Tuesday, November 10, 2009

iphone > Droid

I went to the mall the other day (shiver) to put my meaty paws on the new Droid smartphone from Verizon. Like any iphone owner, I would gladly pay a hefty fine and/or take hit to the nuts if I could switch from AT&T's craptastic network to Verizon's land of milk and honey.

And with the coming of Droid I thought that I might have found a reason to undergo the painful process of migration. After all, the phone is getting rave reviews. It uses the Android OS from Google which is far more open that Apple's. New apps appearing every day, free GPS navigation using google maps. What's not to love?

Well, the Droid IS good, but it's not awesome, at least in my opinion based on limited hands on experience.

It is well made. Solid. Nice looking. The screen is very sharp. But what they put on it is not nearly as polished as the iphone. It's cluttered. I know it can be configured however you want it but using it wasn't the simple process I'd hoped it would be.

The biggest drawback is the physical keyboard. It just isn't isn't made for my fingers. Period. They sit on a flat plain and one has to depress the center to activate them. The Sidekick had a much better keyboard for us big folk. The on-screen keyboard was okay, but not great. I am sure with practice I could be proficient with it. People have said the camera, while 5 MP, isn't all that great.

But for me, the biggest stumbling black was tapping on some kind of news bubble app and having it crash. Then I launched another app, and it crashed. Two crashes? Really? The Droid can run several programs at once, unlike the iphone. But it's rare that I'm listening to Pandora while IM'ing and uploading pics to my facebook account. And if I do try to do several things at once, the delay in starting an iphone app up is about a second. (Games do tend to take longer to launch). I was impressed, I just wasn't wow'ed.

It is on the network I crave. And with a little polish I am sure the usability will improve. But for now I am still happy with my iphone. It does what I need it to do without any fiddling or crashing. That's my 2 cents. Anyone got one out there who cares to share their experience?

Sunday, November 08, 2009

In praise of beer...

No, not that kind. Most beer tastes awful to me. But Ginger Beer? Heaven! And the best maker of this nectar of the gods is an Australian company called Bundaberg. You can find this stuff at many World Market stores. While it doesn't have any alcohol, it is quite tasty. Give it a try.

I can be bribed with this