It was time to pick a new mobile phone for myself. Not being very happy with the Samsung I have from my employer, I compiled a list of decent Android phones, and looked into each of them. In the end, I settled with the Huawei P10.
About two years ago, I wrote about a long list of annoying features in my then Samsung S5 device (company issued). A while ago I got a Samsung S6 - so it’s time to see if Samsung came around and fixed items on the list.
The good news is that some of the really annoying “features” are gone. No more unnerving sounds when the device is fully charged, no more mandatory warning about sealing the USB port cover when unplugging from the charger (this might have to do with the fact that the S6 is no longer waterproof). Lock screen timeout slightly increased, but you also have to slide up to unlock the device - it no longer presents the keyboard by default. S Finder is gone - who did ever use this one anyway?
OpenStreetMap is an awesome project. Contributors constantly improve a online map and add new data, fix items in the map which did change in the real world, or improve the data for a number of projects (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, List) building on top of the map. Being outside a lot, I figured that I can contribute as well. It’s just a question of how to transport the data from “out there” back to the laptop in my office. After probing around and trying a few tools, I came up with 3 different ways, depending on the situation and amount of changes.
Android is a very nice operating system, people like it because it’s highly configurable. One of the major players in this game - Samsung Mobile - annoys it’s users with certain “features”, which you mostly can’t switch off or get rid off.
Even more annoying - for me - that’s the only Android option I get offered by my employer. The alternatives are iPhone, or Blackberry. So not really an option. Two years ago I switched to a Samsung S3, and a few weeks ago it was time to renew the contract, so shortly before Christmas there was a box with a shiny new S5 waiting for me in the office. Using the new mobile for two weeks now, I realized that Samsung remains true to themself and added more annoying functionality over the past two years.
Samsung is churning out dozens of different mobile devices every year. Maybe they should hire a few User Interface designers, or simply start using their own stuff, and see how annoying it is to use.
Recently I was asked how I do backups of my mobile devices. The discussion started when I told that I “survived” a bricked device without data loss.
Disclaimer: I work (well, was working, before we got spinned of into a subsidiary) for EMC. Part of EMCs portfolio is “backup” and for sure I learned a lot from my employer. All my own devices and servers are backed up, some of them multiple times. Backups, devices and communication is encrypted. I’m not using public services (Dropbox, Google Drive, …) for the backups.