Is Google moving away from the Android brand?

Yesterday, Dutch media guru @erwblo tweeted an interesting question. Erwin wondered whether Android users are aware that their phone runs Google’s mobile OS. People around me usually are, and in my experience, they usually consciously choose Android over other options.

But others chimed in and it seems that at least a portion of Android users are unaware that their Samsung or HTC phone is powered by the cute little green robot.
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Was Google’s Nexus One switched at birth?

If you’ve not been living under a rock these last few days (or weeks, even), you’ll know that Google has just announced (and released) its first ever mobile phone. Called the Nexus One, it represents Google’s vision of what an Android phone should be. And I’m pretty sure the sotfware is OK. It’s just that I find myself not liking the phone exterior design. I know I’ve dismissed Apple products as ‘style over substance’ in the past, but this thing looks like the HTC Touch from 2007. It might look a little better in real life, but the official stills look decidedly unexciting to me.

At the same time, HTC, who make the Nexus One, have a phone in their portfolio that looks a lot more like what I’d expect from a Google Phone. Its HD2 is a very sexy device that coincidentally has pretty much identical specs compared to the Nexus. It looks nothing like HTC’s other phones, yet runs boring old Windows Mobile. I’m telling you, these two devices were switched a birth. Somewhere deep inside HTC’s Taiwan development labs, a very sexy, top secret new Google Phone was designed, but delivered to the wrong software department. Meanwhile, the next boring Windows device was handed to the Android people.

Despite its bland looks, I’ll probably still get a Nexus One. I’ve been putting off getting an Android phone for way too long, and this is the new king of hill. But I’ll probably regret the terrible mixup for as long as I have it…

Gadget history: Mobile phones

Nokia 6150This might turn into a series of posts. I thought it’d be cool to list the gadgets in a certain category that I’ve actually owned and used, and do a sort of short hindsight reviews. I’m pretty sure there are people out there who’ve used a some of the same devices and share (or disagree with) my experiences. First up: mobile phones.

I’ve had seven up until now, if you count the first one which I actually shared with my girlfriend. Cell phones, and the contracts that came with them were terribly expensive back then. Both the first and last ones are from Nokia, but that’s just about the only thing they have in common.
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Android aestetically enhanced

Google’s cute little Android logo has been my desktop wallpaper for months now. I’m genuinely excited about Google’s efforts to create an open platform for mobile phones. Being an avid gmail/talk/maps/calendar/docs/etc user, my next mobile might very well be running Android. But up until now, the demos that were out there weren’t much to look at. With the release of version 0.9 of the software development kit, that has changed. Android now looks the part too.

Head over to Engadget to see more.

Gizmodo has a nice video tour that shows some of Android’s features.

Roy | August 19, 2008 | English,Gadgets | Comments (1)
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Nokia E51 – Substance over style?

Nokia E51 Sony-Ericsson W890i

It was time to renew my cell phone contract this month, and I the first phone that caught my attention was Sony-Ericsson’s new W890i. It’s really flat (10mm), has a 320*240 pixel screen, great network support and all the usual features. But what really made me want one was the design. Boy does it look good. Unfortunately it’s not yet been released, and while I was waiting for it to become available I met the Nokia E51.
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Sync your Google Calendar with your phone

I’ve always found syncing calendars to be troublesome at best. I used a Palm III years ago, and even the software that Palm supplied was hard to set up and buggy as hell. Most sync tools nowadays assume you’re using Outlook, but if you’re using Google Calendar you probably aren’t. The whole point with “GCal” is that it’s the web 2.0 alternative to Microsoft’s horrible PIM.

Now that I run my own company, I have to have my appointments handy at all times. I hate those bundled stacks of paper that some people use to jot down their schedule, so syncing my calendar of choice suddenly became a priority. unfortunately, Google does not offer something similar to their brilliant mobile gmail software to access your GCal. While googling for solutions I found two interesting options.
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Nokia 6230i bricked?

It seems my Nokia 6230i is stuck in some sort of weird reset cycle. It starts up until I get to the screen where I need to set the time, and then the screen turns black. Sometimes it comes back up, but mostly the phone either restarts again or turns itself off. I’ve been having a love-hate relationship with this phone ever since I got it, and it appears that besides the poor usability, the crappy camera and the dito screen its unable to withstand a year and a half of daily use…

Anyone know how of any tricks to get it working again?

Roy | October 9, 2007 | English,Gadgets | Comments (2)
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