1st ever 3g phone.. LG Ally
This is a discussion on Phone before the LG Ally? within the LG Ally forums, part of the LG Android Phones category; 1st ever 3g phone.. LG Ally...
Currently using the LG Ally as of a week ago today. Previously had a Blackberry Curve 8330. I'm so loving the Ally right now, still have a few things to learn.
Well, I tried my Ally for a week, but have gone back to my XV6800 WinMo phone. Reasons so far (more a reminder to myself of what I need to motivate me to move from functional WinMo to anything else):
1. Tethering - I cannot get adb to work to root Ally, to modify it for tethering (then modify each target device to tether, etc). PDAnet does not get past my employer's VPN startup (nor for WinMo either), but I can use the native WinMo Internet Connection Sharing just fine, as well as for my personal Linux setup, and Modem Link for BT connection with my Nokia N810 Internet Tablet. I have lost too much time already trying to to get up to that level of crucial functionality (for work access on the road/power outage/etc).
2. "Fingertip interface" - this actually gets my fingertips so dry and hard (all the swiping on the screen material?) that I start having trouble getting them to register (happened with an Eris 6 months ago, too, but I thought that was just winter heat drying), and that ridiculous design of requiring the "center"of the fingertip to register on the tiny keyboard keys (and having to keep switching between alpha and numeric keysets - what WERE they thinking?? The physical keyboard is the only reason I was willing to give Android another try on the Ally, since it is one of the better thumbboards, aside from slick keytops, and only offering the hindering qwerty design instead of having a Dvorak option), and other control buttons (the pulldown status menu at the top is a real challenge). The WinMo resistive touch screen lets me use about any kind of stylus-like pointer, including a fingernail, and the Letter Recognizer is second nature to a Palm Graffiti veteran - works for me much better.
Now if Celio ever comes through with its promised Android support on my C7 RedFly terminal, that might change the playing field substantially. My 6800 does not have quite enough memory and CPU to make that so appealing as it could otherwise be. A viewable screen (for old eyes), and touch-typeable keyboard (and yes, even a touchpad, if not my preferred trackpoint, which would give even more room for keys) makes the WinMo much more usable for productivity and web browsing, and would be even more helpful with the Ally with its much greater power and app choices. The next best thing would be VNC server on the Ally (I have seen several VNC viewer type apps, but no one seems to have seen the use for the server side of the equation).
3. No wired headset to complement a BT wireless headset such as my Moto 710 BT headset which does not work for music. As I understand it, I need a stereo A2DP type BT headset, but since I am deaf in 1 ear, I have no interest in spending extra money on that, but I do find any kind of headset that gets the sound to my somewhat impaired "good" ear is often a necessity with a bad call connection, which brings me to the next problem...
4. The receptivity of the Ally is definitely inferior to the XV6800 based both on db numbers (per FieldTrial on the 6800), and subjectively to my hearing, and EVDO download speeds per dslreports.com. I am guessing regular trips through central Virginia (former Alltel bastion that has been pretty well integrated by Verizon) would have almost as many dropouts as the AT&T phone I used a while for work (only - kept Verizon for personal use). This is very noticeable in my Verizon-resistant house, even with a ZBoost repeater.
5. Google "entanglement" - I use Google stuff a lot, but I prefer to keep it somewhat "in its place", and not live in that universe. I am finding that Android makes that degree of separation on such a phone difficult to maintain if I want to take full advantage of the Marketplace and builtin apps. With WinMo and its localized PIM apps, and being able to serve as a gateway for other devices, I can interact with Google a bit more selectively (getting harder to do all the time it seems as Buzz showed where they can go on short notice).
This applies to my work stuff, too. I am not supposed to post work Outlook calendar items with any "sensitive" info externally, and 80% of my work email is "internal spam" that I spend a lot of time deleting (internal organizational/group structures, don't ask...), and that really works best in the full-blown Outlook environment, so I have no interest in that much-ballyhooed integration "feature". I manully put the brief notices I care about in my WinMo calendar (i.e. "Teleconf re Curr Issues" 10-11 - "DING" at 9:45), and that is all I need on that device. Android is rather "wasted" in the PIM regard if I want to keep that separation.
6. I am not interested in the "social networking" lemming trek - I have a FaceBook account, but the stuff I see there makes me wonder if Iwould not be better off just dropping out.
Aside from those "quibbles", it really is a cool device with Google Navigator (altho Google Maps on WinMo provides some of its benefits in terms of mapping/directions/traffic - just no more updates it seems; and Maemo Mapper on the N810 is comparable to some degree, and on a much more viewable screen in the car), Pandora, a decent web browser, ebook reader from Borders (if I could stand staring at the screen for any length of time), and lotsa neat apps like Shazam, and barcode readers (although none seem to save the info for me to catalogue my library of several thousand books).
Since it did not cost me anything with my NE2 upgrade, I am considering keeping it as an Android version of the iPod Touch with the wifi being its only connection to the 'net (and I might try to set it up with wifi tethering on my 6800, but I am leery of that exposure and battery drain vs USB and BT tethering). Thus I could see if the 2.2 update, or any others worthwhile come along, including finding the "Open Sesame" for adb/rooting. But then, if something better does come along from Verizon, I would not have the chance in the next 20 months or so to try that out, so I need to decide before my 30 day trial period is up at the end of July.
Overall, I guess I am not quite ready to be fully assimilated into the Droid Collective (to mix sci-fi paradigms).
Update July 19: Seeing all the buzz about the update that seems to be cranking up (do we really need 6 different threads on that core topic?), I decided to switch back to the Ally for a few more days since I am not on--call/traveling, and see if that comes through, and has anything redemptive (esp letting me get adb to work, so I can try to get root, so I can try to tether, so I can ... whatever). Something else that needs redeeming is the BT tendency to disconnect from my Moto H710 headset after some minutes - not cool! If this update is not very helpful, then I will "cut bait" by about Thursday since I will be going on vacation the next week, which will make it a lot harder to return the phone before the deadline that week. Oh, my finger tips are drying out again after one day of usage - maybe it's due to my wiping them on my shirt more often to avoid that nasty smudginess I find so disgusting on all these shiny gadgets ...
I'm LG Ally....switched for the moto droid....guess ill stick with the ally till jan 2011 at least its a neat little phone