Android 1.6 (Donut) initial thoughts

I installed donut earlier this week. This is on my G1 devphone, so I don’t recommend you use the htc page otherwise. This time I didn’t bother going through all the nonsense with the tools, I just mounted the phone on USB and slapped the image across one by one into the SD card as update.zip.

This is not as significant an upgrade as cupcake was but nevertheless, it’s improved the phone in a number of key ways.

  • the search widget now searches phone content as well internet content, this works very smoothly;
  • the camera / camcorder apps are now easy to switch between, and much faster;
  • the gallery is quicker, but only after it takes a complete age to index/whatever;
  • the market application is hugely improved, and as a bonus, lots of content that was previously unavailable on the devphone is now listed;
  • the speech synthesis stuff is installed, but I don’t really see it does much just yet;
  • the battery monitor app is very useful, especially since the g1 battery life sucks so badly.

My battery life is, by the way, 29% taken up by wifi (forgot to switch it off today), 18% by display, 14% cell standby, and so on. 8% was taken up by voice calls.

Be warned, the new upgrade seems to suck up more space, and takes a long time to start-up after first reboot.

You can see a full list of the changes here, and though it’s modest, I think it’s a nice upgrade in lots of ways. At this time, it’s hard to know how much limitations in the G1 experience are from the hardware or the OS, I’m looking forward to seeing how android behaves on new hardware.

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