Drilling a bit deeper into Android

The device is a non-starter for me because of the subpar and inconsistent performance of the T-Mobile network. I wouldn't rule out Android for me on the right hardware and network. I am stilling searching for that combination of hardware and network.

Yesterday, I discussed the Samsung Nexus S hardware, its battery life and the rocky performance of the T-Mobile network in my area.  Today, I am getting a bit more specific on my comments:

Observations about Android. I follow Android and people that have Android phones so I generally know what what is going on with the platform.  However, actually using a device as my primary phone is a more intense experience.  Here are a few of my thoughts:

a.  Apps.  The depth and breadth of the applications has greatly improved dramatically since November 2009.  Every item that one would expect find seems to be covered by an app.  Coming from the iOS platform, it seems to be there is close to parity in apps in terms of having the same items available.

b.  Full Gmail.  Android provides a full Gmail experience, including the ability to archive items directly from the native Gmail application.  If your a Gmail user, this is about as good as it gets.The official twitter app supports only one twitter account

c.  Entertainment. Music, podcasts and video are still challenging on Android.  I played around with Doubletwyst a bit, but it just doesn’t compare to what is available on the iOS.  The fact that I have to decide whether to go into “mass storage mode” is annoying has a very Windows Mobile-ish feel to it.

d.  Location. Gowalla,  Places, Facebooks and other location-based applications seem to function smoother and operate quicker than on the iPhone

e.  Google Apps. Setting up my Google  Apps for Business accounts was surprisingly simple.  Although my Google Reader account will not sync with my Apps account on the device, a problem that other have apparently experienced

f.  Google Voice. Similar to full Gmail experience, Google Voice is native to Android and allows me to use my Google Voice number for everything.  However, in what seems like a quirk, the native Google Voice does not appear to allow me to change or select the numbers I forward calls to.

The device is a non-starter for me because of the subpar and inconsistent performance of the T-Mobile network.  I wouldn’t rule out Android for me on the right hardware and network.  I am stilling searching for that combination of hardware and network.

What is the feature that is most important to you on a smartphone?

Posted by Shawn Roberts

On this blog, I write about and try to answer practical Oklahoma legal questions. My focus and most experience is in estate planning and business issues including Oklahoma non-compete law. I make a living as an attorney in the law firm I founded, Cazes Roberts, PLLC in Oklahoma City. I live in Edmond with wife Amy and my two children, Sam (17) and David (9). We live precisely in the path of where the "wind comes sweeping down the plains."

2 comments

Jordan Patterson

What is so much better about the gmail app, what does it offer over a solid imap implementation?

shawnjroberts

The Android Gmail app (as compared to the iOS native mail app) offers the ability to directly archive email with one button press and to create labels. The Gmail client on Android also seems provide quicker notifications of new email than on the iOS email. The Gmail Android app also allows the user to choose which folders to sync, which is nice of there are a lot.

My other problem with the iPhone’s native mail app is that it is inconsistent in syncing Gmail folders, if it will synch them at all. I did not experience any problem with the Gmail Android app.