HTC Desire

Google 3D Maps on Android

I was browsing Google Map on my HTC Desire to find a place in Tanjong Pagar when something came out of the screen unexpected. Buildings popped-out of the map. They are more than just blocks of squares because architectural details are captured. It’s exactly the same as what you can see on the map of New York.

Just to be clear, I am aware of this feature of Google Maps for Android. I’ve been browsing the map of Central Park in New York and I’m in awe for the incredible details. But I didn’t expect that this awesomene feature will be implemented in Singapore this fast.

The app works just the same as when you’re browsing any major city in the U.S. The multi-touch gestures works brilliantly. As expected, it takes a while to render the buildings the first time they are shown. That’s specially true when you’re on the MRT train. And keep an eye on your space because these additional details on the map can decimate the already little memory left on your HTC Desire. That’s another reason to root my phone.

Yes, my phone still uses the official ROM.:)  I’m thinking, would this ever be implemented in the Philippines? I’d like to see Bacolod and Cebu.

HTC Desire Gingerbread Released

I don’ t know if I want to be happy that HTC finally released the Android 2.3 for HTC Desire or be angry since it came so late and yet there’s a lot of caveats and reminders that some functions may not be working. You read it right, it’s as if HTC is giving this to us with a ‘use at your own risk’ sign.

As Engadget reports, this ROM is only available outside the U.S., Germany, Japan and a few more countries. Apparently, it’s available in Singapore. But wai5, did I just say ROM? Yes, and that means it is like factory resetting my phone. No upgrade for me.

I guess it’s time to use custom ROM.

Words With Friends on Android Review

These past weeks, I have been playing the addicting Words With Friends Free for Android. The game has been available for iPhone for quite sometime already and only became available to Android last month. Though it came late, it is still a welcome news for Android users.

Just like the iPhone app, you can play Words With Friends with your friends and strangers alike regardless of what device they are using. Your opponent can use iPhone, Android, PC or Mac as long as the app is installed.:)

But not all is well, though. Here’s the problems I encountered.
Force Closed
I’m using HTC desire and I’ve seen this number of times. However, I don’t remember seeing this after the last update. So hopefully it stays that way.

Slow Refresh
Most of the time, your moves are not reflected on your opponents device until at least 3 minutes. It can get longer. This is very evident during peak hours. I thought it was a network problem at first but one time, I was able to watch youtube videos and yet my game isn’t updated until several minutes.

Out of Synch Games
I still have 2 games pending because it is out of synch. My opponent and I are both waiting for each other’s move. Up until now, the games aren’t updated yet.

Battery Hungry
This is the Hummer of Android games. Actually even for iOS, this game guzzles up your battery juice. So make sure that you are near your charger when playing this game. Another thing is that it heats up the devices quite significantly after some time playing. That is true at least for HTC Desire and iPhone4.

But despite these problems, the game is still addicting. My wife and I play this game everytime. Even before going to bed. Untortunately, I got pwned by the wife. But I can conveniently attribute tye defeats o the problems I identified above.:)

Gun Bros on Android

I’m currently addicted to Gun Bros for Android. It’s a shoot-everything-you-see with a top view 3D graphics. The graphics itself is actually good. The gameplay is comparable to some PSP games.

The game is ideal for killing some minutes here and there. I’m currently on wave(level) 38 and is somehow stuck there. But before that, in took me a lot of tries on wave 18. I managed to upgrade my guns after that but then wave 22 was another challenging level. After that, level 28 is also challenging due to the number of kamikaze T.O.O.L.S.

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FireFox RC for Android Released

Yesterday, I installed the release candidate(RC) of FireFox for Android. I’ve been using it for almost a day already and I have to say it’s a big improvement from the previous beta version (which I installed and then removed almost immediately). I’m still evaluating it before I decide if I will make this as my primary browser. Here’s what I’ve seen so far.
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Gingerbread on HTC Desire

It’s already March and yet no Gingerbread love is coming to HTC Desire. At least, officially there’s none. Desire’s sibling, Nexus One, is already sporting the latest OS. And when can we expect Gingerbread on our phone?

If rumors are true, we can expect HTC to release it in June. I hope it’s true. It’s really the problem with manufacturers taking ages to release the update. Although here in Singapore, we’re still lucky because we don’t have carriers that are another hurdle in the release. Unlike in the U.S., it is the manufacturers that decides on when to release updates.