Friday, December 23, 2011

Hurray for Honeycomb

I had all but abandoned any hope of my View getting Honeycomb so you can imagine my surprise on Wednesday night when I suddenly had an available update to 3.2! I was hesitant to go ahead with it until I noted that it promised I would not lose my data. I applied the update and in a few minutes was enjoying the best that Honeycomb had to offer. The layout is still taking me a bit to get used to- my muscle memory makes my eye flicker to the top right of my screen to check the time.
All the apps I had still work with 2 notable exceptions: HBO Go will not even launch now bit that's fine since I could never get it to actually play videos. The most painful loss is StylishGirl, where I have meticulously and lovingly logged months of outfits only to have it force close on startup.
But, on the bright side, a good number of apps have slicker tablet versions I can now enjoy. Aesthetically I'm finding that I enjoy the overall look of HC. And the scribe pen which could previously only scribble notes can now interact with all aspects of the device. So thank you Sprint and HTC for a pleasant Christmas gift!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

AppSnap: Next Issue

Last month I wrote about some of the gaps between the iPad and the Evo View. I was especially bummed about the lack of support for the People Magazine digital edition. Then yesterday I stumbled upon NextIssue which is in beta but works fantastically already.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

I was thrilled to find that, like the iPad version, I could parlay our print subscription into a free digital edition. Once I entered my number, I was able to get the current issue and I get an email reminding me when a new issue is available. But the best surprise by far was that this app supports all the 'bonus' content. The People app has a good amount of interactive content that makes the reading experience even better.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Acer Iconia A100: A brief affair...

I've had a somewhat unhealthy fixation on Honeycomb for a while now- and eventually just flicking through at my local Best Buy wasn't cutting it. Over the Thanksgiving shopping period I noticed the Acer Iconia had dropped to as low as $189. I didn't act quickly enough to snag one at that price, but I did find one at Gamestop.com for $240 and convinced myself it was worth my while.
The first thing I noticed was how light it is compared to my Evo View. Not that my View is a brick, but I definitely noticed how heavy it was next to the Acer. The body was slick and had an interesting shape. When I turned it on, I spent the first few moments playing with Honeycomb. I didn't like the stock launcher as it wasted a lot of space allowing for the rotation from landscape to portrait. So, after downloading Launcherpro I felt more at home. More exploration led me to realize that Honeycomb is not that much different from Gingerbread on a tablet. In fact, there is a certain uniformity that Honeycomb is missing- everything in Gingerbread happens in the status bar, but in Honeycomb you need to go right for the clock, go left for the task switcher, remember which icon is used to go back.
In the end, the thing that annoyed me the most about the Iconia was the home button. In portrait orientation things were fine, but hold it in landscape and your fingers inevitable brush by the button dumping you right back on the home page. If there is already a home button as part of the OS, please tell me why there is a need for another physical button? I bundled the Iconia back up, but because I wasn't quite sure what the Gamestop return policy is I decided to go to a local store to return it. My first try was unsuccessful but the manager did point me to a store that stocked the Iconia and would probably take a return. So, I was able to return the Iconia, less shipping cost, and finally was able to put my Honeycomb curiosity to rest.