One of the nicer things about Google+ is its integration with mobile platforms. The updates for my Android cell phone have been coming at a regular pace. Certainly more often than most of the other apps I routinely use.
One of the most convenient features is the auto upload of photos taken by the phone. Such a feature is actually so convenient that’s it’s seriously bothersome when, for whatever reason, it doesn’t work as expected. This is what’s happening with my G2 for the past few weeks. It only uploads some of the photos I take.
Now, I should be clear, when I bought the G2, about a year ago, I merely moved the 2GB micro-SD card from my old Blackberry 9700 to the new Android phone. That memory card presently holds just over 800 photos and a handful of video clips. It also holds a few hundred songs & podcasts.
In recent weeks it seems quite random with respect to which pics it will upload to my Google+ profile. If a pic doesn’t get uploaded there seems no way to upload it without also sharing it in a somewhat public fashion. This seems problematic.
It’s not clear if this is an issue with the Android or the Google+ client for Android, but it sure does bug me. It makes me wonder how the combination would handle the storage capacity of a more modern micro-SD card, with as much as 16 GB of space for photos.
Steve Perich, also of Australia, pointed me to an older post on Telstra’s coprorate blog. It highlights the fact that earlier in the year they launched HDVoice capability across their mobile network. Given the size of their coverage area they claim to have the largest HDVoice footprint on the planet.
The blog post includes nice video that highlights not only the improvements to the audible frequency range, but also the fact that it’s possible to do a better of job of background noise suppression with the richer audio data provided by the HDVoice stream.
Today I decided to try a little experiment with my G2, and put it back on T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network. For the past week it’s been using the 2G EDGE network in order to ensure a practical battery run time.
It seems that T-Mobile must be tinkering with the network, because today I’ve managed almost 11 hours of normal operation and only consumed 30% of the battery. A week ago it was draining the battery dry in under 5 hours.
I would guess that they’ve backed off on the channel bonded access for the moment. The Speedtest.Net app on my handset currently measures my connection to Comcast’s nearest server as 3100 kbps down and 328 kbps up. That’s not bad, but certainly less than their much trumpeted network upgrade should permit.
Given that they have few devices in the market that can actually take advantage of the faster network performance it makes perfect sense that they’d back off on the network changes in order to ensure that the bulk of their 4G customers have workable battery life, at least until HTC releases the firmware update that provides a more permanent solution.
In the last week of July a number of T-Mobile subscribers began observing that the battery life of their HTC handsets had fallen away dramatically. Both my wife and I have the G2 (aka HTC Desire Z) and have found that typical battery life has dropped from 8-10 hours to less than 4 hours on a charge.
In fact, I noticed that the back cover of my G2 was warm to the touch even as the phone was sitting idle all morning. Even in a completely idle state the phone was drawing enough current to make the battery warm.
During this weeks VUC call I was at KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh PA. I was sitting monitoring some equipment in the Art Department, which is is physically located in the basement of the building at One Gateway Center.
There in the basement my cell phone was only able to get an EDGE connection to T-Mobile. Of course, CBS won’t let me on their network with my laptop or netbook. As a result, all week long I’ve been making use of my now aged Sprint 3G Mifi for general internet access.
Last week I installed the very latest version of Counterpath’s Bria Android Edition on my G2. To this point I’d only used it to make a couple of test calls around my office. This day I used it to join the ZipDX wideband conference bridge.