It's kind of amusing. A week or two ago, Ars Technica had a little blurb on the DROID's ad campaign, that boiled down to, "Yeah, yeah -- it's got a multiprocessing and open development and all that. But who cares about that?" The answer, it seems, is us. I'm not sure whether Verizon deliberately targeted the geeks with this phone, but they seem to have done a good job with it if so.
Anyway, so far I'm reasonably pleased with it. It's responsive, powerful and rather fun to use. The main downside is that it gives you enough rope to hang yourself: it *does* do multiprocessing and it *does* have lots of apps, so it is *very* easy to kill your battery. The most important advice I've gotten so far was from Denise, who told me that I needed to get TasKiller as the very first app I bought. This seems to be true: you've got to do active process management on your own if you want decent battery life. Even with that, the battery is only so-so: I can pretty well drain it in 3-4 hours of serious online work. (OTOH, it appears easy to swap batteries, so if it ever becomes a real problem, I can get myself a spare.)
That's really my only complaint, though: in general, I'm enjoying the heck out of it. So far, I've picked up the following apps:
- AK Notepad (a simple, well-reviewed notepad app), Rehearsal Assistant (a voice recording app) and Note Everything (which does both, and may be the one I really keep);
- Andoku (an adequate Sudoku game) and OpenSudoku (which is pretty great, but doesn't auto-generate new puzzles -- you have to download them);
- Astro (a pretty full-featured file manager for getting under the hood);
- The Bank of America online banking app;
- Documents To Go (the old Palm classic, that lets you read and edit Word, Excel and Powerpoint -- currently on sale for $15);
- Google Sky Map (silly but cool: it shows you the constellations in whatever direction the phone is facing);
- Jewellust (a *horribly* addictive Bejeweled variant), and of course a Solitaire implementation with Spider;
- Google Listen (Podcast client -- it occurs to me that podcasts are going to be far more useful on this thing than they ever were on my iPod);
- SleepyTime (sleep-noise generator with a remarkably full collection of sounds);
- The Weather Channel app;
- and the aforementioned TasKiller, whose sole purpose is to make it quick and easy to kill processes, individually or all at a shot. I do like the system's stability, and the fact that I *can* kill all of the background processes and everything seems to cope just fine.