Android and Linux

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Galaxy Nexus

I finally got a Galaxy Nexus. I went Thursday at 11:15, walked in and told them I wanted a Galaxy Nexus and they said "We don't have them yet. They're coming in via UPS today. We're getting 8 of them and can save one for you if you want."

Yes, I live in a small town.

I didn't get around to buying one until yesterday afternoon. Since I enjoy voiding warranties within an hour of purchase, I promptly rooted it but didn't have time to do much else. Last night, I was a little upset because I kept losing root. I still don't know what the problem was, I'd flash the recovery and su binary and I would be doing something as root in a terminal when suddenly it would tell me "only root can do that" and I could no longer su. The root checker app said I had root, and the superuser app showed that certain apps were allowed and logged them as allowed when I opened them, but they still reported that they couldn't gain root.

It kept losing root after numerous flashes and rootings until I flashed this ROM this morning, and that seems to have cleared it up.

Anyway, my impressions on the Galaxy Nexus...

This puppy is huge! I'm charging the battery on my digital camera to try to get some comparisons of the Nexus One and Galaxy Nexus, but if you want a good idea of the size, it's almost the exact same size as a dollar bill, except a little shorter.

You ever go to a cell phone store and look at the flip phones and think "awww, such cute little screens, but I don't know how you could get anything done on that tiny little window." I felt that way when picking up the N1 after 20 minutes with the GNex.

The N1 had a habit of turning in my pocket, the GNex stands tall and it's thinner, so although it's much larger, it rides in my pocket better than the N1.

There are some things I don't really like.

The phone has very few features and it's easy to pull it out of your pocket and try to use it upside down. The earplug is on the bottom, which may or may not be a good thing, I'm not really sure yet.

The battery cover is a cheap piece of plastic that snaps in place instead of sliding. It's not what I would have designed, but it does raise the possibility of easy replacement, so there may be some cool looking battery covers showing up soon.

There are no hardware buttons for "back" "menu" "home" and "search", instead there are software buttons for "back" "home" and "recent apps". Three small dots are used for settings, and they may be at the top or the bottom of an app. I miss being able to always find them in one place.

And no trackball. Oh, how I miss that, but no other phones have them either. I've really been dreading the loss of the trackball, but I'll have to adapt.

With the launcher, you can't add widgets by long pressing the home screen, you have to do it from the app drawer. The app drawer has tabs for apps and widgets, and everything side scrolls now, which takes some getting used to.

LauncherPro still works, so that gives you the old school feel with long press widget adds etc, but it hasn't had an update in forever so it will surely stop working one of these days and old fogies like me will be dragged kicking and screaming into the future.

I really do love the phone. My gosh, when I pull that thing out it feels like I'm using a tablet. I have a lot of setup to do to get things working the way I want, so that means a lot of playing with this cool phone!