The (almost) perfect phone
Hi everybody. Heard a lot good things about the "google phone", I bought it and needless to say, it is amazing.
Let's start with the thing you see first when you unbox it - the touchscreen. It's massive and crisp, colours are vivid, backlight does great. It's very responsive, the only thing is to get used to it (you have to know that it catches the exact point on the screen when your finger was). All graphics are very clear.
When you boot the phone for the first time it asks you about your Google Account (that's why it's called "google phone", right?). If you don't have one you can create it straight away without touching your PC - everything is done via the phone. That's cool, it automatically synchronizes your mobile contacts, calendar and similar stuff with Google.
Every action on the phone is really simple. It's easy to use, everything is in the right place. It reacts fast to the user activity and last but not the least - Android Market. In fact - it should be a subject to another review. This little thingy is simple yet powerful. On top of it you can see few (about 8-10) featured apps - and those are really robust, the most of them are "a must". Software is divided into groups like lifestyle, tools, entertainment, games, etc. What makes it really easy to navigate - search functionality. You can search apps from the main screen, from any opened group, it remembers what you've been looking for previously. Apps are described well, many of them are free, user reviews are really helpful there. Along with ratings and number of downloads makes it very quick to tell if you want this app or not. You'll have notices about upgrades and so, very handy.
QWERTY keybord - well, that's self-explanatory. It's great. It's superb. It's amazing. And you can't tell anything bad about it - it's just the ultra comfy keys in your phone. You can do shortcuts to access apps or anything quickly. Just brilliant.
On the other hand you don't want me to bless this phone all the time, do you? Well, it lacks few things of course. It doesn't play or record videos - you can use one of a bunch of external apps doing that, not a big problem (personally I don't use it as I don't need this functionality and always wondered why do they put video recording in every phone). You can use only the phone memory to install apps (it can run out at some point, haven't reach it though). And the biggest software mistakes (you can workaround them by rooting your phone - you can google "rooting g1" for more details) are: not letting you into the console as a root user (causing some limitations, the regular user probably won't need it and it protects from completely breaking your phone - but I would like to have it) and not utilizing the multi-touch (yes, that's right. You can use only one finger at a time even that the hardware allows two [at least, that's what I know at the moment]).
To conclude it - this is almost everything I've ever wanted from phone. More than that, it doesn't have any compatibility problems (it is the only Android phone so googling "android phone" is way more easy than "T-Mobile Google Enabled g1 HTC Dream Android mobile phone") and the community is really helpful. Apps developers are people you can ask something, not "pay and go away", updates are frequent. This phone is truly excellent and I can recommend it honestly for everyone.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
HTC Dream/T-Mobile G1
The G1 is the first phone to be released based on Googles open source Mobile Operating System, Android. If you've owned an HTC phone before then you'll know exactly what the phone itself is like, just as in the Windows Mobile models it's a fairly sturdy, if unglamorous, affair - it's not too heavy and has a fairly usable keyboard.
It's not going to set the world on fire for it's looks, but your not going to be disappointed either. The Android OS itself is straight forward and sensible, it reacts quickly to events, such as a phone call or message, and is overall a very responsive environment.
The 3G connection works well, and whilst not as fast as on some phones is much, much better than the 2G connection of the 1st Generation iPhone that it replaced.
As I mentioned above, this replaced my old cherished iPhone and as such I can't really avoid comparing the two.
Is it as good as the iPhone? Yes and no, if you have a 3G iPhone, then you may want to wait for the second set of G phones coming soon. The G1 just has too many 'niggles' that aren't present in Apples baby. If your stuck with a 1st gen iPhone, however, then this is genuinely an upgrade, the much, much faster 3G connection and GPS are worthy additions, as is the picture messaging, missing from the stock iPhone.
Nice screen, good in bright light
Pretty fast 3G connection
GPS which works seamlessly with Google Maps (well, you'd hope it would)
Lots and lots of Free apps and games on the Android Marketplace
Opensource and (sort of) free development means lots more interesting stuff
Good battery life
'real' bluetooth (iPhone owners will know what I mean)
Charges through a fairly standard mini-usb cable
Auto syncs contacts, calendars and emails from Google
Always seems to be trying to use a data connection if your not on wifi, regardless of what you disable
Slide out keyboard just doesn't feel right after using the iPhone one
It's exceptionally easy to accidently cut-off a call due to the over sensitive hang up button
Proprietary USB based headphone socket, due to my seller not including all the accessories I had to source this myself - and there aren't any nice ones out there.
It doesn't support the useful double-click headphone button to skip song feature the iPhone uses.
Video playing is 'quirky' and falls apart if the video is too big.
Phone itself is quite 'noisy', much like other HTC phones there is a fair amount of squeeking when you push buttons.
You have to literally pull the back panel off when you change the sim or have to remove the battery - I can't see it surviving too many removals.
I'm actually enjoying the phone, there are a few things i'm missing from the iPhone, but I suspect that as more software is released and the OS is updated the gap will shrink considerably. Because my music collection is quite large and the fact that I moved from a 16GB iPhone I had to put a 16GB micro-SD card in it, I got it from eBay and it's working fine (it's a Sandisk model).
19 of 21 people found this review helpful.
Great Phone, Would Definitely Recommend!
I saw this phone being used by a character on a Television series & I instantly wanted it! It just looked really nice [especially in white].
 The apps. If you have never owned a phone with apps to download, then you will fall in love with this phone. There is an app for almost anything! I'm not talking about 'for fun' things, there are actual useful apps like maps/local info etc!
 Just the way the phone looks. Okay so it's a little on the large side, but personally I prefer it to be like this. You don't feel at all scared of dropping it [not that you'd want to]! I love the fresh white colour of mine & the screen is so bright, large & sharp, it really does stand out.
 The browsing experience. I absolutely love browsing the web on this phone! It has one of the best browsers I have seen on a phone. I love the Android operating system. You can easily connect to your own Wireless in te house [for even faster connection] & it automatically updates new Wi-Fi connections while your out & about. You can download 'Facebook for android' & 'twitter for android' but I access Facebook through the normal browser & it is better than great! You can download great apps for Twitter & other sites you use often.
 The Keypad. A lot of people ask 'What phone is that?'' and I always answer ''the one before the hero'' - I personally prefer this model to the Hero, I find it much easier to actually have a real keypad, rather than JUST touchscreen. It still offers touchscreen for when you don't flip open the keyboard - but it is a little tricky! There is a lot more to go wrong with JUST a touch screen anyway - I've heard from a lot of people with iPhones that have found problems with the touchscreen, like it freezing/going out of sync etc. Unlike the iphone, this phone has a battery you can take out rather than just a hard disc.
 The speakerphone, it's one of the loudest I've heard on a phone. So when your in the car - simply stick it on speakerphone & it is loud enough to drive safely hands free!
 Battery Life!! Yep, like everyone else has mentioned, the battery life on this phone is not the best. It does ultimately depend on what your doing though. If it is fully charged & used strictly for calling/incoming calls/texting - it will last you 2 days. However, watch out, the apps you use once opened are always running in the background. You CAN download an app called appkiller [or something like that] which which with one click, closes everything that you don't want to be running. Very, VERY useful I have found. I bought my phone with 3 batteries - I would reccommend buying at least a couple & always carrying a spare in your bag - because when fully being used [intrnet etc] the battery will last you a maximum of a day!
 The Camera. I am not too fussed about this because my boyfriend bought me a little point-and-shoot for christmas that I always carry in my bag now - but they could have at least made the camera a little better, with at least a light! Some people have mentioned the phone does not have video recording - it does! However, it is not the best quality again!
 The size. I mentioned the sixe being a good thing. This is what I found personally - but some of you might find it a little bit too large. The first time my friends saw it, they said it looked like a Nintendo Ds, lol - it's not THAT big, but a little on the bulky side!
Overall I love, love, love this phone! If you like it - GET IT! :)
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Not quite an iPhone but definately worth the price diff
First off, this isn't an iPhone. My workmates have iPhone 3G and a 3GS and there is simply no other mobile device that offers the silky smooth interface and level of application support (in terms of number and quality of apps). The reason I never got one is because there is no amount of features in a phone that would justify £800+ over a 24 month contract for.
This is where Android phones fit in perfectly for me. My G1 phone cost £160 including unlocking, and I use a £15/month 30-day contract sim from 3 with unlimited internet.
Feature-count wise its almost identical to an iPhone 3GS; application store (with lots of games) compass and gps for Layar location finding, good browser and maps, and with albeit poor camera. There are some advantages over iPhone hardware too: replaceable memory stick and battery (my workmates iphone battery now lasts <12 hours after 12 months daily use), Obviously the keyboard is handy and speeds up typing (sadly only the g1 has it).
One major difference is the ability to run Opera as a separate browser. I prefer it loads pages far faster and prefer the feeds, despite it being a bit fiddly to use with track-ball. It shows that google aren't as unfair as apple in forcing you to use their own browser.
Quality wise G1 is just not as good as an iPhone. You just dont get all the same cool apps you see on tv, it often slows up and is just generally not as smooth as doing the same things on an iPhone. However in my opinion it is equally as capable and can achieve all of same tasks you would ask of an iPhone.
Yes, it is a cheap-man's iPhone, but even if you can afford the iPhone I simply cannot validate the price, no matter what competition there is. Its just good that Android phones are very comparable and half the price
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
HTC G1 Android Phone
I've been using Nokia phones for a few years, most recently the E51.
I like the idea of touch screen phones but my partner briefly had a touch screen LG and it was a pain to use.
I like having my emails on my phone, I use google maps every day and I live by google calendar.
I saw an ad for the G1 on T-Mobile and live the keypad in addition to the touch screen and the sync with google calendar and Gmail.
Stuck on a contract with '3' for almost a year still I just bought a G1, it took me 5 minutes to unlock it and set it up for 3, no problems at all there.
The touch screen is superb, the backlit hidden keypad is excellent, the battery life is supposed to be a big problem but so far, for me, not, it lasts a day and thats fine for me 99% of the time.
I looked around at other phones too mainly in the Nokia range before making the move to this one and this is a hell of alot of phone for £150ish.
You can download applications (software, 'apps') for all kinds of things, I recommend 'netcounter' (free) if you have a limit on your data use (such as my 1gb per month on '3').
To unlock I went to www.unlock-googlephone.com and they sent me an unlock code in about half an hour. Anyone needing settings for '3' in the uk (these work fine for me, for other networks and/or other countries, search on google for APN settings):
Menu button > Settings > Wireless Controls > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names > Menu Button > New APN
Proxy: <not set>
Port: <not set>
Username: <not set>
Password: <not set>
MMS proxy: mms.three.co.uk
MMS port: 8799
APN type: default
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.