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Things You Wish You Had Known

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by BLACKTOOTHGRIN, Sep 8, 2011.


If you had all the info on the Commando that you do now, would you still have purchased this phone?

  1. YES

    15 vote(s)
  2. NO!

    2 vote(s)
  3. Yes, but ONLY because of the phone's durability.

    5 vote(s)

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Hello Everyone.
    I'm not a noob to technology, but I'm a complete noob to smartphones and Android.

    I've been wanting to upgrade to a smartphone for quite a while now, but never found one that I thought could hold up to my lifestyle.
    I got an upgrade message from Verizon the other day, and that's when I first saw the Commando.
    Problem Solved!
    I already have the Rock, so this is a no-brainer for durability.

    Since then I've read miles of reviews,
    and for the most part I'm liking what I've been reading.
    I'm still stuck in a bit of analysis paralysis just because I'm SO GREEN to smartphones and Android though.
    So I thought I'd start a thread about all the things that you wish you had know BEFORE buying the Commando.
    This will really help me in my decision, and I'm sure could help others in the future.
    (for me personally, the smartest phone i've had is the env touch)
    Basically just list all the things that you wish you would have know about this phone prior to your purchase.
    Not really a Commando BASHING thread, just some good info for people on the fence to have. :)

    The main things I'm sort of concerned about right now is the 800mhz processor.
    Is it fast enough?
    (i'm not one for phone games nor will i watch a bunch of videos, but speed is still important)
    Also...If Android 2.3 never becomes available to the Commando, is 2.2 good enough?


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  2. bigdanmeys13

    bigdanmeys13 Newbie

    I have had the G'zOne Boulder and Brigade so this was a no-brainer for me as well. My Commando has already survived work and play. I work in a steel mill with all kinds of nasty pollutants (mainly, baby-powder-fine slag dust which is semi-metallic and magnetic). Plus I'm an avid outdoorsman (hunting, fishing, hiking, camping...) and the phone has been dropped in water and on rocks, etc. and is no worse for the wear.
    Now, what I wish I had known; the fact that development for this phone is almost non-existent. You can root and de-bloat it, and V6 Supercharger (by zeppelinrox) works wonders for speeding it up. But nobody has made any custom ROMs or recoveries for it. That makes the "high-tech" side of this high-tech-redneck sad.
    Otherwise it IS a great phone and I have no complaints. Anything that can (or will) be done to it, you'll be able to find either here or on XDA's site.

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Yeah...that was another concern I was having.
    I'm just trying to gain a bit of "quick" perspective on it
    without having to search for hours about things that I don't quite understand yet.
    ( +'s and -'s of rooting being one of them)

    Would you buy the phone again having the knowledge that you do now?
    Why or why not?
    Is it just a durability thing?
    ( it kinda is in my case)


    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Another thing I was concerned about is the keyboard in landscape mode.
    I'm someone that just likes to type it all out without assistance.
    I read that the keyboard isn't very good on this devise.
    Can it be altered or replaced with others from the market?
    I know Casio uses a UI over Android,
    and have read that might cause a problem with other keyboards.
  5. bigdanmeys13

    bigdanmeys13 Newbie

    I would absolutely buy it again. Durability being the main reason. Its plenty fast and being Android, you can improve on what you don't like.
  6. Rafael

    Rafael Android Enthusiast

    Wish it had a greater following.
    Knowing what I know now about the bloatware, the launcher, and the battery life....
    I would not buy another if not for the ease of rooting to make improvements on these and other items.

    I found too many of the "features" Casio included to be annoying.
    If they would ship it with a stripped-down OS utilizing more mainstream launcher and ditching the commitment to Verizon apps like Voicemail; I would find it a lot easier to recommend to friends who do not intend to root.

    If you are the type who is not bothered by the proprietary stuff I mentioned.....you will be happy with owning this phone if you are just shopping for a rugged phone.

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Durability IS the selling point for me,
    but it doesn't mean that's all I'm concerned with by any means.
    I just always told myself that I probably wouldn't upgrade to a smartphone until they made one that would suit my lifestyle.
    Since my Casio Rock has held up so well, it was a no-brainer that this would be my kind of smartphone if there ever is one.

    Yeah...not being able to ditch unwanted apps REALLY aggravates me.
    Will it aggravate me to the point of voiding my warranty? I'm not sure yet.
    If rooting were something I was familiar enough with, and I knew I would be able to put the phone back to "stock" if needed (without any issue) then I would be right there with all of you, tweaking every last little thing.
    Being that I don't know jack about this type of OS, Smartphones, or Rooting...leaves me hesitant.
    If I had a lab rat phone to practice things on, no problem.
    I think the deciding factor will be just how slow this devise is,
    what all the limitations are, how comfortable I become with it, and how it all works.
    I didn't hear anyone really complain that this devise is WAY TOO SLOW though....is it?

    I did go ahead and order the Commando today btw.
    Like I said before,
    IF there is a smartphone out there for me, this is most likely it.
    Plus the Rep agreed to wave the restocking fee if I returned it.
    I also got him to throw in the Charging Cradle & a Holster for it.
    So...if I find that it's not for me,
    I can easily go back to my old plan without any consequence.

    That being said.....
    I'd like to learn as much about everything (including rooting)
    as I can before it arrives on Monday.
    I doubt there are any actual tutorials on rooting for android noobs,
    but what would be the next best thing?

    If anyone can list some helpful tricks to making the Commando run better without rooting it,
    that would probably be a nice place for
    me to start.
    At least for right now. ;)
  8. runsondiesel

    runsondiesel Member

    I had a Rock too and decided last year that I'd get a smartphone when someone made a rugged android one. Now I have it. I got my Commando in June and I have not rooted it.

    I didn't like the stock keyboard, so I put in Better Keyboard 8 from the market. First the free and then the paid one. Try the free one first. If you like it keep it. The paid version gets you nothing extra of value unless you like "skins". I've since moved to the GO keyboard free. I like that one better than BK8 because the cursor arrows can be added at the bottom (fifth row) to be always visible, and there is a button at the top right to close the keyboard. I just don't get along with this swiping business. The market keyboards also have a mic key that can be used with Voice Search for speech to text.

    I didn't like the stock email app because it displays text only. No html. I put in K-9 Mail free and like it very much.

    I didn't like the stock browser so after trying Firefox and Dolphin I settled on Opera Mobile. I had Opera Mini on my Rock. I liked it the best because of the start page where 9 of my favorites are there without having to drill down in a bunch of menus.

    And then the apps... Google Maps, Google Search, Navigation, ScoreCenter, Lookout, Kindle, WeatherBug, and Angry Birds:D.

    So I started with the complaints first, but don't get the impression I don't like the phone. I really like it. It's not as fast as some, nor as thin but it's fit for purpose. Mine hasn't gone swimming yet, but it has taken a few tumbles. Back on Easter weekend my brother had just gotten an iPhone and was irritating me with everything it could do. I tossed my Rock in the pool and asked him "can your iPhone do THAT?"

    On the whole I'm very pleased with the Commando. It's not a Corvette, but Corvettes don't climb rocks. As for the bloatware: I moved the 16 gb card from my Rock to this one and put as many apps on the card as I can. I haven't run into space problems. As to the performance drag, the rooters report that it's much faster without all the Vzw trash and I don't doubt that. I'm just not at the point of risking making a brick out of the thing when I'm happy with the current performance.

    My big hurdle at the beginning was that I had never seen the Android OS before, so I was learning a new operating system as well as a new device and I burnt up many a battery charge combing through the menus looking for stuff.

    If you're coming from a Rock I bet you'll like the Commando.

  9. theGliberal

    theGliberal Lurker

    Overall, I'm very happy with it. I do a lot of bicycling and the durability aspect was the main attraction. Battery life has not been an issue. Right now my only beef is with the LED flash for the camera. Turn the flash on and the LED is always on. It doesn't flash just when you take pictures. But hey, it's a phone first, right?
  10. cbreze

    cbreze Android Enthusiast

    I love my commando even with all the onboard crapola it came with. I've also been hesitant to root it even tho I had no issues tweaking and upgrading custom stuff ROMS and such on other phones. One reason I'm holding back is my c771 just works so well as it is. I'm not seeing any huge benefit to rooting yet. If it were really a big benefit then I'd maybe consider it, but no custom ROMs out anyway, so ...?
    I find the phone to be pretty fast and very reliable for all the uses I put it through daily. No complaints at all running it stock.:)
    For all the bloatware talked about, I think alot of it is just icons that take you someplace so it's not really taking up alot of mem space. I have my screens set up with what I need to use and seldom ever go to where the icons are stored, so that way I don't see them anyway. I have tons of memory and never have gotten a low memory pop up. I do have an app that cleans history and cache and use it occasionally. The phone runs great as is and I think you'll love it stock out of the box. Then if you want root it later. Folks who have every app under the sun probably are the ones experiencing slow downs and mem issues. Common sense is good.

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    That's some good info to have David, thanks.
    It sounds like we have a similar way of looking at this devise.
    I would've loved to see your brother's face when you tossed it in the pool.
    Even more so if you had told him, okay...now let's try yours! :D

    Yeah...the keyboard is one bad thing I've heard come up about this phone.
    I knew I was going to have to search for a new one, but didn't know what was worth
    checking out and what wasn't.
    This will be a good start once the phone arrives.
    However, I can't seem to find the BK8 stand alone app, just the skins. :thinking:
    The GO Keyboard free looks good too. Especially the FREE part!
    I AM someone that likes skins though.
    Nothing crazy, I'd probably even be content with a nice black and grey skin to be honest.

    I was going to ask about Voice to Text as well.
    In a video review that I watched, they said this phone doesn't have it.
    It's sounds like there's a way to do it though.
    How do you rig that up?

    I hear ya.
    I use gmail so I'm going to need to get a gmail app.
    I HATE Bing, so I'll need the Google Search app for sure...
    as well as Google Maps and such.
    Do you know if there's a way to get these apps set up to replace the defaults,
    or you have to go to the actual app and start them from there?

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    It's pretty weird isn't it?
    The G'zone Rock that I have does the same stupid thing.
    Sounds like Casio carried it over to the Commando.
    Makes me wonder if the Brigade and Ravine do that as well.

    How's the camera on the Commando btw?
    It was complete GARBAGE on the Rock.

    BLACKTOOTHGRIN Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    That's good to hear CBREZE.
    It makes me feel alot better about my purchase.
    As I stated before, I went with this devise almost completely for the durability,
    and just wasn't sure how much speed would actually be sacrified.
    If someone like you (a person that's had other smartphones) isn't complaining about it lagging,
    then I think that someone like me (long time basic phone user) should be happy with it as well.
    I can sometimes be a real picky S.O.B too though, so we'll see. :cool:

    From my understanding, I know you can't delete the bloatware....
    but can you hide the icon shortcuts anywhere?
    Maybe place all of them into 1 folder marked "sh*t", and put it on the last page?
    Any way of changing their properties to "hidden"?

    I really hate clutter and junk I won't use.
  14. Bailx

    Bailx Lurker

    blacktooth, you CAN remove them, just use titanium backup.

    i'd probably go with this phone again, based on the durability, and the cool hardware (compass, flashlight, etc)..... but as far as customizing this thing.... that's another story (many apps simply don't work), but it's still pretty awesome....

    some good apps to go with:

    titanium backup
    smart keyboard
    k-9 mail
    root explorer
    opera browser
    hbo go
  15. dartmar

    dartmar Member

    I would buy it again. I have not had the courage to root it yet, but it seems to work OK. Mine fell in the pool when it was only 2-3 days old and it worked great afterwards, it also gets dropped regularly. My biggest problems are the reception and the battery life. I am coming from the G'zone type S. Which got 2-3 weeks on a charge (even at 3 years of age). It also had great reception. With this phone I have to take the case off to make a call or send a text and I don't have any reception in my basement. This phone barely lasts a day and often needs to be charged during the day. I actually like the swiping keyboard. I find it is much more accurate using that method than it is when I type key by key. I am considering buying the full version to get the voice control button.
  16. cbreze

    cbreze Android Enthusiast

    I find my commando to be on par with the rest of my previous devices when it comes to RF capabilities. When I was out in the boonies on a recent long road trip I was pretty impressed with signal so I dunno if yours has something up with it. As for battery life, it's a smart phone, so a day is good to get. I have chargers handy and I'm usually syncing, tethering or hot spottin' it so my commando is getting topped off a lot. best feature of the commando is the ruggedness, so no case needed for me. In any case we can't compare dumb phone and smartphone battery life.
  17. CKes7er

    CKes7er Lurker

    I've had mine for about four months an I love it. My previous phone was a Ravine and it died on me while at a store not far from my Verizon store. Just up and died on me.
    I work in the trucking industry and get exposed to the environment a lot,so this is just the ticket for me. Plus when GPS is added it can really help with getting there.
    As to apps an rooting, you have to really consider it carefully . I've been looking at rooting for a while and the biggest gains I have seen referred to are in boot time and battery life. After rooting and backing up the bloatware then removing it the system seems to run faster. You have to keep copies of the original setup to reinstall so that you can get sys updates. Without the bloatware on it the phone boots in about thirty secs for some depending on how much is removed. It also makes the sys use less battery because it isn't handling as many tasks at the same time. Those Verizon apps and other bloatware are constantly running and using resources.
    There are many apps that don't work on UN rooted phones or only have limited functionality . So you just have to read on them and think about it. I'm still on the fence about rooting myself. There is a chance of bricking the phone if you do it wrong or remove the wrong thing from the sys. However I might go there if I find out that it also improves overall performance as well. Wish I knew if there was an app or computer download that could benchmark it.
  18. Noryb

    Noryb Lurker

    I've been using mine a few months now and have no major regrets aside from the bloateware as do others. This is also my first smartphone, former Env Touch owner.
    As to the stock keyboard, I replaced mine with "Hacker's Keyboard". It gives you all of the function a PC keyboard give you. You get arrow keys, function keys, etc. I also found "Vlingo" which is a speech to text app that works pretty well. Also, I didn't want to use the Vcast Media program to move files around all the time so I found "SwiFTP". Put this app on the phone and download "FileZilla" to your PC and just FTP file back and forth.

    I've always liked Casio products, had just about every G'Shock watch they have made and never had an issue. I would purchase again, just would be great if it had less Verizon bloate.:D
  19. scottfarcuz

    scottfarcuz Newbie

    The only thing that drives me nuts and seems to have no work around at this point is the slide to unlock screen that can't be turned off even when using the draw pattern or enter passcode to unlock options.
  20. DaveCool

    DaveCool Lurker

    I also replaced my working Rock with the Commando based on the durability I experienced. Being my first smartphone, I don't have much to compare to.
    I did immediately root it and remove the bloatware (I hate clutter).

    One issue that took me a while to discover was an issue, is that it will not sync your Facebook contacts. I had tried to add my FB account when I was setting it up and exploring the menus, but didn't realize how it is supposed to work until I was playing with my brother's phone one day. Googled it and discovered this is a known issue that no one seems to be concerned about fixing.

    The slide lock screen is kind of annoying too.

    The charging cradle is a "must have", and should come with the phone.
    (And another wall charger or USB cable.)

    I don't have a belt clip yet, but that should come with the phone too.

    Even rooted and debloated it is sometimes slow to respond to input via the touchscreen, but again, I have nothing to compare to.

Casio G'Zone Commando Forum

The Casio G'Zone Commando release date was April 2011. Features and Specs include a 3.6" inch screen, 5MP camera, 512GB RAM, processor, and 1460mAh battery.

April 2011
Release Date

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