T-Mo works fairly well in PA…they’re iffy down here in Baltimore.

  2. Most of the people who have handled one/used one that I know of have been pretty happy with them. I can’t be an unbiased source on the subejct of either customer or radio service (I’m theoretically one of the guys WAAYY in the back of that crowd scene of the “it’s network ads); but the corporate policy-setters do aim for a “customer-first” attitude. Probably helps to be a nominally-private company there (and, IMHO, a free-labor company. Unlike VZComms, VZW is NOT unionized.

    I don’t think my next phone will be a droid (I’m a WinMo guy), but I see the writing on the wall. My next after that will probably be it unless MS can revolutionize. It’s not something they do often, but they do manage it every so often. If WinMo7 can be as cood as Win7, we’ll see. (So far WinMo 6 has been about like Vista…)

    1. I’ll be honest, I’ve been with Verizon for 10 years because of the service. The phone service is great, and the 611 customer service is great. The stores are absolute awful, and I wouldn’t wish my worst enemy more than 10 minutes in one. Well, at least that had been my experience until this weekend. Someone my mom works with knows a guy who owns three franchises in this area. We were hesitant to go to one, but they took care of us. (I guess asking for the owner makes a huge difference in how you’re treated.) They did for us in 10 minutes what the official stores have refused to do for years – jump through the hoops to merge an individual plan into a family plan, even though it was mid-contract (VZW still came out ahead…), leaving my MA phone number in tact while bringing in my mom’s SW VA phone number. I will go to that store again, but I still won’t venture into a company-owned store. I’ll just keep calling customer service anytime I need it.

      As for the phone, I like it. I just need to figure out how to make it stop notifying me every time I have a new email. I at least got the notification sound changed from “Droooooiiiiiiiid” to the tweeting sound that’s far less freaky.

  3. Bitter,

    In the Gmail app, go into Settings and you’ll see a checkbox for notifying you of new mail. Or you can just change the sound to “silent” and still get notifications in the notification bar (I think; I haven’t tried it myself yet).

    For the other email app (i.e. non-Gmail), you have to select an account (i.e. be in the Inbox for the account), then go into Settings and do the same as for the Gmail example above (i.e. turn off notifications or set a different sound).

    After the second day I also had to change the default notification sound from “Drooooiiiid” to a sonar “ping” sound. I’ve got two personal email accounts (on my own domains) and a Gmail account, so I was getting a lot of notifications and it got pretty old. I also changed the default polling time for email (and Twitter) to once per hour to keep the notifications to a minimum (and to improve battery life).

    Also, if you’ve having battery life issues, give it a few more days. I had bad battery life at first, but the last two days have been much better, even with some fairly long browsing sessions (I’m now seeing about 50% charge left after 15 hours; the first day it used up 90% of the battery in about 10 hours).

    1. That’s really funny about so many “Drooooiiiid” noises with that many accounts. I only have my main account hooked up to it, and email has been much slower over the holiday. So because of that, I was only hearing it periodically, and I couldn’t figure out what the hell was making it “yell” at me. :)

      Thanks for the tips, I’ll check those out. I haven’t had any apparent battery life issues yet. When I got the phone, it was only half charged. I used it for the two days on that, but turned it off at night. (Since I didn’t want to hear the “Drooooiiiid” all through the night.) I finally charged it yesterday all the way up, so I’ll get a feel for battery life when we drive home today.

  4. Most smartphones in my experience need to break in the battery & meter.

    I end up leaving my phones on vibe most fo the time anyway; combo of wearing them on my belt and being places I don’t need or want the world to know that I’ve got [mail|SMS|IM|phone call]. Esp since my ringtone is a spiffy bagpipe number.

    (Speaking of which, you can probably set your notifications to sound file chosen by you; .wav or .mp3 would be the most likely)

  5. I would not expect Flash to play nicely on the Droid.

    Not because the Droid’s bad, but because Flash is a horrible hoggish monster from hell.

    The reason Apple won’t put Flash on the iPhone is not that they have some strange grudge against Adobe, or against Flash content on the web – it’s that they know it’ll bog any phone currently on the market down, and they know that, right or wrong, people will see shitty Flash performance and blame Apple.

    (Kinda like people blame Nokia or Motorola or Samsung for the crappy applications that phone companies bundle on innocent phones that did nothing to deserve that…)

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