Android Quick Hit #1: Flash
Adobe Flash for mobile devices has been the buzz in the mobile tech industry for the better part of the last six months, and I certainly understand the desire to have the capability to view Flash-based content. Heck, if my phone could cook breakfast, lunch and dinner for me I would be happy as a clam. What I don’t understand is why Flash for devices with sub-4” screens has become so important for smartphone enthusiasts. Sure, it would be nice to view Youtube videos natively in the browser instead of the re-direction to the Youtube player, but that isn’t a huge inconvenience. I don’t really want to see Flash-based web advertisements. I suppose it would be neat to be able to watch an episode of my favorite show on Hulu, but I can’t think of a single situation in which I would sacrifice battery life in order to get a few chuckles. Either I’m in the minority on this issue, or I’m blowing smartphone enthusiasts' desire to have full Flash out of proportion. Let me know your thoughts in the comments.
Android Quick Hit # 2: 2.1 Upgrade for Droid Eris, Hero
The fact that it’s taken this long to upgrade the Hero and the Droid Eris to Android 2.1 is simply appalling. These devices have been rooted and run ning stable 2.1 ROMs for months now. I’ve been running a stable 2.1 ROM on my rooted Eris since the Friday before the WiFi iPad was released. My phone hasn’t had a single hiccup or re-boot. If the awesome developers on the XDA-Developers forums working for on these ROMs (simply for glory and a donation or two once in awhile) can cook up such great ROMs, its unconscionable that HTC and the carriers that serve up these devices haven’t been able to push out a 2.1 update yet. I would love to be able to recommend that all Eris owners root their phones and install a 2.1 ROM, but I just can’t do it (on the Eris anyway). The process is still too complex for anyone without some advanced computer skills to complete the initial root on Eris,though my understanding is that some devices have a more simple root process. If you are frustrated about the delay in bringing 2.1 to the Eris or Hero, sound off in the comments.
Android Quick Hit # 3: Stock Android Apps in the Market, Please
One thing I’ve come to realize during the last month of testing 2.1 ROMs for my Eris is that many people have Android devices with HTC’s Sense UI or another manufacturer’s customization, but they would rather use bits and pieces of the stock Android UI. There have been rumors about Google’s desire to bring future upgrades to Android via app updates in the Market. This would be a positive development, but I would like Google to go further and publish most, if not all, stock Android and Google phone apps to the Market so users can download these apps to replace the manufacturer supplied apps. This would allow users to pick and chose their own custom flavor of Android. For example, I would rather use the stock Android keyboard than HTC’s Sense keyboard. Other folks like the Google supplied Nexus One lockscreen better than HTC’s Sense lockscreen. Still others like the Google supplied Nexus One app launcher better than HTC’s Sense launcher. The examples go on and on. How nice would it be to be able to create your own custom Android experience rather than be tied to your phone’s manufacturer’s preferred variation? Let me know if you like this idea in the comments.