Archive for the ‘Android’ Category

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Review: CSL SPICE Mi700 Google Android Powered Tablet

September 23, 2010

Available Date: 21st September 2010

Launch Price: RM1,599

Fresh Gear rating: 9/10

CSL Mi700 Google Android powered Tablet was launched in early September 2010 by the CSL group of companies.

Specification

  • Android OS, v2.2 (Froyo)
  • GSM Quadband/GPRS/EDGE/UMTS/HSDPA
  • 480 x 800 pixels, 7 inches (Capacitive Touch Screen)
  • 179.4 x110 x11.5mm
  • Qualcomm MSM7227, 600 MHz
  • 512MB RAM / 512MB ROM
  • Accelerometer sensor for auto-rotate and Motion UI
  • E-Compass + Ambient Light Sensor
  • 3 MP,  autofocus, 0.3MP 2048 x 1536 (Secondary VGA camera)
  • Bluetooth, Wifi, GPS
  • Standard battery, Li-Pol 3,240 mAh
  • Standby: Up to 520h
  • Talk time: Up to 6h

Unboxing the CSL Spice Mi700

Packaging of the CSL Mi700 is huge compared to other HTC packaging. Taking up valuable retail space in the outlet 🙂

CSL SPICE Mi700 comes with the following accessories in the box.

  • A slim bi-fold synthetic leather holder with pocket
  • Screen Protector
  • CD, Quick Start Guide and Manuals
  • Headset/Handsfree
  • Travel Charger
  • Car Charger adapter
  • USB Sync cable
  • Mapking Registration Card

First Impression

The device looks big but the weight is surprisingly light. However, the supplied casing is rather heavy. The build quality is quite good with minimal moving parts except for the memory + simcard cover.

Four controls are located at the right side of the tablet. Back, Search, Home & Menu.

Located on the top is the UP/DOWN volume button, SIM Card + Memory card slot.

Located at the bottom is the Reset button, Mic, Headset and charger/sync slot.

Also located on the both side are the speakers. A power button is located on the left side speaker. You might also noticed a “Black” round hole  just above the speaker. This I believe is for other accessories maker to make a plastic cover that uses the hole as a hinge.

Located on the top left corner is a front facing camera for 3G video calls and a ambient light sensor.

Size is just perfect! It is not as big as an iPad and is more like a normal diary.

The front casing can be flip backwards and make as a stand for the tablet.

Using the CSL SPICE Mi700

As a user of HTC Legend, switching over to the CSL SPICE Mi700 is easy. Only difference is that HTC Sense is smoother and have nicer UI. Some of the software not found standard on my HTC Legend are.

1. Mapking

  • Comes with a license for Mapking for your all GPS needs.

2. CSL Blueberry Messenger

  • A collection of all the different IM. E.g. MSN, GTalk, Yahoo Chat…

3. CSL Blueberry Store

4. CSL Azan Alarm

  • Islam prayer time with built-in compass

5. CSL Fun Club

  • Some SMS services like News, My E.G Services, Currency, Sports results..

6. Aldiko

  • Ebook Reader

7. Documents to Go

  • Words, Powerpoint and Excel for Android.

8. S-Unno

9. WaveSecure

Comparing with an Apple iPad

Naturally, people will want to compare this with an Apple iPad. So, what are the differences?

CSL Mi700
Apple iPad
1 7-inch screen (800 X 480) 9.7-inch screen (1024 X 768)
2 Able to make calls Not able to make calls
3 Comes bundled with a case No casing bundled
4 Uses normal SIM card Uses Micro SIM
5 Expandable Memory Fixed memory, 16GB, 32GB & 64GB
6 3G Video camera No front facing camera
7
600MHz Processor
1GHz Processor
8 6 hours battery life 9 hours battery life with 3G
9 179.4mm x 110mm x 11.5mm 242.8mm x 189.7 mm x 13.4 mm
10 410g 730g
11 Priced RM1,599 Price starting from RM1700 to RM2,900

Sample Photos taken using the CSL SPICE Mi700 (Click to Enlarge)

Conclusion

Pro:

  • Good Size and solid built
  • Good battery life! (Thanks to the huge battery size)
  • Built in many useful software; Mapking, Document to Go, Prayer time.
  • 3G camera, uses latest Froyo Android OS!

Cons:

  • Abit on the heavy side with the casing
  • Back camera 3.0MP not good enough
  • Speaker “breaks” when turned on too loud
  • Built-in battery
  • Not all Android apps are made for 800 X 480 screen size

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Brochure: HTC PDA Flyer (Nov 2009)

October 25, 2009

Click to download the latest HTC PDA flyer (November 2009) issue.

HTC-Flyer-ver200911

Clearance Model

  • HTC P3300 – RM899 (Usual Price RM999)
  • HTC Touch P3452 – RM899 (Usual Price RM1,099)
  • HTC Touch Cruise P3650 – RM1,299 (Usual Price RM1,599)
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Upcoming: HTC Hero Android Phone

June 24, 2009

google android logo htc_logo

It’s official! HTC Hero is officially launched at London today. It is HTC’s third Android based phone and I am certainly impressed with the new all improved “HTC Touch FLO” for android. They now call it the HTC Sense ™.

HTC Hero

Specification:

  • Qualcomm 528 MHz processor
  • 3.2-inch 230×480 touch-screen TFT-LCD display
  • ROM: 512 MB      RAM: 288 MB
  • 5MP Camera with Auto-focus
  • GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Trackball with Enter function

They even have a Facebook Page created for the HTC Hero.

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKTDSfbcbBU&]

Stay tuned for more hands-on review of the HTC Hero!

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News: HTC pledges allegiance to Windows Mobile

June 13, 2009

htc_logo

Despite being the world’s first mobile phone maker to launch an Android-based handset, HTC still favours Microsoft’s Windows Mobile.

Frédéric Tassy, Grand Fromage of HTC France and Benelux, was recently asked whether he thought 2009 will be Android’s year. And although he thinks that, yes, this will be the year Android really takes off, the executive nonetheless stressed HTC’s close ties with Windows Mobile.

“We will always have more flagship products on Windows Mobile,” Tassy told French-language website Mobinaute. “Our best selling smartphone in Europe is also the HTC Touch HD [which uses] Windows Mobile.”

He also claimed many other handset makers will announce Android handsets – but fail to deliver their offerings on time.

“I think there will be a lot of bluffing, with products that are likely to be delayed,” he alleged.

Tassy claimed it was “hard to say” how many Android smartphones HTC will have launched by the end of this year. However, pictures were recently leaked online of a device widely thought to be the firm’s third Android-based device. ®

Sourced from: Register Hardware

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Updated: Fresh Gear PDA Flyers – 2009 May Version

May 26, 2009

 

Fresh Gear PDA Flyers - May 2009

Fresh Gear PDA Flyers - May 2009

 Our PDA Flyer for May 2009 is out. Click on it to enlarge / download.

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Review: T-Mobile G1 ‘Google Phone’

November 14, 2008

google android logo

Available Date: Late September 2008

Launch Price: -Not available officially in Malaysia-

Fresh Gear rating: 8.5/10

Specifications

  • Qualcomm MSM7201A 528 Mhz
  • 192 MB RAM, 256 MB ROM (MicroSD Slot)
  • Android OS
  • Quad-band GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 (HSDPA)
  • 117 x 55.7 x 17.1 mm (158g)
  • 65K colors, 320 x 480 pixels, 3.2 inches
  • Accelerometer sensor for auto-rotate
  • Trackball
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g & Bluetooth Ver2.0
  • GPS
  • Camera: 3.15MP Autofocus camera
  • Battery Capacity: 1150 mAh
  • Standby time: 406hours
  • Talk Time: 5hours 20mins

Un-Boxing the G1 Phone

G1 Box

G1 Box

g1-box-back1 g1-box-side1 g1-box-open1

The pakaging looks like any other regular phone pakaging except for the cut-out “G1” at the front.

Contents of G1

Contents of G1

Inside the box comes an AC Charge, USB Cable, Pouch, Handsfree Kit and some manuals.

First Impression – The Look and Feel

Keyboard

G1 Keyboard

Styling wise, the G1 does not really score better than Apple iPhone. It lacks the “coolness” and simplicity of an iPhone. 

Keyboard Closeup

G1 Keyboard close up

The keys are a little too flat to type on and provides very little tactile feedback. The little ledge near the letter “Q” is to remove the battery cover. 

Memory slot

G1 memory card slot

The memory card slot located near the “CALL” button is properly disguised. I might not have spotted it if it wasn’t for the instruction manual.

Buttons

G1 - 5 simple buttons with a track-ball at the centre of the phone.

Missing a secondary video camera

G1 - Missing a secondary video camera

Mini USB charger slot. Nicely concealed when not in used.

G1 - Mini USB charger slot. Nicely concealed when not in used.

No buttons on the top part of the phone.

G1 - No buttons on the top part of the phone.

The signature "bent" of the G1

G1 - The signature 'bent' of G1 and the Camera button

Up Down button and 'HTC' Logo

G1 - Up Down button and HTC Logo

3.2MP camera and speaker located behind the G1

G1 - 3.2MP camera and speaker located behind the G1

Battery cover removed. No RESET button.

G1 - Battery cover removed. No RESET button.

When G1 is connected to A/C charger

G1 - When G1 is connected to A/C charger

Using the G1 Phone – Screen Shots

When starting G1 for the first time, you will be prompted for a Gmail account. If you don’t have an account, you are op to create one on the go. Basically, G1 does not really work without a Gmail account. You also need a Gmail account to access the “Market” to download application.

Upon keying in your Gmail account and password, all your contacts, calendars and emails will be automatically sync with your G1. Process is straight forward and simple unlike setting up a Microsoft Exchange Server details. 

G1 main screen

G1 main screen (centre)

The main screen spots a analog clock and 4 basic icons; Dialer, Contacts, Browser and Maps. I added the Messaging icon for quicker access to SMS and Email.

On the top is a mini notification bar which have snippets of new SMS, miss call notification and tells you other info like time, battery and signal indicator. When 3G is in active transmission, the arrow below the “3G” will flash accordingly. Good indicator to know if you are transmitting signal or just an idle connection.

Notification curtain

G1 notification curtain

If you want to see the full notification, you can tap and pull the notification bar down to reveal everything. This is an extremely cleaver design which save precious main desktop screen space.

Main screen (right)

G1 main screen (right)

There are 3 parts to the main screen area; centre, left and right. You can flick your screen left and right (just like Apple iPhone/Touch). The right screen is just a Google search bar where you can quickly do a search without first opening your browser.

Main screen (Left)

G1 main screen (Left)

Originally a blank screen, I have basically added all the games application on to the left main screen. (Some of which are very addictive!)

Application screen

G1 application screen

Tap and drag the little tab at the bottom of the screen will reveal all the full application on the G1. What you see now here are not the original softwares found in G1. Many are downloaded using the “Market” icon.

G1 Android Market

G1 Android Market

From here is where you will get to download and install additional application to enhance your experience with the G1. Do note that a valid Gmail account is required to access the Android market place. Most of the application found here are free and result of the open source practice by Google OS “Android”.

G1 - Android Market Place

G1 - Android Market

Softwares are all sorted according to their category which makes searching hassle free.

G1 - Android Market

G1 - Android Market

G1 - Web Browser

G1 - Web Browser

The web browser found in G1 is just called the “Browser”. However, we suspect it is actually Google’s latest Chrome browser, or Mini Chrome or Chrome Lite… It supports multiple tab browsing and works with most online banking site like Maybank, CIMB and Public Bank.

G1 - Web Browser

G1 - Web Browser

G1 - Web Browser

G1 - Web Browser

What I miss most is the “pinching” function of Apple iPhone. To resize the website on G1, you need to press on the “+” and “-” sign on screen. Then again, multi-touch is a patented technology of Apple. 

G1 - Web Browser

G1 - Web Browser (Settings)

The Browser also lacks the support of “Auto-Rotate” when held the G1 in a landscape position. To rotate, you will have to open up the keyboard! Why not built that in when G1 has accelerometer built in?

G1 - Calendar (Month)

G1 - Calendar (Month)

Calendar screen is pretty standard looking. There is no “invite” function like the online version.

G1 - Calendar (Day)

G1 - Calendar (Day)

To crate a new event, tab and hold until a new message pop up.

G1 - Call Log

G1 - Call Log

G1 - Contacts screen

G1 - Contacts screen

G1 - On screen dialer

G1 - On screen dialer

G1 - IM Chat

G1 - IM Chat

You can configure GTalk, AIM, Windows Messenger and Yahoo Messenger on G1. 

G1 - Email screen

G1 - Email screen

G1 - Map

G1 - Map

You can set the Map in Satellite mode, Traffic Mode or Street View mode. Unfortunately, Street view mode is not available in Malaysia. You can set the destination and you can see the route to the destination from where you are currently. But there is no turn by turn voice navigation on the G1 like most GPS devices in the market.

G1 - SMS

G1 - SMS

Just like Windows Mobile 6.1, Apple iPhone, SMS is threaded for each viewing and referencing. 

G1 - YouTube

G1 - YouTube

G1 - Setting Screen

G1 - Setting Screen

g1-screen-setting-2 g1-screen-setting-3 g1-screen-setting-4

g1-screen-setting-5 g1-screen-setting-7 g1-screen-setting-8

g1-screen-setting-9 g1-screen-setting-10 g1-screen-setting-11

g1-screen-setting-12 g1-screen-setting-13 g1-screen-setting-14

g1-screen-setting-15 g1-screen-setting-16 

G1 - Unlock pattern

G1 - Unlock pattern

With G1, you can set your own unlock pattern as oppose to usual PIN number.

Sample Camera Pictures

Color is quite accurate on the pictures taken using G1. Auto-focus function is great with macro shots possible. However, there isn’t any send file via bluetooth option. So, the only way is to save into memory card and transfer using a card reader.

G1 - Sample Pictures

G1 - Sample Pictures

G1 - Sample Pictures

G1 - Sample Pictures

G1 - Sample Pictures

G1 - Sample Pictures

Conclusion

Pros:

  • Built quality is good
  • Integrate with Google product is painless and easy
  • Same touch screen technology as iPhone (as opposed to normal pressure sensitive screens)
  • Download and install software OTA (Over The Air) is simple and FREE (Network data charges applies)
  • Camera is auto focus enabled
  • Does not support Microsoft Exchange/Black Berry syncronization

Cons:

  • Does not show which network you are on
  • Does not use built-in accelerometer in most applications. E.g. website, pictures, main screen.
  • Pressing on battery does not give a precise battery indicator
  • Do not have turn-by-turn voice navigation on the GPS Map
  • Does not support bluetooth file transfer

 

Want to try out the Android OS before buying? Click here

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