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Old January 18th, 2011, 05:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Hi, and is Android right for this long-time Nokia user?

Hi,

My name is Al. I've joined these forums because I am thinking of buying an Android phone, and I want to do my research before I commit. There's a few things I need to find out, but I can't see a sub-forum for people trying to find out about Android - I don't want to use the specific phone subforums because I have no idea yet which phone I would choose. As such I'm going to go ahead and post my questions here, in the hope that someone will be able to either answer or point me in the right direction.

My background is that I'm a (very) long-time Symbian user, since EPOC days and the Psions (I still have a Revo - now there's a fantastic QWERTY keyboard layout in a mobile device). Since then it's been almost all Nokia smartphones: 9500 Communicator, 3230, E60, E51, E66 and E75. I've stuck with E-Series phones mostly because they have been stable out of the box unlike corresponding N-Series devices.

I currently have the Nokia E75 and an iPod Touch 2G, and I'm looking to replace these with one device that does everything I need. My default position was that I would just go out and buy a Nokia E7 whenever it comes out, but I'm open to a change of platform. The iPhone is definitely not for me - too many compromises on my wishlist - but it occured to me that an Android phone might fit the bill so I'm having a look.

I guess the easiest thing for me to do is list the things I need, and hopefully someone will be able to suggest an Android phone that will give me all these things either out of the box or with third party apps. I'm also interested to know if there is anything here which Android definitely can't do, so I would know what I would be giving up by switching. The list follows this post.

According to the specifications on paper, the Nokia E7 will be able to do everything on this list. One area where it is guaranteed to be weak is availability of third party apps, where the Android Market and the App Store are leagues ahead of the rather poor Ovi Store offering - this is one of the main reasons why I am considering alternatives. Having said that, I just looked through all the apps on my iPod Touch and the few that I couldn't live without are already available for Symbian^3. The other concern with recent Nokias is that you never quite know how the first firmware version is going to go, and this is a worry too.

I am very grateful to anyone who can help guide me on this journey!

Thanks,
Al


What I need from my smartphone:

Hardware essentials
Multi-touch capable touchscreen
Hardware slide-out QWERTY keyboard
Bluetooth compatible with Parrot car kit (headset, not A2DP)
Camera (quality not that much of an issue, but must geotag images)
3.5mm headphone jack
Battery must last one day with medium use

OS/Interface essentials
Homescreen(s) with ability to show:
- Email status for at least two IMAP mailboxes
- Upcoming calendar events (maybe up to six)
- Shortcuts to often-used applications
- Usual date/time/network/signal/battery/voicemail information
Calendar & contacts syncable to online server
- currently use SyncML to mobical but open to alternatives
- sync must happen automatically at least once per day
- sync must be to online server not local machine
- web interface to view online contacts/calendar
Log (including data session information)
Web browser including Flash
Email client
- up to three IMAP accounts with automated checking for new headers
- don't need push/Exchange but IMAP IDLE would be good
- ability to move messages to other IMAP folders
- ability to set a sent items folder on the IMAP server
- HTML email reading/writing
Music player with album art and gapless playback
File manager
Compressed file utility (ZIP probably)
Access point management
- so the best access point (WIFI/3G) is always selected automatically
- all applications can use this facility
Voice commands for dialling contacts and other OS features
Profiles
- ability to switch to Silent automatically when connected to car kit
- silent profile must not send message alerts over A2DP
Calling facilities
- call waiting facility
- call diversion facility
- show call duration
- call recording

Software essentials
Ability to view/edit Office documents
Ability to view PDF files
Facebook application
- maybe with notifications but not essential
- ability to tag and upload to facebook after taking photos/videos
Youtube application
Iplayer compatibility
Panoramic photo application (proper stitching not cropping)
Sky mobile application with remote record programming and TV guide
Internet radio with ability to point to own MP3 streaming server
WiFi sharing application (all protocols not just HTTP)
VOIP facility (Skype is ok but I prefer SipGate, happy to change)
H.264 MP4 playback (I have lots of iPod videos)

GPS essentials
Maps application
- with free turn-by-turn directions for driving and walking
- useable without data charges abroad by downloading maps in advance
- with points of interest (pubs, car parks, petrol stations etc.)
- downloadable satellite view when required
Tracker application
- ability to regularly upload my position to a remote server
- ability to remotely lock the phone and silently request phone position
- prevents uninstallation of itself without code
- web-based location viewer showing current location of phone
Custom mapping application
- ability to calibrate and view position on custom maps
- ability to record and view tracks and waypoints
- ability to view trip information
- currently use SmartComGPS with OziExplorer maps but happy to change

Other things which would be nice to have (but not deal-breakers)
Squeezebox Server control application
Angry Birds
HDMI out for photo/video viewing
At least 3.5" screen
On-device video/photo editing
FM Radio
RSS Reader
Automatic podcast downloader
Metal casing and scratch resistant glass
Ability to code my own apps and deploy on device without further cost
Battery which would last more than one day
Thousands of third-party apps available free or at low cost

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Old January 18th, 2011, 05:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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sounds like the just released EVO shift from sprint
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Old January 19th, 2011, 01:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daash View Post
sounds like the just released EVO shift from sprint
I forgot to say I am in the UK, and I gather the Evo Shift is US-only, although it appears the HTC Desire Z (similar to the T-Mobile G2) has similar features. Maybe I'll go and repost my request in the relevant forum...
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Old January 19th, 2011, 04:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Welcome to Android Forums!!
Try asking in the Android Lounge. You'll get the most responses their i would think.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 05:04 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Welcome to Android Forums!!
Try asking in the Android Lounge. You'll get the most responses their i would think.
Thanks NightAngel,

I've had a very helpful response (Will a Desire Z meet all my needs (switching from Symbian)?) in the Desire Z forum which covers quite a lot of these things especially the hardware stuff - I'll probably post the remainder of the queries in the Android Lounge as you suggest.

Al
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Old January 19th, 2011, 05:05 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bat400 View Post
Thanks NightAngel,

I've had a very helpful response (Will a Desire Z meet all my needs (switching from Symbian)?) in the Desire Z forum which covers quite a lot of these things especially the hardware stuff - I'll probably post the remainder of the queries in the Android Lounge as you suggest.

Al
It's cool. Glad you found the help/info you needed.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 05:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I used to have a 5800 - by god is Android a lightyear advance on Symbian...
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Old January 19th, 2011, 08:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Advice provided comes from fellow Android enthusiasts. We're not tech support. Please do your due dilligence before implementing! And if someone helped you, please share the love with the button...
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