G1 – My week 1 review

I should preface this review by mentioning a few things:

  • The G1 was my first venture into any sort of smart phone / pda, so I don’t know how other devices compare.
  • I’m a Google addict.
  • I like to be productive and hate repeating tasks or maintaining multiple lists (e.g. contacts and to do lists) on multiple platforms (e.g. cell phone, e-mail, even paper)
  • I get insanely frustrated on usability issues.
  • This is not an in depth review, just a review based on my individual needs, wants, and expectations.

I’ll start with the good first.

Using the device and navigating through it could not be easier. Like I mentioned above I get insanely frustrated when things are not intuitive. I was able to get the phone up and running and use all of it’s features by simply poking around. It’s very easy to learn and use. The touch screen is responsive. The roller ball is easy to use and responsive.

Like I prefaced, I’m a Google addict, so I had been using gmail and my only e-mail (besides work) and have been using the contacts in there as my main contact manager. So “having everything in one place,” which is important to me, was a snap since I’ve been using Google for almost everything to begin with. So, immediately I was all synced up.

The Google maps feature is amazing. I love that I can plot my exact location, then find directions from there. I wish I had this when I was lost in New Jersey a few weeks ago. It’s the next best thing to a GPS navigator.

The camera is easy to use, although you have to keep your hand real steady to get a non-blurry pic.

IM is quick and easy to use. Google Talk, Yahoo, AIM and Windows Live are all loaded. All simple to use.

I haven’t really tried amazon MP3, or even played with adding my music to it. This is really not a high priority for me as I really wanted something more for productivity than entertainment.

So far, some of the apps available are pretty cool. I installed the weather channel one–nothing groundbreaking, but pretty cool to get local weather with one touch. Pro Football Live to keep track of NFL scores. I guess that’d be cool if you’re away from watching football on Sundays. I’ve yet to try ShopSavvy, which supposedly lets you scan barcodes of products in stores and finds comparative prices in the area.

Now the bad.

A big WTF is not having an app installed that lets you create or edit Google Docs or Notes. There goes my “access from anywhere to do list” dream. There is a separate notepad type app to download, but it’s not a cross-platform app. I want something that I can edit and have synced/access to across any device.

More of an inconvience than a WTF… And this has more to do with gmail contacts than the G1 device. I have a ton of duplicates contacts since each one is unique to an e-mail address. A lot of my contacts have multiple e-mail addresses, like I do. Gmail and/or G1 should come up with something to merge contacts. I have too many to do manually.

A Google Reader app would be nice too, although it’s easy enough to access and use through the browser.

That’s my thoughts for now. More to come soon.

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