View Full Version : Considering webOS to Android switch - what issues?

01-09-2011, 02:25 PM
I've had a Palm Pre (well, three Pres...) for long enough to qualify for an upgrade, but I'm considering switching to Android via the new Evo Shift. (Before the Pre, I had several PalmOS phones, and a BlackBerry 7100t before that. Never an Android or MS phone.)

I love love love the way webOS works - the cards, the swipes, etc. - but we all know that Palm's hardware just doesn't live up to the amazingly more-Mac-like-than-iPhone OS. Also, my keyboard is starting to go flaky, and without a keyboard there's just no point.

I use my phone primarily for the following things: texting, e-mail (4 accounts between work and personal), nav, reading websites (slate, nyt.com, etc.) or gchatting while I'm waiting in line for TSA or something, and quick-n-dirty photos. The Pre's abysmal call quality has made me talk on the phone much less than I used to, though a better-sounding phone might change that. I rarely use other multimedia features, and that's not a phone-capability thing but a workflow issue. If I want to watch a Youtube video or something, I'll usually do it on my MacBook. Features-wise, the only thing I really don't like about webOS is that there's no way to back up my SMS's. (Maybe there is, but it requires knowledge I don't have.)

What issues would I encounter in switching to Android?

Any weird things that other webOS switchers experienced at first?

Will Android give me the same integration with all of the "cloud" contact lists as webOS Synergy without having to do a bunch of time-consuming contact-linking?

Are the GPS's in these phones typically better than the Pre's?

Are the SMS issues one reads about endemic to Android or only on certain phones? (My sister's HTC Hero occasionally "disappears" text messages like it was a Latin American dictator ca. 1986.)

The other phone I'm considering is the BB Style, though things like a hard 160char SMS limit are annoying. And just waiting to see what HP comes out with in a month, because webOS on more reliable hardware would be just fine with me. At least since I assume there won't be a Sprint iPhone in the next two months or so.

01-10-2011, 12:04 AM
I have never owned a webOS phone but there are a couple common complaints that I have heard from former webOS users. One is that there is no default way to create different ringer profiles. I'm pretty sure there are some apps out there that do it but couldn't tell you which ones. The other thing is that Android does not handle its multitasking in the form of cards. webOS people seem to miss those though there is an app called itching thumb that implements something similar rather elegantly.

As far as the cloud is concerned, Android is heavily rooted in the cloud. All your contacts and calendar info will be automatically synced with a gmail account so if you don't have one already you will want to make one. One thing that will make you happy is that iCal on your Mac syncs beautifully with your google calendar so when you add an appointment in iCal, in just a couple minutes it will automatically appear on your phone's calendar, no need to hook the phone up to sync it. Through the cloud you can send web pages, driving directions and other things directly from your chrome browser to your phone. If you start reading something on your Mac and have to run out, click one button and it will be on your phone to finish reading on the run.

The GPS in my EVO is dead on accurate and have NEVER had a problem with it. I'm pretty sure every other EVO owner will tell you the same thing. I'm sure the Shift is at least as good as the EVO is.

The sms thing is definitely real but doesn't seem to affect everybody. It's more of a minor annoyance than anything. Good news is that google has found the problem and already put out the patch, HTC should follow suit shortly.

Android isn't perfect, but it is awesome and very versatile. I'm sure if you do make the switch, you will be very happy. I hope I've answered your questions, and if you have any more feel free to ask.

Also, welcome! :)

01-10-2011, 09:21 PM
Thanks for the input. That Itching Thumb app may just make the choice for me! And maybe future Android versions will do stuff natively now that they've hired some ex-webOS people do work on their UI. They seem to have lots of swipes in their tablet previews.

Does Android/Sense also automatically sync with facebook as seamlessly webOS Synergy does? I love having my contacts automatically update when a FB friend updates contact info or profile pics.

Truth be told I think I'm going to deal with my failing Pre until the Feb announcement, but I'm also going to look at the Evo Shift as soon as ATL roads are passable again.

01-14-2011, 11:39 AM
I haven't been on a Sense ROM for a while now so I'm not the best person to ask but I'm pretty sure that if you have it set to sync your contacts it will update. I don't think it's going to change the phone number in your gmail contacts, but it will change it within the facebook phone book. The pictures do update, I remember that much.

01-17-2011, 04:53 PM
I'm thinking the same thing. Which of the touchscreen phone (http://mobile-store.dell.com/touch-screen-phones-324.html) versions for Sprint droids are the best in terms of usability?

01-31-2011, 10:57 PM
Ended up ordering an Evo. Cheers, everyone!