Why Android?


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  1. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    Hi there!
    Since it says "we are all friends here" I hope I am not going to be eaten alive when I ask my question: Why are you crazy about Android phones? I really have no idea, all I know is that it's from Google but other OSs allow the use of google service too, so...?

    I have a Noika N78 right now and I am really interested in the Samsung Galaxy (i7500). I like the looks of it, the screen and just plain the GUI of android looks great.

    BUT- the programs I use the most are (appearently) not supported by Android, or am I wrong?
    -Mobireader (I use my offline wikipedia ll the time, even if I have to say that online is an option too now that I have a data flatrate)
    -Mobireader for the Longman dictionary of contemporary English
    -Some GPS turn by turn solution (AFAIK there is only one and you have to pay a monthly fee)
    -Some sort of GPS tracking program like Nokia Sports Tracker

    That's about it. Any input would be greatly appreaciated. I know that there is also the new Samsung Omnia HD which would propably work with my S60 programs but I realy like the look and feel of Android OS. What other advantages are there?

    Thanks!
     

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  2. my05

    my05 Active Member

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    Hi,

    No worries :)

    As for your current preferred programs, there are alternatives in the Android world as well:

    "-Mobireader (I use my offline wikipedia ll the time, even if I have to say that online is an option too now that I have a data flatrate)"

    here you have (amongst others): Wikipedia, Wikitude AR travel guide, etc

    "-Some GPS turn by turn solution (AFAIK there is only one and you have to pay a monthly fee)"

    You have Nav4All, AndNav, etc (which supports turn-by-turn) and i am sure there are others.

    "-Some sort of GPS tracking program like Nokia Sports Tracker"

    My favourite is BuddyRunner but there are more as well.

    regards

    Daniel
     
  3. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks for these, I'll check the out!
     
  4. punkzanyj

    punkzanyj Well-Known Member

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    Why are you crazy about Android phones? I really have no idea, all I know is that it's from Google but other OSs allow the use of google service too, so...?


    The main reason is Google itself.

    I've had gmail for several years now, and it's just gotten better with time. When it started it was very plain and boring. It's only unique features were that it threaded your emails, gave you huge storage space, and had google's awesome search tools for organizing your mail. Since then they have added color coordinated labels (as opposed to folders), integration with google calendar, docs, tasks, and gtalk(in fact, some of those services were spawned off of gmail to begin with). Every product they've added such as google maps, youtube, and blogger are tied into my google account, so slowly I've received all this software, for free. They regularly improve their software and add functionality, new features, or just plain new products --- all for free.
    Given google's dedication to providing great products, with simple interfaces, that are guaranteed to get better over time with improvements to quality, integration, new features and even new products --- the android phone was a no brainer.
    I've said this a billion times, but I'll say it again, I had a T-Mobile Wing for a year (that's windows mobile if you're paying attention) and not once, not ONCE did I get an update. I even ran the update manually once a month and got nothin. It was an "okay" experience that I had to hack the hell out of to get it half as functional as my G1 was out of the box. Meanwhile I've had the G1 for 9 months and it's had at least 3 updates that have improved the quality and experience and even added extra features. I'd even argue that the Cupcake Update wasn't an update at ALL but rather an UPGRADE. A vast improvement on what has already been a GREAT experience so far. And again, ALL for free. The phone may have been $400 but The Android OS wasn't part of that price. The OS is free, the updates and upgrades(like cupcake) are free.
    I love that my info is backed up on the cloud and I can make changes to contacts at a PC and have them float over to my phone in a matter of minutes without me having to do a thing.
    I love the innovative programs this open source OS is not only inspiring, but rewarding developers for making. Apps you won't likely see on another OS such as locale and ShopSavvy.
    Are their problems, ABSOLUTELY. I don't deny for one second that Android has issues. But, unlike Windows Mobile, I'm not going to have to wait and hope they fix it, only to find out they'd rather have me pay for a brand new OS instead of just fixing the broken one. Google has demonstrated an obsession with improving their products, leading to an outstanding customer experience that Apple and MS can only HOPE to achieve.
    It's not ready yet, but I have a strong feeling that in a couple years Android will be an OS that competes directly with Windows and Mac on the computer/laptop platform, and I have little doubt that Android will kick their asses -- or at least inspire them to drop a lot of their bad habits and fix their customer experience issues.
     
  5. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    Sounds interesting, thanks. I haven't heard of the cloud yet, only of some Apple app that seems to to what you describe, gotta check that out.
    I also have no doubt that there will be many god apps for Android, just wasn't sure if it is already time for me to change.
     
  6. Buffman

    Buffman Member

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    As for a "Sports Tracker"-like or fitness application, there are tons out there. BuddyRunner, SportyPal, MyTracks are just some of the few to name.

    Personally, however, I think CardioTrainer is the best out of them all (As agreed by the popularity ranking in the lifestyle section of the Android Market). I'm not sure about the Sports Tracker, but CardioTrainer has the following functions:

    - GPS enabled tracking (With a real map to be on your screen)
    - Statistics (Distance Traveled, Calories Lost, Etc)
    - Facebook App
    - Uploading of all stats online.
    - Voice Command

    And a couple other minor stuff. But the GPS tracking is essentially what all fitness programs on the Android are like.

    You can learn more about CardioTrainer by visiting their website at:
    About - WorkSmart CardioTrainer

    Hope this helps,
    Buffman out.
     
  7. georgetr

    georgetr Member

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    As you already have explanation for BR and CT, I will present SPORTYPAL or maybe is better if you try on your NOKIA 78 because they have versions for Android, Nokia, iPhone, Blackberry, WinMo real MULTIPLATFORM application.

    Sportypal is like Sports Tracker but it has very clean design and better presentation on your track after finishing (google maps presentation) and graph of speed on Nokia(usable presentation), on Android there is a LIVEMAP on the phone and you can even visually navigate.

    Home | SportyPal is just a little better than Nokia site but this is just my opinion, there is more details of analyzes.

    This is my last workout:

    Workout Details | SportyPal

    On the web site you can see more Android or Nokia workouts.

    Worth to try :)
     
  8. ManLike

    ManLike Well-Known Member

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    "The Cloud" is IT slang for "out there in the network somewhere". Typically taken from IT training diagrams and planning documents where you detail out the local network at point A and point B, then just draw an amorphous "cloud" between them to indicate you are going across a bunch of network that you "don't care" about or don't have control over. This ranges from private leased circuits to The Internet.

    As for why I love the G1... What can I say. I've been a HUGE fan of smartphones and PDAs for decades. I've used most everything from Palm OS, Wind Mo, Series 60, and a bunch of others. I haven't seen ANYTHING that is as easy and transparent for the end user to just pick up and DO. There's no need to connect to your PC, or wonder if you CAN connect to your computer if you have a Mac or Unix/Linux box.

    The Android Market has a metric long tonne of applications that are both good and free.

    The OS itself is going to be marketed on more hardware platforms than anything else I've seen, with the possible exception of Series 60 (and I wouldn't put money on that staying the same for the next 2 years).

    There are crazy and innovative apps out there like Shop Savvy (OMG!!), and Parallel Kingdom. The OHSA (or Google, not sure which) has put up a HUGE sum of prize money for the top 10 developers of new and innovative applications (the Android Developer's Challenge, now completed) and is planning on doing so again.

    This platform rocks, and it only going to rock harder as it matures.
     
  9. sergey

    sergey Well-Known Member

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    Have you used Android yet? That might seal the deal for you.

    The advantages for me are:
    -cheap to own vs. a Verizon or AT&T smartphone
    -future plans, it's exciting to be a part of something new and growing
    -OS is impressive
    -the "cloud"
    -rooting- hacking your Android phone to do anything
    -Android community

    The disadvantages for me are:
    -hardware is not as good as software, although many would disagree here.
    -not mature yet
    -not as many apps as phone-who-must-not-be-named

    If you are an open source advocate who hates Apple and likes to hack your phone and tinker it to just the way you want it, go with Android.

    Or if you want a good deal on your cell phone bill.

    I'm like you but in the end I decided not to get an Android phone this time around. I've got my eye on it, so for my next phone I'll seriously consider Android.
     
  10. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks guys for your input.
    I don't care about hacking my phone and I guess not too many people are (in relative numbers).
    As for the cloud I still haven't understod what that is in relation to Android phones.
    Otherwise I think I will try the new Samsung device, it looks good to me.
    Just hope there will be a good navigation soultion for Europe soon.

    As for SportyPal- I tried that 3 days ago and while it looks good I can't see why it would be better than Sports Tracker- the latter shows me a map on my N78 while I wok out and SportyPal only gave me error messages when I tried to upload it. But it certainly looks good enough in case I buy an Android phone, si I wouldn't miss anything really, provided that the upload works.
     
  11. georgetr

    georgetr Member

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    Hi,

    for uploading you have to open account on Home | SportyPal, you can do it first on the web site and later just register the application on the phone under my profile, or made account on phone and register automaticly..

    if you have account check it on the web if it works, and then fill account(mailadress,pass) info on the phone....

    It is not much better than Sportstracker on Nokia phones.....just beter presentations, but that is personal view....

    On Sportypal for Android you have live view on map while you running, and other good features....

    And the good thing is: you can start to use now and later no matter you choose Android or other phone you can continue just with registering the new phone on Home | SportyPal
     
  12. Kana

    Kana Member

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    SportyPal definitely has one of the prettiest UIs out there (Though I wish I could change the color. I really don't like the blue.) Personally, I've been debating between MyTracks and CardioTrainer right now, though I'm leaning a bit more towards CardioTrainer.
     
  13. GeoUSA

    GeoUSA Well-Known Member

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    • was already a Tmobile user
    • less costly data plan than iPhone
    • open system. Seems Apple would have learned from Mac/PC history that open leads to more software, innovation, and sales
    • Google creativity. Have had a GMail account since the early days but have grown to appreciate it as my main e-mail system
    • reliability and stability is pretty amazing for a first generation product
    • voice recognition is very good since version 1.5
    • user can change the battery and upgrade the flash memory
    • I expect to see Android running on many different types of devices soon. Apple will likely introduce an iPad, but will likely fall behind the speed of innovation Android will experience
    Dislikes:
    • not as polished as iPhone
    • open system (yes it's also a like but having one company in control of hardware and software does tend to make for a more polished and reliable product)
    • Gmail app does not display many inline photos in e-mail
    • battery life in G1 is not great
    • multi-touch is not implemented
     
  14. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks Geo!
     
  15. KlaymenDK

    KlaymenDK Well-Known Member

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    Here's a totally different perspective for you.

    I've been wary of Google for years, I guess I'm kind of a privacy nut (to think there's even a term for that nowadays:rolleyes:). Nevertheless, here I am. Why?

    I've been a very satisfied Palm user for many years; for a period I also used Psion. Now, PalmOS does a lot of things right, as does Psion's Epoc OS. That basically translates to having few but nigh-on perfect apps on a device with very little memory and a slow processor -- and still having oodles of space and snappy response (there's a lot of good to be said about event-driven real-time operating systems). Seriously, neither the iPhone nor Android can compare with a Palm Tungsten T3, a Psion Series5 (my brother used (up) a number of those over a span of over a decade) or a Revo. Especially not after a couple of days, when the smart phones are long out of battery but the older devices still have plenty of juice. Those things keep power for up to a fortnight! Add to that that I've been doing some development for the Palm platform, and you have a happy person. Well, had...

    So why am I here? Well, the old devices are after all slowly dying from normal wear and tear, and Palm just up and pulled the carpet out from under a living community. So I gotta go someplace else. Don't particularly want to, but gotta.

    So where do I turn? Apple is right out with its proprietary platform (you basically need a Mac to write software for it), and so is WinMo and Symbian (requires you to run Windows). OpenMoko? Maybe in five years. So that means that Android is pretty much the only thing left. I think that Android as a platform is promising, and it's definitely a plus that its Eclipse plugin and the documentation is quite nice.

    I don't particularly crave connectedness, either. I'm just fine with doing a USB sync every now and then, and generally working off of the device and its onboard data. Now, it seems I need a data plan (I have no idea what tier I should go for), and all my data will be going back and forth all the doggamned time. Still, it's either this, or going back to my old pocket book and mini pencil, apparently.

    So, after much squirming about, I caved in and got myself a Google account. And I must admit it's very nice, although I'm still uncomfortable with the ramifications of it. And I do expect to be disappointed with the phone, in particular battery life and the quality of what I consider the core applications, namely the address book and calendar.

    I don't have a phone yet; I'm holding my breath for the Samsung Galaxy, but I'm beginning to be very blue in the face. :( Gimmegimmegimme!!!
     
  16. Scott

    Scott Active Member

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    The lust of Android is easy to explain.

    For Phone manufacturers
    One-time, fixed cost to implement. Zero per-unit costs. Lots of community support. Great name behind the OS. Usability is very high (Android is easy to use). Market is large (thought not huge), and likely to grow fast. Google name is great credibility.

    For Carriers
    Same as for manufacturers, plus it's easy to "brand" the user experience (some OEMs are doing this, but more carriers). Try to make WinMo look like something other than WinMo!

    For Developers
    Drop-dead simple development, great features, anticipated growth of the user base.

    @Klaymen: waiting for a Galaxy is time well spent, IMO :)

    Scott
     
  17. justjimjpc

    justjimjpc Premium Member VIP Member

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    Welcome to the AF Forums and enjoy your visits and thanks for your contributions... :cool:
     
  18. geozec

    geozec Member This Topic's Starter

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    I am a privacy nut too. I hate facebook and Co, I never use my real name unless I have to and so on.
    The Galaxy came to stores 2 days ago in Germany and yesterday I opened a Google account under my real name! Guess you have to be trustful to some extent and the whole idea of all your contacts saved online makes sense to me, even if I could live, like you, with the occasional USB-Synch til now.

    BTW, still have a Revo in my desk drawer, gotta look if it still works;)
     
  19. Jayziac

    Jayziac Well-Known Member

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    I don't have an Android phone yet, but planning on getting one to replace my regular clamshell phone (maybe with a Sciphone N12, no contract & inexpensive, using wi-fi only for data). The biggest roadblock are expensive 3G data plans that are required to get an Android phone right now. I see the Android a potential replacement for PCs on the go for most people. It's what Microsoft did for the PC in the 80/90s. allowing different hardware manufacturers to run the same standardized OS. Apple will be slowly squeezed out again even though their product may be easier to use, but the closed system and higher price limits its appeal.
     
  20. hightower

    hightower Member

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    Im relatively new to android and I can say I love the concept of it. Total integration and sync with gmail is simplistic.

    My only gripes are the extreme lag if you run more than a few applications. That includes widgets. Somewhat strange for a new OS and state of the art $400 phone. Why would they put so little ram on the G1 in the first place let alone not even being expandable.

    It is new so it can only get better with time. Hopefully things like the marketplace will get a major overhaul and have better descriptions, screenshots, and better UI.

    my 2cents worth.
     
  21. punkzanyj

    punkzanyj Well-Known Member

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    more RAM = more $$$$. It was already $400 with a free OS.
     
  22. Clackamas

    Clackamas Well-Known Member

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    I think your question is a good one because it asks about the operating system / user environment rather than the hardware.

    The following comments speak to the US Market and Mobile Phone Industry. Europe and other jurisdictions will vary and I cannot speak to them directly. Yet, don't discount their influence on our market and ours on theirs.

    With all the excitement of "app stores" users are either overlooking or just discovering that Apple conveniently censors what you can have based on content.

    Sprint/Palm for the webOS has yet to make the announcement, but you can bet it will be as advantageous to them at as much your expense as the market will allow. Censorship has yet to be determined.

    Google, in my opinion, has the best market for selling 3rd party apps.

    However, like a poster in this thread commented about appreciating Gmail over time, I think it will take the public a while to realize what freedom of choice they will have in Google's business model vs. Apple and the telcos with exclusive deals already forged or being forged.

    Anyway, it's less and less about the OS and it's more and more about the tools.
     

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