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Review of HTC Desire As Alternative To iPhone 544

Posted by timothy
from the not-exactly-a-ringing-endorsement dept.
Andrew Smith writes "My search for an alternative to the iPhone has been long and frustrating. On paper, the HTC Desire is the first serious challenger to the iPhone's reign as king of phones. But how does it compare in use? There is much good and much bad. (This review is primarily for UK readers as HTC's new handset, the Incredible, will not be available [in the UK].)"
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Review of HTC Desire As Alternative To iPhone

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  • by markov_chain (202465) on Monday April 26, 2010 @02:13AM (#31981080) Homepage

    Yeah, the article didn't dispute that either. The reason people want alternatives (inferior as they may be) is Apple's tyrannical control over the platform.

  • From TFA... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by tonywestonuk (261622) on Monday April 26, 2010 @02:20AM (#31981106)

    "The problem, you see, is that the iPhone is close to perfect. It feels solid, it looks pretty, and its screen responds to the slightest gesture."

    Followed by..

    "But it is hobbled by Apple’s super-tight approval process that...."

    Don't you think, that the reason iPhones are close to perfect, is because of the super-tight approval process.... Not only in the App Store, but also in the build and design of it. Where other manufactures make something just good enough to sell, Apple go one step further.... The touch screen has to work perfectly, it has to feel solid, and the Apps that are available for it, better not let the whole experience down....

  • by Mascot (120795) on Monday April 26, 2010 @02:24AM (#31981118)

    That's a rather subjective observation. My Android phone broke the other day, leaving me with my work phone (iPhone) as only phone for a week.

    I wouldn't swap my Android for an iPhone if you paid me big bucks to do it. And that was true as of my first (1.5) Android phone. Slow as it was, I still instantly preferred it over the iPhone.

    Luckily, both exist and people can pick the one they prefer.

  • Re:iPhone Killer (Score:1, Insightful)

    by dingen (958134) on Monday April 26, 2010 @02:31AM (#31981156)
    Because the iPhone set the standard for modern smartphones.
  • by qwerty8ytrewq (1726472) on Monday April 26, 2010 @02:38AM (#31981188) Journal
    is in my opinion the Nokia 100, 1987, a 1G Candybar, what a phone, low power, good screen, nice feel, reliable, tough, easy... Maybe you are referring to the modern portable mobile computers that help us bring spamto ourselves in new and exciting ways?
  • Re:From TFA... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:04AM (#31981298) Journal

    Don't you think, that the reason iPhones are close to perfect, is because of the super-tight approval process...

    Nope, not really.

    Not only in the App Store,

    They don't allow third-party app stores, so it's not just the app store, but the entire device that they're asserting that control over.

    You give up nothing by using an open phone -- you can still stick with Google's App Store if you really want, or you can use a third-party app store, or install apps yourself, or...

    also in the build and design of it.

    That would be where it really shines, and where Steve Jobs' style may work really well. Unfortunately, it also has the effect that if there's any element of that design you don't like, you're SOL.

    Some people want physical keyboards -- with Android, you can find phones with them and phones without them. With iPhone, Jobs says no keyboards, you don't get a keyboard.

    The touch screen has to work perfectly,

    And how hard is that to get right?

    and the Apps that are available for it, better not let the whole experience down....

    Because clearly, that's what's holding OS X back on the desktop. Riight.

    I mean, people always bitch about some random OS X app not having a native-like interface, but you know what? If my choice is between The Gimp and nothing, I'll take The Gimp, ugly X interface and all, every time. It's not like one app is going to ruin my entire experience, and if it did, I'd know exactly where to place the blame.

    Of course, you and I both know this is bullshit. Apple didn't censor "sexy" apps to make sure the experience was seamless. They didn't block tethering apps to make everything that much more perfect. They didn't block Google Voice because they just knew it was exactly what the customer wanted. No, they do all that and more for purely business reasons, when it isn't just someone fucking up or making an arbitrary spur-of-the-moment decision.

  • by Xest (935314) on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:35AM (#31981430)

    The problem is, no one's actually demonstrated why the iPhone is better either.

    Does it have better screen resolution? no. Does it have a better camera? no. Does it have better processor/ram/storagE? no. Is it more open so that you can do more with it? no. Is it smaller, lighter, sturdier? no. Does it have better battery life? no. Is it more practical in allowing you to carry multiple batteries? no.

    But of course, you look at the other things- does it look nicer physically, does the software feel nicer, and some people will say yes, others will say no.

    So here's the fundamental problem in this discussion- the only areas where the iPhone can be said to be better than most other high end handsets that compete with it are entirely subjective. That doesn't mean you're wrong, but it doesn't mean the GP is wrong either- both of you like the other phone, you don't have to justify it and neither does he. It's simple fact that the iPhone doesn't win on things like those points listed above, and how exactly can he justify the other things? if Android works better for him, then it just does- just as most iPhone fans will tell you that the iPhone just works for them, but that doesn't mean it works for everyone. I for example can't stand any of these new touch screen phones for texting on any platform, be it an Android handset without physical keypad, or the iPhone, when the majority of use I get out of my phone is texting, they're both a massive step backwards. In fact, even full keyboards on phones are a hindrance to me because they're too small to type properly- I can text far faster with Nokia's predictive text on a standard numeric pad than any other phone, because that's just what I've been used to for over a decade.

    We all use our phones in different ways, and we all get a different experience as a result. Some of us think differently, not everyone appreciates the UI features that others love. When the iPhone can only stand up to the other handsets based on subjective things there's really little that can be said in terms of proving your point, because you really can't prove something that's so subjective. The GP merely seemed to be making a counter point to this effect in response to the initial post because after all, just because one person says the iPhone is better, it doesn't mean it is for everyone.

  • by bragr (1612015) on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:35AM (#31981432)
    Well hello there, welcome to Slashdot: The home of the small group that is the technical elite.
  • by bemymonkey (1244086) on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:42AM (#31981460)

    It's true - my sticking to Android is more out of principle than because the actual experience is better...

    In my experience (limited to the Milestone...), Android is:

    -Less stable
    -Glitchier
    -Slower
    -UI lags

    These things don't really bother me, and not having to own anything made by Apple (as well as having a resolution far higher than the iPhone's measly 480x320) is a pretty good reason to stick to Android... however, I can definitely see why prettty much everyone else prefers the iPhone.

  • by icebraining (1313345) on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:42AM (#31981462) Homepage

    Well, *someone* (read: many people) buys the Android over the iPhone, and as it was said, it's not because of "total experience".

    Maybe it's because of Latitude, or Voice or any other of the apps the Apple denied? Being against Apple's control is not a philosophical position, it's has real consequences for its users.

  • by Facegarden (967477) on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:48AM (#31981482)

    I use a Google Nexus, almost equivalent to the Desire, and I can recognize the battery drain. However, after a few weeks, the phone easily holds a day - probably because "moderate; use" is really "let's see what this device can do; use".

    Also, some apps are written badly and consume a lot of power when in the background. If you are experimenting a lot with your phone, chances are big that you have installed one of these. There are two solutions:

    1) Uninstall the bad apps.

    2) Use a tool, like task killer, which can kill the bad apps when the screen turns off.

    Additionally, if you are always online, and have enabled wifi, it will consume power. Quick solution: put a wifi on/off widget on your front screen, and keep wifi off under normal use.

    Also a +1 for android, when your battery gets low, there is a little "Why?" button, and you can see battery usage by process, to see if its some poorly written bad app using it, a good app just doing more than you realized, or you're an idiot and left the bluetooth and wifi on all day (which are simple to turn off with the homescreen widget!).

    I use my nexus one like crazy and by midnight i still have half my battery left most of the time.
    -Taylor

  • by 404 Clue Not Found (763556) * on Monday April 26, 2010 @03:56AM (#31981522)

    I wish I read your post before I signed up for a new contract with a Droid (or, more like, I wish the N1 were available on Verizon).

    The Droid already feels like a second-class citizen, what with the N1 getting all the updates (new versions of Android, Google apps like Google Earth, etc.) much faster. I feel bad for the early adopters stuck with pre-2.0 versions of Android... and that gap will only widen as time passes, with only Google's own phone getting the best treatment and everyone else begging for leftovers. This isn't idle speculation; it's already happened and is still happening. It's the difference between a Mac experience and a hackintosh experience.

    It's really too bad (IMO) that Google went with a decentralized approach to device and OS design and allowed manufacturers so much leeway in creating their own modified versions of Android and allowing them to update on their own schedules. Google, as a service-oriented company, has an incentive to continually provide newer and better software so their users will continue to use their services. Cell phone manufacturers, however, just bleed resources updating their software once the initial purchase is paid for... causing exactly the situation you describe.

    No two Android phones are alike -- and I don't mean that as a compliment. Some apps work on device X but not Y, screen sizes are different, the user interfaces are different (specifically home screens/launchers, notification systems, and messaging systems), and manufacturer post-purchase support is shoddy. Does a cell phone really need 50 different setups instead of one well-polished one that works well?

    What exactly is the point, anyway, of 50 different hardware designs that are mostly, but not quite exactly, the same? Didn't Verizon already try that with their standardized phone UI? Besides, how many different ways, in hardware, can you usefully differentiate one touchscreen Android phone from another? Processor, screen resolution, button placement... maybe, but the iPhone changed all that without compromising the user experience. Third-party Android manufacturers have not shown themselves capable of such. Keyboard? Maybe that'd be a valid point if the hardware keyboard on recent devices were actually any good. The Droid's isn't. Bluetooth support and roll-up keyboards would probably have worked better.

    So now we end up with an ecosystem that promised freedom but actually delivered half-assed apps, half-assed devices, half-assed manufacturer support, and half-assed accessories. Great.

    I mistakenly thought Android would mean "Google Phone" the way iPhone meant "Apple phone" -- i.e., a product designed from the ground up and managed exclusively by one company, with perfect feature support and flawless integration. Maybe the Nexus One is that, but the other Android phones certainly aren't. It's a great concept OS held back by third-party manufacturers, less-than-stellar apps seeing no real quality control and compatibility problems, not to mention incompatible hardware accessories. For other manufacturers, an Android phone is a Google phone the same way a Dell computer is a Microsoft computer -- sure, the underlying OS is the same, but the end-user experience is determined mostly by what the manufacturer does or fails to do. Android deserves so much more. It deserves Google-level innovation and competency across the board, not nearly-but-not-quite-there solutions from Old Guard manufacturers desperately trying to hold on to relevancy in a post-iPhone world.

  • by QuantumG (50515) * <qg@biodome.org> on Monday April 26, 2010 @04:15AM (#31981602) Homepage Journal

    Sometimes you don't need to demand someone justify every minute detail in the hopes of advocating someone to switch to your favourite thing.

    You do if you're in a cult. Just sayin'.

  • by 404 Clue Not Found (763556) * on Monday April 26, 2010 @04:24AM (#31981634)

    I'm one such user. I love Google Voice and Maps with Navigation. And I dislike AT&T.

    If Apple allowed more apps and were on more carriers... Android wouldn't stand a chance. Heck, it probably wouldn't have even needed to be developed.

  • Re:It's great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jo_ham (604554) <joham999 @ g m a i l.com> on Monday April 26, 2010 @04:33AM (#31981668)

    I think his battery life will go up as he uses it more. It's a feature of these small lithium batteries that they need to bed in. It's very noticeable on the iPhone, where I was charging the phone once a day from red to doing it every couple of days without changing my usage at all. The same was true for my sister's iPhone. I'm sure the Desire is very similar once the charging system has calibrated the battery after a few cycles.

    It also seems, regarding sound quality, that the Desire can have carrier-custom firmwares that affect the sound, and restoring the default HTC one improve the quality considerably. Score one for being able to modify the firmware yourself.

  • by Tukz (664339) on Monday April 26, 2010 @05:02AM (#31981786) Journal

    His point was this is a technical site.
    He only paraphrased parent on the "elite" part.

    Regardless of how it's worded, we on /., cares about wether a system is vendor locked or not.
    Most of the regulars anyway.

  • by YourExperiment (1081089) on Monday April 26, 2010 @05:13AM (#31981858)

    As a Desire owner who's also played with the iPhone a fair bit, I think I'm pretty well-placed to judge this. It's fairly simple: the Desire is the better phone in almost every respect.

    Additionally, I think the author of the article may have a faulty handset. Many of the problems he mentions having with the Desire are not an issue at all on my device. The supposedly oversaturated screen looks beautiful (put it side-by-side with an iPhone and see the difference), I've never had the touch screen remain active during a call, and the "tinny speaker" sounds great to me, giving far greater call quality than I've experienced on a iPhone. He's right that the screen can be difficult to see in bright sunlight, but I solved this problem by living the U.K.

    iPhone pros

    • more extensive app store

    50/50

    • interface - some people consider the iPhone to be slicker and/or easier to use due to its simplicity, while the Desire is far more customisable
    • touch screen - both devices have beautifully responsive and accurate touch screens - many other smartphones are rendered near-useless by screens that feel horribly sluggish or fail to register touches correctly

    Desire pros

    • better screen (OLED and higher res)
    • better camera (not just megapixels but quality)
    • faster processor
    • multitasking
    • open app ecosystem (also handy for hackers - put together your own apps with the free API)
    • web browser - remarkably, despite the slickness of the iPhone browser, the browser on the Desire is even better - and certainly faster to render pages
    • no need to use iTunes
    • half the price!

    Some of the above will be added in the new iPhone OS, indeed I'm sure the hardware will catch up with (possibly overtake) most of the above too. So if you're a real Apple junkie it might be worth your while waiting for the summer. But if you're after the best smartphone available right now, I don't think there's really any competition.

  • Re:From TFA... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pydev (1683904) on Monday April 26, 2010 @05:23AM (#31981930)

    Don't you think, that the reason iPhones are close to perfect, is because of the super-tight approval process....

    No. There are plenty of apps that violate Apple UI conventions, that crash, that leak memory, and that are generally awful. Apple's approval process is there for business and strategic reasons, not as quality control.

    iPhones appear "close to perfect" because Apple avoided most of the hard problems in making a modern phone: multitasking, application integration, file management, USB devices, full Bluetooth support, DUN, full over the air synchronization, security and access control for applications, intents and other APIs, etc. They also appear "close to perfect" because it's premium hardware and you pay a premium price for it.

    It's a tradeoff that works in the market: Apple is grabbing market share now. In a couple of years, iPhone-like responsiveness will be on sub-$200 Android devices, but then we'll still be stuck with Apple having grabbed a large part of the market and charging a premium.

  • by itsdapead (734413) on Monday April 26, 2010 @05:28AM (#31981964)

    Here's another opinion. As someone who _had_ an iPhone and went back to a $50 Nokia I'll tell you the iPhone is junk.

    I think you meant to say:

    As someone who _had_ a smartphone and went back to a $50 Nokia I'll tell you that I don't actually want or need a smartphone.

    ...because if you strip out the usual Apple-hater memes many of your criticisms apply to many smartphones (Battery life, lots of dross in the App store, features knobbled to appease carriers, bugs & crashing, halfbaked Bluetooth). NB: I use a HTC Hero, not an iPhone and, yeah, it shares many of your issues (plus some all of its own, like a halfbaked WiFi implementation with no proxy support and unreliable and slow reconnection) and a basic $50 cellphone would be more practical if you just wanted calls and SMS/MMS.

    Apple's answer... use email or MMS. What if I'm sitting right next to the person and want to save some data charges? Nope. Use email or MMS.

    One helpful hint: a smartphone without an unmetered data plan is as much use as an ashtray on a motorbike. If you don't want to pay for unmetered data don't bother with a smartphone (of any flavour).

    Oh and thank you for not forwarding silly videos and pictures to all and sundry over the already overloaded cellphone networks. Social networking sites are there for a reason.

  • Hah! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:16AM (#31982182)

    On paper, the HTC Desire is the first serious challenger to the iPhone's reign as king of phones.

    If I had a nickel every time I heard that I would be able to retire. Who cares about beating the iPhone? It may be a big seller, but it still sells far fewer units than the rest of the smartphone market. The ONLY thing that the iPhone has done was to be the first phone to offer a fully integrated, easy to use smartphone experience that the average consumer could appreciate. It's been done dozens of times since then, and much better in many cases, but because Apple was the first one to truly simplify and bring smartphones to the masses they still get all the press. It's much like MP3 players, the iPod was by far the best but people just bought them. Or at least that's what they led us to believe.

    Personally, I'm surprised that people overpay for such a restrictive bauble of a phone.

  • by bcmm (768152) on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:23AM (#31982216)

    Oh and thank you for not forwarding silly videos and pictures to all and sundry over the already overloaded cellphone networks. Social networking sites are there for a reason.

    Yeah! The networks are quite right: their inability to provide the services customers pay them for is the fault of the customers, for actually using said services instead of just paying for them.

  • Re:From TFA... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by delinear (991444) on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:25AM (#31982226)
    That, or they would decide it's too risky developing for a minority platform with an approval system which might mean they pour millions into development and arbitrarily get their application rejected.
  • by KahabutDieDrake (1515139) on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:50AM (#31982362)
    Are you really putting forward the argument that everyone wants an iphone, but not everyone can get one, so enter android? Seriously? I've watched this iphone saga play out on /. and it's been agonizing. A group of otherwise intelligent and discerning users tossed all decorum out the window and salivated at the iphone. Frankly, I don't get it. I've had a smart phone since before anyone called them that. My old ass busted Treo 650 does everything modern "smart phones" do, and it did it 5+ years ago. Granted, you had to be pretty good at hacking up the phone to make it do half of it, and the other half only worked as a technology demo, rather than a productive tool. However, I'm not sure when, but somewhere along the line, it went from being a really productive tool, to a flashy bauble.

    At some point, we as consumers need to step back from the glossy black surfaces, and sleek lines, and realize that the tools we buy should be stylish, but they should be functional first. I won't be using an iphone, ever. Because I ONLY use platforms that are extensible by the user. Because I want function. What is it you are shopping for?
  • by arogier (1250960) * on Monday April 26, 2010 @06:54AM (#31982382) Homepage Journal
    Exactly why I'm running a cheap touchscreen Nokia powered by Symbian. It is a great communications tool and personal organizer, and the plan it runs on is inexpensive. It won't win any beauty contests nor will this particular phone offer stellar performance as a portable entertainment device.

    Differing needs fuel demand for different devices. Its why Blackberry will be around for the foreseeable future, why KIN will probably take a lot of the market feature phones held, and that simple candybar and flip phones still exist.
  • by vadim_t (324782) on Monday April 26, 2010 @07:09AM (#31982470) Homepage

    Precisely.

    The difference is that geeks care about such things in advance because they can imagine where all of that leads, while normal people concentrate much more on what it does right this minute. But that doesn't mean they don't end up running into trouble later.

    Then it seems that the real source of those issues isn't the one that gets the blame. Instead the blame goes on computers or tech in general, and some friendly geek/tech support is asked to deal with it.

  • by jedidiah (1196) on Monday April 26, 2010 @08:27AM (#31982950) Homepage

    > People accept that, so why is a phone any different?

    Music, Movies and Books have never been a "proprietary console" experience.

    Consoles have always been proprietary because CODE tends to require higher compatability barriers than DATA.

    Of course Apple is happily encouraging the confusion that Microsoft helped to start.

  • by jedidiah (1196) on Monday April 26, 2010 @08:34AM (#31983010) Homepage

    > Yeah, funny that. Not everyone requires their phone to be extensible in order to be "functional".

    No. Apple users are just used to "doing without" and then making excuses for themselves.

    It applies equally well to proper Macs. It's just a lot easer for a "geek" to modify a Mac so it's more flexible.

    The problem with the Apple fanboy idea of "usability" is that you also have to cripple the device in the process.
    You need to hide all of the scary details (even the filesystem) lest the frighten the end users you want to keep
    ignorant and dependent.

  • by tophermeyer (1573841) on Monday April 26, 2010 @08:51AM (#31983172)

    People accept that, so why is a phone any different?

    Phones are semi-critical part of peoples everyday lives. I'll agree that nobody would die without a cell phone, but voice and data communications have become almost necessary for many people to communicate with friends, family, and coworkers. I think people are more willing to accept restrictions on purely entertainment devices (especially since the usefulness of the device is contingent on its ability run new software in the future). We don't accept that on phones because we feel that we need to control how we use them and what we can use them for.

    Plus, the American public has had a long history with monopolistic telecommunications companies telling consumers what services they need. Remember, ma bell used to own the entire infrastructure; you leased a telephone that they serviced inside your home. Granted, Apple doesn't own the pipes. But I think I can understand why I wouldn't want the phone manufacturer dictating what services I can use on my phone.

  • by aussersterne (212916) on Monday April 26, 2010 @08:54AM (#31983196) Homepage

    is smoking crack. I am a multi-published developer and tech guy who's been in the industry since the days he was using a Sun 3/50 all-in-one 68k machine with SunOS loaded from DC600 tapes. I'm not tech-incompatible.

    I spent days and hours frothing at the mouth because "in theory" the Palm "should" be able to do X, Y, and Z or because the Palm was "so close" do doing what I needed... and yet with all the hours and evenings spent trying to "just make it do this one little thing" that would make my life easier, the Palms always fell short. I always fell back into "well, what are you going to do, those are the trade-offs of mobile devices" thinking.

    That has never happened to me with iPhone. I have spent damned near zero time configuring, syncing, hacking, installing, manipulating, and maintaining. It has just worked from day one and I have never found anything that I wanted it to do that it didn't do with a minimum of fuss and an almost stunning lack of impediment.

    And anyone who says that Palm or Windows Mobile is more extensible than iPhone is smoking crack. Maybe you can put a bigger MicroSD card in a Palm, but there's damn near no point in filling it up with anything but music. And beyond that, there's no real extensibility there. You have half a dozen "usable" shareware apps to choose from (most of them $50-150 to register) and a whole world of utter, utter app crap in the Palm and Windows Mobile spaces.

    iPhone on the other hand has excellent apps that universally cost less than $10, most less than $4, and that don't require registration, configuration, or tethered installation... not to mention that not one of them has yet caused me to go into spontaneous reboots, data loss, and other things requiring a factory reset and restore from backup, a regular occurrence with Palm that was a strong disincentive to actually install apps and try to make use of that "extensibility."

    Basically anyone still arguing that there is nothing new with supersmartphones like iPhone or Android and that all of this could have been done before, and that people are just responding to "hype" or "shine" or whatever... Well, such people have far too much time on their hands to dick around with gadgets, and far too few real needs for those gadgets to actually work, or they'd know that previous gadgets in fact didn't, by and large.

  • by mathimus1863 (1120437) on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:04AM (#31983278)
    I just recently got a Nexus One at about the same time my girlfriend got an iPhone. I don't know about the Desire, but I know that Google got fed up with other companies not implementing Android well, so they made their own phone as they envisioned it, and that's the Nexus One (it's the only phone they make, www.google.com/phone). It's very similar in design to the iPhone, but has a ton of stuff that I would prefer any day over the iPhone. Intimate integration with all google services, voice recognition, and an open app market make it much better in my opinion. Most other interactions are very similar to the iPhone, but to me it seems more polished.

    If you want to see true Android, get a Nexus One. At least most people on Slashdot will find the feature set much more desirable than the iPhone, and it's overall price is actually slightly cheaper than the iPhone.
  • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:05AM (#31983290)

    What swung it was Engadget riffing about integration with external services like Twitter/Facebook/etc - goes completely against Apple's principles, whereas Android actively works to do this.

    I've been reading up on the Desire for the past couple of days, and funnily enough this is what really swung me against the phone. I don't want lots of social network integration. I don't want lots of integration with Google's cloud services. I deliberately avoid putting lots of data in the cloud and relying on third party services normally, so why would I want my phone to do this?

    I want a phone that, first and foremost, makes calls well (good quality mic/speakers, simple controls for things like muting and conferencing people in). It also needs to handle messages well (good keyboard, good management of past messages, easy and ad-free integration with my e-mail systems) and manage contacts well (good address book, speed dialling).

    There are plenty of other PDA features I wound find useful on a mobile device, but I want them to be generic and open. I'd like a calendar/alarms, but it's not worth much if it only syncs with MS formats and Google Calendar. Apps to do things like time zone conversion would be useful in my case, and a web browser is a useful addition and completely generic, but I don't need the bloat of lots of preconfigured apps on day one that tie in with specific services I will never use. (I appreciate that others would find this useful, and the right phones for me and for them will be different.)

    Unfortunately, almost anything running Android seems (unsurprisingly, given Google's involvement) to be heavily biased towards lots of on-line working that I don't want. The iPhone is a non-starter because of Apple's closed system and their apparent willingness to append their own marketing to messages (hardly a professional image for a work phone!). So I'm back to looking at the established PDA brands again.

    That's too bad, because the screen on the Desire looks really impressive, at least for those who don't want to use it in bright sunlight. It seems like small format mobile devices are finally pushing the envelope for high resolution full colour display technology in a way that only things like high-end medical imaging have done in the past. When they make a 24" widescreen version of that AMOLED screen, sign me up. :-)

  • Re:From TFA... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:12AM (#31983360) Journal

    Suppose Apple did ban OSX applications that don't have a good interface. Certainly at least one developer would be willing to write graphics program for OSX that has a good UI because that would give them a market with less competition.

    That only works if you're only considering broad categories of application, like "graphics program" -- it means that some little one-man projects would likely be gone.

    And, as delinear points out, it would very likely drive people to less restrictive platforms. Think about it -- why would you bother developing for OS X, where you have to do that much extra work to develop a "good UI" which Apple may reject anyway, to get less marketshare than you'd have on Windows, which is going to be far easier to develop for?

    Then instead of having to choose between a crappy UI or nothing you would have a good UI.

    Well, then you'd have no choice beyond that good UI, whether or not the app itself is good.

    Maybe this will help: Right now, Photoshop would fail such a test. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your perspective), Apple has shown that they're willing to make exceptions when it suits them, and I suspect they'd allow Photoshop. But suppose they applied the rule consistently -- you'd now have no Photoshop and no Gimp, probably no Inkscape...

    Yes, someone would write a crappy little Paint clone with a beautiful OS X UI. Thanks to Apple, you would now have no choice -- you'd have a good UI and a sucky app, instead of a sucky UI and a good app.

  • by CODiNE (27417) on Monday April 26, 2010 @09:13AM (#31983368) Homepage

    the multitasking lets me run certain background applications that would never be accepted by Apple (they are our remote management tools.)

    I'm pretty sure you could set up an enterprise developer account and do an internal app distribution. Not saying you want to but it is possible.

  • by Ash Vince (602485) on Monday April 26, 2010 @10:09AM (#31983914) Journal

    The difference is that geeks care about such things in advance because they can imagine where all of that leads, while normal people concentrate much more on what it does right this minute. But that doesn't mean they don't end up running into trouble later.

    For my two cents i can never understand why normal people do not want to be able to carry a spare battery. This will always be the deal braker for me with an iPhone. Why do I have to send the whole unit back to apple for this? My Sony Walkman I had in the 1980's let me change the batteries when the old ones ran out, why can Apple not master it now?

    I have no objection to it being a proprietary battery that costs a fortune either. They can even sell me an additional charger that allows me to plug and charge batteries directly without the phone. I will probably even then leave my spare battery on the charger for weeks until I know I am going to need it, thereby giving a lifetime of a few months before memory effect kicks in and I have to buy a new spare battery. I swear they will get a small fortune out of me.

    Just please, please let me have the option so I can go away for a few days and not give a crap about there being a plug socket of the correct format for a hundred miles. I also like travelling light so am not keen on always carrying a charger and universal plug socket adapter.

    Especially when even with these things I have to leave my phone stationary and plugged in while it charges. If I am out and about I am terrible for forgetting to do this before I crash out, especially if alcohol is involved (or a women, but that hardly ever happens).

  • by Old97 (1341297) on Monday April 26, 2010 @11:01AM (#31984476)
    With Google you find out after the fact that she was filming your sexual activities and selling them on the web as porn. And she didn't pay you or offer you a cut of the proceeds.
  • by ChuckG (9015) on Monday April 26, 2010 @12:05PM (#31985336)

    So it feels like he owns it and can do what he wants with it but actually he can't do what he wants with it. At least he actually owns it!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 26, 2010 @12:05PM (#31985340)

    support for Facebook and Twitter is incomplete and unreliable, at times missing entire blocks of messages

    That sounds like normal FaceBook behaviour with all?? browsers/platforms.

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