I’m on Android

– Hello, i am Kaigara and i’m on Android.

– Hello Kaigara!

I’ve made the switch, i put to sleep my old and wonderful Nokia E51 and bought a Motorola Defy Plus. I know…i know.. he who is without sin, to throw the stone first.

After months of comparing, testing, reading blogs and websites, talking to people i finally decided to go with an Android smartphone over other smartphones like Symbian (yes, even if it’s dead), iOS, Windows Phone.

What were the key buying points:

  • i am a linux user and i wanted a similar open environment (so iOS and WP are down);
  • i wanted a rugged smartphone to take on cycling trips, with enough screen space but with good battery life (Motorola Defy Plus wins over Samsung Galaxy Xcover and Sony Ericsson Xperia Active);
  • a good price/quality ratio (i think).

What i don’t like in Google’s services and products is that they gather every data from your device/service, this being a really big no no for me, but i think, hey, if someone, anyone will really want  to track me and know every step i make, they will know. Anyways, if you plan to bomb something, you don’t post your progress on Twitter or gather Likes on Facebook.

I really don’t care how many apps are on the Store, i’m not an avid user of social networks and i don’t care how much integrated are those services or any other services with the phone system.

There are many online debates, pros and cons, fights about how that OS is better then he others, how a smartphone maker have the best product, about the killer app, the iPhone killer which i really think it’s all rubbish (the majority of stuff on the internet is rubbish but that is another story).

To put it simple, a smartphone is good, is friendly and useful, just like a mini computer that can handle small and frequent tasks that otherwise requires a computer or laptop.


Best android offline navigation software

When it comes to mobile navigation on an android device, you basically have two options:

  1. Use an online mapping and navigation software (like Google Maps) that requires an internet connection to load the maps and calculate navigation routes. The bad thing is that you must pay data traffic on your mobile and the worst thing is when you use those services abroad, on roaming costs and this can put you on the yellow path of going broke. The good thing is that you always have the latest version of the map.
  2. Use an offline mapping and navigation software (like OsmAnd and many others) that can store the maps on the device and even operate the navigation offline. The bad thing (which is not such a bad thing) is that you must take care to update the maps at their latest version. The good thing is that you will not pay a dime to look at the maps or use the navigation features of the app.

The software i tested and use for offline navigation is OsmAnd that has three versions:

  • OsmAndFree – can be downloaded from the Google Play that have some limitations, like the number of downloads you can make for maps, voice guidance etc.
  • OsmAndPlus – paid version from Google Play with full features
  • OsmAnd~ – i downloaded the app via F-droid app, a repository for FOSS (free and open source software) android apps. This is a free version with a donate link that have no limitations.

OsmAnd is using data from Openstreetmap (OSM), an open map system build buy the contributors and works great. I tested the navigation part in different parts around the city and i was pretty impressed.

As a contributor to OSM i can add Points Of Interest (POI) directly from OsmAnd and you can even track your route with the app and upload that in OSM.

The great thing about apps like OsmAnd is that you can load on the SD card of your device, the maps of the locations you will travel and use them with no data cost. Imagine the roaming cost for downloading map data abroad, with those money you can get a cab and go around the country and you will still have money left.

The story of Nokia MeeGo by TaskuMuro

MeeGo Handset Launcher from MeeGo 1.1 “Day 1”

MeeGo Handset Launcher from MeeGo 1.1 “Day 1” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A very interesting read about Nokia’s MeeGo

Here is the article and no further comments.

I just love Nokia but i’m not happy with Windows Phone on their devices….i know they are!

Mobile Wars !!!

English: Graph showing global smartphone marke...

English: Graph showing global smartphone market share for Q2 2011 When updating this graph, please check its usage and update the captions and refs in articles which link to it. Thanks. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Recently we’ve purchased a smartphone, the first smartphone in the house and it’s used by my wife primarily, the gadget in case being a Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc S.
Me being techie, i spend some weeks searching and comparing and testing and asking and reading and viewing tones of reviews to find a smartphone that will be:affordable, with a good camera phone to take pictures and to film the kid, with a large enough screen for browsing and games and last but not least, the biggest selling point for a woman……….to be beautiful !!!

During all the searches i saw this whole pros and cons online about smartphones and anything related and i really didn’t like what i saw! Are you guys (those fighting to death for some phone’s supremacy) for real?!

The main claims on the internet are:

  1. “You shouldn’t buy a Symbian, it will die soon, the OS is old and laggy and can’t keep up with the iOS and Android features, the Ovi Store have a small number of apps compared to others, veeeeery small number of apps maaaaaan”. Why should i care if there are 10 million apps in an application store?! Who needs those apps?! What do all the people do with a smartphone, talk on the phone (duh!), send messages, check/write email, browse the internet, keep in touch with Facebook and Twitter friends, use the organizer features, play games, take pictures, use GPS, ALL OF THIS BEING PREINSTALLED ON ANY SMARTPHONE. Maybe you will find replacement apps , better apps, it’s ok,maybe you’ll play games like crazy, do it but please tell me if there are so many apps in another market that you lack in another.
  2. “No dual-core?!?!?  The competition  have quad-core!!!”.  This is something http://www.gsmarena.com style. Even if they’ll preview a mobile phone with the only feature is to make phone calls because the manufacturers wanted the only thing this phone will do, they will say that. o.O. Anyways, in what life threatening situation you will come in life when going to homescreens in a quarter of a millisecond will save your ass?! Ok, ok, you want to play the latest 3D games, ok, but do you know how fun Wii, PS or Xbox are?!
  3. “3.5 inch screen is too small. Come on…how will you use the phone?!?! You need at least a 4 inch!”. iPhone is doing just great with all those 3.5 inch screens.
  4. “The phone battery wouldn’t last long”. The majority of smartphones on an average use, you have to recharge the phones after two days.
  5. “There is no front facing camera and you can’t make video calls”. I see that very often. Who cares?! You talk most of the time with people you meet often and for other situations you can use Skype and stuff. In the good old days, seeing and talking about how the other have changed was one of the best things.
  6. “I found it at PhoneIndia for only 9.500 RS”. Guys, it’s not hard but not handy to convert rupies in another currency. Anyways, we have online, updated daily all the prices of the phones in India.

I just don’t get it! Maybe it’s all about marketing, payed evangelists or pure fan boys/girls but don’t you think it’s too much?! You know…when you’re looking that much on the smartphone’s screen, you’re loosing many more interesting things.