| browse: mobile | android | pc hardware | firefox | fun | music | .

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Android HTC Desire better user interface

*** this article is outdated - new version May 2012 here ***

BTW: you can make your phone look better and add functionality to the homescreen without even rooting the device. Below you see how I set up my phone these days.
The lower dock is scrollable with a swipe, so you can add a total of 15 fully customizable actions (actually even more if you use the "swipe gesture action")

wallpaper credits: tamilia orb vector
more wallpapers here and more inspiration at XDA dev


Exchange ActiveSync on Android phones - Desire Froyo

Loads of Android users around the globe have been waiting for a matured support of Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync security policies.

The good news: since Android 2.2 aka Froyo MS Exchange syncing works exactly as desired! I just created some screenshots to give you an idea how Exchange support was implemented into Android. Let's hope your HTC Android, Samsung Magic, Xperia X10 etc. will get a Froyo update soon.

First the exchange setup. Honestly... it can't get any easier than that, the setup process works the same way as on every other phone supporting MS Exchange: your administrator has to provide nothing more than the name of the server you need to connect to and add your user-id to the designated active directory group.

Go into settings > "accounts & sync" - add Exchange ActiveSync
You will be prompted for the server name, your user-id,
domain name, email address and password. Done.

before syncing for the first time you'll have to accept
the security policies activated by the Exchange Administrators
the screenshot gives you an idea

you can setup the update schedule quite precisely
(peak time start and end, sync frequency)
our administrator set the password retry limit to 10 see top of screenshot
the 11th wrong try will trigger the process "erase all data"

most important: the integration into the android calendar
and email is absolutely seemless! This is also true for the reminders.

...you get the idea!

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Logitech G700 Mouse announced

Some of you know that I'm using a Performance MX Mouse almost a year now. It's close to perfect - really.
Today Logitech announced the tuned up version G700 > comes with 13 customizable buttons instead of just 9 and with higher transfer/report frequency. While I can't care less about the (nonsense) features specifically designed for gamers? I'm often in need for many mouse buttons while working series of hundreds of pictures in Photoshop.

[Update Aug 2011: just bought a G700. While the design and the driver's usability are perfect, I dislike that on the side we're dealing with a hard, cheap feeling, rough plastic, where the Performance MX offers a much higher perceived value by it's soft and slightly 'rubberish' shell.
Everybody intending to use the included USB cable should be aware, that it's relatively rigid. Pleasant surprise: tilting the mouse wheel left an right triggers a clean click - better than the analogue sampling introduced with the Performance MX. btw you can also run the mouse without having the battery inserted, so it's cord vs. weight  /end]

under exposed to give you an idea of the rough surface

Have a look at the pictures, the mouse looks really good and the buttons are placed where I love it. That's the main reason for me to report the mouse. Maybe I'll get one for my kids? For their Photoshop course I mean - lol

(image source: logitech.com)

Remember: in the normal consumer Logitech products you can only assign custom key functions to all buttons by using uberoptions (or manually tweaking the xml files), whereas in the gamer products such as this G700 you can assign custom functions to more and every button right out of the box.
In the driver you can create as many button profile sets as you like, three of them are stored in the mouse itself.
The pictures explain it all:

Logitech G700 & Performance MX

Specs taken from their site:
- 13 customizable buttons
- 200 - 5700 dpi
- dpi can be changed in 5 steps, you can freely assign a value per step
- report rate or polling rate: up to 1000 Hz (steps are: 125, 200, 250, 333, 500, 1000)
- weight 145 g (reports also state 151g), 128g if you run it without the battery
- only one AA battery max, eNiTime 1.2V, 2000mAh
- no customizable weights

Reviews and pictures:
engadget.com (pics)

Monday, August 02, 2010

HTC Desire Froyo Update Android 2.2

On July 21 HTC released the official Android 2.2 aka Froyo update for the HTC Desire. The Update is delivered to you over the air (FOTA). Go to settings / system software updates / and hit "check now" if you want to get it right away.

In no particular order, here's a quick overview of some of the new functions that have been added:

Adobe flash 10.1 showcase now downloadable in the android store
...works fabulously! Even a flashheavy site like okaydave.com works

HTC: new FM Radio widget, new color
Now with real RDS support - wow didn't expect that

voice recognition searches now actually work
with the same tool? hey even voice dialing works fine

HTC: new flashlight using the photo LED - but I think flashlight apps to make the main display shine in bright white are more useful

HTC: added 720p video recording mode
HTC: camera options now also displayed portrait style
(click here for Desire 720p test video)

"recent apps" now showing 8 apps, new design

Wifi Hotspot functionality

Thai and other Asian fonts added, Chinese Input added
they all render in the browser as well as in all apps

  • HTC: easier keyboard language switch through added key
  • new texting dialog makes it much easier to attach files (mms)
  • HTC: new "App share" application
  • HTC: is the calculator widget also new?
  • browser can now display animated GIF
  • browser now supports file upload
  • HTC: powering off phone now delivers better feedback (vibrating)
  • much better MS Exchange ActiveSync security policies support (auto-discovery, GAL look-up, calendar synchronization, remote wipe)
  • better browser performance
  • some apps can now be installed/moved to SD-Card
  • new Android Market widget
  • screen can now also be rotated to the right
  • Android Market now offers the option "update all"
  • THE BAD: all of a sudden google search history was activated automatically

    >> full list of new features at android developers

New Version Details:
Android version 2.2
Baseband version
Kernel version / htc-kernel@and18-2 #1
Build number 2.09.405.8 CL218634 release-keys
Software number 2.09.405.8
Browser version WebKit 3.1