Sep 25th, 2008

No phone is perfect and after a couple days, a somewhat universal list of complaints for the T-Mobile G1 has sparked up on the web. I agree with AndroidGuys and IntoMobile on their list and echo it below:

  • No standard 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Video player other than YouTube
  • Lack of MS Exchange support
  • No tethering or desktop sync
  • No VoIP capabilities
  • T-Mobile capping bandwidth at 1GB
  • Amazon downloads have to come via WiFi

The most obvious problem was the 1GB data cap. Once you surpassed 1GB of data usage in a month, your internet speed would be throttled back below 3G and EDGE to whatever painfully slow amount T-Mobile decided was enough to jail you to.

Apparently T-Mobile heard those complaints loud and clear… they’re no longer capping data at 1GB but instead, changing their “Terms of Service” vocabulary to make decisions on a case by case basis. If you abuse the unlimited data system, you’ll get slapped, banned, pwned or whatever else – bottom line.

With that out of the way, lets move onto lack of MS Exchange support, no tethering/desktop sync and no video player besides YouTube. Do these not ALL sound like problems that could be solved by 3rd party developers? Andy Rubin said himself that MS Exchange would be perfect for an outside company to tackle.

Desktop syncing… Funambol is working on an application for that. YouTube player? There shouldn’t be any reason that a 3rd party can’t develop a video player… if YouTube is able to play videos, Android’s SDK should have the tools to allow for this. These might not be EASY but they ILLUSTRATE what Android is… you have every building block you need, if you want it, build it and download it!

I’m kind of disappointed about the 3.5mm headphone jack as well… I would have liked to carry this thing around as a music player. The VoIP and Amazon over WiFi things are a little less important than the others, I would think.

All in all thats a pretty short list of complaints. No phone is ever going to be “perfect” and I imagine thats why the “Dream” moniker wasn’t used. Its setting the bar too high. Its ASKING to be railroaded with snarky headlines like, “T-Mobile Dream is a Nightmare”. Why put yourself in that position?

All in all, if these are the only complaints – several which have already been addressed – than the T-Mobile G1 does a pretty darn good job at addressing the needs of consumers. And remember, this is only the FIRST Android phone by ONE manufacturer and on ONE carrier… we’ve got plenty more to come and plenty of applications on the way that will fill some of the “capability” gaps that been discussed so far.

Kudos for T-Mobile addressing the 1GB limit pretty swiftly. Even if the current resolution leaves somewhat of a question mark, they noticed the issue and addressed it and you have to give them credit for that.

And while the steady stream of Apple Fanboys persistently proclaim their superb power, the story that is unfolding illustrates that just the opposite is true. The iPhone App Store rejection letters to developers are now coming with a Non-Disclosure Agreement. What a joke.

Excuse me while I bask in the glory of openness.