Monday, August 9, 2010

Opinions on smart phones?

Right now I'm seriously hunting a for a new smart phone (darn my geek lust). At the moment I'm ignoring the iPhone - I know it'll do everything I want, so I think I'd be better off looking at the competition, you know? More likely to find that "perfect" fit for me.

I've been looking at Android and the upcoming Windows Phone 7's, but feel like I haven't given Blackberry a fair shake just yet. Just doing my research :)

Been looking more at the smaller phones - want something that's a reasonable size (no Droid X for me) with a good camera. I've realized that having 1 billion apps isn't important - my wants and usages are actually fairly limited. Nothing major. If my Centro has taught me anything is that I'm fine without multitasking, although it would be nice. I'm seriously NOT power-using my cell phone - that's what I have computer for!

I pretty much want:
  • a phone (heh)
  • to be able to check my email (two accounts - Yahoo and Live/Hotmail)
  • sync my calendar between Live/Hotmail and the phone
  • "clouding" for all my contacts
  • a good camera (3-5 megapixels) for photos, video optional
  • decent web browser
  • eReader and PDF viewing

Its an interest piece of de-cluttering. In exchange for less physical clutter I'm going to have one consolidated device. I gave up on my old camera because it was so large (wonderful, but large) - 95% of the time I really only need and use a cell phone camera. Small, spontaneous photos with friends and family, hobbies and food. I'd like to be able to check my email, calendar, and light browsing because some things aren't worth firing my desktop computer for. I'm tired of having tons of dead tree books, physically, so having a library of eBooks and PDFs appeals to me (especially if they're search-able). Borders' eBook store appeals to me as they aren't tying me to a specific device - very agnostic, very nice, and I love my local Borders (yay Kris and crew!).

If I get a Windows Phone 7, I might look at re-upping my Zune subscription. $15/month for all you can eat music, plus you keep $10 worth of music in MP3 format? Hmm... I've used the Zune software for a few years now, and own a 4g Zune - I'm very happy with the platform (former iTunes/iPod user here). Plus I tend to buy my music from Amazon, which sells MP3s anyhow, so I'm not tied to anything with my actual purchases (product loyalty? What's that?).



  1. Well, I know you read my blog, so you already know my opinion (Android *cough, cough*). Of course, the Android OS is by Google, so it auto-clouds with Google services (Gmail, GCal, Picasa, etc). Interestingly, since you mentioned camera, my phone and my camera are both 5MP, yet the phone takes better pictures; at least at close range, like when I photo my 40k models (I don't quite understand that). Anyway, good luck. It took my quite some time of looking at various smartphones before the Droid finally came out and I was happy - now if only Verizon would push Android 2.2 to my phone already.. grrr.

  2. Of course, on different part of the spectrum, I've been using Microsoft's online services to my satisfaction - primarily because I think Yahoo's webmail client interface is the best they're simply too far behind in other ways. So that's Live/Hotmail, the online version of Office, etc.

    Android is interesting, but the trick is there's so many variations between phones: hardware, software, versions of the OS, and who's willing to allow the phone to update to a newer version (seems like some are using 1.6 to establish a "low end" and 2.0+ to be "high end"). I'm hoping the WP7 phones are in between Apple's "one true way" and Google's myriad of devices... not for everyone, but that might well work for me.

  3. I guess, for me, because I was already a heavy Google services user, it made the most sense to go with Android. Still waiting on my "Froyo" (Android 2.2) update though :-(