Gumby

Thoughts from the clay guru.

Archive for the category “iOS”

Why I like my WP7 phone over my iPhone – part 2

After a few days, I came up with a few more features I like on my WP7…that iPhone users have to learn to live without.

  1. Damn IOS Auto Correct.  Now WP7 has “auto correct”, but it seems to perform much better than the iOS version of auto correct.  I remember turning it off on my iPhone when I had it, and I still have it turned off on my iPad.  (see http://www.damnyouautocorrect.com/  there are entire sites dedicated to the auto correct silliness of iOS)
  2. Late for meeting.  If I am running late for a scheduled meeting, there is a quick “Late” button when I view my meeting invite.  When I press this button, I am given the option to send an email to the person that scheduled the meeting, or everyone invited to the meeting that states; “I’ll be a bit late, but I’m on my way.  See you soon.”  So from the meeting, I am 3 clicks away to tell folks I am running late.
  3. Edit response to meeting invite.  When declining a meeting, on an iOS device I cannot give a reason.  I am so used to this in Outlook and now WP7 that I do not accept or decline meetings using my iPad (that and the number of issues iOS devices have had with meeting synchronization in the past).

Please feel free to add your favorite reasons in the comments.

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Why I like my WP7 phone over my iPhone

Here are the highlights on why I like my Windows Phone 7 phone over my old iPhone:

  1. When looking at the keyboard, am I typing in upper or lower case?  On my iOS device, you have to look for a slight blue highlight on the up arrow of the shift key, yet on WP7 and Android devices, the entire keyboard changes that characters to upper or lower case to show what mode you are in.  This is software, why can’t Apple just change the keyboard.  And the funny thing, I did not notice the issue when I had my iPhone, and everyone I have shown does not really realize it…but once you notice it, it becomes a minor annoyance.
  2. Downloadable, subscription music.  For $10 month, I get a Zune pass subscription that will allow me to stream or download all the music I want on my device.  Now this is really nice to:
    • Minimize my mobile data traffic over a pure streaming service (like LastFM, Spotify, Slacker Radio, etc.).
    • No outages when my data plan cuts out (like in remote areas in the midwest)
    • I get to download and stream music to my PC, XBox plus 3 other mobile devices (my phone, daughters Zune HD player)
  3. Love the configuration and look and feel of the Home page.  Not just a bunch of icons, but the Live Tiles show me a lot of extra info like (all this without any input):
    • Weather temp, and flips to show radar
    • Next appointment
    • Family group tile that shows if I have any calls, text messages or emails from anyone in my family.
    • Missed phone calls, text messages, emails, etc.
    • ToDo Tasks remaining
    • New RSS Feed articles, with highlight titles
  4. I can create groups of contacts.  I currently have 2 groups defined; one for my family and one for my immediate co-worker.  The contact groups allow me to:
    • See if I have any new emails, phone calls or text messages from the group.
    • I can view the groups’ aggregate Twitter or Facebook posts
    • I can send an email or text message to the entire group with the single click.
    • I can view all the photos of the group members in a single place
    • I pin my Family group on my Home page so I can get updates and communicate easily and quickly.
  5. The People (or contacts/phone) application merges all my contact information together for me.  For example, I have one co-worker in which his single contact card on my phone merges all the information together from my company MS Exchange contact, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and XBox ( my @live.com account).  So I don’t have multiple contact cards, just one, with all his data in a single place.  And when I view the contact card, I can swipe right and see all the communications I have had with this person, which includes:
    • Phone calls
    • Text Message
    • Emails
    • Tweets
    • etc.
  6. BACK BUTTON.  All caps because this is a big deal when you get used to it.  I still use an iPad on a daily basis…and I REALLY miss the back button when switching between apps.  I know, I can double click on the Home button, then select the application I was just in, but this is much more difficult that just clicking the Back button.  Everyone with a Blackberry, Android and WP7 device I am sure know what I mean.
  7. It’s quicker for a lot of daily tasks.  Google “Smoked by Windows Phone 7” and see what I mean.
  8. Initially, WP7 won with the quick picture taking by simply holding the Camera button down.  And for those of us that are required to enter a password because of Company security policy…this is a real time saver.  I think Apple might have closed the gap a bit with their later OS versions…but not sure if they would still beat WP7 in a “Smoked by” test of taking a picture.
  9. Options, options, options.  Now I have gotten used to the soft keyboard, but try and get an iPhone with a physical keyboard, or maybe a 4.3 or 4.7 inch display.  Replaceable battery anyone?

That is my quick dump on why I like my WP7 phone, and am currently looking at another (Nokia 900) WP7 phone to replace my current Samsung Focus.  I still love my Focus, but LTE (can I get an iPhone with LTE????….think not) would be sweet, I need a new GPS and for the lower price, I think I might just be fine with Nokia Drive (included with the phone), and a bigger display and faster CPU might be nice.

Please feel free to comment on why you love your WP7 phone.  And if you have carried a WP7 phone for any period of time (say 1 month) and went back to an iPhone, I would like to hear why as well.

Checking out an eBook on your tablet or Kindle

So, did you know that most libraries provide a number (although small…but hopefully growing) of electronic books available for checkout?

I have used this approach a few times and it is pretty easy.  This blog is a visual step-by-step process for getting the book Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson onto my iPad (and Windows Phone 7 if I want to later).  Click on any picture below for the full-size image.

Step 1:  Go to the Overdrive site (http://www.overdrive.com)

Step 2:  Enter your Zip code to the Library in your area.

Step 3:  Click on the library link provided in Step 2 to be taken to the collection of books available for download from your library system.

Step 4:  Search or browse for your book.  Once you locate an available book, clicking on that book will provide you some options to download.  I will select the Kindle format for this discussion.

Step 5:  After selecting the Kindle format, we will select the option to Proceed to Checkout

Steps 6, 7, and 8:  Select your Library, change Lending Period if you want, and then click on the Get for Kindle button

Step 9, 10, 11, 12, 13:  Head on over to Amazon (http://www.amazon.com) and accept your Public Library Loan and then Deliver it to the Kindle compatible device of your choice

Step 14, 15:  Go to your Kindle device (my iPad for this example), and select and read your book.

When the book has expired, you will see that the loan has ended (as in Snow Crash in the image above), and when you launch the book, you will be presented the option to buy it

Hope you found this guide helpful.  Please provide comments to this blog if you have anything to say… positive or negative.

iOS 5 on iPad (v1) underperforms

Okay, I just need to vent/rant.  Anyone else with an iPad version 1, that has installed iOS 5 think that these two were not meant for each other?

I am experiencing the following issues with iOS 5 on my iPad v1:

  • Crashes often with 3rd party apps AND build in apps like the Safari browser?  I don’t think I am a heavy iPad user, but experience at least 3 application crashes per day.  A lot of times, it will simply be watching a YouTube video on a Safari page.  The app just closes down.
  • Performance has taken a major hit with the new iOS.  This is especially obvious in the AppStore application where clicking on the search field will often take 3-5 seconds to get the I-beam to appear so I can type.  And yes, I have fully shut down and restarted the iPad…and it is still slow…with no other apps running.  Also, switching between Updates, Categories, etc. is sluggish….and I am WiFi with 30+Mbps connection.
  • The new fancy notification pull-down seems buggy.  At times, some of the items will flash (appear then disappear then appear….).

Anyone else experiencing issues?  Maybe it is just operator error (but I doubt it).

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