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Flandry's Avatar
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#1
So i've been through 1.9 N900s. Both began their decline with a connection problem in the screen/backlight (something in that connection seems to be especially susceptible to high humidity), but the connectors on both are about shot, too. I thought about trying to replace the screen, but I'm increasingly concerned with the possibility of suddenly losing my "brain", and i don't like something i've become so dependent on being so increasingly rare and irreplaceable.

In short, i think it's time to bring in a replacement so i can begin to migrate my data.

The question i have is, what next?

I'll say up front i'm not looking to spend what the N900 cost again, ever, on a phone.

One of the things that i've been mulling over is whether i can ever come to accept and use an onscreen keyboard. It seems like GSM sliders with a QWERTY have all but disappeared. Is it possible to ever develop touch typing speed on a flat onscreen keyboard? How has your experience been, and what works for you?

Another thing is the camera. Now the N900's camera wasn't the best, even when it came out, but it was good enough for me to use as my main camera, especially with the all the extra tricks that came after the FCam drivers. I used a little tripod clamp to take a lot of photos on timer, including of myself during bike tours. I know there are some or many phones now with better cameras in terms of hardware, but which have software capable of replacing the N900s, if any? How has your experience been, and what do you recommend?

The third concern is multitasking. I've only encountered Android briefly in early (~2010) devices and a crappy entry-level no contract phone my gf had. I really didn't like the lack of camera-flicking to the task switcher and tapping in my other app, or being able to switch to a note app and type something in while on a call. How have you dealt with the loss of this aspect of the N900?

Fourth: offline nav apps. One of my important use cases for the N900 was to be able to navigate around on tour outside of network coverage, using predownloaded maps etc. The A-GPS issues and battery consumption made it a less than ideal use case in the end, but it did end up being very useful this way with the software that came out. With the increasing paradigm of always connected and cloud computing, are there any options like this for other phones? How is the integrated GPS these days in terms of performance and battery consumption?

Finally, what about notetaking and spreadsheets? I have my entire life in conboy, and the thought of losing the features it has is troubling. I have read a bit about Evernote and gnotes, but i'm curious about the actual experience from someone coming from the N900 and its options. I also love having gnumeric on my phone.

Thanks in advance for your feedback. I'm considering buying a used MyTouch G4 Slide because of its above-average camera and by virtue of being one of the last GSM phones with a landscape hardware keyboard that i'm aware of. Convince why i should/shouldn't buy a 2-year-old phone to replace my 4-year-old phone. lol

ETA: The "transflective" LCD display that is still visible in direct sunlight is another thing i appreciate about the N900. I don't know if other phone LCDs are this way or if it requires a special design, but that's something else i'd miss.
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Accelemymote: make your accelerometer more joy-ful

Last edited by Flandry; 2013-05-29 at 16:33.
 

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nokiabot's Avatar
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#2
I liked htc sidekick 4g
e90??
Moto backflip
some others
btw its wise for now to refurbish yor n900 insted its byfar the best in class till date
check the flex cable dude and connection problem is solved in many cases by home diy check forum or go to some refurbish shop insted...
 

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#3
Just to not become a "former" N900 user, I recently bought another to have repair parts in case of an accident with the main one.
 

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#4
So I wasn't ever a diehard n900 user. I have an N800 that was my primary device for a number of years, and I had an n900 that I used for about 6 months regularly before moving to a Galaxy Note 2. That being said, here are my thoughts.

1) Keyboard - Android has a good variety of onscreen keyboards, and I don't find typing speed to be a worry for most "normal" usage. I use a keyboard called Kii, which has the ability to use Swype typing, but also lets you add in a dedicated number row and generally has more keys. I also use Hacker's Keyboard which has all the keys in the standard place and you can do keyboard shortcuts with it. All in all I think I'm actually faster with the onscreen keyboard for most things than I would be with a physical keyboard. For me, the big problem is that the onscreen keyboard just covers to much of the screen, many times covering up what you are trying to see. For instance, when I'm typing a search query into a search engine, the suggestions that appear below the search box are almost always covered by the keyboard. I'd probably be happier with slower typing speed, as long as I could see the entire screen when I was typing.

2) Can't really comment on the camera, as I really only use mine as part of another app. like scanning checks for deposit.

3) Multitasking on Android just sucks. After years with Maemo devices I still can't get used to the crappy way they handle multitasking even after 6 months with my Note 2.

4) Offline maps, there is an open source program called OSMAnd -that uses Open Street Maps for offline navigation. I've downloaded it, but haven't really had the opportunity to use it for much yet, but I've read really good things about it.

5) I didn't get a chance to use Conboy very much, but I'd be surprised if you had a hard time finding a good note taking app for Android. Spreadsheets also seem to work fine. Gnumeric was fine the little bit I used it, but the GN2 screen size really comes in handy when working with spreadsheets and the software hasn't ever gotten in my way, and I haven't run into any Excel compatibility issues (but I haven't thrown any complicated sheets with VBA to it yet). My bigger issue with any kind of office work is that Android doesn't seem to have been built with a transparent file system in mind, so even though you can download a bunch of file managers to navigate through files, most programs don't really give you the ability to save a file where ever you want it.

All in all I can do what I need to do with Android, but using it is more frustration than pleasure. If I was in a position right now where I needed to move to a new platform I think I'd probably look at BB10 before Android. My boss got a Z10 a bit ago, and while I haven't used it extensively, I've really liked what I've seen so far and I think it will continue to get better with the next couple of updates.

If I could afford to wait a bit I'd look towards the end of the year and see what Jolla's phone looked like, and if anything was available from Ubuntu, Mozilla, or Tizen by that time.
 

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#5
Originally Posted by xanderx View Post
Just to not become a "former" N900 user, I recently bought another to have repair parts in case of an accident with the main one.
I can understand the sentiment, and was willing to do that when it was a newer device and the "next model" was expected in the near future, but with the product line essentially dead and the potential similar devices not yet available it's a different story.

So, i'm asking those that have actually moved on what platform they moved to and how they've coped etc.

I realize this may not be the best place to find those, but i imagine the more dedicated users pop in now and then, and those are the ones whose feedback is especially relevant.
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Unofficial PR1.3/Meego 1.1 FAQ

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Classic example of arbitrary Nokia decision making. Couldn't just fallback to the no brainer of tagging with lat/lon if network isn't accessible, could you Nokia?
MAME: an arcade in your pocket
Accelemymote: make your accelerometer more joy-ful
 

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#6
Originally Posted by dylanemcgregor View Post
So I wasn't ever a diehard n900 user. I have an N800 that was my primary device for a number of years, and I had an n900 that I used for about 6 months regularly before moving to a Galaxy Note 2. That being said, here are my thoughts.

1) Keyboard - Android has a good variety of onscreen keyboards, and I don't find typing speed to be a worry for most "normal" usage. I use a keyboard called Kii, which has the ability to use Swype typing, but also lets you add in a dedicated number row and generally has more keys. I also use Hacker's Keyboard which has all the keys in the standard place and you can do keyboard shortcuts with it. All in all I think I'm actually faster with the onscreen keyboard for most things than I would be with a physical keyboard. For me, the big problem is that the onscreen keyboard just covers to much of the screen, many times covering up what you are trying to see. For instance, when I'm typing a search query into a search engine, the suggestions that appear below the search box are almost always covered by the keyboard. I'd probably be happier with slower typing speed, as long as I could see the entire screen when I was typing.

2) Can't really comment on the camera, as I really only use mine as part of another app. like scanning checks for deposit.

3) Multitasking on Android just sucks. After years with Maemo devices I still can't get used to the crappy way they handle multitasking even after 6 months with my Note 2.

4) Offline maps, there is an open source program called OSMAnd -that uses Open Street Maps for offline navigation. I've downloaded it, but haven't really had the opportunity to use it for much yet, but I've read really good things about it.

5) I didn't get a chance to use Conboy very much, but I'd be surprised if you had a hard time finding a good note taking app for Android. Spreadsheets also seem to work fine. Gnumeric was fine the little bit I used it, but the GN2 screen size really comes in handy when working with spreadsheets and the software hasn't ever gotten in my way, and I haven't run into any Excel compatibility issues (but I haven't thrown any complicated sheets with VBA to it yet). My bigger issue with any kind of office work is that Android doesn't seem to have been built with a transparent file system in mind, so even though you can download a bunch of file managers to navigate through files, most programs don't really give you the ability to save a file where ever you want it.

All in all I can do what I need to do with Android, but using it is more frustration than pleasure. If I was in a position right now where I needed to move to a new platform I think I'd probably look at BB10 before Android. My boss got a Z10 a bit ago, and while I haven't used it extensively, I've really liked what I've seen so far and I think it will continue to get better with the next couple of updates.

If I could afford to wait a bit I'd look towards the end of the year and see what Jolla's phone looked like, and if anything was available from Ubuntu, Mozilla, or Tizen by that time.
Thanks, really appreciate your comments. I'll take a look at the new BB and see how it looks. Never thought i'd take BB seriously as an OS...

I had really hoped that android would evolve into a more "complete" OS over time, but i guess that hasn't really been a design goal for Google.
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Unofficial PR1.3/Meego 1.1 FAQ

***
Classic example of arbitrary Nokia decision making. Couldn't just fallback to the no brainer of tagging with lat/lon if network isn't accessible, could you Nokia?
MAME: an arcade in your pocket
Accelemymote: make your accelerometer more joy-ful
 

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#7
Galaxy note lll is the way to go. Wait for it...unless a keyboard device appears along the way. If you don't like it, get Note ll and you still get a great Penn.
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Last edited by Dave999; 2013-05-27 at 19:50.
 

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#8
N9 -> Jolla
 

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#9
I've been reading reviews of Blackberry OS 10 and it induces a bit of deja vu from when i discovered Maemo. Talk of how it's a much more secure and sophisticated OS, etc.

Interesting comment i encountered here: "Hmm... sorry, I may have spoke too soon. I have never had the pleasure of using a webOS device. I have heard only rave reviews, though. I believe MeeGo was likely inspired heavily by webOS, and in turn somebody on the UI team for BB10 was definitely inspired by MeeGo. There's just too many similarities for that not to be the case."

Looks like i'm not going to like the photography aspect of a BB device, though.
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Unofficial PR1.3/Meego 1.1 FAQ

***
Classic example of arbitrary Nokia decision making. Couldn't just fallback to the no brainer of tagging with lat/lon if network isn't accessible, could you Nokia?
MAME: an arcade in your pocket
Accelemymote: make your accelerometer more joy-ful

Last edited by Flandry; 2013-05-27 at 21:47.
 

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#10
Originally Posted by Flandry View Post
Thanks, really appreciate your comments. I'll take a look at the new BB and see how it looks. Never thought i'd take BB seriously as an OS...

I had really hoped that android would evolve into a more "complete" OS over time, but i guess that hasn't really been a design goal for Google.
I was never really a fan of the old BB devices, except for their email capabilities. I like that the new devices have good multitasking and what to me are really intuitive gestures. They are also the only OS manufacturer that I trust to really take enterprise usage seriously. That has been one of the few areas that Maemo really fell down in, and iOS and Android are not much better.

I also feel that iOS and Android are already pretty limited by what they have already done. I think both will have trouble evolving into what N900 users would think of as a real multitasking OS, just because of all the legacy apps that have been built to explicitly ignore this kind of functionality.

BB10 and Sailfish seem like the best option we have at the moment, an OS built from the ground up to support multitasking, but with support for running Android apps, so you can fall back on that for any needed functionality until someone develops a native app.
 

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