After a lot of waiting and wanting, the first Android based mobile device has been released.
Introducing the T-Mobile G1.
What do you think the G stands for (Google 1 maybe?). For starters, I like the phone and how it looks. I am however, more tolerant of bulky phones than most I think (considering that I currently use the KJam). The sliding screen, the full keyboard will definitely keep me in familiar territory. Considering that we are not really interested in the hardware part and more interested in the software part, I will go straight to my impressions of the screenshots that I have seen.
I read on another blog a few days ago that the interface is really cluttered and difficult to navigate. I dont think that this should be the case. I think that the main screen looks extremely well put together and should not be a surprise to anyone in terms of whats there and what to do with whats there. The icons used are very Web 2.0 and I think that they look better than the ones on the iPhone. The interface looks very clean to me.
A really nice feature; Amazon’s DRM free music store is preloaded on each phone. What this means is that you can download music from the store and play it on other devices like your ipod, zune or any other mp3 player. This is in direct competition to Apple own iTunes that offers only DRM protected music download that ties down the songs you download to that particular device. More power to DRM-free stores I say.
Some of the cool features:
- Digital Compass lets you navigate Google street view by simply moving your device around
- Blackberry style trackball
- Excellent browser (Chrome Lite)
- 3 colour options (beats most phone colour options)
- Full Cut/Copy and Paste support (Eat that Apple)
- Drag and Drop images/icons from menus to desktop. (yes they call it the desktop)
- Barcode scanner can get you the best prices from the internet for any product that you scan in.
- Since this is the first release, you can expect Google labs to keep adding little little things to make our life easier.
Since the device has everything you could ask for and more, heres a short list of things that it doesn’t:
- The G1 does not allow you to synchronize with your desktop
- There is no earphone/handsfree jack. You have to use the USB port for that.
- Does not support Microsoft Exchange
- No multi-touch. Who needs multi touch anyway right?
I wonder when I will be able to get my hands on this one. Then I would be able to really write about it. Also, I wonder how much it will cost without any operator dependence? Its supposed to be retailing for about USD179 currently.
Judging from the sold out pre-order stocks, I am guessing a lot of people feel the same way that I do. I would really love to get my hands on this one. Better still I would like android to be able to run on my KJam. That would be the coolest. But again, to really take advantage of all these new devices, we really need to get 3G going in India.