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Upgrades - Doing It Right

There is a great article over at NYTimes about software upgrades for existing devices and how it can build brand loyalty. It's called Capturing Hearts, One Upgrade at a Time, check it out.

This is something I've been saying for a while. A lot of companies forgot about building brand loyalty and is focusing too much on short term profits. But that's wrong, if your device sucks and you never fix it with firmware upgrades, consumers are going to go elsewhere when it's time to upgrade.

The article mainly focuses on Apple, but that's because they are the only company that's doing it right. Android phones are similar, but the problem is with the companies that are building the handsets. They are in the business of selling handsets, they are unlikely to release upgrades to older handsets.

Take my Sony Ericsson X10 Mini Pro for example, it's a fairly new phone released in May 2010, but running Android 1.6. Android 2.1, which have been out since January 2010, was just rolled out for the X10 Mini Pro this month. A full 10 months after the new Android release. I'm still waiting for it since it's not available in the US yet. And Android 2.2? There's no word from SE, and I don't have any hope of it ever being released for our devices. There's a good chance I may go elsewhere for my next phone.

Posted: Nov 14, 2010 @ 11:55 pm


Life With The Mini Pro

I've only had the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 Mini Pro for a few days, but so far so good.  The battery life have been decent so far, I've almost gotten 2 days out of it with a fair amount of use with me installing apps and playing around.  If I just use it like lightly, I don't think I'll have a problem with it lasting 2 full days.  Of course I've applied some battery saving tips I've found around the web, which I think helped.

Haven't used the slide out keyboard much, the on screen keyboard is good enough for short text.  But I do find myself sliding out the keyboard for things like passwords.  If I start writing emails, you bet I'll be using the keyboard, that little on screen keyboard is not good for anything more than a few words.  The only issue is the keyboard creeks when I type, makes the phone feel very cheap.  And the space bar is weird, can't be pressed in the center, have to be pressed on the side, kind of annoying.

Another thing, no flickr app, it's going to be a pain uploading to flickr.  With the Nokia N78, I take a picture and select upload to web right in the preview screen, and the phone does the rest.  Not so with Android.

Pros (so far):
- Small Size
- One Hand Operation (Easily reach all 4 corners of the screen with one hand.  Great for a straphanger like me!)
- Slide Out Keyboard
- Decent Ear Piece Volume
- Auto Focus Camera with Flash
- Smooth Menu Operation (Only 600Mhz processor, but I didn't notice much lag.)

Cons (so far):
- Android 1.6
- Many App Not Available (No Angry Bird!)
- Small Screen Size (Not great for video. But it's a small phone, can't be helped.)
- Battery Life (Could be longer, and without all the power management.)
- No Tap to Focus for Camera

Of course, the phone is already rooted.  Now I'm waiting for that 2.1 update to roll along.

Posted: Nov 06, 2010 @ 12:10 am


My New Phone Is An Android

Ah, my Nokia N78, we've had our good and bad times, but I'm finally ready to retire it. It's recently been slowly falling apart, literally, and figuratively. After much research and thinking, I've settled on the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X10 Mini Pro. I'm on T-Mobile and off contract, and not really in a mood to get back into a 2 year contract. So my budget was around $350 for the phone. Hopefully I can keep my Web2Go plan as well, I only really want to check email with it and read the NYTimes Mobile site. I would be pissed if T-Mobile bump me up to an android plan, since I only get EDGE on the T-Mobile network. For the year or 2 that I've had this plan, I don't think I've used more than 400MB total.

Originally I ruled out the X10 Mini Pro because it ran Android 1.6, but with the news that Sony Ericsson is releasing Android 2.1 for all X10 series devices in November, it was back into the game. With it's small size, pop out keyboard, and decent camera with flash, it seems like a winner to me. At first I was worried about the small size of the screen, being only 2.5" and all. But after using it for a few hours, the small screen makes it very easy to use with one hand. Which is a plus since I'm usually standing on the train to and from work. Another concern is the battery live, I've read that it either sucks (less than 1 day) or it's great (2-3 days). So I'm crossing my fingers and hoping I would get great battery life with mine.

Android 1.6 on the X10 Mini Pro doesn't seem too bad, but I've seen good things with the Android 2.1 upgrade, so I can't wait until it rolls around to North America.

Oh yea, I'm still waiting for that iOS 4.2 upgrade for my iPad...

Posted: Nov 02, 2010 @ 06:34 pm


iTunes 10 Video Encoding

For some reason iTunes 10 won't sync my converted videos anymore, even thought it works fine on the iPad.  After some testing, it seems that I can no longer sync MPEG4 videos, H.264 videos sync fine.  FFMPEG seems to encode MPEG4 2x as fast as H.264.  Why, Apple, Why!?

Also, the Dropbox app got updated, now it won't sync my 900MB video file, it just fails after 15% or so.  This along with iTunes 10 not syncing MPEG4 makes one sad iPad.

Posted: Sep 22, 2010 @ 11:24 pm


iOS 4.2 for iPad

Can't wait until November when iOS 4.2 for the iPad is out.  This will complete the iPad, and really should have been shipped with the iPad right from the beginning.  Now that the developer's beta of 4.2 is out, I wish I had a Mac and is a developer.  But I don't have a Mac or paid $99 for the developers program, so too bad for me.  I had a Hackintosh, but I gave that away, so I don't even have that.

Posted: Sep 15, 2010 @ 10:37 pm


It's Safe To Surf Again

Apple finally released a patch for the PDF vulnerability.  I'm still waiting for iOS 4 for my iPad!  But anyway, it's safe to surf the web on the iPad/iPhone again.

Posted: Aug 12, 2010 @ 11:13 pm


JailbreakMe

Wow, this is nuts.  Going to a website to jailbreak an "i" device?  It's supposed to work for the iPhone 4 and iPad too, I'm still considering.  I skipped over Spirit, will probably skip over this one too.  I really don't have a need to jailbreak right now.

Anyway, this is a MAJOR security concern, what if other sites make use of this exploit?  I actually hope this gets patched soon, I don't feel "safe" browsing the web on my iPad anymore.

Posted: Aug 02, 2010 @ 09:31 pm


Documents To Go

I just bought this office app called Documents To Go for the iPad on Sunday, and today on Monday I find out that it's on sale for $3 cheaper. Err!! Why does it seem like this kind of thing always happens?

So if you want it, it's on sale now.

Posted: Jun 14, 2010 @ 03:14 pm


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