By Stefanie Hahn
I just upgraded. After pouring over the research… visiting the phones (four times, but who’s counting?), working to get the best deal, and waiting until the price dropped to where I wanted; I did it! Friends and co-workers cheered that I finally moved out of research-mode and into go-mode.
I love my new HTC Hero and all of the Google-fantastic-ness that comes with it. The transition from my Palm OS phone to Google was fairly simple. My Gmail, contacts, and calendar were a no-brainer. After a few days, I had my bookmarks stored, a few essential apps loaded, my music, photos, and social media all set and I was off!
I knew I would love this phone, but a few things pleasantly surprised me:
- Screens – HTC is big on personalization. The Hero has a screen for each part of your life — work, weekend, travel, music, etc. and with the ability to add a different “scene” to each screen. Not a necessity, but I think it’s organizational with a fun twist.
- Facebook integration – I love that my Facebook friend’s information will connect automatically with my Google contacts. Bliss! Plus I get their profile photo, status updates, and whatever contact info they have on Facebook. This rocks for friends that change their e-mail and numbers often.
- Hands free – The Hero also offers a few hands-free options — voice dialing, voice Google search and apps for translating speech-to-text. The voice-dial is pretty accurate and makes finding contacts a snap. As someone who is on the road a few hours each day, the hands-free options are wonderful. Safety first!
- Notifications – Now that I know how to move around my android phone, I love the notifications bar that pulls down from the top of any screen. I get call, voicemail, e-mail, text, twitter mentions and direct messages, download info and more — all of the latest and greatest information in one little touch. The notifications bar keeps me up to speed.
- Keyboard – The lack of a physical keyboard was my biggest concern with choosing the Hero. I played with it endlessly in the stores. I figured if I had to return the phone, the lack of keyboard would be the reason. Turns out… the touchscreen keyboard rocks too. I misspell everything; the Hero corrects me as I type and offers suggestions along the way. I can add a word to the phone’s dictionary with a simple tap. Using the calibration tool helped tremendously too… now it’s basically effortless.
So consider an android phone at your next upgrade! A tad less sexy than an iPhone, but still a hot date next to a BlackBerry or Palm, get the best of both worlds with great productivity tools and plenty of fun too.
Stefanie Hahn is the education director for Coldwell Banker Hearthside, REALTORS® in Willow Grove, Pa. Visit her Web site: www.StefanieHahn.com.