Browsing articles from "January, 2013"

I <3 my Nexus 4

Jan 15, 2013
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Santa brought me a new Nexus 4 and as I said to my husband, it was like giving me a Porsche to drive down to the local dairy and back. A lot of flashiness when I really only asked for something with a good camera and the ability to send the odd text and make a few calls.

After turning it on and entering my gmail account details, I was up and running. Easy peesy and come early January I was repeating the mantra “I love my new phone” to everyone I came across during my summer holidays. Seriously, I LOVE my new phone – it’s not a mere phone at all. I am converted. It does what I want it to and more. It’s my ‘everything’. It’s my new best friend.

As a new Android user, I’m no expert but this is my take so far:

Embrace everything Google
Email, calendar, contacts are only the basics. Give Google Drive a go to keep all your important files either online or offline, you choose. I started by using it to save birth certificates and passport scans offline, just in case.
Google Now tells me what traffic to expect for my next appointment even telling when I should leave to get there on time. It also gives me the weather forecast for where I am and for my destination, my friend’s birthdays and more…my new BFF just ‘knows’ all this. How clever.

Play around
Make one of your first stops Google Play. Quick as a flash (and I mean this, by the time I was on the site and clicked Install it was on my phone – my new bestie is quick, lightning quick!) download some apps. From the advice of colleagues, Juice Defender and Lookout was on my hit list. The first to help save battery life where possible, and the second to check and protect for unwanted nasties like viruses, loss and theft.
Then came ensuring I had some handy widgets. Standout ones for me are the widgets for Facebook status widget and gmail inbox, so far anyway, I am an Android novice.

Pretty as a picture
I’m finding the camera fantastic – the 8MP quality is great and it’s quick to edit images, send to Facebook, Twitter, email (and a host of other options) with an easy click.  Set up Google Instant Upload to make sure your images and video are automatically uploaded to a private album on the web – never lose them and sharing and organizing them is a breeze.

Swiping, gliding, pinching….
Swipe from the right when presented with your lock screen to access your camera. Swipe from the left and you can access a widget or two of your choice. Without having to unlock the screen – how cool. Then, swipe down to reveal your notifications, swipe TWO fingers and get access to control brightness, WiFi and more. Swipe up to reveal Google Now. Oooooooh….nifty!
I’m also finding texting easier than my iPhone. The anticipation of my words, gesture typing – it’s actually making texting a pleasure.

Friends aren’t perfect
I’m disappointed that Google Music isn’t yet available here. It sounds great storing all your music online meaning no worries about synching or storage space. And you can save your faves for offline playing. In the meantime I’ve settled for transferring a few fave songs from iTunes to my phone using Android File Transfer. Also, since it’s so new I’m waiting on stylish case options to hit our shores, my new best friend needs a great jacket!

All in all, I’ve only had my Nexus 4 for a little under a month and I still have my L plates. My advice for new owners: hit Google Chrome and search for tips and tricks to get you started.