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I want to like Android...

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by alorn15, Aug 15, 2010.

  1. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Hey all -

    The Droid X is my first Android phone. As has been mentioned elsewhere, I really want to like it, but I have to be honest and say I'm fairly disappointed.

    Here's what I like:
    - The hardware is fantastic. Even on 2.1 I can really push the envelope with simultaneous apps and a lot of performance-intensive widgets.
    - Battery-life is more than acceptable - coming from a dumb phone I was warned about this, but I'm not finding it to be a problem.
    - The OS itself is a lot of fun.

    Here's what I don't:
    - The body is fairly aesthetically displeasing. The non-touch buttons are clunky and the phone itself is a chore to hold. I hate to make the comparison, please hold your criticism, but the unibody design on the iPhone really sets the bar on form, and everything about the X's body says 'Good Enough.'
    - It goes without saying that Motoblur is a drag. My first goal with my X was to replace all the stock software that felt lacking. After a few hours I had accomplished this with LPP/Chomp/DialerOne/FancyWidget and a few others, but the UI ended up feeling poorly integrated. If my new browser would throw an exception, it ended up getting caught by the stock browser. Even after turning all notifications off I couldn't avoid getting double notifications on SMS, and if I received SMS while browsing I couldn't reply. I'm constantly clearing the status bar manually, even though I've already responded to the events within through non-blur apps. I could give a ton of examples; each app seems great on it's own, but all feel slightly incongruent with each other and the environment itself. I realize that I'm asking for a lot of polish here.
    - The bugs. From the Exchange issue to the GPS-disabling-sleep-mode to the speaker problem, there are enough to deserve a bullet point.

    I'm a week into the phone. At this point I'm fairly certain the X is going back, but I'm not ready to give up on Android. I've given a lot of thought to the Incredible and Sense, but am concerned about the battery life and voice quality issues I've heard about. I could also go off-contract for a couple months and pick something up in October/November, closer to 3.0 and the UI revamp. I do have to stay with Verizon (the family has spoken.)

    Thank you very much for reading. Any recommendations are highly appreciated.

  2. G.Armour

    G.Armour You know you want to.

    It takes a while to get used to, I love Android, wouldn't ever go to anything else now. If you want an app that will allow you to reply to sms while in another app, try the messaging app handcent.
  3. gruss

    gruss Android Expert

    Well first off, the physical aspects of the phone have nothing to do with android. There are smaller android phones, you can't pack a huge screen into iPhone form factor. If blur is an issue replace with different home like launcher pro or adw. Double notifications just means you never searched or read the instructions and disabled notifications in the stock messaging app.
  4. Sweed

    Sweed Well-Known Member

    actually, I think this is just a problem with android.
    I had no extra messeging app installed, but whenever I get an sms I got 2 notifications, both from the default messeging client.

    1 notification that shows me the message
    and the other notifications says "you have 1 new message"

    although I haven't seen this problem since cyanogen 6 (android 2.2) so i guess it's fixed now
    alorn15 likes this.
  5. Medion

    Medion Android Expert

    If you want something that feels more polished and integrated, and a better form factor, either trade it in for the Incredible, or wait for the Fascinate. I haven't experienced the sound quality issues with my Incredible yet. Also, my solution for the battery life is the solution I've been using for years even on phones with good battery life.

    Get one of these: Multi Function Battery Charger For use with HTC Droid Incredible/EVO 4G

    And one of these: HTC Touch Pro 2 OEM 1500mAh battery

    That battery is the OEM For the TP2, but fits in the Incredible and lasts a little longer. Between that and the OEM Incredible battery, I keep one in the phone and one in the charger at all times. I find myself switching them out every morning, but I'm rarely below 40% on the battery when I do.

    And yes, you can get that battery much cheaper elsewhere, I just wanted to provide a link to what I'm recommending.
    alorn15 likes this.
  6. Bluestreak

    Bluestreak Lurker

    I understand where you're coming from...
    I just moved over from a 3G, and I'm all-around disappointed with the Droid2's OS, and some of the lack of hardware integration.

    The UI is good enough, but for me, I prefer more of a multimedia device, and this just isn't cutting it. I'm pretty disappointed in the music player, and I can't use the USB interface in my car to stream Pandora/XM/Slacker. I expected more, and everything about this just feels like it fell short.
    The audio quality on calls is pretty bad, too, even after the switch to the B vocoder.
  7. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Thank you very much for all the feedback.

    Yes, the issues I have with double notification primarily center around the status bar that demands a manual clear after every incoming event. Which wouldn't really be an issue except that some apps don't allow the user to hide the X's eyesore of a status bar. It makes me wonder if what I'm looking for is available in a ROM.

    From Engadget, on Froyo:
    "Some of the major aesthetic issues that have plagued Android in the past, however, are still out in full force. There seems to be no cohesive vision on how the platform should look and feel, and first-party apps run the gamut in terms of interface and design."

    I'm excited for 3.0 as it sounds like this cohesive vision will be provided. Sense seems like a reasonable option in the meantime, and with an unlocked bootloader it sounds like the Dinc's chances of getting Gingerbread are 100%?

    The fascinate looks even better than the Dinc form-wise, but word on these forums seems to be a general skepticism of Samsung?
  8. Medion

    Medion Android Expert

    Samsung makes amazing hardware. Their Hummingbird + SGX540 is the best CPU/GPU combo available on a consumer handset today. However, they've always been sketchy about updates. Sure, they've promised 2.2, but it could still be months off. There's also no guarantee that it will fix the GPS issue.

    If the Fascinate were out within the next 2-3 weeks, with 2.2, and a GPS fix, sure, I'd consider trading in my Incredible for it. Anything short of the above, and I'd keep the Incredible.
    alorn15 likes this.
  9. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Am I correct in assuming that 3.0 for the Dinc is likely, given the unlocked bootloader and the active dev community?
  10. G.Armour

    G.Armour You know you want to.

    I would say that is very likely, I've heard that Gingerbread is gonna require at least a 1 ghz processor, in which the Incredible has.
  11. Demache

    Demache Android Expert

    The audio quality problem is a verizon problem, not an Android problem. You said you came from a 3G which is a GSM phone. GSM phones have MUCH higher quality sound than CDMA phones. I could tell easily when someone called me from a Verizon phone back when I had my GSM Nokia.

    I don't know why you.thought you.could stream slacker or pandora straight to.your phone.
  12. Medion

    Medion Android Expert

    Just keep in mind that those requirements were speculation from a blog, and have since been debunked by Google.
  13. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    I guess it's not really a question of whether Dinc will run 3.0, but whether the Dinc will run 3.0 well. And I suppose any answer given at this point is pure speculation.
  14. milk lizard

    milk lizard Lurker

    I disagree with Engadget, in fact there is a "cohesive vision on how the platform should look and feel" it's just that Motoblur screwed with it.

    To the OP: Yeah don't give up on Android, but I would ditch the X, at least for now. Motoblur + current bugs + your unhappiness with even holding the device sounds like more than enough reason to send it back. Of course you can wait for 2.2 and eventually 3.0, or even wait for custom ROMs which are bound to appear eventually. But if you're really that unhappy with the physical design, why bother.

    Since you're staying on Verizon, do you really have a better option for a smartphone other than Android? I've never used a RIM phone, but honestly without the apps does it really rival using Android? Of course there's the much hyped CDMA iPhone rumored to come to Verizon in January, but it all depends on how long you want to wait.

    My experience with a rooted Droid 1 running the Sapphire 1.0.0 custom ROM is probably a lot closer to the "cohesive" Android experience you're looking for. It's basically stock Android with some neat customizations available, and I love the damn thing. 10x better than the 3G I was on last year, in every respect, but I won't go into a long iPhone vs. Droid essay here, as it's certainly been beaten to death by now.

    It may be that getting the "latest and greatest" Android device exposes you to more bugs at first.
    alorn15 likes this.
  15. Hog Milanese

    Hog Milanese Lurker

    The problem seems to be with Motorola, not Android.

    Pick up a nice HTC phone and you won't look back. I'm a die-hard Nokia user for several years now, and I've finally made the switch... for GOOD.
  16. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Great. Thanks guys, going to snag the Incredible. :)
  17. alorn15

    alorn15 Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Yikes. Apparently since I bought the phone from a third-party store that doesn't stock the Incredible, I have to cancel the contract, return the phone, then sign a new contract at a Verizon store. That part doesn't so much surprise me... but if I want to keep my old number, I have to backport it to Sprint temporarily, pay Sprint that activation cost, wait several days for the number port to complete, then return the X, and then pay Verizon to activate the Dinc. My X's activation was waived as part of a deal, but now I'll end up paying for two activations. And the rep tells me that I can expect to receive very little in terms of customer service because in this case 'no one will get credit for signing you.'

    I ended up going home with the X as the rep attempts to special order the Dinc, a prospect he admitted was unlikely. I feel bad for the trouble though, so figured I'd give him a chance.
  18. gruss

    gruss Android Expert

    There are many folks wanting the latest and greatest that would swap ya, I'm not one of them but they're out there.
  19. gruss

    gruss Android Expert

    Orly? Please point me to the source of this knowledge.
  20. Demache

    Demache Android Expert

    Well, I don't have a "source" per se. But to me, my GSM phones always sounded better than CDMA ones. They always sounded near landline quality of sound. I shit you not, you could play music through it to a landline, and it actually was decent sounding, as opposed to the garbled mess when I tried it through a Verizon phone. People's voices also sound a TON more compressed and less natural on CDMA. Of course, I had a Nokia, and they are the masters of GSM technology, so they pretty have it nailed on the head. And also, Unicel had a pretty good network, when you had coverage. Verizon has the better network though, hands down, and I'm glad I switched from Unicel.

    ALSO. Just remembered. If your using an iPhone and you have 3G coverage (when it actually works), it actually uses 3G for voice calls, so the sound is actually very high quality. CDMA phones still use 2G for voice.
  21. Aerimus

    Aerimus Well-Known Member

    I am loving my captivate on AT&T. The GPS was an issue, but the settings fix listed on XDA took care of it for me and now it's working perfectly. I am coming from an iPhone 3gs and then an iPhone 4 that I had for a month before changing. The kicker is that I loved the iPhone 4, but I just wanted to try Android. The 2.2 update has been slated for September by Samsung.

    As far as the phone goes...wow. Video is absolutely amazing, and the 4" is perfect if you ask me. The Droid X just feels too big and clunky to me. If I had to choose between any phones out there, I would probably settle on the Evo or the Galaxy S phones. I used to love HTC phones, but lately their build quality seems to be a bit lacking...I'm not sure what's going on with that. The galaxy S phones have the most potential in the hardware category at the moment.

    So try a Fascinate, I think you'll enjoy it.
  22. MrX8503

    MrX8503 Android Enthusiast

    I have to agree with you on the build quality. With the iPhone4 nothing beats metal and glass, except when you drop it on concrete,lol. Even though its fragile I still dig the higher grade materials.

    You should check out the free app LauncherPro. It'll give your DroidX a HTC Sense feel.
  23. ari-free

    ari-free Android Expert

    OK something that breaks on concrete isn't exactly what I call higher grade material. I want a tough water resistant phone and it's too bad the Motorola i1 just doesn't have the specs...
  24. Medion

    Medion Android Expert

    Samsung stated that they are currently on target to have their update rolled out to carriers by end of September. Now, every carrier will handle this differently. For Verizon, this means at the earliest a late October update for the Fascinate (which won't be too bad since the phone itself won't be out till sometime in September anyway). AT&T might just do minimal tweaks and have it out withing a week or two of that date.
  25. storm14k

    storm14k Member

    I'd almost consider a swap for my Dinc. I just prefer to have a phone that can be rooted and flashed in case I get tired of the customization or something really major pops up on the mod scene.

    Has anyone tried ADW on the X and does it eliminate the lag I hear people talk about? Its kinda odd that this phone lags anyway with the performance numbers it puts up.
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