Wednesday, July 8, 2009

3 Month Samsung Omnia Update

So, I've had this phone for 3 months, and I am still undecided as to whether it is actually a productive device or not.

RANTS -

  1. Sleeping Pattern - For whatever reason, the phone goes to sleep and will tell me when someone calls, but not when I get a text message or any other notification. It's irritating. My text messages are just as valid, if not more important than my phone calls. I'd like the phone to wake up and tell me. I have tried all sorts of settings (sounds on/off, vibrate, flashing lights) and it just doesn't work. The only notification I get is a sound or a vibration, but the screen does not wake up. If I happen to not be paying attention at that moment, I won't notice. I don't usually have the sounds turned on anyway, so it's useless.
  2. "Mobile" sites - Several rants here. Although the world claims to be mobile-friendly by offering mobile sites for just about everything (not really...), these mobile sites leave a lot to be desired.
    • i-devices and other fruits - Half of the time, the so-called mobile site is only available for iPhones (iPod Touch) and Blackberry. Windows Mobile has been around for quite a while. Why just ignore the folks using it? It's ridiculous. I can understand the case with iTunes (even though I won't like it), but for other sites not owned by Apple, why be that way. If you have a useful site/app, make it available to everyone - not just to people who talk into fruit based phones.
    • Same ol' crap - Some mobile sites are merely just the regular site with the bells and whistles stripped out. They are difficult to navigate on a mobile device because they weren't designed with the user experience in mind. Folks need to remember that a mobile user is probably busy, wants something fairly quickly, might have a tedious connection and wants full functionality. A poorly designed site for a regular PC is just as poor on a smaller screen with the fancy graphics stripped out.
    • Half functional - so to combat the problem outlined above, some sites choose to strip out some functionality. That's all well and good, but don't strip out the core of the site. For instance, there's a great Facebook app for Windows Mobile. However, you cannot search for and connect with any new friends. That defeats one of the main purposes of Facebook. This app is merely a window into your existing Facebook world. Heaven forbid if you're watching TV and decide to "friend" your local TV station and you'd just like to type in their Facebook name. Irritating.
  3. Battery life - Still poor. I need a solar charger or static electricity charger or something. It's ridiculous.
  4. A Shell, Really? - It appears that the answer to my problem of accessing the apps I want in the way I want is to use a different shell than the one that comes out of the box. This is irritating. If it's taken 3 months to get this far with the phone, how long will it take me to find the right shell, install it and figure out if it's stable and functional? I am hesitant to go through the trouble.
  5. Shallow Saving - Apps that only save to the root level of a storage area. Several apps only save things to one level of folders. So, even though I have a nicely organized subfolder system to separate work from pleasure, I can't use it, because I can only save to my top level folders.
  6. Losing my Memory - I still have the storage memory issue. Not sure why it crops up, but if I really need to use my camera, I suddenly have less than 5 MB storage memory available. Not sure why. I haven't found the answer to this yet.
  7. Tethering issues - I have tethering issues. The problem is different every time and it takes me multiple tries to get tethered successfully to my laptop. I'm not even talking about just doing ActiveSync. I can do that, though I don't yet use it for anything functional, because everything important is stored online somewhere. I am just talking about using my phone as a modem. Once it's going, it's usually ok (75% of the time), but it's annoying that I can't just plug it in and connect even when I remember that I have to change some settings on the phone.
  8. Touch screen - I'm still wrestling with the touch screen. I'd prefer if the touch was a double touch to launch things. I spend a lot of time accidently touching things and then closing them. Maybe that is related to my memory problem.

RAVES -

  1. I finally got the alarm clock working seamlessly. I'm happily able to wake up on time now.
  2. I discovered how to set ringtones from any mp3. It's a blessing... or not. Now I change my ringtone every other day and don't know when my phone is ringing. haha.
  3. Better organization - I've figured out where to save all of my files so I know where everything is. You'd think this would be simple since I have a MY Documents folder, but surprisingly it's difficult. See number 5 above.
  4. Storage capacity and file viewing - So far, my most productive uses of the phone has been to keep reference material for work handy so I can pop open a document in a pinch. That's been nice.

So, more rants than raves. I don't hate the phone. I am actually still undecided. I don't regret getting it, I'm just disappointed that it has taken hours of work to feel like I'm getting some value out of it. And no, I do not think that switching to an iPhone will solve my problems. I'm sure they are there too.

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