Posted by: Eddie | November 15, 2009

Droid First Impressions

As my last post described, I decided to drop my iPhone 3GS for a Motorola Droid this weekend. I ended up getting it Saturday morning, and have been using it intensively since then. I’m still very happy with the Droid and my decision to switch. Unless some surprises crop up in the next 29 days it looks like I’ll be sticking with it.

Here’s a rather scattershot list of thoughts and reactions to the Droid, in no particular order:

  • Very pleasing selection of ringtones and notification sounds
  • Found a little easter egg: type ‘Droid’ into a text message and you trigger the ‘Droid’ notification voice.
  • I love Love LOVE having folders to organize my app icons
  • I also appreciate being able to use my photos as screen backgrounds, and NOT just for the phone lock screen. I also like how each of the three screens shows a slightly different perspective on whatever background photo/image you use.
  • Really cool screen under Settings/About that shows what’s consuming all your power. (Damn you large gorgeous screen!)
  • Not nearly as many apps as on the iPhone, but there’s still LOTS of them in Google Market, so not too worried there.
  • Like most reviews have said, the camera is underwhelming/inconsistent for stills, although the flash is very bright and video taken is quite nice.
  • Using the physical keyboard more than I thought I would. Drifting back to a usage pattern more similar to my Helio Ocean days when it comes to text input.
  • Still very, very happy with the browser. Having the advantage of the beautiful screen helps. Alot.
  • Was easy to transfer about 4Gb of music over via USB. Music player is crude in comparison to iPhone, but I have my Zune for music, so don’t care too much.Will have my MP3s available for those times I don’t have my Zune with me, and that should be fine.
  • Was a little worried it would be a touch too heavy, but no worries at all. Still love the ‘hand-feel’ and sturdiness of it. Fine in the pocket
  • Was super easy to get all my contacts over via Google. Absolutely painless. Oh, and I LOVE the integration with Google Voice! Had completely forgot about that. Am using Google Voice voicemail to avoid paying the stupid $2.99 extra per month for Verizon’s visual voicemail option. I can also give that number out to friends for texting, which may let me get away with choosing a text package less than the 1500/month I have right now, and save a little more money there.
  • My iPhone seemed to always have one of three states for signal strength: pegged at 5 bars, flickering between 1 and 2 bars, or nothing. I would still get dropped calls even when showing 5 bars sometimes. The Droid seems to get a fuller range of strengths, frequently showing 2 or 3 bars, and not just pegging at four bars or next to nothing.
  • If anything, the Droid is pessimistic. I can go between 0 and 2 bars of signal when inside at home, yet even when showing 0 bars in certain parts of the house I can still place and receive calls that sound ok! Voice quality isn’t quite as ‘warm’ as for stronger signal, but still very usable
  • Speaking of call quality, very solid! The Droid does it’s core phone duties much better than the iPhone.
  • More on apps: there’s a few apps I’ll miss, like Kindle for iPhone and the NYT crossword puzzles, but still lots of intriguing goodies in Google Marketplace to explore.
  • Very pleased with battery life. I’ve been slamming this thing, using it constantly, and it still went for a good 5 or 6 hours yesterday before needing a charge, and after lots of heavy use today as well is only now getting close to needing a charge again around 8:45pm. It should easily make it through a typical workday, even one spent showing off the Droid! 😉
  • Overall, still an enthusiastic thumbs up. I’ll post again at the end of the week (or sooner if anything interesting comes up.
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Responses

  1. Have you found a good replacement for your crossword puzzles?

  2. Hi Hurley, unfortunately no I haven’t. That New York Times crossword puzzle app for the iPhone spoiled me, they really nailed it.

    I’m pretty much just hoping they port it over to the Droid. The Droid’s momentum seems to be going strong, so I hope that does get them to port it.


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