In keeping with my last post, I wanted to post a brief review on another new product I recently acquired thanks to my team at HP. To level-set, I love my iPad, I love my iPhone, I love apple products, and they keep multiplying around my house. That being said I have been very interested in android as a technology, and I am excited to test out the new product.
A few weeks ago I received an HP Slate 7 for winning a work related contest. From a hardware perspective it does feel a little less solid than my iPad, but honestly not bad. The display is not as crisp, movies don’t pop quite as much, and the camera leaves a bit to be desired. I have also noticed that apps lag, I attribute this partially to hardware and partially to the operating system.
From an OS perspective, I equate this lot to linux v. Mac OS. Similar concepts, but Mac OS delivers a more polished product. I like that Android is so easy to customize from an end user perspective. I love that I can pull up a terminal window and actually look at the system. I found it easy to use, but I also found it with so many options, sometimes I get sidetracked and forget what I originally started doing. They keyboard is not optimal, it does have some lag, and is not as simple as the iOS keyboard I am used to. Where I found Android really shines is multitasking. I don’t lose context when I switch between apps, they simply pick up where I left off, something my iOS devices struggle to do still, especially with iOS 7. I have also found that widgets are quite useful, and very well done.
The ecosystem is ok, albeit a bit frustrating. Some apps such as the Gmail app are far superior. Others don’t work on my version of android, and I cannot upgrade until HP releases the new code. I could of course root the device and upgrade, or sideload the apps, but one pull of the mobile operating systems is the appstore ecosystem. I have found a number of great apps, but I do prefer apple’s approach.
One final thought, with all the devices I have, I am starting to compartmentalize them. I love using my Chromebook for email and web surfing. I love my iPad for traveling, video chat, note taking, and watching netflix/hulu. I love my Slate 7 for reading and games. My iPhone is still the best camera, and good for quick responses to e-mail. At the end of the day, this is a lot of devices, but much better than carrying around my heavy workstation replacement laptop. Each has it’s place, and I hope Android can improve, but for now, I am very happy with my Apple devices.