Help with choice; Droid/N900


Last Updated:

  1. pspbricker

    pspbricker Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    4
    Hey Everyone - first post.
    I find the best way to choose a new device is to browse the forums. I had my heart set on the Nokia N900 as it seemed to be everything the N97 promised to be (but didn't deliver).However, after reading the N900 forums, the device seems to have more than it's fair share of teething problems (random reboots, faulty mic, shoddy GPS app). That, coupled with a confusing Nokia statement that this is the "4th step out of 5" made me think that perhaps I should wait for step 5.
    So what next? HD2? Well, I love everything about it - except the OS. Palm Pre? Felt cheap in my hands, creaky - plus no mem slot? Nope, looks like I'm going android.
    So, I went to buy a Hero here in France but then heard about the Droid/Milestone. I have to be honest, phonewise it's about the ugliest thing I've seen recently. The keyboard part seems asymmetrical (sticks out beyond the screen), and there must have been an alternative to that vent at the back. Also the Hero's trackball was great, and I would rather have seen that, than the thumbpad on the Droid. I do want a physical keyboard though, and I also want the Droid's resolution on the screen.
    Anyway, what I would like to know is the following;

    1)I liked HTC Sense on the Hero, are there any plans to integrate it into Android 2.0? Is that "do-able" by the modding community?
    2) What are you guys using to transfer music? Does Windows media player do the job ok? And is there a podcast app integrated into the media player (on the droid)?
    3) Am I right when I say that turn by turn navigation is not available on the Milestone? If so, would that again be something that the community can help us with? Also is TomTom available for Android?
    4) Finally, are there 3rd party media players available with a bigger choice of codecs for vids? VLC or equivalent?

    Thanks ......
     

    Advertisement
  2. Robfactory

    Robfactory Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Messages:
    246
    Likes Received:
    2
    I would say wait 4 more weeks. A whole mess of snapdragon processor phones will be available.
     
  3. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    218
  4. pspbricker

    pspbricker Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    4
    @Colnago - I envisioned having the N900 3G connection on all day - I use Skype and loved the idea of integrated Skype, tho' Fring looks good on Android - as well as 5-10 GSM calls per day, occasional GPS and the odd spot of music/podcasts. Would you say you could get a days use out of your N900?
    4 more weeks? Ergh.. Anything special confirmed? Because I flogged my N97, and am currently using my old N82 (Still takes damned good photos), but I'm refusing to replace my battery which only lasts 4 hours if i'm lucky...
     
  5. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    218
    I was getting about 6 -8 hours use in the (2) days I had the 900...but that was 6-8 of constant interaction and screen being "on". I'm sure battery would have lasted longer after it became conditioned and I could leave it alone, but I think about 6 is what its rated for. I suspect the data "power management" is pretty intuitive, given that when a web page stops loading, the notification bar switches from "3.5G" to "3G" right away, instead of staying on for a while afterwards....I'm thinking it throttles back the power. Also, the WiFi settings allow for a lower power setting, for when you are close to an access point...pretty nice.

    Typing on the 900 was much much better than on the Droid. I was concerned about the screen not siding up far enough, but it was really balanced and feels natural in the hands.

    Until the 900 gets Ovi maps 3.0, and a decent "search" app, you'll feel like you're missing out vs. the Droid. However if your concerned about data, IM, regular cell calls, Skype and Fring, Maemo is pretty well covered. Some people complain about the 900s "Contacts" interface, in that its too "basic", but it has enough fields hat you can contact people in many different ways and you're prompted for each method, even SIP.

    I "think" that the 900 may also work at the 21Mb speeds TMo rolled out in Philly...need to re-check, but the 7Mb it does for sure.

    If you really want the DROID, but want GSM, just get the Milestone. They are available now at expansys-usa.com.
     
  6. reflex

    reflex Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would chose Droid because more applications and games are available for Android. Maemo is only in beginning.
     
  7. Optimus

    Optimus Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Messages:
    243
    Likes Received:
    16
    The 900 is pretty barebones...and with flash comming to android...the only advantage for an average user on the 900 is speed perhaps.
     
  8. alostpacket

    alostpacket Over Macho Grande? VIP Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Messages:
    7,978
    Likes Received:
    3,603
    I just have one thing to add, the Droid looks waaaaaay cooler in person than it does on line in pics on blogs and whatnot. I originally thought it the ugliest thing ever too, until I saw it in person. Ymmv.
     
  9. vincentp

    vincentp Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2009
    Messages:
    1,640
    Likes Received:
    59
    Android is a bit more mature, and that may make a significant difference. Maemo looks awesome, and has a load of potential. I unfortunately haven't been able to use it first hand, but right now my money is on Android simply due to it's current growth rate and device selection.
     
  10. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    218
    I got my replacement N900 after the USB port came out (really tight fitting microUSB plugs for data/power...now using my Motorola plugs) and both units "function" properly, with none of the major soft/hardware issues. With the limited apps available for maemo, I've been able to pretty much replicate everything I "needed/wanted" on my DROID. Native POP3 email client much better/more stable on 900 than Droid, has multiple sort, attachements, multiple selection delete, etc. I like the "status bar" better than the Droid, in that there are a lot of toggle features for things like screen brightness, BT, log in/out of SIP/IM/VoIP clients, FM Transmitter, etc. But mostly I like the fact that I'm getting better reception in the VA-to-PA area than I did with the Droid (I still think its the DROID vs. Verizon's network.).

    That said, while the devices are similar, they're kinda in different classes. Droid is a much more user friendly, "lifestyle" device, with the Google/search/NAV/contacts integration. Its way ahead of 900 in those respects as you can use it in more of your day-to-day tasks. The 900 gives you the basics, with some slightly slick contact integration of Skype/IM/SIP clients. Its geared more for the IT crowd and right now has only limited appeal, as its also a "work in progress". The next iteration of the OS, and 900 series, is most likely to be more "mass market".

    As someone who just needs email, fast web browsing, "GPS trainer", occasional MP3, and hopefully soon Sling/Hava support, this device is more than fine "for me". As I'm hitting more Flash based sites, I'm noticing that the 900 is having a hard time rendering "quickly". From what I understand however, Flash 9.4 isn't optimized to make use of the 900's graphics hardware. Overall, the 900 may have more potential as the OS is more "PC like" and apps are supposedly easier to create/port, and the device is already "rooted" (open).

    FWIW, I'm able to get Unlimited minutes/data on T-Mo for $43/mo, with the help of Skype thru:

    - T-Mo 500min/mo. plan...$29.99
    - T-Mo web2go data...$10 (got 2.9Mb down/1.8Mb up, per speedtest.net in Philly's 7Mb network)
    - Skype Unlimited calls to US/Canada...$2.95

    Its not an ideal solution, in that I can not receive calls to my main number, however I can call out via Skype with my main number as the caller ID. Given the limited number of "public release" apps, this is about as cheap as it can get, withougt having to pay for a full on SIP account, and not having to deal with GVoice "ring back", or paying extra to qualify for "freinds/family"...although there is a community dev GVoice app available.
     
  11. pspbricker

    pspbricker Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Messages:
    62
    Likes Received:
    4
    Thanks for all the remarks/opinions/comments.
    Should have made it clearer that i'm in Europe, and that the equivalent of the Droid (Milestone) is not available yet. After much brain frying I went for the Hero. My final reasons were; there seem to be a lot of bugs to iron out on the N900, and it seems to be pot luck whether you end up with a faulty device or a good one. Apparently about 10% of N900s are being returned with faulty mics. Also, I really think Nokia shot themselves in the foot by calling this device "step 4 of 5" - It made me think that the N900 is just a stepping stone to the device that Nokia actually want to produce. Of course all phones evolve, but it just sounded like they were apologising for any faults/bugs that the N900 had by saying "Wait for the next one! It'll be better!".
    I love the shape of the Hero - the anti slip rubberised material on the back is good to the touch, and I think the trackball is genius. One personal gripe, when using the phone, the hardware buttons should stay illuminated as long as the screen. It's too fiddly in a darkened room to have to move the trackball so that the buttons light up - how about they light up when touching the screen?
    Overall pretty happy with my Hero (ok mebbe not the name), though there is room for improvement - onscreen keyboard and email client aren't the best. Love the facebook integration, google maps, screen, responsiveness and the UI. I'll keep my eye on Maemo, it does look very promising, but for now i have a happy hero habit...
     
  12. Howie

    Howie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2009
    Messages:
    1,412
    Likes Received:
    71
    I have a Droid and just ordered the N900 last night from buy.com. Now I'm wondering if I should cancel the order if it's a "pot luck"
     
  13. alostpacket

    alostpacket Over Macho Grande? VIP Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Messages:
    7,978
    Likes Received:
    3,603
    Colango's post are very fair and accurate usually but one minor correction: the Droid does have multiple selection delete in the email app.
     
  14. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    218

    I thought a lot of German carriers were subsidising the Milestone, and in the UK, expansys.com has them on their website for the past few weeks?

    I see a lot of the complaints on maemo.org, and other vendor sites, but I've had no issues with the (2) 900s I've had, both from newegg, from (2) different shipments (save for the USB port, which initially may have been my fault...replacement fairing better). You're gonna see a lot of hardware/software issues with any new advanced device...no different than the DROID.

    As far as Nokia's intentions with the 900, I think they are letting the "community" go all out and create most all of the apps. You get the feeling that they are "concerned" about the device, and its current itteration of OS, but they're "focused" on the "next step". An OS update is supposedly coming soon.

    Coming from the Droid, the only thing I really miss was the "POI search", where results were returned in a list form and had links to directions and calling, and a few of the "funner" apps like Talk To Me. But for day to day use, I'm finding it really stable and responsive, and covers all I need. I finally got the apps to download from the "testing/development" sections, and there are a bunch more available than what's "ready for public"...but of course its "caveat emptor" with any of those.
     
  15. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    218

    Roger that...but I wasn't really stating that the Droid "didn't have it", though I do remember someone complaining about it, as much as I was trying to point out that the native 900's POP3 client seems much more "robust", and more importantly "stable".

    Are hardware issues your concern Howie, or were you worried about the 900 not being able to "replace" the DROID? If its the hardware, just make sure you can get a replacement from the Vendor. For the most part, I'm 2 for 2 with "everything working". But again, just be carefull when connecting the USB cables on the phone side...don't wiggle them or it could loosen the receptacle. I think its an issue with the Nokia's microUSB plugs having prongs on the top and bottom, making the connection tighter than necessary.
     

Share This Page

Loading...