Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Sifter3000, 25 Jan 2010.
It's not too surprising really, the N900 already has the capability to install a full scale version of Debian, there's Maemo obviously, and a fully community re-developed parallel version of Maemo called Mer. Android was a bit of an inevitability, however the strangest thing is why anyone would want to put Android on in the first place?
Maeo is brilliant and smooth, I've got an N900 and it works fantastic out of the box. The main good thing about it is that it's COMPLETELY open. You can compile anything, run anything, install anything, edit anything. Android is very locked down by comparison!
Maybe because Androids a better os?
Now they just need to get it running on an iphone and ill be be happy
better apps I suppose.
but if we can all just wait..
Remember the N900 is widely touted as a hackers toy so the only justification they need really is 'because they can'
For me it's pretty interesting as I use google calender and contacts quite extensively and the only thing holding me back from buying one at the moment is Exchange sync between google and n900 at the moment might charitably be described as 'unreliable'.
Why is it touted as a Hackers Toy? Does it not work as a smartphone? I'm looking for a qwerty smartphone and have been eyeballing this phone for a while now. But I'm also torn between the Android OS and Memeo. I need Exchange Sync between Outlook and Calender on the phone for it to be a viable purchase, without that it is just a toy.
Could some of you n900 owners sound off here and share some experiences?
I use Nuevasync (http://www.nuevasync.com) for my Gmail sync and it works flawlessly with my N900 - which as chimaera mentioned, Google's own sync doesn't! It is $25 a year to get the push email, but I consider it worth it purely for the simple fact that when I transitioned from my HTC Touch HD to the N900 I just needed to enter my account details and all calendar, email and contact entries were synced straight away with no fuss! There have been a number of times that the push email on my N900 has "beeped" before the browser Gmail updated itself!
If you're just using your company's Outlook's Exchange servers then it should just work straight away. There's just something strange about the way that Google has implemented their Google Sync that doesn't quite play right. Nuevasync uses straight up Microsoft Exchange so works fine.
Personally, from the limited amount of time I've played with Android, I much prefer the Maemo implementation. It's (to me) much easier to get my head around the GUI! I much prefer the landscape orientation as well.
Then there's the apps; Android is essentially a Java implementation with a proprietary SDK, while Maemo is native Linux so can do anything the hardware allows, Python, GTK, Qt, flash etc. You can even make it install and use full scale Debian packages; I've seen someone running the full GIMP program on their N900! You don't need to jump through hoops to root the device either, just install a patch freely available in the development repositories and "sudo" in no problems!
Very interesting, but will hold my breath to see whether this becomes usable. The community has spent a very long time porting Android to other HTC phones, such as the Kaiser/TyTN II or the Diamond, and while it's an impressive technical achievement, it's still not quite as stable or as smooth as I'd like. I've used Android ports on both of the above phones (as I own them), and it is still a long way off from being 100% usable - by every day standards of "usability".
Yes, I would happily upgrade my Diamond to Android if it were usable as an every-day system.
OK Possibly I could have phrased that better as 'hacker friendly' - its running an OS that uses Debian linux at its core and is very open to tinker with (indeed you could argue that you need to be at least moderately techie to get the most from it).
Exchage support with actual MS Exchange works fine (2007 out of the box, 2003 support added in the recent patch).
Its probably most accurate if you consider most smartphones to be phones with the ability to run applications to look at the n900 as a mobile computer than can make phone calls - it works well enough but its not the primary function.
Other irritations for me (other than the lack of aforementioned reliable google sync (although I don't know much about the nuevasync solution mentioned above)) are the headphone socket having some sort of odd pinout so 'standard' (read: iPhone) headsets don't work with it (headphones are fine, but try to use a mic headset and you get horrible static). Thus far noone is offering an adapter or directly compatable headset, and the bundled cans are (as typical) pretty horrific.
Well the problem with standard headset jacks is that there isn't one! Not yet anyway... iPhone headsets are especially not "standard" (unless they work with Blackberries and 3.5mm equipped HTCs, in which case I stand corrected) Incidentally, the N900 comes with a TV-out cable which is quite fun to play SNES ROMS on the emulators available!
the iPhone connector is closer a defacto standard insomuch that the one I have (although I don't have an iPhone) works with my mate's HTC Hero, my Nokia E71 and my work Blackberry - while the buttonpress syntax doesn't necessarily do much, push to accept call (which is all I really need) works across all three. Mine is a maximo headset, but I've made the same test on etymotic HF2 headset with the same result.
Incidentally I'm not talking about that noddy chip controlled setup they use these days, the older single-button multipress setup is the one I mean.
ok, that does sound "standardised" in that case though it's not surprising that nothing other than "push to answer" works with the control codes...
It could be the TV-out pin that's causing the interference issue with the headset. Sounds like something that would be useful to submit as a bug report and see how possible it is to fix...
Never had the problem myself because I exclusively use bluetooth (stereo) headphones with built in mic. AVRCP controls work perfectly!
No I quite agree, but like I say push to answer is at least good enough
I think you're probably right on the matter of the TV-out being the culprit - althought interestingly there is some anecdotal evidence to suggest that the protoype units that were floating around *did* work properly.
What headset do you use with the phone? I'd heard that A2DP support wasn'ty all that it should be
I use a Sennheiser MM 200 and I've yet to have a problem with it! Connects first time every time, controls always work and sound quality to my ears is good. I have become somewhat distrusting of the automatic connection so always manually connect via the Bluetooth settings but the settings are so quick to access it takes a couple of seconds to get to the "connect" button!
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