I’ve been excited about Google’s Android mobile platform since it was announced last year? but was really surprised when T-Mobile (the carrier I use) said they were bringing out the first phone to use the OS. The G1 is a phone by HTC, and was supposed to be introduced in black, brown, and white. I had my heart set on the white version, but they were delayed because of a paint chipping issue. I thought the black was too plain, and the brown, now known as bronze, wouldn’t be to my liking, but I’d see them in-person before making a decision.
Well, on Oct 22nd, the day the phone was in stores, I went to check them out and decided that the black one was the one that I liked better. The bronze phone was a little cheap looking. The metallic paint on the outside and the keyboard didn’t look so great to me. Plus, the letters on the keyboard were difficult to read when the backlight was on. The black one, on the other hand, was really cool looking. It’s kind of geeky in that it seems like an old walkie-talkie. It’s kind of heavy and substantial, and feels good up at my ear. The back of the phone is a little rubbery, kind of like a camera grip. They qwerty keyboard is comfortable to use and I can type pretty quickly on it. I don’t think I can go back to typing on a little numeric keypad.
Some other things I really like are the instant messaging, the wallpapers, the desktop shortcut customization, integration with google contacts, gmail, and calendar, and the access to my IMAP email accounts. The things that the G1 and Android is lacking right now are:
- Music player shows ringtones in the list
- Playlists are not coming over from Windows Media Player
- IMAP email doesn’t always sync correctly (if I delete a message on the phone, it doesn’t actually delete from the server)
- Email need a “Show only unread” option
- Apps for Google Reader and Google Docs
- No 3.5mm headphone jack. You have to use the mini-USB port.
Most of these issues I think will be fixed by Google (except the headphone jack, of course) via their “over the air” updates. The app store is starting to get some interesting applications as well. I am really looking forward to a robust ebook reader, because I used to love reading ebooks on my pocket pc, and the G1 will be even better.
All-in-all, I am really loving the G1. I am so glad that T-mobile users can finally have a cool phone! By the way, my IM of choice now is Google Talk, since it doesn’t incur any text messaging charges when I use it. So, if you are using Gtalk, add me to your list! barronfujimoto*at*gmail*dot*com.