Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Omnia Ground Zero reboot

I'm not quite finished with this list yet, but I'm going to post it anyway.

As previously posted, my Omnia was hosed last night, so Verizon gave me a new one. This is the process I followed today when reinstalling, hacking and re-configuring the phone.

Can I just say that Microsoft does a damn fine job of making it REALLY fucking hard to get things done? There's no way it should take a person five hours to simply get his phone functioning as it should in the first place. Bastards.

These are the steps I've taken so far:
  • installed MyMobiler (control phone from PC)
  • switched to Today screen (deselected crappy Samsung Widget)
  • installed Paul from Modaco's .NET configuration CAB and .NET 3.5 update*
  • installed CeRegEditor CeRegEditor is nice, because it automatically uses an interface from your PC (not the phone itself), but it is only for RegEdits, as opposed to Total Commander which is a RegEditor, file explorer, and editor for any type of file
  • installed Total Commander
  • turned of motion rotate
  • assigned camera button to rotate
  • RegEdit - disabled keyboard auto deploy for SMS and MMS
  • RegEdit - enabled Today 2
  • updated Opera cache and download folder to utilize My Storage
  • switched dpad to optical mouse
  • set upper side "menu" button to Task Manager
  • updated and merged all my contacts on the Windows Live website then downloaded Windows Live to sync contacts (this step took an eternity)
  • setup NuevaSync.com exchange server to sync Google Calendars
  • installed VITO Audio Notes Touch
  • installed iDialer
  • installed GreenButton
  • installed PocketCM contact manager (took a good, long look at iContact, but it didn't offer all the goodies of PocketCM)
  • installed PocketCM themes
  • installed SoftKey Manager
  • mapped left key to PocketCM
  • created program screen .lnk file and mapped right soft key to it
I've said it before and I'll say it again: the fact that Microsoft names all their services ALMOST the exact same thing is fucking infuriating. Live Search? Windows Live? Live.com? Windows Mail? Windows Live Mail? Yes, none of those things are the same (seriously... none of them... they're all something different). What... the... FUCK?! Not only that, but to make your phone work to its full potential, you have to install them all (well, not Windows Mail, because Windows Live Mail replaced it). WHY NOT JUST INCLUDE THEM IN THE FUCKING FIRST PLACE?!

(why is it that my blood pressure shoots through the roof whenever I have to make major changes/upgrades to anything PC/Microsoft related?)

In the end, I still think the offerings of WinMo and the Omnia are superior to the Mac alternatives (iPhone), but it sure is a freaking mess trying to get to the point where you can actually function.

*In case the .NET updater thread ever disappears, here are the steps:
  • Download and install both CABs (to internal memory!)
  • Run .Net Configuration from your Program Menu
  • Navigate to the 'Device Policy' tab and select version 3.5
  • Selecting 'Apply' then 'OK'


Anonymous said...

In the end, I still think the offerings of WinMo and the Omnia are superior to the Mac alternatives (iPhone)

Hey Dan, your blog has been very helpful in terms of me trying to use the Omnia, but I returned it after 3 weeks. I thought I'd post here the reasons since a lot of people looking at the Omnia might end up on your blog.

Here are a few of the deal breakers:

* The battery couldn't last through lunch. I tried everything to fix this. Killing processes, plugging it into a USB port on my work computer. But work being on a fringe reception area just killed the battery life of this phone. You can't tell it to stop trying to connect to data without turning off the radio completely.

* The screen is just unusable outdoors. Don't you find you can't read it at all when outdoors during the day? I had to crank up the backlight to see it even barely.

* WinMo just isn't keen on touch UIs yet. It requires a stylus.

The camera was just awesome, and I loved the device if the above three items weren't an issue.

I went back the iPhone that I had before this Omnia and back to the DeathStar (AT&T). AT&T's coverage is absolutely horrible, but it does work in key areas (work, home and commute). I couldn't justify spending the $30/mo on the Omnia data plan without a usable device even though I had coverage.

I would be curious to hear your opinion if you spent a significant amount of time with the iPhone and compared the two.

Thanks for the help with the Omnia!

The Invisible said...

Thanks for taking the time to check in.

Admittedly, my experience with the iPhone is limited to using friends' and family's, but I do know that I really like my Omnia (when I'm not having to mod and hack it up to get it to the starting place from which I feel it should arrive from the factory).

Regarding the battery... all I know is that I hear my iPhone friends bitching up a storm about their batteries. When last I went to LA, I used my Omnia to get online constantly at the airport. I always had tunes running through my headphones (in the airport and on the plane), and I took a lot of phone calls throughout the trip.

My battery was fine and dandy even after two days of this constant use --without a charge. I can't believe how well my battery functions.

I do have e-mail set to "manual" check (not syncing constantly), but I think it's actually better, as I'm not constantly bothered my the minutia of every e-mail sent to me. My calendars and contacts are set to sync immediately.

Regarding your problem with the battery, are you sure you can't turn off just data? I'm pretty sure I've seen some cabs for that floating around.

Yeah, the screen's a little hard to read in the Colorado/California sun, but I don't think it's much worse than the iPhone in similar conditions.

As to the touchscreen... with a few tweaks (widening the scroll bar, making sure your screen is calibrated, customizing your menus) I've been extremely pleased with the touch functionality of my WinMo device.

So with a superior camera, video recording capability, longer battery life (not to mention being able to buy an extra or replace it without sending your device back to the manufacturer), removable memory, and the superior coverage of Verizon, I'm sticking with my Omnia.

Thanks again for checking in and reading the blog!