Sunday, September 5, 2010

Best M001 Firmware? "Relax v1.9.6" by Lefeudedieu

If you haven't tried "Relax v1.9.6" by Lefeudedieu on your Eken M001, give it a go ASAP.

  1. The Android Market works right from the start. No fix. No fiddling. It just works.
  2. It's rooted and all you have to do to get root access is enable USB debugging in the Settings -> Applications -> Development, then go to a terminal and type in "SU" and allow access to the SU app.
  3. It sees and uses a Linux swap partition if you have on your sdcard as the second partition. Mine is 128MB.
  4. It's fast. ADW.Launcher leaps into service when asked. The Home screen switcher doesn't lag. The M001 is as responsive as I have ever seen it.
  5. It looks great. Lefeudedieu knows how to theme his firmwares and he does a great job.
  6. Based off the lastest firmware update from Eken - v1.9.1.

The only "bug" I found in v1.9.6 is French as the default language. Which isn't really a bug. It's just not the language I wanted. Easily fixed: Go into Menu -> Settings and change the region to whatever supported language you need it to be. It takes affect immediately.

Anyone familiar with the M001 and similar tablets will know that access to the Android Market is a constant issue because these devices aren't phones and so far no one had been able to automate the Market setup. Users who wanted access to the Market had to mess about with creating an "androidID" in the Android SDK emulator and then using sqlite3 on the PC to insert it into a file on their devices. For many users, this was a bridge too far. Relax v1.9.6 fixes that completely. I signed into the Market and downloaded an app. I shut down and re-booted and went to the Market and downloaded another app. It "Just Worked" (tm). Yes. Finally.

Folks.....this is the firmware we've been waiting for. Get it on.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Android: Fragmentation? Or choice?

I've seen some articles and blog posts around advancing the view Android is "fragmented" and the telcos are ruining it by putting their own user interfaces on their phones. I suppose might look that way to some, particularly those used to the Apple iPhone paradigm: One phone. It's black.

I thought it might be fun to see how one might "spin" the reality of many versions of Android on a wide variety of phones from several different phone makers, as well as the issue of telcos offering their own user interfaces with their phones. I'll try to keep it brief.

First, "Fragmentation". What is fragmented? Yes, there are phones selling today with one of Android v1.5, 1.6, 2.1 and 2.2 loaded. Each new Android release has offered new functionality and features. There are good reasons to want to own a phone with the latest release. But that comes at a price. You need to buy a phone with enough memory and a fast enough processor to run Android v2.1 or v2.2.

What if you just want to make a cheap phone and push the smart phone boundary well down into the "feature phone" range? Then you have to load up Android v1.5 or v1.6 as they cope very well on slower phones with less RAM. Like the LG GT540 Optimus for NZ$399? It's an incredible phone for that price..and runs Android v1.6.

I own an Eken M001 tablet with 128MB of RAM and a processor that *barely* does 300MHz. It runs Android v1.6. It can't really run anything later. It's just too low-spec. It also has no GPS, no camera and no accelerometer. I bought it to see just how BAD it could be. Blow me's not bad at all. It's actually quite good. It happily runs virtually every Android app there is that doesn't need those things. Any limitations aren't in the OS, they are in the device itself and what the hardware can't do. But I got it for NZ$120 (US$80-ish) and for all intents and purposes I have a touchscreen netbook for that paltry sum. What a bargain.

So is that "fragmentation"? Or is it Android demonstrating it can offer a powerful functional platform at many price points on diverse hardware? Buy the one you want. You can't really go too far wrong as almost all the apps will run on any of them. Where some see "fragmentation" my blurry eyes have so far only been able to discern choice...and lots of it.

Can Google stop this? Why would they want to? Android is infesting every nook and cranny of the handheld device paradigm. It's Open Source. Anyone can take the source for ANY released Android version and deploy it on whatever device they care to port it to. Remember, the apps will run on anything - separate from the underlying hardware. That's been a computing Holy Grail for decades. Why would anyone want to stop that now that we've finally - almost - arrived?

Secondly, the telco user interfaces. Yeah...I find that annoying. But it only becomes unbearably annoying if it prevents me from downloading and installing one of the dozen or so Home apps available in the Market...thus replacing whatever the telco put on with something I like better. Open Home, aHome, GDE, DxTop, Panda Home, Home++, ADW.Launcher, Launcher Pro, Helix Luancher....and so on. I've run them all at one time or another. Whatever the telcos put on, I don't care as long as I can download one of these - or some other - and have whatever UI I want on my phone. I've owned an HTC Magic, an Acer Liquid and a Nexus One. I could make any of them look like whatever I wanted it to look like. That's one of the cool things about Android. If you want your phone to look and act like every other phone, then get an iPhone. There's only one model and it only comes in black. Would you buy a car that way? Or do you want 2-door or 4-door? 1.3L or a honking great V8? Hard top or convertible? that car 'fragemntation" that confuses the poor old car buyers? Maybe all they wanted was the Model black. :-)

So I don't really understand the UI confusion thing if one ofthe best aspects of Android is allowing the user to replace the UI almost completely with one of many apps created to do exactly that.  Where others apparently see eyes see choice and flexibility and more power for me, the phone owner.

The bottom line is the same apps run on almost all the phones - with the exceptions being more a function of the hardware in the device itself (phone versus tablet vs netbook) and the progression of capability that occurs from the lower end of the market toward the top end.

I can't really see Google being unhappy with an eco-system that lets anyone run Android on anything...and virtually all the apps work if the device itself can support it.

I've so far only been talking about stock, un-rooted phones. It's worth bearing in mind that almost every Android-bearing phone released so far has been rooted and each phone owner can gain system-wide access to their phone if they wish to go that route. Many of the more popular phones have very active communities of independent (and competent) developers creating their own versions of Android from the publicly available source code for the system itself. So if you *really* don't like what the telco did to your phone (but you bought it anyway), you don't have leave it that way. You have choices.

Android 3.0? Bring it on! I'm sure I'll find something to run it on.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The real reason Google stopped selling Nexus One online?

The story everywhere with respect to the Nexus One is shortage of supply due to lack of availability of the Samsung-sourced AMOLED screens used with the phone.

Google would almost certainly have been informed of the coming supply crunch weeks ahead of the wider market. They announced on May 14th that Nexus One availability was about to change. It was, after all, the only product sold in their online store. Google appear to have tried to reserve their remaining stock for developers as the phone is the reference platform for development of Android v3.0. Those have now sold out, too.

Looking in the rear-vision mirror, it looks like a case can be made for Google having decided to pull the plug on the online store at least in part because they knew they would soon face a supply crunch that would last months.....if it didn't last until the EOL for the phone itself.

Samsung are spending US$2.1 billion on a new screen factory that will allow them to almost double their annual capacity from 35 million units to 65 million units. Meanwhile, HTC have moved their phones to SONY's Super LCD.

Make sense?

Maybe we'll see a Super LCD Nexus One?

Friday, August 6, 2010

My fave Android apps right now

One comment: I don't really use task killers as Android does a very good job of managing tasks and memory. But - occasionally - I do resort to killing an app I specificially do not want running at all. In that case, I use Advanced Task Manager (paid).

My fave apps:

AndFTP and SwiFTP - the first is an FTP client and the second is an FTP server. A great pair for easily moving files between devices of *any* kind as long they have either an FTP client or server. Both free.

Estrongs File Explorer - a great file manager, but can also access Windows / samba file shares in a non-domain setting. Free.

AndroZip - A general archive management (rar, zip, whatever) utility that doubles as a very useful file manager. Free.

Rock Player - the only media player I know that can play Xvid AVI files on Android. Free or paid.

Meridian Pioneer - my favourite all-round music / media player. Free or paid.

Antropia - An media player and streaming Internet radio app. Average UI but *key* feature is that it buffers what you're hearing to the sdcard and you can save it as an mp3 if you liked it. Free (I think...not sure).

Beautiful Widgets - A Sense-like skin-able (loads!) clock and weather widget plus many other functional widgets (wifi, GPS, Bt, etc...etc..) Paid app

Handcent SMS - best SMS app. Period. Free.

"Maps and Nav [brut]" - turn-by-turn GPS nav. Hacked version of Google Maps. Effectively separate app. Exists alongside and does not conflict. Works really well. Free. Can be obtained via XDA-Developers and various web sites. A must have if you want GPS Nav for free.

AndCam3D - take 3D photos (stereo or anaglyph)

SlideIt keyboard - paid app. It's a slide-ya-finger-to-type keyboard. Easily as good as "Swype"...and not beta. It's a finished product and you can buy it. Better than ShapeWriter. I love this app. It makes mot typing easy and one-thumb, one-handed typing becomes possible and practical.

Chrome to Phone - get the Chrome browser extension and the Android app (free)...and send interesting web links to your phone from your Chrome browser. Click "send to phone" on the PC in Chrome...and then open the browser on the phone and the page you sent will come up on your phone.

SMS Mail Monkey - "Thanks for your txt. I'm not in right will. Will text you back!" - or whatever. Answer phone for txts.

Backup to Gmail - backs up txts, MMS and your phone's call log to your gmail account, filing each under an appropriate label. Love this app.

Better Terminal Pro - the best linux shell / terminal app for Android.

Wifi Tracker - paid app. Walk or drive along with the app running and GPS enabled...and it detects, locates and logs all wifi it sees. You can export CSV, KML (Google earth) and another the sdcard or to email. The Google earth files are awesome. You load the file and all the wifi is geo-located with clickable tags that dispay all attributes.

Camera ZOOM FX - loads of effects and props. A major extension of function beyond the default camera. Paid app.

Picsay Pro - take a photo, "share" it to PicSay Pro -> add a caption, effects, titles, adjust images properties (brightness, conrast, etc..)...and then save to SD or "share" it onward to any app thqat can receive a share -> gmail, twitter apps, printershare....*whatever*. Paid app, but I love it.

Printer Share - print stuff from your phone to any printer connected to a PC with the Printer Share PC app on it. Eg. - Can print on printer at home from phone anywhere. First 100 pages free.

Clipbot - supplements phone's clipboard. When the collector is on it captures and keeps all cut or copied text for individual or group selection later from the Clipbot app. Very useful when trying to copy / paste several pieces at once in stead of treating each individually.

SPB TV - Paid Internet streaming TV app. Must be over 100 channels from all parts of the world. Beware the Polish shopping channel that plays porn ads all night - in Europe. Includes Bloomberg, Euronews and many more.

TransDroid - Easy, simple app for remotely managing a bittorrent client / server.

AppMonster Pro - I use this for backing up the APKs for non-protected installed apps.

Ping - free. It pings things.

JetFlicks - subscribe to on-demand streaming of many of the most popular TV series of recent years. Usually multiple seasons available.

Adobe Flash Player - free. Needs Android v2.2. Works great with TVNZ OnDemand. Doesn't work with TV3's on demand. (Can see the ads....but the show never comes up).

Last but not least: Skyfire browser. Allows you to watch flash video on phones that can't yet support the Flash. I use d it mainly to watch video clips on the BBC News web site. 

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Eken M001 video: Is this fast enough for you?

The intention here is to show you what an Eken M001 looks like running custom firmware and set up to perform as well as it possibly can. To me, this is much faster and more responsive than the software that comes pre-loaded (v1.7.2) or the official v1.7.4 update.

  • ECOTOX v1.1.1 (based on Eken official v1.7.4 / Android v1.6) custom firmware (comes pre-rooted)
  • Home++ launcher / home app
  • 96MB Linux swap partition on sdcard

I didn't make a video of the official software as I didn't have enough battery. I left the charger at work tonight. Oops! In any case, I leave it to you to decide whether or not what you're seeing is fast enough.....whether you've seen any other flavour or not.

Bear in mind this is a very cheap, low spec device. I got it on TradeMe for NZ$156 (US$112 approx). It can be had for less.

I was looking at the M001 through the viewfinder on my SONY camera, so had a little finger trouble with fine movements on the screen as I couldn't see it very well.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Getting the best out of your Eken M001 android tablet

The learning curve continues

At this point, the very best performance configuration for the Eken M001 (and no-name OEM versions) is ECOTOX v1.1.1 firmware and an sdcard partitioned to include a linux swap partition (along with the usual FAT32 partition) and swapping enabled. Using the "Home++" alternate Android UI included with ECOTOX also seems to help speed things up.

To create a swap partiton on my sdcard, I used my android phone booted in Amon_RA Recovery v1.7.0.1. As ECOTOX is a rooted Android system, you're able to edit the "" to change the swap device from the default /dev/block/mmcblk0p2 if you need to. In my case changing it to mmcblk0p1 was all that was needed. I used the "Root Explorer" app to do the editing.

Once you re-boot you find you now have 195MB of available memory.

The effect is amazing! Where moving from the browser to the Home screen on stock firmware might take up to 10 seconds, with swapping enabled it takes barely one second. If you have an M001 you would do yourself a favour to get. ECOTOX v1.1.1 installed and set up a swap file.

The first thing anyone should do with one of these tablets is go into Menu > Settings and recalibrate the touchpanel. Do not use your finger! Use something with a very precise point like a knitting needle or stylus. Nail those crosshairs right in the centre. This gives you some hope of being able to use your fingers for most things. I've also found that for typing it is better to use a couple of stylus-like objects to ensure better accuracy and less re-work. I use two halves of a broken knitting needle for typing. Just the right length and comfortable to hold. They work great.

Although the Android market is included in all the recent firmwares for the M001, it remains a hassle to get it to actually work. It will function normally in every way, except it won't actually download what you choose. That is very annoying. So instead, I use my Android phone to get the apps, then back them up using Appmonster Pro. I then email the *.apk files to a gmail account associated with my M001. To receive the APKs you have to use the browser and login to Gmail as the included Gmail app isn't able to download such attachments.

The summary is that ECOTOX and Home++ and the ability to swap, combined with a properly calibrated touchpanel, transform the M001 into something reasonably responsive for daily use. It's almost a netbook for so cheap who cares. If your expectations are low, then the M001 will pleasantly surprise you.

Looking at the screen, it seems to like ECOTOX v1.1.1 presents a sharper, clearer display than the other firmware. I may be completely wrong there, but to me it looks better than the others. My eyes aren't as good as they used to be and I can read text more easily on this system.

The ECOTOX information and links to the firmware are at The site has a few "issues" with the hosting provider, so it can be flakey at times. Keep refreshing the page and it should be OK, if annoying.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Eken M001 Android tablet

I bought an Eken M001 Android tablet on Trademe last week.
The specs were attractive for the low prices being asked. The devices had a feature set similar to an iPod Touch, with a screen almost 4 times the size and for about half the price.


  • 7 inch TFT LCD touch screen @ 800x480
  • VIA MW8505 600MHz CPU
  • 2GB NAND Flash
  • Support SDHC flash media up to 32GB
  • WiFi 802.11b/g
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • built-in mic
  • supports usual Android multi-media formats and codecs
  • Android v1.6
There are quite a few for sale there and many start with a $1 reserve, so there is a chance to pick up a bargain. Many of those auctions also appear to have an auto-bidder right from the start who takes the price up to a level the vendor may well be happy with.
...a bit like a stealth reserve.

In the end, I got one for $156 and received it two days later. I recorded the unboxing with a few still picks.

Unboxing and Starting Up

It comes well presented and the packaging is up to the job of protecting the device. Nothing shonky here. The battery was full and I had it booted up and running in no time.

I had very low expectations of this device. At such a low price point I almost expected to not start at all. But it did. Having started up, I thought there might be a slight chance of a hardware failure within the first few hours of use. That didn't happen.

Two things you must do immediately if you buy one of these:

1. Insert an 8GB SDHC sdcard into the device. You need this additional storage to make best use of several apps and services. After I inserted the SDcard, at first it reported a bad sdcard. I powered off and re-booted. Still bad. Then I went to "Menu -> Settings -> [SDcard & storage]" and formated the SDcard and it worked fine after that. The device would also take a MicroSD in an SDHC adaptor, if you have one of those. I strongly recommend getting an SDcard as it allows you to use the device more fully. In particular it makes it possible to apply system updates.

2. Calibrate the keyboard in Menu -> Settings -> Touchpanel calibration. The default calibration is - frankly - terrible. Don't do the calibration with your finger tip like I did. It's too big, even your pinkie tip, and the result will be sloppy, unreliable keyboard interpretation of your intentions. I finally did the calibration with a sharped-tipped pointy object and nailed the cross-hairs right in the middle...and the keyboard accuracy after that was MUCH better.

If you do these two things to start with you'll save yourself annoyance later.


Generally, the M001 looks good, is designed reasonably well, but feels 'cheap' with a glossy plastic case and "clicky" control buttons. That is probably because it is cheap. But once it's powered on and I'm using it, I forget about all that and move on to whether it works or not.

It works.

The screen is bright enough and clear enough to easily usable. Definition isn't razor sharp, but usable without eye strain. The glass isn't the highest quality you've ever seen, but it's good enough. It is prone to smudging. If you wipe it, I recommend using something very soft that won't scratch the glass. The external sound is not amazing, but it works and you can hear it clearly enough. I have yet to try it with a headset. The WiFi worked great and I had no trouble getting online via my WPA2-encrypted TP-Link Wifi access point. It holds the connection well with any access point I've tried it with.

The battery life is about 3 hours of steady use though you can extend this a bit by using the device in a dimly-lit room and turning the screen brightness down. If you find yourself needing to turn it up to 60% or more in a brightly-lit location, then the battery life will be reduced accordingly. It's possible to use the device while it is plugged into the mains and charging, so provided you're somewhere with available power, battery life isn't a huge issue. The M001 does not charge via USB. It's mains only.

External connections include a 3.5mm headphone jack, power port, SDHC sdcard slot and a 30-pin USB connector port, similar to those used by Apple.

I'm including the soft keyboard under hardware. As above, properly calibrated, it works fine though a wee bit on the slow side.

The very best way to use the keyboard seems to be in landscape mode. I found that propping it up about 20 degrees from horizontal allows me to see the screen easily and I can actually use something approaching normal two-handed typing on the touch screen with a high degree of accuracy. This was a good find as it means the M001 is actually easier to type on than my Nexus One phone.

In portrait mode, the smaller keys mean you're back to "phone typing" and that isn't as 'ease-y'.

The controls on the M001 are simple. There is a circular pad near the base of the device. Up, down, left and right are, respectively: Menu, Home, Volume down, Volume up. A button in the the centre serves as the Back button. Just to the left is the Power button for turning the device or on or putting it to sleep. The "sleep" mode may just dim the screen as the the battery continues to be drawn on steadily even when you think you've put the device into stand-by.

System and Software

As far as the system itself is concerned, this is Android v1.6. There is no phone or camera or Bluetooth, so any system functions that rely on or relate to these things either aren't there or won't work as you would expect. If they are there at all, it will be because something the M001 does do needs system support from a relevant component.

The range of apps pre-installed was broad and covered most areas of functionality you'd like to see there: Facebook, Twitter, Google Maps, email, MSN Droid, web browser, My Music, My Video and many more. The Eken M001 even included a few apps that may or may not be legal to be included - like the "Documents to Go" suite of apps - including full reg key. This app allows full file compatibility with MS Office's Word, Excel and Powerpoint and also includes a PDF reader. But I do not know what Eken's licensing arrangements might be, so I can only assume it's all good.

A lot of the apps were Chinese language-only ("QQ", for example), so I they weren't really usable if you can't read Chinese. There was an App Store but it wasn't the Android Market and the number of apps there was quite small and they were, again, mostly in Chinese.

To get apps onto the M001, I installed them on my Android phone first, then backed them up with Appmonster Pro and emailed any app I wanted to the M001's gmail box as an attachment. I then downloaded the app via the browser, logged into Gmail. Then I installed it. This works fine if you have an Android phone or access to one. Otherwise, you're a bit stuck and would have to look around the Net for Android app sources other than the Android Market.

There were a few bugs in the firmware level delivered (WTM SDK v1.7.2.). Among the issues I noticed personally, the YouTube app couldn't play any videos. In Google Maps the Streetview function didn't work. The screen didn't rotate reliably when you change the device from portrait to landscape or vice versa. The keyboard was sluggish.

I Googled around and found a few sites that focus on Android tablets. The best was I found an active forum dealing specifically with my Eken M001. Even better, there is a community of people there who have hacked the default system images and made a few improvements. Even BETTER, I found an official firmware update for the device that would take it to v1.7.4. I downloaded it from here.

If you're looking for a cheap eReader, this may be the device you're looking for. I've installed three eReaders on it so far: Kobo, Kindle and Aldiko. They all work fine. I've reviewed the Kobo eReader app here. It works the same on the M001 as it does on my Nexus One. The M001's much larger screen is a huge plus.

Upgrading the M001 firmware

Installing the firmware update is easy. You just unzip the ZIP file. Inside and down a level is a folder called "script". Just copy this folder and everyting in it to the root of the sdcard. Then power the device off and back on. It automatically installs the update. I took some pics of the upgrade.

After the update, the YouTube worked, Streetview worked in Google Maps and I found Google Mail, Google Talk and the Android Market had all been added. The screen rotates more reliably, though I notice each app may have a default orientation and starts up in that and the system orientation doesn't appear to be updated. To get around that I rotate the screen to landscscape, count to 5, and then rotate back and the M001 will then operate normally, having been refreshed as to what the orientation state is. It's a minor thing and the firmware update improves it.


The M001 isn't a fast device, but it is definitely usable. once in any given app it can be quite snappy and very usable. The biggest lags I have seen are when in the web browser for a few minutes, then touching "Home" to return to the Android Home screen. This can take anywhere from 5 to 20 seconds. This is the worst case. Most transitions are much faster, though 5-10 seconds isn't unusual.

Copying files on and off via the USB cable was painfully slow (200KB/second) with the Windows Server 2008 system I tried it with. But that system is always crap for USB data movements, so I still need to test this with some other system. TBD. I had much better performance after I installed Estrongs File Manager on the device and copied files from Windows/samba file shares on the LAN via Wifi.


The M001 does a great job of playing songs and videos. The big screen is, again, a huge plus. It supports the same default video and audio formats as any Android v1.6 system. This means most non-proprietary video and audio codecs work just fine.

Rather than try to describe it, here is a video of my M001 playing some YouTube videos over wifi. In fact, the M001 was wifi tethered to the Internet via the Wifi Hotspot built into Android v2.2 on my Nexus One phone.


I had low expectations of the Eken M001 and I have been pleasantly surpised. For $156 I think I've got something of a bargain here. It's several times the size of an iPod Touch - it's functional equivalent - and for less than half the price. Even better, because this is Android, the device is free of the file transfer and other limitations imposed on the iPod Touch.

If you wan't a premium product, this isn't it. But if you want an eReader / multimedia / Internet-enabled tablet for cheap, then you can't really go past the Eken M001.

(The video and photo content in this article were taken with my Nexus One phone)

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Kobo e-reader for Android

I downloaded and installed the free Kobo e-reader app for Android last night. Once installed, I created an account and bought a book "The Shadow Factory". It's a US book, but the price was quoted in NZ$. I thought that was pretty good.

This all took at most 5 minutes from install to completed book download.

There were a couple of apparent glitches. The Kobo app said there had been an error and to restart the app.....but the book download appeared to be proceeding normally anway, so I let it finish and then opened the book to read it. That worked fine. I'm not sure what the error message was for.

The table of contents in the book appears to not work....or I don't yet understand how it should work. If I touch a link for a location in the book, it presents a blank, white page....but I am able to happily scroll though the book directly. Fonts can be changed to serif, sand serif and monotype. A range of font sizes is available.

I'm sure any little glitches seen in v1.0.0 will be sorted out and as it is right now, the app works. I can install it, create an account, buy a book and read the book.

Why "Android Luver"?

This is a blog about Google's Android OS and any device it runs on and any app that can be used on any of them. It marks a departure from my previous blogging on things droid.

I've been running a blog called "Truth Seeker" for more than two years. The original intention of that blog was to think about everyday issues and add my own opinions, views and values to whatever anyone else has published.

That went fine, though thinking takes a fair bit of research and informed opinion takes a fair bit of thinking about what you've researched...and it's a good idea to try to do all of that with integrity.

As time passed, I became more interested in the transformational effects of mobile technology. I started blogging more and moer about tech than current events. I also started getting a lot more views. People wanted to know how to do stuff and wanted to read about what others were doing so they could better understand what and how they could do it too.

So "Truth Seeker" isn't really the right context anymore for that kind of blogging. The odd post I still made on current affairs now seemed out of place.

Why "Android Luver"?

So you know what to expect. I've used laptops for years, but you still need to sit down somewhere with a flat surface and it can't be too bright and the battery doesn't last too long and connectivity is always an issue. More like luggable desktops than truly mobile - everywhere, anytime - information technology.

Then I bought my Apple iPod Touch...and that pretty much changed everything. I was hungering to buy an iPhone as soon as one was available and I could afford it.

But after a few months of using my iPod Touch I worked out that Apple's view of how I should be using the thing wasn't one I shared overall. Instead of buying the iPhone, as planned, I looked for alternatives...and Google's Android OS looked like just the thing.

I bought an HTC Magic 32B from Vodafone NZ a few weeks after they became available.


This blog is driven by that "Wow" feeling I get every time I turn my Android phone or tablet on.