Welcome to the sixth edition of #AskAndy where we aim to answer all your Android related questions. We survived the first month and this will continue to be a weekly column. Thank you to everyone who submitted a tweet this week. Again I have chosen 10 questions to answer and we will try to cover the ones we missed in the coming weeks. If your question did not get answered, you can submit it again or leave a comment here for help.
I wanted to give a special thanks to @mrhaydel who has been very active in attempting to help other Android users. As this week’s winner, we are sending you a $25 Amazon.com Gift Card. Keep submitting your questions via Twitter because we will be giving out more Amazon.com Gift Cards each week to those who ask and answer questions.
If you would like to participate, you can search the #AskAndy tag on Twitter to see if there are any questions you might be able to answer. We want to encourage community involvement and will be adding new features in the coming weeks to #AskAndy that will make it easier. Soon we will be creating a dedicated Ask Andy section for the site, but in the mean time you can send responses via Twitter, from the contact page, or send email to andy (at) androidandme.com
Anyone that submits a detailed response to a question will receive full credit with a link back to your site. If you have any suggestions on how we can improve #AskAndy, leave a comment. Thanks again and keep the questions coming.
1. machee @androidandme Will Rogers HTC Dream/Magic work with AT&T 3G? Will we be able to install standard Android and/or JesusFreak, etc? #askandy
The T-Mobile G1/Dream will not work on AT&T’s 3G network because it operates on a different band. As for the Rogers versions of Dream and Magic, I am not certain. Rogers operates on the 1900mhz band for their 3G and also offers the iPhone. It is quite possible that a Rogers Dream will work on US AT&T if it ships with a different radio chip. I searched long and hard and could not come up with an answer, so don’t get your hopes up yet.
We do know that the Rogers Android phones will not be full Google experience phones. It has been reported they offer Exchange support and other new features. Hopefully, someone can give us a final answer when the phones are released on June 2nd.
As for installing custom builds, I have yet to see an Android phone that was not hackable. Root guides are availalbe for both the G1/Dream and Sapphire/Magic.
2. massayoshi @androidandme #askandy does it mean that g1 doenst fully support multitouch?
The G1 was never intended to be a multi-touch device. Luke Hutchinson created a hack that offers multi-touch like functionality, but it is only useful for pinch zooming. You will never see iPhone like multi-touch on the G1 because the hardware does not support it. The G1 will not recognize two fingers when they are close together or when they cross the same horizontal or vertial axis. Think of the hack as tracking two touches but they are still seen as one input.
3. leetcharmer @androidandme do you know of any good T9 keypads for android? Need me some big buttons with predictive text
Check out Better Keyboard available in the Market for $2.99. A new version was released today that now includes a T9 keypad. I’ve been using it for several days and found it easier to use than the standard soft keyboard.
The T9 input is not perfect, but this is the first release and we should see improvements. I suggest downloading it and trying it out. If you have any suggestions visit the dev’s website send them feedback.
4. j_norton @androidandme #askandy I’ve seen a lot of references to Twidroid on your site. I think TwitterRide is far superior, give it a try. Review it
Thank you for the suggestion. I have been looking for a new Twitter client and this past week I finally switched to I Tweet! Right now, I don’t think I will be returning to Twidroid until they release a new version. I still plan to do an updated review of multiple Twitter apps and I will inclue TwitterRide.
I went with I Tweet! because it has multi-user support and it just works. I don’t really care for the UI, but it has support for skins. Hopefully, we will see some new themes released for it soon.
5. TornadoTexan @androidandme #askAndy any good GPS programs that provide turn by turn ala Tomtom etc. I know telenav has one but any free?
TeleNav is the only app I have seen that offers turn by turn instructions for the US. I reviewed it back in February, but found it too slow for my taste. We had a major Android update since that time so maybe performance has been increased. I can find no change log on the TeleNav site so I don’t know what version is the current release.
TeleNav still offer a free 30 day trial if you want to give it a look. I’m interested to see if they improved the performance. If anyone out there has TeleNav and Android 1.5, let us know how it works.
6. mrhaydel @androidandme If I wanted to get the Amazon MP3 app back on my phone, how would I go about that? I’m on a rooted JF 1.51. #AskAndy
If you would like the Amazon MP3 app, you have two choices. You can flash a custom build based on the official US version or manually install the Amazon app to any build.
The first JesusFreke cupcake build was based off the Android Developer Phone which lacks Amazon MP3, My Faves, and certain IM apps. When he released JF1.51, he offered both an ADP and US build. If you wish to flash the US build and are coming from ADP, make sure you perform a wipe when flashing. Visit JesusFreke’s blog for download info.
If you wish to manually install the Amazon MP3 app, it is available for download as a zip file. Just download the zip file, change the file extension to apk and install it like a normal Android app. The file download can be found over at XDA forums. (Thanks mrhaydel for the link and answering your own question)
If you are still confused over what each build includes, check out the Android ROM Build Information Database.
7. JA3ROK @androidandme #askandy are there any “Gigapet” like games on the Android Phone or games like that coming?
I have yet to see any Gigapet/Tamagotchi/Digimon style virtual pet game. Your phone is the perfect platform for this genre of game so I expect we will eventually see one. Actually, I have a similar game idea I’d like create myself.
Imagine a game where your pet was a mixed martial arts fighter. You could train him, feed him, and then send him into battle to face off against your friends. I’m a huge UFC fan so that is where I got the idea. If someone wants to use my idea please do or wait another 10 years and you can play mine.
8. OrganizedFellow @androidandme #AskAndy Is it possible to corrupt the internal memory of the G1 with repeated ROM re-flashes & app re-installs, etc.?
Yes, repeated use of a flash rom can wear it down but I don’t think there is anything to worry about. Flash memory does have a finite number of erase-write cycles, but for most current products that number is over 100,000. I have yet to see someone corrupt their G1 flash memory, but I guess anything is possible.
9. phroghollow @androidandme #AskAndy Paid Apps For Australia just ask the question and tell us, even if they say we don`t know thats more than we have now
I was hoping to get some new info about the Market during Google I/O, but was sadly disappointed. The latest news out of Google is that free apps are now availalbe in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Greece, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan. For accessing paid apps in other countries, your only hope is a hack done by Tim Strazzere and Andrea Baccega.
10. C3NTURY@androidandme Anything that makes it(HTC Sapphire) stand out from the G1? The lack of a physical keyboard makes me think it’s not for me.
I’ve been using the Google Ion(HTC Sapphire) for a few days now and I think I’m ready to switch. The two things that stand out are the increased internal memory and higher capacity battery. I miss the physical keyboard, but I am getting better with the soft version. Give me another week or two and I plan to do a full review of the hardware and how it compares to the G1.