Mobile Nations World Tour Update: Kevin says hello to Android and hangs out on an Android Central podcast

By Kevin Michaluk on 8 Jun 2012 12:02 pm EDT

It's on. I announced the Mobile Nations World Tour 2012 earlier this week, which has me spending the next few months getting to better know the competition as we wait for BlackBerry 10. My first stop on the tour is Android and yesterday I said hello to the audience over at our sibling site Android Central, who *mainly* welcomed me with open arms (turns out there are a lot of ex-BB users and CB fans over there too). I also joined Phil, Jerry and Alex for a podcast in the evening, which you can check about above. 

My primary SIM card is now tucked into an HTC One X. Transitioning from a BlackBerry to Android phone has been interesting so far. When a blinking red light, physical keyboard and BBM have been part of your existence for so long, not having them is weird. Despite the big change, I've been managing to get along OK with the One X and am getting pretty fast at typing on glass (I tried a few different keyboards and have found the SwiftKey 3 Beta keyboard to suit me). Even if I learn nothing else while on Tour, I'm glad for the practice I'm getting in prep for BB10.

There are a few things that drive me bonkers and a few demands I still need to find solutions for, but overall it has been fairly easy to pick up and use. The One X hardware is pretty nice. The display really is awesome and it has a solid camera. But at the same time I've also found that the One X has a piece of sh!t speakerphone and that the bluetooth works like crap with my car (Range Rover) and is always dropping the connection. These are things that have been rock solid on BlackBerry for years, so I find it surprising and sort of unacceptable. I guess it's an illustration of where the priorities are at, and I'd put delivering a great communication experience not at the top of the list.

I'm taking detailed notes of all my experiences and also building an evaluation framework so I can provide useful insight based on all of my likes and dislikes and observations. I'm thinking the plan will be to do a dedicated Mobile Nations World Tour podcast followed by a long write up with my experiences as I try each platform (I dont' want to pollute the CB blogs with too many non-BB posts!). Stay tuned for more. And in the meantime, you can keep up with me on twitter and Google+ for my remarks.

Reader comments

Mobile Nations World Tour Update: Kevin says hello to Android and hangs out on an Android Central podcast


The post pic says it all.

Kev looks "happy as a clam"? Well not quite.

But it's good to see the nations tour is underway.

It may be that it is BB needs to understand the average Android users do not require a "communication device. Point in case... I gave my son my first Generation Bold 3 years ago. He did very little calling & mainly texting.

He wanted to update and didnt want a BB anymore. So he now has a One X. He loves it. But he never uses the phone. Texting, Facebook, gaming etc ...

So if this is a market that BB wants to go after they will need to polish up that user experience for BB10.

That's the opportunity for BlackBerry 10. Bring the best of that BlackBerry communication and productivity experience of the past to an updated platform (QNX) that rocks at apps, games, etc.


Doing my own world tour. iOS user for years, then switched to BB. A year in, i decided to try out all the platforms. Got a Lumia 800 a while back, then an iPhone 4, and now a Galaxy Note. But despite trying, i can't even last using those devices as my daily drivers for a week. After a while i start bringing my BB out with me along with the other device. Then eventually the BB becomes my primary device again and i just leave the rest at home. The BB is still the one that fulfills my primary needs. I'm not a huge gamer, or app junkie. So i am fine with the compromises the BB makes. But of course hopefully with BB10, it will retain what i love about BBOS, and add on the bells and whistles that other platforms are offering.

Flipping back and forth from a Galaxy S2 and the 9900, what I love about the 9900 is still the keyboard (no touchscreen keyboard can match it), email (all of Android's offerings are flawed in some way), phone calling (lack of physical button suck!), calendar (hate the calendar in the S2), and, as you pointed out, the bluetooth (S2 sucks for hands free calling as it continually kicks me out of handsfree mode after a call is done).

For the rest of the phone usage (apps, browsing) then the S2 is a good choice.

Which one to choose all depends on what you use your phone for. It's good that I know have choice and can flip flop as required but in NO WAY is Android a complete solution... just as BB or iOS isn't either...

Wow Kevin is looking caveman! = depression!! Rim get the man a blackberry10 phone quick before he's too far gone!!!

Hang in there Kevin it'll be here before you know it!!

I get completely what Kevin is saying about the PlayBook filling in in areas where my Bold doesn't excel. I think I'd be a lot more dissatisfied with my Bold if I didn't have a large touch screen experience elsewhere.

Hey Kevin, Can you do one of this picture-a-day things and then make a video at the end showing your transition into rabid BB10 awaiting caveman? I think it would be quite fun :) Maybe the other boys could compete with you.

Whoa! Kevin's moved to the dark side!

Hey, Kevin, we expect regular weekly reports on your Android experience :) Be brutally honest and tell us what you like and what you don't. Don't forget, the Android folks will be scrutinizing your comments too, but personal preference is personal. Everyone is allowed their opinion, as long as common sense and clear logic is used.

It would be interesting if one of the Android Central folks would also switch to a 9900 for a bit and you could both compare notes. Only if they want to be objective, otherwise, it is a waste. Of course, the 9900 is not BB10 but still, it would be worth a comparison from a usability perspective.

Youtube is to blame. It did that to all of my videos... and I thought my sound card was going on me, turns out I was wrong, it was the video. Doesn't matter if it's stereo, it gets isolated to mono on the right, or the left channel is scrapped. I don't even know why that is.