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I sold my Tosa a while ago to get a combined phone/PDA (it's an LG Incite, I like it alot, but it's Windows Mobile) (bad choice, by the way, I desperately miss it) and my heart is aching for embedded linux. I haven't thought much at all about Android because I'm not a google fanboy. I use because it is powerful and simple, I use gmail because it is well organized and effective. I certainly don't make a point of loving the company.

But the Motorola Droid has really piqued my interest (it is certainly sexy hardware) as an embedded linux device. Does anyone here have the Droid, (or even a different Android phone) that can speak to the experience? How powerful is it as a linux platform? How modifiable is the distribution/hardware? Would you recommend an Android Phone?


PS- Since I'm on AT&T here in the US, the CDMA(Verison) 'DROID' won't work for me. The "MILESTONE' is a GSM(AT&T/T-Mobile) version of the same phone. Is there anyone in Germany or Italy that would be willing to/capable of exporting the phone for me?
Apparently Palm's webOS is much more open than Android. The source for Android's app store is closed, so it makes installing new stuff a bit more of a chore. There is no ssh (ADB is required and I believe more restrictive).

Keep an eye out for Nokia N900...really good hardware running Maemo. They advertise openness...but who knows.

I'm also on ATT in the US, so I've got my eyes open. In the meantime, I play with my Openmoko FreeRunner.
the droid, or milestone here in europe, looks pretty good

but of late I've read some reviews which indicate there are design flaws and/or manufacturing problem

the n900 is still the best alternative to the zaurus as far as I can see without going to a UMPC like the netwalker
QUOTE(speculatrix @ Dec 18 2009, 07:01 AM) *
the droid, or milestone here in europe, looks pretty good

but of late I've read some reviews which indicate there are design flaws and/or manufacturing problem

the n900 is still the best alternative to the zaurus as far as I can see without going to a UMPC like the netwalker

Milestone Verses Zaurus or Jasjar

I am attempting to migrate from my Zaurus C3200 & Jasjar to the Milestone, I am about 75% of the way. Some of the issues are shown below. Most of the items are negative which is always the way as you have long since forgotten about the limitations of your old devices. I fully expect to complete the migration!

Like the screens once you get used to using gestures, love the smooth scrolling, speed is affected by speed gesture.

Milestone requires all input using your finger or thumb it will not respond to the use of a stylus or fingernail, this requires larger areas to activate options which reduces the space available to display other information. Example: List management applications enables you to display 7/12 lines of information Milestone will only show 2/6 lines (Landscape/portrait) as more screen space required for things such as edit button.

No copy/cut/paste facilities on Android so extra typing.

Zaurus & Jasjar uses a stylus to select options while the Milestone uses gestures. Navigating the Zaurus/Jasjar uses scroll bars while the Milestone requires you to drag the screen, I keep trying to use drag on my Zaurus!

I save lots of web pages for example on-line receipts or details of products that I am interested in, Milestone does not allow you to save web pages nor display pages saved on a PC & copies across. I understand that this is a limitation of Android as Opera does not support it on Android but does on other platforms.

Can’t synchronise with Outlook on the PC it can synchronise with Exchange, can transfer contacts etc., via Gmail & there are people working on a third party solution. I am trying to avoid Gmail as it comes up with a fatal error when trying to send messages to my domain email service, I don’t have this problem with any other email service.

Lots of free software on Google market place although it can be difficult to find what you want & some is of questionable quality. You can install applications without going through Google Market Place, just download to PC, copy file to Milestone after enabling by pressing menu key from the home screen click settings, applications then unknown sources to enable this. I have avoided applications that warn that they will make mobile phone calls as I only use WiFi for Internet access.

Comes with Motonav saterllite navigation, mine does not work, waiting for Motorola support to come back with a solution.

Some Milestone users have reported problems connecting to WiFi others can connect but can’t maintain a connection, lots of possible reasons being put forward but still not clear why. I have the later problem, my personal view is that the Milestone does not fully comply with WiFi standards so it does not have a problem with every router. Switching router off/on always fix it for me, doing this to Milestone never works.

Never remove the supplied xSDcard even briefly as as software protection will disable Motonav.

Keyboard does not have separate numeric keys so you have to press function key to use numbers.

My regular applications

Activity Zaurus Jasjar Milestone
Word Textmaker Textmaker DocsToGo
Spreadsheet Hancock PlanMaker DocsToGo
Passwords zSafe MyWallet IOsafe
Checklists/shopping ListPro EasyShopping
Notes Portabase StageOne UltraNotes
Bank Accounts CashOrganiser Cashew
Sat Nav Tomtom Motonav
Social Networking Facebook, MySpace
TV BeebPlayer
Photos PhotoStorage
Kids TuxPaint Still Looking

Not paid for any applications will probably pay for the full version of DocumentsToGo as this allows editing, also not sure if Motonav is a trial, will pay for a full version if it can replace Tomtom on my Jasjar.
thanks for that review. it definitely seems android has a way to go, and it does seem there's hardware problems (or driver issues) too.

I'm beginning to like the netwalker more and more. hmm, if only someone's found a way to implant a 3G modem :-)
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