Posted by: patdavila | March 9, 2010

Nexus One Arrives

In my last posting I talked about my decision to purchase an HTC Nexus One phone from Google and what I was looking for in a 3rd generation Android phone. My phone arrived on Friday afternoon and I was very excited to be upgrading to a new device. The first thing I noticed about the phone is how sleek, thin and light the thing is compared to my old G1. Another thing that jumped out at me was the beautiful large display and finally having a standard 3.5mm audio jack. Powering up the phone you see a lovely 3d accelerated bootup animation. Android 2.1 is a nice step forward compared to the latest Cyanogenmod ROM (based on Android 1.6). The phone has a 1ghz snapdragon processor and the result is every application is extremely quick and responsive. The 800×480 display is absolutely gorgeous (clear,crisp and sharp). The area where the NexusOne really shines is on the web. Viewing web pages on the high resolution display is leaps and bounds ahead of where it was with the G1. This phone on the same T-mobile network as my G1 seems exponentially quicker. Video streaming works very well on both a 3g connection and wifi. I re-encoded several HD and SD video recordings using ffmpeg (libx264 encoder) from my MythTV box and watched them on the NexusOne. Everything I played looked great. A decent pair of headphones comes with the phone. The headphones have a small controller with three buttons (play/pause, skip forward/backward) and a built-in microphone. If you’re listening to music or watching a video and a phone call comes in the media player will pause your playback and start your ringer at a moderate audio level. Terminate the phone call and the media player starts up automatically. Nice touch. My biggest concern of moving to the NexusOne was losing a hardware keyboard. The virtual keyboard in landscape mode works very well for me. As you’re typing words you’ll see a list of possible words appearing in the toolbar above the keyboard area. At any time you can select one of the suggested words and it will auto-complete it for you. The voice recognition features of the NexusOne are pretty damn impressive. When typing in any application you can switch to voice mode by hitting the microphone key and the phone will prompt you for a voice entry. For me the accuracy rate is about 85% which is decent considering I have a pretty strong New York accent. Speaking a little slower than normal improves the accuracy quite a bit. Using voice input for searches & starting phone calls seemed to work much more accurately than dictation. I’m sure the voice features will improve with time. I’ve been showing off the phone for a couple of days now and everyone is pretty impressed with it. Flash is supposedly coming to Android 2.0+ devices in the next couple of months. While everyone generally dislikes flash having it will improve wider adoption of Android phones. Being able to play videos on Hulu will be something to hold over iPhone/maxi-Pad owners. For better or worse flash is very pervasive on the internet. I now understand why Apple wants to sue HTC out of existence. More to come later.

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