Seperis (seperis) wrote,

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one day with myTouch G3 Slide; the layman review

I come at this from two perspectives, but the big one is as a fangirl and netizen; will this be useful as phone, internet connection, chat supplement, way to read fic online, and continue to support open source languages as well as de-monopolize Apple in any possible way and restrict its closed garden approach to programming.

For anyone in the market for an Android phone, the myTouch G3 Slide is a very good beginner phone, like the G1 I had before. It's intuitive to use, it's got all the bells and whistles of a smartphone, it's attractive, it's multitouch, and it has a full pull-out qwerty keyboard if you like to burst into fanfic writing at a moment's notice. It comes with all your basics and some of your intermediates pre-installed, it's google-enabled from the get-go; setup lets you put in your gmail and google username and password so you have instant access to mobile versions--and well made, customized mobile versions--of all google things.

(I know, I know, google hegemony, but a.) hey, still fighting Apple down and b.) I own stock in them now, so I am now like, personally invested in it and everything. Google is still releasing open-source and the Android market is unrestricted; I'll take that.)

1.) It has My Faves, which is a descendant of the old My Faves plan but now is for your twenty bestest buddies that when you open it has their pictures floating on a black background; when you pick one, you have all the options of communicating with them listed below in icons. It's just cool to look at, I'll be honest. It's basically a quick way to get to the important people you communicate with frequently by phone, text, gmail, etc.

2.) Preinstalled apps include Amazon, Amazon MP3, a barcode scanner, googlemaps, gmail, youtube, peep (a twitter app), quick office (writing stories in phones!), a pdf reader, myTouchc which plays the top forty music (I think?), myModes, for loading different profiles for home, work, airport, fangirl gatherings, each one that can be customized with different apps on the home screens.

There is also a browser, camera, camcorder, and a general mail app that easily configures your Yahoo to look like Gmail's app for easy reading.

There's also an app for weather that's animated and one for stocks as well as a Gtalk app, and IM that covers AIM, YIM, and MS Messenger, as well as AppPack, which lists some useful apps in a variety of categories.

3.) There are five screens for storing your most used programs; the main screen, then two more on each side. There are some neat widgets; I am partial to the iconic analog clock for my home screen. Pushing the home button on your phone always takes you to this screen; pushing it again brings up a visual of all five of your screens for easy viewing and comparison.

4.) The screen is large enough to watch pretty much anything. Youtube does nicely; there's a bit of a wait, but everything I've tried and then some reading seems to agree it's the buffering so you don't have skippage. I tested it with the video For Your Entertainment, as one does, and I have complaints. At all.

5.) Okay, fairness. If I'd known how easy the swype keyboard is to use, I'd totally have been okay without a full qwerty keyboard.

Swype, for those who are like me and apparently live in the dinosaur mobile phone age, consists of swiping your finger between keys on the onscreen keyboard instead of typing as we know it. For mine, as I swipe--I can't think of another word!--between letters, a blue line appears to show me the letters I touched, then when I lift my finger, the word is there.

(Or conversely, it asks you which of these four words you meant in a hover menu.)

Let me say--this is cool. I've been testing it on and off and it works; not only does it work, it's training me how to do it right. And with familiarity, this will work really well. I may withdraw my objections to onscreen keyboards on phones.


If you don't like the bulk of the pull-out keyboard, this is going to work for you. Practice, yes, but the learning curve is pretty fast. Send a few dozen text messages. Hey, send them to me and we'll practice together!


A.) I type. I have no clue where the actual letters are. My fingers know this; seriously, I can type without a problem in a keyboard where there are no letters visible, but if you tied my hands behind me and asked me to find the letters, good luck. That would take a while. So that part, yeah, I need to learn the layout of a keyboard again without intervention from all ten fingers.

B.) using the phone horizontally is the easiest way to make it work; vertical use squishes the keyboard, and while swypeing--I feel a little dead inside how utterly perfect that word is for this--does make it easier to type on it, the horizontal approach is what finally sold me on using it.

So that's my review for the phone. Now why I am reviewing my still-unnamed phone, not that it is not awesome. Because it is. I need a name, dammit.

I am anti-iProduct, not because I am against any of it particularly--my best friend has an iphone and a mac--but because I am strongly against Apple's monopoly when it's also a closed and restricted environment. The decision to deny Flash programming on any iProducts was kind of the final straw on that; I get most consumers don't care because they don't think it affects them, and in a way, it won't. If all our information falls into the closed environment trap with our devices held hostage to whatever a committee at Apple (or X Corp) decides is allowed to be released and risking bricking our devices if we don't comply--let me repeat, losing the use of our own equipment that we paid for for not buying our programs only from a pre-approved list, then I'm not sure how much people would notice or care.

I get that's their right to create devices like that; I also think it's dangerous for any one company to have that kind of monopoly over information. More devastatingly, if Apple's efforts do kill Flash, it's proving something I'm not comfortable with; that a single company--one company--is able to destroy an entire web language. I don't want Apple to succeed in doing this, not just because hey, that sucks, but because other companies might think this is a good idea. I don't want the internet filtered by company policy; I don't want my computers or my mobiles restricted to company-approved programs and I'll lose my ability to use them if they don't like what I'm doing with them. I refuse to lose my right to take apart my own equipment as pleases me, install what programs I like, and use them how I wish to.

It's not that I want to take apart my phone; it's more I am really against anyone telling me that I don't have the right to do it, and using TOS to enforce it.

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Tags: crosspost, my relationship with electronics
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