Huawei’s Customizations to Android 2.1
The Huawei U8100 is an entry level Android device, which retails for only about 150 Canadian dollars. In spite of this it bundles a really good package. In fact, apart from the low resolution screen, you would be hard pressed to find any other deal breaker with the device.
Huawei has also customized the UI with their own interpretation of how the Android 2.1 UI should be. The customizations are mostly very useful and don’t deviate too much from the vanilla Android functionality. The changes to the UI are mostly enhancements rather than a complete revamp. This, I feel is the biggest strength of the Huawei Android UI.
The default home screen has a Froyo like bar at the bottom with shortcuts for Apps, Dialer, Contacts, Text Messages and a button to show the multiple home screens
This device apparently supports up to 42 home screens. I didn’t go so far and only enabled 25
Although this is a slower device and inexpensive, Huawei has given the user Live Wallpapers.
Here is the Nexus One live wallpaper and it works very well. No lag to bother you really
Huawei provides some additional widgets like the FM Radio and replacements for standard Android widgets
Themes are available from the home screen. Selecting them changes the Wallpaper and the application shortcuts available from the 5 default home screens
The contacts screen has a large button on top to search bordered by the multi-select and add new buttons
The contacts details page shows a call history for that particular contact, apart from the usual details
The messages screen has a big compose button on top bordered by the multi-select and search buttons
Huawei has added common phrases to the text messages for quick replies to messages
The app drawer scrolls vertically which, in my opinion, is way better than the horizontal screen fulls of apps that other devices show