First Thoughts On The Nexus One

A little over 3 weeks ago, I finally made the decision to dump Symbian and pick up a Nexus One, Google’s unbranded Android-powered smartphone. It was a big leap, given that I’ve pretty much exclusively used Symbian-powered smartphones for the past 6 years, and used them for everything. So, how do I like it?

For starters, the Nexus One is fast. The phone is powered by Qualcomm’s 1GHz SnapDragon processor, which is backed up with 512MB of RAM – quite the killer combination, especially to power a pocket-sized device. It’s a welcome change from…….pretty much every Symbian-powered smartphone I’ve ever used, and a feature of the phone that I doubt I’ll ever get tired of.

Nexus One

One thing that I’m really loving about the Nexus One and its Android operating system is the customization options. For instance, I don’t particularly care for the stock Android portrait keyboard – it’s rather plain, and I much prefer the HTC Sense UI keyboard, which shows you the symbols and lets you press and hold a letter to access its respective symbol. I’ve also lately been using the Swype beta, which gives a similar option, in addition to the line-drawing feature. The key here isn’t the keyboards – it’s the fact that since I don’t like the default, I can easily change it. Similarly, I find the default SMS app boring – so I installed Handcent, a free alternative that completely replaces the default. Just like that.

One of the things that I originally read about the Nexus One is the poor battery life. I definitely expected the worst, but have been pleased to find that I can actually get through a full workday without having to keep it plugged into the charger. Of course, I can kill the Nexus One in a single day quite easily – but then again, aside from the BlackBerry Bold 9700, that goes for any smartphone on the planet. I’m typically getting anywhere betwen 9-11 hours  of continuous use on my Nexus One with Twitter, Foursquare, email, texting, and some web browsing, along with music playback. Overall, I’d say I’m pretty satisfied with the battery life.

I’m also really enjoying the Android Market, which is where I’ve gotten most of my apps. While the Android Market could obviously use some upgrades in terms of app discovery, it does its current job quite nicely, and I really love getting notified when there are new versions of the apps that I have installed on my phone. It’s a far cry from the Ovi Store that I was used to, which doesn’t really do much aside from act as a storefront.

Overall, I’m really having a blast with my Nexus One. Of course, I’ve had to make some sacrifices, such as the phontography experience, but in the day-to-day usage, I’d say that’s been an entirely worthwhile sacrifice. I’ll have more thoughts on the Nexus One (and Android in general) next week, including a list of my top recommended apps.

Published by rcadden

Just a dude with a phone.

8 thoughts on “First Thoughts On The Nexus One

  1. I switched over to the nexus one about the same time as you did after 15 years with exclusively nokia phones. The HTC sense keyboard is the most like the Nokia keyboard… it's a little bit like an old friend for those of us set in our ways. Unfortunately it's not very accurate and the predictive text keeps changing my text so I may have to kick it out and make a new friend.

  2. I made a similar switch, after 4 years w Nokia I went w a nexus one few months ago. The OS has truly got me hooked, I'm a fan thru and thru. The best thing about that HTC keyboard is it has the standard T9 option for one handed use like my Nokia's, so best of both worlds.The sacrifice I made is camera and speakers, but I'll easily live w that. Android is well thought out and customizable, and a hackers dream if u want to root.Ricky, try a test turning off data completely and see how battery life is. I found it matches my Nokia closer since symbian doesn't keep an active data session connected at all times like android does. When I found that out and saw such an increase in battery life on the nexus, it made me see that its just a trade off of being always connected, which u could disable in an emergency situation and get similar battery performance to s60.

  3. I'm getting good enough battery life that I don't really need to turn data off. Plus, that kinda defeats the whole purpose of the device, IMO. I have almost zero use for voice minutes at all – 98% of my communication is electronic, either SMS or email, plus the various apps (RSS, Twitter, Foursquare, etc). Plus, my Nokia pretty much always had an active connection anyways, thanks to various apps. 🙂

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