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Tag: iphone

Google Nexus One is an iphone killer!

by on Mar.24, 2010, under Nexus One

Having used an iphone for over 2 years, I can tell you this – the nexus one blows it out of the water! While yes,¬† the nexus one takes a little getting use to; I initially missed my iphone – only for the single reason that it was so familiar. And the keyboard is a little different, where sometimes I’m hitting the wrong keys, or the voice button accidentally… but I had the same problems when I tried a blackberry. It’s all in what you’re use to typing on previously.

I won’t talk about how the hardware specs are better on the nexus than the iphone, since everyone should know that already.

I also had a jailbroken iphone to make it somewhat useful… the unmodified iphone really isn’t all that much to write home about. So take the “openness” of a jailbroken iphone, and then enhance that to get the nexus one :)

Sales Figures

Don’t get hung up on sales figures or number of apps in the store. The sales figures are based on ZERO marketing. The nexus one wasn’t hyped, wasn’t advertised, just word of mouth among geeks. Just look at the motorola droid, it was marketed and advertised… outsold the iphone in the first 74 days of sales. Just a classic case of apples to oranges. The sales numbers of the nexus one should carry no weight in any comparison in my opinion.

Apps

As far as apps go, while the numbers aren’t in the millions, who cares?! The features and functionality of the apps are by far the most appealing. And out of the current ~30,000 android apps you’ll be sure to find almost everything you need. Did you install a million apps on your iphone? No. No you didn’t.

Some apps that worked on the iphone work substantially better on the nexus one! Take for instance the barcode scanner app (shop savvy, barcode scanner).

I was able to easily scan QR codes, barcodes etc, from a computer monitor even from 4 feet away in a matter of 1-2 seconds. While the iphone struggled in the 1 foot and closer range. I was able to unlock the nexus, open the barcode scanner app; scan the barcode off of the iphones screen! Much faster then the iphone could scan the original code to begin with.

Some have wondered if a regular (laser) barcode scanner can read directly off the screen, and in my experience this is a big fat NO.

I’ve tried it a few times with my iphone during concerts (You know, when you get a ticket with a barcode and they want you to print it off).. Well I printed it just in case, but tried to get the person to scan the barcode off of my screen. (He actually tried a few times) But it’s just too reflective – and not quite how it works.

You’re able to scan barcodes off the screen of another phone because it’s using an imaging device (camera) instead of lasers.

I had about 10 “official” iphone apps, 3 of which were paid versions which I found absolutely necessary in my daily/semi-daily life. The rest I installed, and deleted within 10 minutes of trying them out. Just because there is a ton of apps on the apple store doesn’t make them worth the bandwidth to download.

Also I had jailbroken my iphone to improve its functionality with SMS, settings, and various other user enhancements that are default with the nexus one, or have apps you can easily install without any worries.

Syncing & Integration

The integration/syncing ability of the nexus is fantastic.. wow is all I can say. It syncs with your google account, calendar, contacts, etc… even backs up your phone settings to google! No need to run any crappy (*cough* itunes) 3rd party software on your computer! horray!

And the micro usb connection is wonderful! No need to buy proprietary adapters (Heck, if you’re coming from a blackberry, your car charger should work just fine). It makes it cheap and easy to have a cable at home and the office.

Also transferring music, pictures, files… you just plug it in and it shows up as an external hard drive! Drag and drop your music files, done!

Battery Life

Well since I’ve only had the phone a couple of days, the battery life currently isn’t conducive to my regular day to day activities. (ie. I’m using this thing non stop, and haven’t tweaked it to my liking). So that being said – I’m easily getting 24hours of juice. (On day 3, I’ve only used 55% battery in about 20 hours – I was playing music and using the occasional app to show off the device).

Where as my iphone was very similar when I first got it – but as of late, the iphone got about 8-10 hours or less (and all it did was check 2 email accounts once per hour). I had to have it plugged in if I wanted to listen to music or do anything.

Sadly the iphone has to be sent back for a costly battery upgrade, no thanks! Where as the Nexus one can have its battery replaced in a matter of seconds. Leaving the option there to have a backup battery for when the main runs low. (That in itself is a decision point for many).

Widgets

Another cool thing about the android os, are the widgets! You can place RSS feeds, weather, facebook, calendar, to-do lists, etc… right on your home screen for quick and easy access! And I should mention the home screen(s) are customizable in a similar manner to a pc desktop. Once you place an icon (or folder) on one of the five available home screens, they stay in the location you put them. So customize your most used apps or links to whichever home screen you want.

All of your installed apps are easily accessible from the “rolodex” (I think I’m the first person to use this term to describe it). All the apps are listed in a grid style, alphabetically sorted. Scrolling is smooth and easy.

A side note about scrolling:

While the iphone has the cool “bounce” feature when you reach the top or bottom, the features the nexus/android has in terms of scrolling far outweigh it!

For example: scrolling a long email on the iphone gives me a checkerboard background until I stop and let it load. On the nexus, its showing me the text as I scroll – even at a very fast speed. (So I can see where I need to stop to read what I want). The nexus also shows the scroll bar position at all times! The iphone only shows it while you’re scrolling.

In the android market (ie app store), there’s no “show me next 25″ to a maximum of 50… its you scroll down, more are automatically loaded… indefinitely. And the loading of more apps is so fast and smooth, It was hard for me to notice they were even being loaded.

Conclusion

While there are many many more cool things about the nexus compared to the iphone, I’m going to leave it at that. I did love my iphone for quite some time, I truly did. But there are many big and little things about the nexus one that just destroy the iphone! The LED trackball notifications, expandable memory up to 32 gig! (which can also be encrypted), removable battery, applications able to run in the background, awesome google and gps integration, google voice (which will drop my cell phone bill by $25/month), easy drop in docking that also changes your phone to a visible clock, voice recognition (which works VERY well)… The list goes on…

The only negative I can think of in terms of the nexus relate to an app that isn’t available yet. (Beejive IM). Otherwise it has everything I could ever need and more!

If you’re thinking about buying the device – go for it! I ended up paying around $650 after taxes, freight, etc… I just have to make sure I don’t talk and pee at the same time – accidentally dropping it in the toilet.

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Apple Iphone Shuffle not random

by on Jul.20, 2009, under Uncategorized

As the topic says it all… the shuffle or random mode in the iphone (or maybe even the ipods in general) are not random! You’ve noticed the same songs play in the same “random” order.. annoying I know.

I remember creating a random number generator back in school (in the C programming language), but to my surprise the rand function wasn’t actually random! Maybe the first time around it seemed random… but it was the same random every time you ran the program. You had to custom code the random to be truly random.

So I’m guessing there are just some lazy programmers working at apple that can’t write a proper shuffle program.

Though recently I’ve heard people say that it shuffles the entire play list when you start up (power on) or whatever… which may be the case… but that is also a very poor way to do it!

No one turns their phone off very often or at all if its not necessary. I leave my phone on until it starts to bug out and lock up.

I want my shuffle to be random for each song! wow that would be great! A shuffle program the way it’s expected to be? Whaatt? no way!

Most of my older mp3 players (and hell, even my portable CD player and car) have this button called “random”. When I press it, a random song plays. When I click “previous”, a random song plays, when i click “next” a totally new random song plays! It’s a surprise every time! I love it!

But unfortunately with the apple iphone I press back and it plays what I just listened to (ok not horrible)… but when i press next, i feel like i know what song is going to play next… and I do… and its sad.

I only have a modest library of around 1,000 songs on my iphone. But unfortunately every day I listen to the same hundred or so damn songs over and over and over. It’s annoying that I can’t get any variety in my ipod!

I’ve resorted to closing my eyes and picking songs from the song list with a few flicks up or down beforehand. It’s a better random than the iphone provides that’s for sure.

Update – Nexus One:

I’ve recently switched to Googles Nexus One phone and found the shuffle on this device works absolutely fantastic! I have the same songs, yet the listening experience is easily 2-3 times as good!

When listening to music, you can easily turn shuffle on or off from the currently playing song. (No need to go back a menu or two in, scroll up to the top of the list and select “shuffle”). Nexus One’s shuffle is right on the screen that’s displaying the current song; along with the option to repeat current song, or continuously loop your playlist.

Pressing the back button on the track, brings you to the last listened track (and pressing it again brings you to the track you listened before that one). Now at anytime you press “next”, even if you pressed the back button, it provides you with a RANDOM song! Imagine that! The people at google sure got this right.

It’s funny, while I have the same few hundred songs, I’m listening to ones I haven’t heard once on my iphone… wow :)

The nexus one media player also has the ability to drag a slider back and forth and skip to whichever section of the song¬† you wish! Very cool. The only thing it doesn’t do out of the box is display the currently playing song on the lock screen. (Not a huge deal, and I’m sure there’s a widget for that).

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