25 November 2010

Posting From the Road

In preparation for a long Thanksgiving drive, I decided to set up my new phone, a Samsung Epic 4G, to tether to my laptop.

It turns out that it's disabled by Sprint, unless you want to pay an additional $30.00/month for the privilege.

Luckily, the phone is an Android™, and not, for example, an iPhone™, so:
  • I turned on USB debugging mode.
  • Downloaded an application to root the phone.
  • Unzipped the file.
  • Ran a batch file.
  • Downloaded Google's Android-Wifi-Tether to the phone, and installed it.
  • Set up the name and password.
  • Turned off USB debugging mode.
So, now I am posting this to you through my cell phone's WiFi connection on my laptop while on I-295.*

In any case, this reveals how a more open architecture than the Apple/iPhone can let one take full advantage of the capabilities of the phone that you actually paid for.

Sweet, though I still think that Android's Calendar is kind of weak.

In any case, I am posting this from my laptop in  moving car, and theoretically, we could have up to 4 devices attached.

My thoughts on the phone:
  • The display is positively stunning.
  • The touch screen, which does not require a stylus, is still not completely comfortable to me.
  • Having actual multi-tasking is useful, though one has to be careful to not allow something in the background that will kill the battery.
  • The keyboard is very nice.
  • The camera is nice.
  • Reception is much better than my Palm.
  • 4G coverage is kind of spotty, but it is still being built out by Sprint.
  • Posting to the blog from the phone is still a pain, which is one of the reasons that I am tethering the laptop to the phone.  The other reason is so that we could watch Youtubes and the Macy's Parade.
  • Having real GPS on the phone, as opposed to cell tower triangulation, is wonderful.
  • Wifi mode chews the battery something fierce.  If you don't have it plugged in when using it, you won't get much time.

*No, I m not driving, my wife is.  I may be crazy, but I am not stupid.


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