...where distraction is the main attraction.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Cons and Pros of the New Phone: MyTouch Q

Last Thursday I rid myself of my BlackBerry Bold 9700 (BBB 9700) for a new LG myTouch Q.

Old and busted

New hotness?
My list of issues with BlackBerries is endless due to almost 5 years of labored usage.  I will not enumerate these issues as I fear that I'll sound like that Cell Phone Guy who Louie CK always ridicules.

Instead, as a mini-phone review, I'll list the Cons and Pros of the LG myTouch Q when compared to the BBB 9700:

CON - The myTouch is bulkier, but that's largely due to the protective case I've added.  Yet BlackBerry Bold was inconveniently wide in order to allow for the full alphabetic keyboard.

PRO - Because it's bigger, I won't carry it around in my pocket, thus avoiding further risk of genital cancer.

CON - myTouch Q sounds vaguely sexual.

PRO - myTouch Q sounds vaguely sexual.

CON - The actual phone part of the phone is much more difficult to use, and oddly so.  For general device usage, the user can set the screen to shut off automatically after a certain short period of time in order to save battery power.  The BBB 9700 had the same option, but the screen remained on during a call to allow the user to multitask or see call information.  The myTouch does not keep the screen on during a call.  It shuts off, thus ending a call is at least a two step process.  Perhaps a first in the history of the telephone?  Also the 'End' on-screen button is small and surrounded by a bunch of other call options, making the call ending process a precise procedure.  Weird LG fail.

PRO - The Google-run Android software is beautiful to behold and runs very smoothly, most of the time.  The BlackBerry software looks embarrassing and antiquated by comparison.

PRO - The myTouch Q camera is 5 megapixels, shoots solid 720p video, and has a bunch of easy to use onscreen photo options.  The BBB 9700 claims to have had a 3.2 megapixels camera, but the results appeared considerably worse than that; also its level of focus was poor and the video was, technically, sh*t.

CON - A multiple non-intuitive process to get photos from the myTouch Q to a computer via the very USB cord that's charging the phone.  Perhaps this is a Mac issue, but it doesn't appear so.

PRO - Complete connection with all things Google.  So if the user has a Picasa page, then he or she can post the phone pics directly there without taking up any computer hard drive space.

CON - I have a couple of Gmail accounts for work purposes and though the phone runs on a Google platform it rarely notifies me of my new emails, even when I've set it to update or Sync hourly.

PRO - As I was typing that last message, the myTouch informed me of a new email just received.

PRO - Very easy to turn on/off the WiFi, Bluetooth, and GPS.

PRO - The BBB 9700 had two side buttons that were placed awkwardly resulting in photos of my pocket and constant demands that I "Speak a Voice Command".  myTouch doesn't have these buttons.

PRO - Fewer pocket dialings.  Yay!

PRO - Google Maps looks beautiful and has a great navigation setup.  Google Maps for all BlackBerry devices is clunky and at times totally nonfunctional.

CON - This may not be the phone's fault, but a 4G data connection isn't that super.  As 3G was only minutely faster than EDGE, 4G's not consistently better than 3G.  Thus the beautiful Google Maps requires a considerable wait.

CON - The vertical scrolling on the myTouch is not as smooth as it is on certain Apple products.  This results in all sorts of options being selected when the user is just trying to scroll downwards on the myTouch screen.

PRO - Non-iOS touchscreen typing software has improved significantly since my ill-fated brief usage of the Samsung Sh*t, two years ago.  Plus the slide-out keyboard has much bigger buttons than the BBB 9700.

CON - The alarm.  Ugh.  I've been using my cell phone alarm almost every morning for over 9 years.  I set my alarm, I shut off my phone.  My phone turns itself on for the alarm.  The phone I was using 9 years ago could do that.  The myTouch Q cannot.  If you set the alarm and shut off the phone, then you are sleeping in, my friend.  The software doesn't know how to turn the phone on for the alarm, nor does it have an option to allow for this.  The only workaround?  Leave the phone on, turn off the sound, switch on Airplane Mode, and let the battery slowly drain all night.  Serious LG fail.

CON - Most people use an alarm to wake up.  Thus when the alarm goes off, the shut off or snooze button should be very visible for a pair of discombobulated sleepy eyes.  It should not be one of a number of fingertip-sized choices on a screen.  LG fail.

PRO - The screen is beautiful and allows for a lot of customization.

CON - All of the beautiful screen stuff and great Android features run down the battery within hours, even after all sorts of battery-saving actions are taken.  I am constantly recharging the myTouch.

PRO - I can compose blog entries on my phone! (But not this one because I didn't want to run down the battery.)

Ultimately the myTouch Q is better device than the BBB 9700.  The unintuitive antiquated clunkiness of the BlackBerry software, the hideous camera, and the awkward buttons that caused all matters of unintentional comedy were all dealbreakers on both of my BlackBerry devices.  (Yes, there was once another.)  The myTouch Q looks good, runs on decent software, and has a usable camera.  Now if only the phone part worked well...