After 2 years of iPhone, should you buy a Google Nexus One?

Marco Bertozzi:04.02.2010

I have read a lot about the Nexus One, more than I should have I suspect! Much of it is technical, detailed analysis. One reviewer was commenting on the weight distribution of the phone! That’s all well and good but not what most people are interested in, the question is ‘If I have had an iPhone for years should I buy a Nexus One?’ Just answer that..so thats what I will do.

I really wanted to like the Nexus One, after spending all that money it was vital I actually liked it! My first impressions that absolutely stand out compared to the iPhone:

Just so quick. This is your day to day usage, this is the diving in and out of apps, looking at the web, all of that stuff that you might not think about, but when you see it all speeded up you realise the benefits. Any iPhone user is unlikely to complain about the speed of their phone but that’s because they have nothing to compare it to, once you use the Nexus One you will find the iPhone slow, especially in the opening of the apps, no more waiting.

It does feel very shiny and new! The screen is amazing, you really notice it. Anyone who likes new gadgets will love the feel of it, everything comes alive in your hand. I am personally not keen on the colour, and I don’t think the layout of how the apps and buttons work is as intuitive as the iPhone although you quickly get used to it. The four home buttons at the base of the screen are used a lot to access functions within apps as opposed to being built into the app like on an iPhone, again I prefer the simple iPhone layout. The track ball could be useful in text mode but I think it ruins the look and is really not needed.

The App store and the Apps themselves are lacking on the phone, they feel less finished, a lot less of them and it is an area where the iPhone dominates, lets see how long that lasts. Anyone who has had an iPhone and moves to the Nexus will be frustrated by the fact nothing crosses over, sounds obvious but it feels wasteful having all those apps that I have invested in just sitting on my iPhone, yes you can still use them over WiFi but it would be good if the developers allowed you to transfer to the Nexus One if you bought them on the iPhone, or at least at a discounted rate.

Overall it is a great phone, the keyboard is not as good as the iPhone, more fiddly but again you will get used to that, the touch screen is designed for the phone to be held at an angle which means if you aim straight down you often miss your target, frustrating but again you get used to it. The speech to text functionality is very hit and miss in my opinion, its fine if you talk very clearly and slowly, it will be useful in some circumstances but not everyday usage I would say.

Overall I am pleased with it, most things people moan about are simple functionalities that people are not used to, does not mean they are bad. As with all things, give it some time and it will be second nature. It feels very special and even an avid iPhone user will have to admit it feels like a different league. That said it has some way to go in a couple of areas, annoying you can’t sync your Outlook Calendar, but I reckon they will be continually sending upgrades as time goes by. The biggest thing of all for me..I am glad to be back in the early adopter bracket, everyone has an iPhone now, it bores me.

As a footnote if you have a iPhone bluetooth handset, it will sync with the Nexus One, so at least thats one thing you will not be wasting on your swap to N1.

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