Playing with Magic

It is official; I am in love; with my new HTC Magic Google Phone.

I have now had my new toy for two weeks and in some ways I cannot remember what life was like before it, or how I survived without it. To put it simply this is more than a gadget or a toy that will bore you after a while, two weeks in and I am still finding things to do with it.

Firstly the specs:

  • 3.2in flat panel touch screen running at 320×480 resolution
  • 528Mhz CPU
  • 512MB ROM
  • 192MB RAM
  • 8GB MicroSD
  • Quad Band GSM
  • Bluetooth
  • Wifi
  • USB
  • 3.2 Megapixel camera
  • Android 1.5 (cupcake) operating system

This mobile phone has more power than my computer from 2003. You may go wow 2003 was a long time ago in technology terms, but in the space of six years to compact more power into a phone then what was in a computer is still really impressive.

Here is a quick highlight of my experience with it over the past two weeks:

Android – Android officially rocks. It is Google’s open source Operating System for mobile phones and it has more power built into it then one could ever expect. Normally you do not have to wait long for a mobile phone to turn on or off. Android is like a computer it must be booted or shutdown and it does take time.

3G Coverage – In NZ Vodafone run their mobile network on three different frequencies. Having just been away I have experienced the use of all three. And the phone handles all really well and having the use of all three means I can get the best possible coverage in any location I go. Take that iPhone which only operates on two. (so if you are in a coverage area with the one that iPhone does not operate on you will have no signal).

3.2 Megapixel Camera – The photos and the video from my snow trip earlier this week were almost all exclusively taken on the phone. The camera is really good, however I have yet to find out if it can zoom, and also it is slow to focus and actually take the photos so it is probably not much use for fast moving situations, plus no flash so you need some form of decent light to get a good photo.

USB connection to computer – Now this is cool, while connected to USB the phone can charge, you can use the phone like a flash drive accessing the 8GB MicroSD card inside it, you can also download all your photos and videos and stuff from the phone. But best of all through the use of PDANET you can tether internet off it. So if you are in a place where your laptop has no internet access you can plug in your phone and get access through the 3G network.

Powered by Google – I cannot begin to describe how awesome this is. Gmail at the touch of a button you can both read and send email. Google Talk on the go. YouTube built in, and the streaming of video through 3G is really quick and smooth too, you can also upload video to YouTube. Google Maps built in, and GPS to show you where you are. Oh and did I mention Google Gears built in too.

Android Market – You can download apps on the go. This reminds me of a very old 8mb Palm Pilot I had many years ago, so far I have installed a weather app, a battery meter, a fuel mileage calculator, virtual bible software, wordpress blogging software, a notepad, and a voice recorder.

Full Internet Access – Android comes with a web browser built in, but it is a little slow and can’t quite handle all websites 100% right. Never fear just download Opera Mini through the Marketplace, it is really fast, the GUI is a little hard to use but the way it displays websites is really good. Only crashed badly once (through my own doing).

Touch-screen and Keyboard – this is my only annoyance. I have big fingers and even with the screen rotated the keyboard is still hard to use. Also a lack of stylus or any place to buy one and place it onto the phone.

Overall 10/10 this phone really does rock, and it just simply amazing.