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back to article T-Mobile G1

Apart those with either a technical or professional interest, it's open to question how many mobile phone purchasers weigh up the matter of a device's operating system before handing over their cash. Looks, camera resolution, cost, yes. OS? Probably not. Notwithstanding the fact that you'd need to have spent the last year either …

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IM

"Ditto the IM client, which supports AIM, Google Talk, Windows Live and Yahoo!."

Only Google Talk, the UK version didn't ship with the rest.

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Linux

IM on the G1

I think you've got an American G! there, the UK version G1 only has Google Talk - AIM, MSN and Yahoo! instant messengers have all been removed.

Check your build version, if it isn't TC5-RC7 112931 (there are rumours of an RC8 in the wild) then you have a non-UK phone.

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Boffin

battery life

The battery calibration from the factory is abysmal. The actual battery life is fair to poor. You need to calibrate it by draining it to zero - when it won't even turn on - and then charging 8 to 24 hours uninterrupted. You'll find it can go a day or so with light use after that.

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Web-browsing ...

"If we had to find fault, it would be that to go back a page you have to tap the menu button, then tap More... in the contextual menu to see the Back command. It should really be one of the commands in the contextual menu."

Or you could just click on the back button at the bottom of the phone. The one that's second from the right, between the hang up key, and the trackball. The one with the arrow on it which points backwards. The one that always gets used to go back in history on web browsers. That works too.

Can't really agree with the hardware review. The battery is rubbish, it's true, but you have a phone with a touch screen interface, a usable full qwerty keyboard, a blackberry style trackball, and it's not as good as the samsung omnia? Give over.

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unfair critique methings

when browsing.... to go back a page, I just press the "back" button....

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So how long till we get a better handset?

As I'd rather get an Android phone over an iPhone because there are 5 iPhones in my office and I like being awkward.

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Stretching things makes them smaller aparrently...

"The G1's screen may be a little smaller than the iPhone's but it benefits from having the same resolution stretched over a smaller area and is every bit as clear, bright and crisp."

What?

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Alert

Build Number

Build number on our test handset is TC4-RC19-109652.

And yes, you could use the "back" hard button to navigate to a previous web page if you really wanted to but we still reckon a button in the on-screen menu would have been a good idea - perhaps in place of "refresh". Its not too much of a criticism either way.

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Stop

The G1...

... it just isn't really that good is it?

75%?

Hmmm...

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Boffin

So...

When are we going to find out about the G1's ability to...

Tether to a laptop to provide an Internet connection

A full Tasks app that only shows current tasks

Synchronization with Outlook and/or Evolution

Compatibility of Synching with Windows / Linux

How do we get Office docs onto it?

Is there a decent Personal Finance app in the Marketplace?

Can Tomtom run on it yet?

What about using Access databases on it?

Are open-source software developers likely to code for it? I use the open source KeePass password storage program and would like to see this appear on the Marketplace

There you go, a few things to cover in Review Part Deux.

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Music Player

"though you have to live without any sort of DRM support."

Thats a real shame, I may cry myself a river.

I'm a jesus phone owner without a mac or windows box. No iTunes on linux means my phone is a bit crap really. If it wasn't for the excellent Safari I'd have gotten rid of it ages ago. Looking forwards to a new version of android phone eagerly.

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I was disapointed, would have been more like 50%

Sent my G1 back to t-mobile after 5 days. Android isn't much past beta and the hardware is sadly lacking. My major complaints:

Battery life - less than a day if you do any browsing - what's it going to be like by the end of your 18month contract???

Keyboard - the illumination made the keys less readable in low light, amazing trick that one

POP email doesn't work properly, just google and loads of people are having issues and t-mobile customer support won't admit there's an issue

Put the phone down flat and you won't hear it ringing or notifications, even if it's turned right up

Camera is a joke

I'll let someone else do the beta testing and wait for Android to be on some proper hw before I try it again.

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Coat

@Al Taylor...

"And yes, you could use the "back" hard button to navigate to a previous web page if you really wanted to but we still reckon a button in the on-screen menu would have been a good idea - perhaps in place of "refresh". Its not too much of a criticism either way."

So you'd rather press 2 virtual buttons instead of one real one!? hmm, each to their own I suppose.

Yeah, battery life is baaaad. It's better after a week of full charging/discharging, but it's about the same as the n95 was when that was first released. I'm hoping the right firmware release for the G1 one will do the same as an update for the n95 did and improve it - maybe then I'll get a full day of medium usage.

Mines the one with the charger and spare battery in the pocket...

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Battery power / Hardware

Just thought I'd point out that complaining about the battery life as a hardware issue only is a bit misleading - the power usage is controlled by the OS (e.g. by network use, backlight, etc etc). As this is their first phone, I'd hope Google will invest on improving this for the future.

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Choosing a phone by OS

"Apart those with either a technical or professional interest, it's open to question how many mobile phone purchasers weigh up the matter of a device's operating system before handing over their cash.

Looks, camera resolution, cost, yes. OS? Probably not."

Um, think again. The huge (and sorely disappointed) legion of Palm users were loyal to the Palm OS until the company screwed the pooch through bad decisions and mis-steps. Not only did you have the wonderful UI for managing everything, much like the vaunted "MarketPlace" you had a wealth of 3rd party software available (much of it for free). And as the #1 PDA, everyone had "sync" software to sync your PC's list of contacts and calendar entries with your PDA. Corporate software like Outlook and Notes included. And, if you yourself were a developer and so inclined, you could write your own apps.

Similarly, I suspect there are Windows Mobile users who choose by OS as well.

I think Android will indeed fit into this category -- people will definitely choose phones that are running Android because they are, just as people did with Palm phones when they arrived. The decision tree becomes: #1 questoin: is it the OS I Want? Then, after that, all the other questions.

So, not only do some people take into account the OS when they choose a mobile phone, when they do so it is often the most important primary question.

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Silver badge

When's V2 out?

It sounds like a promising start, but I want one where I don't have to interact with any Google services (except the search engines when I want to). I have my own email server and IM accounts that aren't Google ones. I'd also prefer to pay a bit for the phone and not get screwed on the £40/mo tariff. I have enough trouble using up the cheaper one I'm on at the moment, given that I rarely send texts or make phone calls (but use data a lot). I'd also prefer it not to be network-locked. I assume that's a function of the radio module and not the apps processor, otherwise it would have been hacked already, given the open-source nature of the code.

If they'd care to have V2 out for early 2009 when my current contract expires, I'll have a look.

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Linux

No Voicedial Either

I've found other restrictions and anomalies:

1. No Voicedial

2. Can only attach Pictures to e-mails, no other type of file

3. Cannot download attachments that Android cannot open

4. Cannot see the e-mail address of the sender of the e-mail

5. Cannot select multiple e-mails to archive or label them

6. Not all websites work: now I'm not naive enough to think they should on a mobile browser, but Google Groups and editing Google Sites?

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Gold badge

Multitouch

I thought the review might mention lack of multitouch?

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Glad I got my Touch Pro

Sounds like I made the right decision when getting the TP. Surely this review should have compared the G1 to the TP as they are functionally similar...

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Happy

..on omnia and Touch HD?

You wouldn't want Android on the Omnia or the Touch HD, as they both have rubbish resistive touchscreens.

Now.. Android on the Touch HD's hardware but a capacitive screen.. that would be worth a look :)

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Different Hware

Hell no, Android on the iPhone, now that I'd buy.

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Updates!

Just been updated with RC8 116470, I can now safety type reboot!

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Anonymous Coward

see you in 12 months...

seems HTC very much went back to their OEM ways when working on this, google was the boss and dictated what they wanted (i'm sure HTC will do some very interesting stuff once they're free to go their own way), hence its no surprise that its basically an evolved sidekick. it'll clearly be a very interesting platform in a year of so's time, till then there's still a gaping hole in the market for a solid grown up phone with buttons and brains.

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Pity

"I like being awkward"

Me too. Shame it's on T-mobile, which has almost no coverage where I live, otherwise I'd buy one just to annoy the Jesus addicts. Still, Google are richer than Croesus (and Apple) so we may see some improvement...

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Dead Vulture

pot?.... meet kettle!

"...If we had to find fault, it would be that to go back a page you have to tap the menu button, then tap More... in the contextual menu to see the Back command. It should really be one of the commands in the contextual menu..."

that sounds almost as annoying as this website i frequent.

they have a load of links to articles on their front page which, for some inexplicable reason reside on two different domains of the main site. so [just to invent a random example] if the main domain was 'elreg.co.uk' you might click on an article link on the frontpage about a new mobile phone OS and be taken to 'elreghardware.co.uk' for the story.

often whilst reading an article you'd click through three or four of pages of the article itself and a similar number of pages of comments. then, after you'd finished reading, you'd obviously want to go back to the index of the site again to choose the next article you wish to read. instinctively you'd click the familiar 'elreg' logo at the top of the page, thinking it would take you back to the frontpage of the original 'elreg.co.uk' domain - only to find that, instead, it now takes you to the frontpage of the 'elreghardware.co.uk' domain you've been transported too - and that domain has a completely different set of frontpage article links! to get back to the original 'elreg.co.uk' domain you have to either hit your back button about half a dozen times , search for it in your history menu, or manually retype it into your browser's URL bar.

incredible how often you come across crappy navigation on the intarwebs, isn't it?.... although at least google don't have the hubris to criticise other peoples' before putting their own house in order!

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Go

google os

i thin the hardware isnt up to the google andriod standards and there should be new hardware installed

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