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Showing posts from December, 2012

iPad - new faster text editing

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Positioning the cursor on the iPad can be slow

It doesn't have to be that way. Look at this guy's solution:


Pretty clever. I linked to this navigation idea in my iPad typing review - but it deserves its own blog post :)

QWERTY-bar Android phones

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List of phones with small keyboards - available or roumored
Updated January 2017


See my list of the best ones
(loosers are in there too)


Or check out GSM-ARENA's full list
No phone today fulfills my requirements.
The best match is BlackBerry Mercury (above pic) but it lacks arrow keys.
The perfect phone for me:
Newest Android versionUpdated by Google (Pixel/NexusPortrait display (at least square)QWERTY keyboardPhysical or haptic buttonsArrow keys (at least right/left)

Phone calendars are too slow

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Calendar efficiency test

How hard can it be, huh? - surprisingly complex on some phones actually :)


Here are the results from my test sequences (the lower the better):


WORST-CASE SCENARIO
  7 actions: PalmOS (Centro/Treo)
10 actions: Palm webOS (Pre) 
11 actions: Windows Phone 8 NEW!
11 actions: Blackberry 8800
11 actions: Android v4.2 NEW!
13 actions: iOS 6.01 (iPhone) NEW!
13 actions: Android v2.3
13 actions: iOS 5 (iPhone)

BEST-CASE SCENARIO (same test)
  7 actions: PalmOS (Centro/Treo)
  8 actions: Windows Phone 8 NEW!
  9 actions: Android v4.2
  9 actions: iOS 6.01 (iPhone) NEW!



I tested this sequence of calendar actions:
Unlock phone (security locks disregarded/disabled)Create an appointment called OK (uppercase) today at 14:00 (any duration)Lock the phone again. I was using the basic out-of-the-box setup - the default unlock screen, default Home-screen, default calendar app etc.

Here's a typical excessive sequence of actions on a touch device:
Press Power On button.Swipe to unlock.Press Ho…

webOS and PalmOS

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Centro/Treo and Palm Pre compared - Undo has disappeared (November 2009)

At the time of this review webOS was at version 1.3.1


RESUME
Palm Treo/Centro (with PalmOS) are much faster to use than the their big brother Palm Pre. On the Treo/Centro it feels like everything is happening instantly - no waiting. On the Pre everything looks much cooler but happens in slow motion. You're constantly waiting for it to let you get on with what you want.

The question is wether you can accept the huge slow-down and lack of Undo to get those new web/cloud-features in a visually cooler look, a nicer looking device.


Below + means good and ÷ means bad.


PALM PRE - DESIGN AND FEEL
+ Keyboard slighty better/larger than the Palm Centro
+ Nice weight - feels good in the palm.
+ Uses the same batteries as Palm Centro.

÷ Easily slips out of your hand.
÷ Keyboard won't close if you drag on the lowest third of the screen.
÷ Starts creaking after 1-2 weeks use.
÷ Battery time 2 hours of heavy use (w/o WiFi).

Sony Arc S

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Light-weight hardware - buttons and software sligthly broken (November 2011)

Due to it's many issues I ended up installing CyanogenMod 7.2 - a community version of Android (and a great bootloader with backup features - Clockwork Mod). Overall it's better now, but no panorama-cam and less smooth scrolling/zooming. Also video recording only works if you install the app, igCamera and CD-quality audio recordings are suddenly more "distorted". It became useful again after it sofficial update to Android 4.0 - Ice Cream Sandwich.


ISSUES
- The screen looks good and is clevery positioned close the bottom which - despite that its too tall (no one-hand-touchphone should have a screen larger then 4 inches) - makes its top reachable with only little discomfort and slow-down.

- It feels generally responsive (especially after turning off all animations).

- It does not have auto-brightness.

- It has no SMS app - only a universial Messagning app (mail, sms) that ignores my animations o…

HTC Android 2011 flashback

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Android on HTC phones as of June 2011 - lacking but promising (June 2011)


Tested on htc phones: Hero, ChaCha (aka Status), Click (aka Tattoo), Buzz (aka Wildfire) with original and developers ROMs.

RESUME
Android is generally a stable and fairly mature (partly) cloud syncing platform. It still lacks simple/basic stuff as Undo and ToDo/tasks but has many useful features. Overall it looks fine and loading times seldomly slow you down. The software doesn't help you position the cursor (it lacks arrow-keys) but does a better job than e.g. iOS and webOS. Also it doesn't sync everything (only your mail and contacts - no bookmarks, SMS'es, apps, home-screen icon etc.) so moving to a new Android phone isn't smooth.

One click on the home button _always_ brings up the home screen (unlike in webOS which requires two actions and iOS that sometimes has as folder blocking the home-screen icons). The entire home screen software can easily be changed though - it's called a "laun…

HTC ChaCha (aka Status)

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A QWERTY android phone with big issues (July 2011)

VERDICT
Currently this is the ONLY Android phone on the market with QWERTY and both arrow keys and at least a 480 x 320 LCD.

Check for yourself - click here to see all QWERTY-bar Android phones.


HARDWARE
The QWERTY / hardware keyboard is the flimsiest I've tried yet. I've had Palm Treo, Centro, Pre, Motorola Charm, Pro/Fire and two Blackberries. These are ALL superior button feel-wise.

The keys are OK but it's easy to press a key without meaning too.

The left arrow key only clicks and feels right when pushed on its left side or directly from above. This is very unfortunate since you mostly push it on its right side (after using the other arrows) where it doesn't click and feels wrong. I confirmed this bug on three ChaChas in HTC's concept store hands-on in Copenhagen.

The ChaCha easily dropped vertically - the dry metal is edge-less/grip-less - almost like the Pre but ChaCha feels "dry" and slippery even in …

Your phone is too big

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Phone size can slow you down (December 2011)


If the top of the display is further than 9 cm from the bottom of the phone most people can't comfortably reach the whole display with one hand.

And what about the power button on the top?

iPad touch keyboard

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Not as easy as you might think David Filskov (December 2011)



I was using an iPad 2 with English layout for this review. I can live with the iPad's in many ways inefficient layout - and I use my laptop a lot less.
I've tried typing on several Android devices and they aren't much better than the iPad. Different but equal amount of quirks.
I've designed my own keyboard now.

SYMBOLS
It takes a while getting used to not using Shift to reach common symbols like ( / @ - ' " : etc. Since Apple didn't use Shift it takes THREE taps (not two) to type a symbol. And underscore (and others) often requires FOUR taps. Confusingly - and for no obvious reason - comma and full stop both move to new keys when you write digits. Why? Holding Backspace works nicely to begin with but after a little while it starts deleting HUGE blocks of text. Luckily you have Undo and even Redo.
CORRECTING TYPOS ...is a pain in the b... Or rather: You don't correct typos. You re-write the whole word. …

Google Nexus S

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Perfect size and weight - horrible touchscreen David Filskov (August 2012)




The slow touchscreen makes this phone slower and more buggy to use than any other capacitive touchscreen phone I've tried. Too bad since many other aspects of Nexus S are good.

GOOD HARDWARE - Weight and size are just perfect. - Smooth enough graphics - faster when animations are off (in dev. options). - Good video quality (not HD but close) but lousy indoors - too dark. - Audio-recording somewhat noisy and easily distorts since input is a bit too loud. - Great screen (LCD). Impressive black-level - almost like an OLED.
- Best auto-brightness I've ever seen - never too bright like all other phones - even in dark places.


INTERFACE
Touch-screen seriously lagging - Samsung had it for repair and confirmed "No faults detected". It's MEANT to be lagging :(
Nexus S almost NEVER responds to light touches :(
I ALWAYS have to type slowly and firmly to make it each touch register. Another broken behavio…

Windows 8 on a tablet

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Good old Windows programs - but the swiping sucks David Filskov (April 2012)


I was running Windows 8 on an Asus Eee Slate EP121 for this review.

EDGE SWIPING - A BUMMER In Windows 8 you must swipe from outside the screen an onto it to reach the most important functions. This, however, is working badly. Very often the active app thinks you're simply swiping inside the screen area and reacts accordingly - often with a fatal (data-wise) result. Also a swipe or a tap close to the edge (e.g. when tapping the space-bar) is sometimes interpreted as a swipe starting outside the screen and performs the unwanted function - often with a loss of work as a result. The outside-the-screen-swiping should be changed and re-thought.

TYPING A SPACE WRONGLY CAUSES AN UPWARDS SWIPE The swipe from the bottom happens very often when you tap the space-bar on the software keyboard (and believe me, you type space a LOT) - this closes the keyboard and brings up a menu. Mind you that's while you're typing a…