Android is Taking Over the World

At least that is what I have been told…

Living with an iPhone user I have had a front row seat to the realities of iPhone Syndrome

When I purchased my first Android based phone (HTC Droid Eris on Verizon) there were no doubt issues with it that inhibited the phone capabilities. Many times I would go to show my iPhone user something, only to have my phone fail on me and embarrass both me and the Droid (this was actually a major part of my argument to Verizon for why they should allow me upgrade early).

The phone was not an iPhone. Period. It was cool, it did lots of cool, helpful things (syncing my Gmail calendar to my phone is on of my favorite Android features).  But if I was honest with myself, an iPhone, it wasn’t.

Fast forward 6 months. I talk Verizon into allowing me to upgrade, I purchase the Droid Incredible, and the phone is, simply incredible.

To give an example, yesterday I go for a run. I am listening to music…on my phone. My Pandora account is synced to my phone (no biggie, everyone’s smart phone does this). The running app I am using (Runstar) is using my position via GPS to track distance, pace, elevation and route. This I can then compare to other runs, upload to the web to share, and see how I am doing in my goal for the month. Had the phone rang, and it was an emergency, one button and I am taking the call.

Can the iPhone do all that, yes it can. Does having the iPhone to do all that come at a cost to the consumer, reference the links above.

I now have a phone that I don’t have to make excuses for. I now have phone that border lines on transparent in my life due to the ease in which it transitions into my day to day activities (yes, the voice in the back of my head warning about the impending robot rebellion keeps getting louder)

Long story short. My first Android phone was definitely not an iPhone. My second Android phone is Definitely not an iPhone, and thank the gods for it.


Our Phones Will Do Everything

As if we needed More Proof, our phones are eventually going to do just about everything in our lives.

At least those of us who allow them to. (This is all very ironic to me, being that I am the most paranoid person I know when it comes to the inevitable robot revolution).

On a bright note, my Droid Incredible is in the mail and will be here tomorrow.

Not a day too soon, reverting to my BlackBerry Pearl (my first Almost-Smart Phone) has me wondering what I am doing with my life.

I hated this phone when I bought it. What in the hell was I thinking.

My Android Adventures

I bought my first Android phone in December after a few years with BlackBerry. I had a great experience with BlackBerry, but I read the tea leaves and realized that Android was the future for anyone who, like me, refused to join the Zombie-like masses of Stockholm Syndrome afflicted iPhone users.

 My New Every Two from Verizon came up in December and I had the option of choosing the Motorola Droid, and the HTC Droid Eris, as those were the Android options on Verizon at that point.

I did not like the Moto Droid, at all. Aside from the weird commercials that made me feel like the impending Robot Rebellion was far closer than I was prepared to believe it was, I just did not like the phone.

I had grown very comfortable with the physical keyboard that my BlackBerry Curve offered, but I did not like the slide out keyboard on the Moto Droid at all.

After spending some time in the Verizon store, I decided on the Eris. It just felt better in my hand. I bought the phone and loved it. There were a few issues, such as battery life, and slow performance at times, but they were not issues that were killing the phone for me.

At the time, the Eris was running Android operating System version 1.5. I was promised at the time of purchase that the Eris would be updated to version 2.0 (which the Droid was sold running) or 2.1 (which I am currently running through an awesome online leak). Six months later, the Eris using community is still clamoring for the update they were promised months ago.

In the six months I have had the phone, I have grown into quite the Techie. I learned how to download and successfully install leaked updates, how to get the most out of my phones limited computing power, and how to work around many of the issues that plagued the phone.

The biggest issue I dealt with was dead silence when trying to make or receive calls on about 3 out of 5 calls. Eventually, I had enough.

I called Verizon and politely complained about the silent phone issue. Verizon sent me a new phone last week which did so far has not suffered from the issues the old one did. But was I satisfied, nope.

Verizon recently released the HTC Droid Incredible, which according to everything I have read, including user reviews and hundreds of posts I have read on Android Forums (I know, this is all very dorky and I don’t care) the only issue this phone suffers from, like all smart phones that do everything a computer, a camera, a video camera an mp3 player, and everything else, is poor battery life. The battery life can be fixed with a few changes to the phone and the purchase of a stronger battery for $50.

So, I had my sights set on this phone, and I was going to make it happen. The thing that I found the most attractive about this phone is the whopping 8MP camera. I use my phone as a camera and video camera to record everything Avi does. I want higher quality from a camera phone. This phone has it. Along with a 1Ghz processor, 8GB of onboard memory along with expandable memory up to 32GB, meaning the phone will die before I can fill it with pictures, videos and music.

Now, the problem was, how to go about getting this phone without paying the $500+ retail price. I read online some people who had talked Verizon into allowing them to upgrade now, at upgrade price due to the problems they were experiencing with their phones. So I made the call Saturday. I prepared myself with a list of 10 distinct problems with the phone. The first line of defense guy listened to what I had to say, and sent me to the second level to talk through what I was dealing with and talk about replacement options. The next level woman was very helpful. She offered a few things I could do to fix the problems with the phone. I explained to her that I had already tried everything that is out there, made all the little tweaks possible, and still my phone was not performing as advertised.

She sent me to her boss to talk about options. After waiting five minutes to talk to the guy, within 30 seconds of talking to him, I thought there was no way that I would be getting a new phone. The guy was definitely playing hardball. He had a comeback for everything I said. According to him, the issues were with HTC, not Verizon. It was at this point that I pulled out my big guns. I explained to him that although HTC is responsible for the Hardware, Verizon bought the phone, slapped their name on the front of it, and sold it to me. I pay Verizon, not HTC every month for a phone that is not doing what it was said to do. Every time I pull my phone to show it off, people see “Verizon” splashed across the front, not HTC. So when the phone doesn’t work, it’s Verizon that looks bad.

This seemed to work. He offered the phone to me at the 1 year upgrade price, which was still too high. He played hardball and told me he was already going out of his way and I should be happy. He got snappy with me and started talking about my budget and how an additional $70 is not a big deal. I stayed calm, and said it was not acceptable. Ten seconds of silence later, he changed my upgrade date and I got what I wanted. I was shocked. I outsold the salesman. Drew should be proud of me. I was calm, professional, and passionate. The guy sounded pissed with himself that he allowed me to talk him into it. And I don’t care.

So my new phone will be here in a few days. I have used the phone in the store, and it is FAST. It is everything I hoped my Eris would be, and wasn’t. This phone is Awesome.

I had to sell my Eris so I can cover the cost of the upgrade price, thus making the new phone FREE. I listed it on Craigslist last night, and already have 3 serious buyers who I had to explain would have to wait for a few days to get the phone if they wanted it.

Very long story short, I am getting a new phone, and I still love Android and Verizon.


So, I am continuing to love my phone. I actually have found fewer and fewer reasons to use my computer. I bought a Netbook in the fall, and have since re gifted it to Danni as she is starting school in a few weeks and will get a lot more use out of it than I was.

The phone is basically everything I hoped it would be (I do wish the battery lasted a bit longer, but I don’t mind plugging it in on my way to and from work, I even got a dashboard thing for it, which is awesome when using it for turn by turn instructions or listening to music while driving)

The one downside to the phone is that it is running Android 1.5 and not 2.0 or 2.1 that the better known Motorola Droid is running.

I have been told by the numerous Android websites that I follow, that the Droid Eris, which I own, will be getting an update to 2.0 or 2.1 on or around January 22nd.

So, this morning I wake up an Over the Air (or OTA) update waiting for me on my phone. I knew ahead of time that it was not the much anticipated 2.0, but just a bug-fixing update.

Verizon and HTC are able to push these updates out over their networks, which leads my mind, which lives in a constant state of panic about the inevitable Robot Rebellion to ask, what is stopping them from sending out an OTA signal telling my phone to kill me? Maybe they can get Sarah Marshall to star in that film…

But seriously, don’t trust technology…

iPhone Syndrome?

If you know me at all, you know how I feel about the iPhone, and more importantly how I feel about iPhone users. It is a wonderful device that has completely revolutionized what we use our phones for and how we live our lives.

I don’t think we have even begun to scratch the surface of what a “phone” will be able to do for us in the future.

Actually, as someone who lives in a pretty constant state of panic about the inevitable robot revolution, this thought is causing a fairly severe anxiety attack as I type this…but I digress.

I write this because I stumbled upon this… which references this and I found it interesting, and probably true to a degree.

Seeing as I live with someone who suffers greatly from iPhone Syndrome, I have first hand experience dealing with this.

The fact is, iPhone users tend to be snobby and irrational when presented with reasons why their phone does not represent the absolute pinnacle of what a phone can and will be.

I often wonder, what they hell is someone supposed to do with 100,000 apps? How much time would someone have to spend on their phone in a day to be able to appreciate all the apps they have available. They may “Have an app for that”, but when are iPhone-ers supposed to use them?

The most common refrain among iPhone users is that it is not their phone, but the network that is the problem. It turns out that may not be the case.

I hate iPhone users (except the one that I live with)but I love what the iPhone has done to the market place for phones.

I quit on my Blackberry Curve last week, which was a slightly traumatic experience, and purchased an HTC Droid Eris. I preferred this phone over the much hyped Motorola Droid for a number of reasons.

I could not be happier with this phone. It is basically a slimmer, sleaker iPhone available on the superior Verizon network.

The only thing my phone doesn’t do that iPhone does is support iTunes, and with Pandora, and access to my music library at the touch of my finger, I think I will get over it.

If there is one good thing I can say about the iPhone, it is that they have set the bar high, and the competition is rising to the challenge.