This is topic Help me get a smart phone in forum Books, Films, Food and Culture at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by lem (Member # 6914) on :
With my new promotion at work, it has become apparent that I need a better phone I can use for multitasking. Right now I have an old phone that can text, if I'm willing to scroll through each letter on the numberpad.

I have fulfilled my Verizon contract and am on a month to month contract right now.

My work has switched all calendars, contacts, and email to Gmail. All schools use Gmail for their website. I use Google Tasks, Calender, Email, Documents, and Chat extensively. I live and die by my Google Documents.

I want to be able to sync and have access to all those things. Of course that means my first instinct is to buy the T-Mobile G1 and sign up through T-Mobile.

Does anyone have any experience with this? Would a different smart phone be a better choice? I have never used a smart phone. Quite frankly I don't really know the difference between Blue tooth, wireless, Blackberrys, iPhones, et cetera.

Money is not a real factor since I get a monthly allowance for my phone and steep discounts because I work with education.

I really want smart integration between Google Documents, calender, and tasks while getting emails on the fly.
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
I know the iPhone can has a Google sync app that would most likely suit your needs. The best advice I get give that you should absolutely NOT get the BlackBerry Storm. Horrible phone. Mine broke 3 times for no reason. I babied the thing. The screen wore out, it quit making calls, etc. I love my iPhone for just about everything. I've owned only those two, but the difference is night and day in favor of the iPhone.

You really have more choices than you might think, Google sync supports several phones. More info:
Here. [Smile]
Posted by BandoCommando (Member # 7746) on :
I own an iPhone and love it. Apps do exist for managing documents online, but they cannot be stored on the iphone. I do not know of, nor do I have any experience with using the iPhone to manage/edit Google apps, so that is something that you will have to research.

Folks often complain about AT&T having shoddy coverage. This has not been an issue for me, but I imagine this kind of thing is specific to where one lives and where I live coverage is great. I would advise that you attempt to find out how well AT&T covers your area compared to Verizon, if any subjective sources could be found.

Since I have been useless in terms of talking about the iPhone as it relates to Google, I will talk about the other features.

Web browsing on the phone is quite good. The only issues are a lack of Flash support and issues with the onscreen keyboard. I do not find typing to be a hassle, but if I'm, say, filling out a response on Hatrack, the keyboard takes up most of the real estate on the screen and it is difficult to read what I wrote two paragraphs ago.

I use a stereo bluetooth headset to listen to audiobooks and music and the sound quality is indistinguishable from wired headphones.

My email/documents/contacts are synced with Apple's MobileMe service, which comes at an additional cost. I love the service though.

I would rate my satisfaction with the iPhone as very high, overall. I'm not sure what else to add, but I'll check back to see if you have any other questions.
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
I don't think document integration is an option for the iPhone. . . yet. I bet you can access them via web browser in a pinch though.

[ August 16, 2009, 09:37 AM: Message edited by: Nick ]
Posted by lem (Member # 6914) on :
The most important feature I want, in fact it is the deciding feature that will tell if I get a smart phone, is the ability to use Google Tasks smoothly with my smart phone.

Right now I am in charge of multiple programs, several of them that deal with finances, for 5-40 schools. Most people either call me or email me if they need help.

Right now I am very efficiently using Google Tasks. I can get an email, assign it as a task, and put it on my calender with just a few clicks. My tasks are organized by program and importance. I can check my calender for what I need to do and click the task on the calender for more info or to open the email that I used to assign the task. I love Google.

I want a phone that will let me use that feature on the fly without having to sync the phone every time I go to my office. Tasks-Email-Calender together...very important!

I have never even seen a smart phone in action, so I don't have the conceptual image needed to fully understand what is going on in the 3 minute clips I see online for the various phones.

Does anyone know if this can be done and on what phone?
Posted by Kwea (Member # 2199) on :
My cousin just bought a new blackberry, I'll ask him about it.

Also, Icky has had several of these types of devices, so I'll see if he can chime in.
Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :
If you are talking T-mobile then it's:

The G1 if you want a physical keyboard
The MyTouch 3G if you don't need a physical keyboard.

Both run Android, Google's mobile OS, and both are made by HTC.

If you can wait a few months it's possible that one of the U.S. carriers will offer the HTC Hero -- which supposedly is even better than the G1 and the Mytouch 3G. The last rumor I saw was late Fall on Verizon or Sprint.

It's possible that some Windows Mobile phones have decent integration with Google's services (or at least sync okay). The Palm Pre is also worth looking at. But if you're looking for the tightest integration possible, then you'll want an Android handset and the two listed above are your only real options at the moment.

The Samsung Galaxy is the other strong contender that comes preinstalled with Android, but it also isn't yet available in the U.S. It's quite likely that when it does make it here, it'll be on T-mobile, but I would imagine that T-mobile is going to delay things a bit so it can sell a lot of MyTouch 3Gs. Hopefully, we'll see a bunch of new options over the 6-14 months. When I have enough of a need to justify the cost of a data plan for a smartphone, I plan on getting one running Android. But that's likely one to two years away.
Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :
Also: if a physical keyboard is important, you might want to take a look at the HTC Touch Pro2, which just became available in the U.S. on T-mobile. The keyboard gets raves. It's a real workhorse of a phone, which it sounds like you could use.

The downside is that it runs Windows Mobile. However, you can configure it to use Gmail. And in order to use Tasks, you can use Opera Mini (which I believe comes installed on the phone, but isn't the default browser -- although it seems to be the browsers of choice for non-iPhone smartphone users) and go to:
Posted by lem (Member # 6914) on :
After trying out the Pre, trying various co-workers and sales associate's phones, and researching online, I have finally bought a Mytouch.

I particulary like the Shop Savvy app, Shazzam for the audiophile in me, and Layer. I can't wait to see if Layer works in Japan.

However, the deciding factor in getting the Mytouch was the seemlessnes of it connecting to my work Gmail, Contacts, and Tasks--the whole purpose of getting the phone. It just did a better job then the other phones, which is to be expected since it is a Google phone.

The voice commands are great. I was very tempted with the Pre, however despite it's probably superior multi-tasking ability, it did not utilize Google tasks well. At least the Sprint person who specialized on that phone couldn't get it to work.

Mytouch just did it all effortlessly. The iPhone is too specialized for multimedia and can't multi-task. All in all I am very pleased.

Get bill is 1 dollar cheaper then my stupid Verizon phone with only unlimited texts and about the same minutes.
Posted by Zalmoxis (Member # 2327) on :
As a T-mobile/Android fan, I'm both very pleased and very jealous. But I just can justify the expense yet (and I'd be footing the bill myself -- my work is [rightfully] parsimonious with the cell phones).

Edit to ask: So how does Google Tasks work with the myTouch? Is there an app or do you access through a browser?
Posted by Eduardo_Sauron (Member # 5827) on :
You see... I'm a Nokia/Symbian fan. I also work in Education (I'm a College Professor) and use docs/spreadsheets a lot. I own a Nokia E71 (but would use any of the E series, really). My complete mobile working setup is my E71and Su-8w, Nokia's foldable, wireless bluetooth keyboard. Although the E71 has a physical qwerty keyboard, the SU-8W is invaluable when I must compose lenghty documents/e-mail on the go.
This combo has been so good to me that I decided against buying a netbook (would have bought an EeePc 1008Ha). I really can't talk highly enough about this setup.

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