Android Market opens up and the G1 Achilles heel is exposed

Android Market opens up and the G1 Achilles heel is exposed

Summary: One fun aspect about the T-Mobile G1, and I imagine the same thing occurs with the Apple iPhone, is visiting the Android Market regularly to check what applications and games have been added. I visited the Android Market several times this weekend, without seeing much of anything going on. However, while browsing my RSS feeds this morning, I ran across Michael Gartenberg's post on the Android Market update and went to check out the Android Developer's blog. I then launched the Android Market and found a mini-explosion of applications with there currently being 61 applications and 20 games available. This is still a drop in the bucket compared to the iPhone, S60, and Windows Mobile platforms, but it is still early in the game.

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Android Market opens up and the G1 Achilles heel is exposedOne fun aspect about the T-Mobile G1, and I imagine the same thing occurs with the Apple iPhone, is visiting the Android Market regularly to check what applications and games have been added. I visited the Android Market several times this weekend, without seeing much of anything going on. However, while browsing my RSS feeds this morning, I ran across Michael Gartenberg's post on the Android Market update and went to check out the Android Developer's blog. I then launched the Android Market and found a mini-explosion of applications with there currently being 61 applications and 20 games available. This is still a drop in the bucket compared to the iPhone, S60, and Windows Mobile platforms, but it is still early in the game.

By my last count there were 47 applications and 15 games available on Thursday afternoon. There are now even a couple of tip calculators ;) I downloaded a couple of new applications (official Twitroid release, JogTracker Beta, Ringdroid) to try out on my device and now have 27 applications and games loaded on my G1. My internal storage available currently shows up as 17MB so I don't have much more room to add applications. I hope that someone comes out with a utility to store applications on the microSD card or the benefit of having an "open" device with 3rd party application support may be lost.

I don't know if it is directly related to the large number of applications I have installed (requires further testing), but my G1 will often just sit there with a blank Home screen after I press the Home button or go back to the Home screen. It seems that the G1 doesn't cache the Home screen and dynamically builds it or something. After much use this weekend I also found it started to drag and have the pop-up warnings appear that I could force quit or wait for an application to respond. While I like the G1 for the most part, I don't think it is quite ready for the power user who wants to load lots of applications.

I also noted that a few games are now appearing with the word Demo in the title and and read the comments that indicate these games are extremely limited in functionality. I assume these games may eventually be released as paid games, thus the word demo in the title.

In addition to the limited amount of storage capacity for applications, I have also discovered what the real Achilles heel is to the G1 and that is battery life. I found I have to charge the device at least once during the day to make it through a full day with my standard, power usage practices. This covers about 1.5 hours of surfing in the browser (on my daily commute), Gmail/Calendar/Contacts sync enabled, no WiFi and limited (15 minutes) of Bluetooth, just over an hour of music/podcast listening, and about 20 minutes of phone calls. With WiFi or GPS enabled the battery goes down even faster. It would be nice to have time profiles for syncing with the Google servers as your device may actually die overnight if you don't plug it in. The good thing is that it used standard miniUSB to charge up and it charges very fast. I think we will eventually see 3rd party batteries with higher capacities come out, but it would be nice if HTC/Google would improve power management.

Topics: Mobility, Apps, Browser, iPhone

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6 comments
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  • Battery life and Apps on Micro SD Card

    I agree. the two things that have kept me away form switching to G1 from Blackberry are Battery Life and Inability to store the 3rd party apps on Micro SD card.
    atishparikh
  • RE: Android Market opens up and the G1 Achilles heel is exposed

    short, interesting, informative giving Matthew, if not Google, credibility.

    P.S. I'm rooting for Google; not because of stock (I have none) but because WE need a viable alternative to MS's crap, and Apple's over-priced, under-robusted hardware.
    lee@...
    • Right

      Because the G1 is an under-priced super robust piece of
      hardware...
      frgough
  • Get over it.

    There are actually other technology companies out there doing good things which include mobile. Leave google to get on with it like you would any other company and focus on the positive stuff out there that people already like and use.
    Tell us why we should use something else. I know people who swapped their Blacky for a Dopo and swear by it, and others who have done the reverse. Different strokes for different folks. Android isn't quite worthy of the attention yet. I don't need it at the front of my mind and neither does google, they're better off doing search.
    topsecret@...
  • iphone's been out for over a year

    and Windows Mobile has been on the shelf for quite some time. What new, downloading straight to the phones. The G1 just came out on the 22nd, this is a lot compared to iphone's first arrival. They had an explosion due to there 3G release refreshing the market with the phones. If and when if Pick up the G1, I won't see a 3G signal till I'm out of contract where I live and probably where I work.

    Since T-Mobile has the smallest 3G footprint this is a good start for their market.

    One last point, since you can download the full OS, more people are making applications for the phone. Also the price of the phone is just right to compete with other touch / qwerty phones.
    Maarek
  • RE: Android Market opens up and the G1 Achilles heel is exposed

    In my experience my G1 phone is the most user friendly keyboard and touch screen combination on the market. Right now I am using it as a wireless only device and am very happy! An official spec higher power battery will come soon I hope - I do look foward to a better battery- I spent alot of time in the apple store messing with the I-phone & the I-pod and it just frustrated me! I like the user friendly less frustrating keyboard combination touchscreen on the G1 much better, the future of this is amazing! And I support the pioneers at Google who launched the Android platform- it can only get better and I am glad to be onboard now!
    RWB777