30th March 2011 8:34 pm
On Friday of last week I unexpectedly got a text from Vodafone saying I was able to upgrade my phone early. I was pretty pleased about this as having been something of an Android early adopter, I was still using an early Android phone, namely my HTC Magic. While a fine phone when it was released, it was only the second Android phone to become available in the UK and was therefore a bit dated compared to newer devices. It has been upgraded to Froyo (albeit a cut-down custom build) but that did slow the phone down somewhat.
So as soon as I had the opportunity I had a good look around for a new one to replace it. Right from the start I had my eye on the HTC Desire Z. Much as I love touchscreen phones, it’s very often extremely handy to have a physical keyboard, and as I’ve found myself using ConnectBot to connect to my home server via SSH a lot, the keyboard-toting Desire Z immediately had an advantage over the touchscreen-only models. Ideally I didn’t want to change my plan, so I checked out the deals for HTC phones on the same plan, and the Desire Z happened to be the only one on the same plan, so it was a no-brainer.
I got the phone on Monday, and it is amazing. The keyboard is easy to use and works well, the phone is lightning fast, and the UI is spot-on - it has everything I love about Android on the Magic (like the great notification system) and more. In particular I love the RSS reader- it syncs with Google Reader, so if I have to wait for a train, I can at least read some feeds while I’m waiting.
One thing I’m hoping to get more use out of is SL4A. I had this on my Magic, but coding on a touchscreen phone is not easy! I’m hoping that with the Desire Z’s keyboard, this will be a lot more useful.