Mobile Phone – with Android

Well, Android is obviously the only option on a mobile phone for me. After and a half decades not owning a mobile phone, I now decided to get one. But primarily not for communication but for navigation (Android even has free navigation via Google-Maps, continuously improved, closing the gap to traditional/standalone navigators) and for those potential, rare cases one could really need one. Android over other systems, because it is open and (thus) also decentralized. Don’t like the Google-hosted Android marketplace? Just switch to the third party provided marketplace of your choice! Or don’t use one at all.

Read on for the details, suggestions and impressions …

The device is a Motorola Defy. Best value per price I could find, 230 € with everything your could need.

As a provider, I chose to go with Simyo. Pre-paid and their price is defined, static. 9 ct/min to Telephone as well as any mobile device networks and per SMS. Internet is 24 ct/MB, which I’m not sure how good that is. Making sure you have enough money on the pre-paid is easy, they got many options automatic, manually per click, whatever you like. But best of all, you can easily upgrade to flatrates, complete or part, big or small. For 5 €/month 100 MB Internet, for 10 €/month for 1 GB. And if you have no flatrate and really use it that much, everything above 39 € is free (normal connections, non paid4-phone numbers etc ofc.)! By the way, you get your SIM-card with 5 € for 4.90 €.

So, after first use, my impressions:

Meh Motorolas own Android fork Motoblur. First start-up it asks you to create an account with a SUPER LONG Agreement, which seemed quite laggy while scrolling, probably because of its size. Gladly, you can skip it, hidden in the menu/options functionality. Sadly, there is no description of what Motoblur is or does prior to the setup/agreement or within the agreement. Turns out it’s some widgets, social media apps and apps for locating and/or disabling your phone via remote, even allowing to erase all data, in case of emergency/robbery. You can do so via their internet-accessible website portal. I skipped the registration process, because I didn’t like the EULA and that all my data would be synchronized to them, into the USA, and they seemingly tried to resign any guarantee in the EULA.

Onwards, it somewhen asked me if I will allow google to get my location data. I denied, as I would like to allow that on a per-app an/or per-usage time. Unfortunately, I did not find out how to enable it anywhere later on. Still looking in to that.

Secondly, as I do not have an internet flatrate but it would still seem to synchronize over the internet (you can lower the amount/frequence in the settings at least, but I’m not sure what that includes – just contacts?). Good thing marketplace and internet: NetCounter will seemingly give you stats, separated into Wi-Fi and G3 and APNdroid (ads 🙁 – src avail, interesting, no license info, bad – APN on-off looks good) will allow you to disable the G3 internet connection. For Jabber I’ll try Xabber, especially because of it’s focus on 1 protocol and support for multiple accounts, possibly also Jabiru.

I’m still gonna have to look into how much is different from Motoblur to default Android if I don’t even use the Motoblur apps and services, if I can simply change to Android, and how I can upgrade my Android version. Secondly, if it’s the in-house, between-mountains and walls place I am currently at and/or my denial of providing Google my location why it didn’t work yet, and how I can allow it again. Thirdly … was there something else?

Do you have any suggestions on apps I should use? On settings? Anything else?

Let’s see if I can find the time and interest/idea to develop something … I at least already learned it last year – without a phone then.