Having vented about my frustration with the iPhone, it’s time to look at the other two contenders: Android, and Palm Pre.
Ahh, the gentle, warm embrace of the Googleverse. Who could resist? Well, me for a start. While I like some of Google’s apps, I tend to sneer at them a bit too. Outside of search, a lot of their technology is… well… actually pretty lame.
Android, though, seems to be gathering some momentum. Every phone maker other than Apple seems to either have or be planning an Android phone. While the first lot of Android phones were more than a little clunky, the next wave looks a lot more appealing. And the hardware is finally up to the speed of the iPhone and Pre. Certainly, hardware development on Android is outpacing the iPhone.
And – wonder of wonders – Android multitasks. Yes, this means you can end up running too many apps at the same time and consigning your battery to an early grave, but as I previously said, that should be my choice to do if I please.
What’s bad about Android? Mostly that the number of applications is, at the moment, small. But as John Gruber pointed out, what matters is not the number of apps, but the quality. Sadly, there are few stars in the Android app world, at least not yet.
However, does this matter so much to me? After all, I have a perfectly good iPod touch which can run most of those lovely iPhone apps. And having a separate media/games/stuff player makes sense for me: I want my phone to have enough battery left to do real work, like email, calls, and, erm, Twitter. Running out of battery and missing a call because I played Championship Manager till my eyes bled would be a bad thing.
Sure, it’s less convenient to carry two devices – but it’s really not that big a deal for me.
Until I have one of the newer Android phones in my hand, though, iPhone will be a safer bet. I know iPhone, it’s good points and bad. Android is less-known territory – and that, on its own, makes me err towards iPhone.
The screen is lovely. The pebble shape is lovely. The charger thingy that works without wires is lovely, like a little bit of magic.
There’s only one problem: the keyboard blows. Badly. I’ve tried it and I know damn well that I would just not bother typing anything longer than 140 characters on it.
That, on it’s own, is probably enough to rule out the Pre. Sorry, Palm.
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