James Williams

24 hours with Android

Tags: Android

Yesterday afternoon, I received my overnighted G1 in the mail. After a couple hiccups with a bogus SIM card and a visit to the local T-Mobile store, I was ready to go. It turns out that online they are on backorder until November 10th and the San Antonio(Mountain View) store was one of the few in this area to get more phones on Oct 23.

Form factor

Because of the keyboard, the G1 is considerably thicker than the iPod touch/iPhone. However, it has a more rugged less dainty feel to it and conforms to your hand more. The screen is a bit smaller but very crisp and responsive. The keyboard/trackball combo IMHO beats the iPod/Phone's on-screen keyboard hands down. Moving the cursor back when you make a mistake is so much easier than using the long-click gesture on the iPod. And there's copy and paste too.

Apps

I've read some chatter where people were complaining that it didn't have this or that app. True, there were about 50 apps for launch in Android Market but they are quality apps. And we must also not forget that for a year, we were told the web is the SDK(for iPhone). Android had their SDK out there way before launch. That in combination with the lower price for their developer program. I expect there to be a deluge of apps very soon. Gmail on the G1 is much better than the touch. The only app I really would like to have is a Skype app that doesn't use cell minutes but I'm sure the Fring guys are working on that. I've had almost as much fun developping apps for it as I have doing Groovy apps. The UI design doesn't work against you and has a very well-thought out group of base components.

For the record, AFAIK Android would require major hacking to run Groovy. Not impossible but not easy due to the work that would needed to make MOP work.

Thanks to a SD slot that unofficially supports up to 16GB(and probably will be expandable with software updates), the G1 is most likely going to replace my touch and eeepc.