I Dream of Android

Posted on 10 February 2011 by jose

In December of 2009, I upgraded my phone. I went from a Razr to a Cliq, which just happens to be a smartphone running Android 1.5. At the time, it was the best T-Mobile/Android offering within my budget; I also took advantage of their 0% financing/installment payment plan, which is a fantastic deal. Interest-free, I'd pay them $20 a month until the phone is paid off. With my particular plan, this option was better than a 2-year contract and its subsidized phone (I actually did the math). This netted me an awesome Android phone running Linux (yay!) with a neat slide-out keyboard. Being able to send and receive all my e-mail on the Cliq was fantastic, even if it lashed me tighter to the office. The Twitter/Facebook interfaces weren't too bad, though I more often than not would just fire up the Cliq's browser and visit the actual sites for both.

Naturally, with the advent of Android 2.x, my Cliq's OS quickly became obsolete. I would hear of awesome apps, go to the Android Market, and discover they were for 1.6 or higher. I very quickly became obsessed with updating the software to 2.1, possibly even rooting the phone in order to do neat tricks like tethering. Motorola finally released a 2.1 update that is currently powering my phone. Or perhaps draining is a better term? My battery life is close to what it was when I was running 1.5... unless I run some of my fancy new apps. I'm very impressed with Google's Text-to-Speech app, and the combination of that and the Google Navigation means I may not buy that Garmin GPS I've been lusting after for some time now. Google Navigation is good enough, even if it drains my battery faster than a really fast, battery-drainy thing.

I am nevertheless happy with my Cliq; putting 2.1 on it makes me feel like I've got a new phone, regardless of the hardware being the same. I've seen other phones running 2.2, but I don't feel the same envy that had me scanning every article about 2.1 or about rumored updates to the Cliq or so on. I can do little things like resize my news feed widgets, spreading them horizontally to better be able to read them. I can use the Twitter for Android app, which is excellent, and not have to bother with firing up a browser just to read updates. In short, the experience is loads better, even on so-called slower hardware. 2.1 goes fast enough to do what I want. I feel like I've got a tiny hand-held laptop, and if I ever install a terminal emulator on it, I will have everything I need to manage websites on a device that's half the size of my hand. I love living in the future.

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