Tuesday, November 20, 2012

No longer having to eat our own dogfood

There is a silver lining to all this. Back in April we decided to switch our US cell carrier from Sprint to AT&T. Sprint's Mexico roaming options were not optimal, so after looking at competing bids we signed up with the Death Star. We also decided to deploy iPads to our US team at the same time, having reviewed several Android tablets during the previous year. That brought up the question of which smartphone to deploy alongside the iPads.

Our operations director brought up a good point. The ability to operate phone and tablet in the same way and to be able to share programs between the two devices would, for most of our users, be a plus. It was hard to argue with that, despite my affinity for Android. So in the spirit of "eating our own dog food" - running the same platform your customers run - I too became an iSheep. To his credit, my sysadmin refused.

Most days I wanted to pitch that phone. Keyboard auto-correct is not the same as the stellar prediction engine in SwiftKey. "Share with" is an absolute joke: just email, sms, twitter, facebook instead of the dozen or so options on Android. No notification profiles for all-at-once settings changes or scheduled changes. No file manager. Can't attach files to an email message from within the message compose window. Tiny 3.5" screen. There were some good points - the radios were superb and the phone was very stable. But overall, it was a disruption to my daily workflow.

So I did what any geek would do. I jail-broke the phone. It didn't really make much difference. Nor did iOS 6. The phone was a thorn in my side.

But, soon to be cut loose from the mothership, I realized I didn't need to suffer in silence any more. I ported my number out from the Death Star and back to Sprint. I have a nice new Galaxy Nexus, and probably real soon a Nexus 7 tablet to be its companion.

To be honest, I do miss AT&T's data speeds. But how I love my Android!