A few more things about Android…and Windows 8

I don’t think my last post did true justice to Android devices. After thinking a bit there are some killer features on Android that will make me never, ever going back to an iOS device again. I was playing with the old iPhone 4 again and I was shocked to see the screen. It just felt horribly small, like as if I were using a Nokia phone from the 1990’s. The result of going from a larger screen to a smaller screen is that dramatic. I don’t think I will ever return back to Apple phones again if they don’t make another phone that is at least 4.6”.

Another issue with iOS is that there is not much autonomy in downloading files. In the past many people needed to jailbreak their phones just to download files. Now I heard you can download files from the Safari browser by saving it to your Dropbox app. Neither of them is what downloading a file is really meant to be. I have no idea why Apple would restrict such an important feature from the very beginning.

And for the voice assistant, Google Now is fairly decent, but I can’t compare it with Apple Siri because I don’t have an Apple device with Siri. If you have a question that can be easily answered, you can use Google Now and ask it right away. I was watching the documentary/movie Jiro Dreams of Sushi, they were talking about the minimum price for a course is 30, 000 Yen. I didn’t quite know how much that would mean, so I asked Google Now “how much is 30, 000 Yen”. It easily answered me with voice converting 30, 000 Yen into my home currency. Pretty neat feature. Google Now also displays useful information wherever you need, like showing you movie times when you are near a cinema, or showing train timetable when you are near a station. However, there is not much control when this information is shown. You have to be around the station before it will show you the times. It definitely needs some changes there.

I think I have quite a radical change in viewpoint about Android phones in terms of its software given that you don’t use it like a full fledged computer. Everything is very snappy when you don’t strain the system too much. If you treat it like a baby and it will run smoother than iOS. However, if Apple ever makes a phablet it will highly likely to be my next phone. Wouldn’t it be perfect if someone combined the good features of Apple with Google…

Windows 8

I also got Windows 8 and I tried it for a few days already. I think at the first hour it was driving me nothing but frustration. I couldn’t even do anything including: open cmd, restart/turn off, opening start menu and more. I literally had to do a Google search on how to turn off/restart my computer. That is what makes me chuckle right now. After using it for a while, I think Microsoft did an excellent job in getting rid of the Start button on the desktop, otherwise Windows 8 would be Windows 7. The beauty about the lack of a Start button forces you to familiarise yourself with the Microsoft Modern UI, that is the interface you will be facing on their tablets, phones, and XBOX. Every single person using Windows 8 will be a proficient user of their tablets and phones. This is genius. There is zero learning curve for their tablets or phones one day, which is pretty much the majority of the population. Microsoft would have made another catastrophic error if they had included the standard start button. The Modern UI would be left to collect dust, just like all the other full screen programs like Microsoft’s Media Center or Apple’s Front Row. But a lot of people are coming up with tweaks to get the start button back as People are just so resistant to change. The average user just doesn’t have the time and energy to learn unnecessary things. I am not sure if people would forgo upgrading in the short term due to Windows 8 being a steep learning curve.

What if Windows 8 adoption rate is low? This would be a challenge since I can’t tell much difference in Win7 with Win8 other than the Modern UI when using on a traditional non-touch computer. I can’t test Windows 8 on a touch-based computer yet, but the idea of a full fledged PC and a tablet in one is salivating for me. I hate how the iPad cannot function like a computer. The Android tablets are slightly more computer-like, but still not 100%. If I were to purchase a new computer, I think laptops with a flippable touch screen and the Microsoft Surface Pro would be my top choices. Surface RT is not even near my radar since it is just another iPad but running Windows. I think if Microsoft does blend touch with PCs well enough, Apple will follow suit and come up with an iMac, or Macbook with touch capabilities. I think this could be another PC revolution in the making.

The problem now is I just purchased a few Macs during 2010-11, I don’t think I am replacing my computers anytime soon.


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