| | 06-18-2013, 12:03 AM Thread Author #1
My Impressions - 1 Week With Q10 - VERY Heavy Business User - Returning Phone
Before I begin, I want to thank everyone for their help and amazing insight on these forums. Fantastic community that is extremely helpful - thanks! I'm compelled to take the time to write this to help other heavy business users who are trying to evaluate whether the Q10 might be a fit for them.
Here are my impressions after 1 week with the Q10. I'm a VERY heavy business user who has used a Motorola Q9c for the past 5 years. Boy did I look forward to this phone coming out but it looks like I'm going to return it (for now). You'll see that I actually like the phone and software overall but I just can't keep it as is due to the battery life. And there are quite a few bugs and software design qwirks that I don't love but frankly I could live with if need be.
- Hub - This is my first touch screen phone and I have to say that the general OS10 design and Hub in particular was both very easy to become accustomed to and was very productive (especially the Hub). Furthermore, the relatively small form factor makes for VERY easy one-handed use. While I can't compare this to another touchscreen phone, in that I have tried others but never for more than a few mins, I can say that it is VERY easy to get around this phone and is great for written communication (the dialer/phone portion is another story). It is definitely great that e-mails/txts/visual voicemail are all very easily accessible.
- General OS10 Flow - While there is no home button here, I found the flow very easy and very efficient.
- Universal Search - This isn't new to phones in general (Android Jelly Bean actually has a more flexible interface that provides better search results, in my opinion) but it is nice then you can simply swipe up for home screen and then type into a search right away. But do some my "con" for Universal Search below, as it's not the best in terms of search algorithm.
- Side mute button - Clearly a BB classic trait that works well here and is NOT found on Android phones, for example. MUCH easier than having to press mute on screen. If you use the Mute button literally 10-50 times a day, like me, then you'll really love this feature.
- Exchange Server Integration - Well-integrated. I was blown away how quickly it syncs flags and even draft e-mails that I was writing on my laptop show up just seconds after they are saved.
- Speed of OS - Very quick and NO lags whatsoever. Truly fluid interface with very few load times delays (although there are some odd times where loading settings, for example, can take at least several seconds with no apparent explanation).
- Calendar - Overall the design is quite good. Probably on par with Windows Phone 8 and any other interface. The only major issue for me was the lack of category sync (ie. color coded categories) for calendar items, which is a shame.
- Side and pop up menus - They generally work very well, are intuitive, and BB did a good job of including the most important tasks within them.
- Battery Life - For a VERY heavy user like me, the battery life is really the reason why I'm returning this phone. The irony here is that NO one that I can find it making an extended battery or skin for this phone because the battery life is decent enough for most users. But power users like me are just stuck. We can either opt to swap the normal 2100 mAh battery, which isn't an option for me, as I can't afford to drop off of a conference call, pull the battery, and reboot (far too much time and too disruptive), or we can charge the phone, but we can't just buy an extended battery or skin like we can on 80-90% of the other phones out there. For now this is a deal-killer for me and is why I am returning the phone. IF anyone ever makes an extended battery or skin for this phone then I will very seriously consider buying this phone again. But for now I refuse to be a slave to a charger to get through every single day... You can't turn off 4G on Verizon, which is part of the problem, and I happen to work in an office where the reception is quite poor. I also keep WiFi, GPS, and NFC Off. The only thing that should be taking battery is my Exchange Push - my screen isn't even usually on and it's still draining at that rate with no additional apps. Overall I can get about 2.5-3 hrs of talk time + 9 hrs of standby - not nearly good enough for me.
- Dialer - While this is subjective, I frankly find the dialer is really below my expectations in terms of lack of smarts and odd qwirks. Here are a few examples: If I start to key in a number in the dialer then it doesn't recognize any of the past numbers I have dialed to match them up for a quick dial and/or at least a confirmation that I putting in the wrong digits. I would have to scroll through the Call History to be sure of that, which isn't always practical. And you can't dial into the call log to match phone numbers (ie. you can't search the call log), nor do the previous call log numbers appear in the Universal Search (this is a bug). Furthermore, the phone DOES NOT recognize phone numbers in titles of e-mails (only in the e-mail body itself) and I can't copy the number from the title. This is a problem for me, as I often make a not in an e-mail title that includes a phone number and the current bug does not allow me to simply click on it and dial it. Sure, you can argue that I can work around this by including the number in the body instead of the subject, but then when I return to my laptop it's much more efficient for me to view it in the title line. So the dialing aspect of the phone is plagued by several bugs that hamper my efficiency daily, which is a shame.
- Universal Search - This should be MUCH smarter than it currently is and I suspect it will improve as they update the OS. Here are some frustrating examples: I have used this feature to dial people (much easier than going into contact in my opinion) and the fact that the screen is small limits phone results to 2 people. Well, if I keep dialing the same Jaime the phone should be smart enough to put the "popular" Jaime at the top of the list so I don't have keep typing part of her last name beyond her first name. My Q9c was smart enough to do this and that OS was 5-6 years old (Windows Mobile 6.1 - great OS!). Some people suggested I mark that frequently called person as a Favorite but the Universal Search wasn't smart enough to prioritize Favorites (at least not for me). Furthermore, the Universal Search does not pick up previously dialed numbers and received numbers (ie. nothing in the call history), which is ridiculous and it probably a bug.
- Ringtones + Vibrate - The selection of built-in ringtones is ridiculously small and I shouldn't have to take the time to download any - I am busy enough with work! But, more importantly, the lack of vibrate customization is really a problem, as I can't control the length or number of vibrations for the different notifications, so it's VERY hard to tell what notification I just got during a meeting when my phone is on vibrate. This is ridiculous and is just 1 example of a feature that will likely be improved over time but just isn't excusable right now for a power user for business.
- Lack of holster actions/ringtone options - Another inexcusable feature lacking that was on previous BBs. Something that will probably be added to future OS version but is inexcusably lacking for a power user for business right now.
- Random Bugs BUT Important Ones That Affected My Usage Practically Ever Hour (Verizon 10.1.0.2011) - Ending a call when using a bluetooth headset (regardless of whether you end up the call on the headset or press End Call on the phone) seems to bring up the Music App 50% of the time randomly. Calendar app shows Eastern time when creating new appointments even though I'm on Pacific but actually saves the time as Pacific (thank God!). e-Mail search/filter shows flagged e-mails probably but then doesn't work after you view the first e-mail or go back into filters. You have to exit search and go back in and choose flagged e-mails again every time. Visual voicemail pop up notification brings you to a visual voicemail menu that then calls the person when you click on that entry when you think you're about to listen to their voicemail. But going into the Hub visual voicemail works properly. So the visual voicemail popup is useless, as you can't use it to listen to a visual voicemail directly. Another bug: Turning off a bluetooth headset turning a call hangs up on the person instead of putting the call back on to the handset. So if you want to switch to a different headset during a call you have to press the appropriate keys on the dialer to drop the headset and then turn on a new headset. This sounds minor but I often have to switch headsets due to batteries dieing while I am driving on the highway and having to press buttons on the touchscreen to accomplish this is MUCH more distracting and dangerous then simply turning off one headset and turning on the other one. I can't push the % button while writing an e-mail within the Symbol menu, as it doesn't pick it up because it's too close to the edge (it's the last symbol on the right side of the first line). So I have had to manually type out percent many times. I'll stop here but you can see that these bugs add up and reduce from the productivity of the phone practically ever hour for me. To be honest, I could definitely deal with all of these minor bugs if the battery lasted much longer but I am pointing them out to help educate others who are considering this phone.
- Browser - Very minor point for me, as I hardly use the Browser, but the double-tap zooming just doesn't zoom well most of the time. Comparatively Android has just mastered this feature on tables and phones. Annoying and a shame but not a deal breaker. You might not even notice it until you give Android a try and realize how perfect it is on that OS.
- Lack of Apps - Frankly I never thought I would care about the relative lack of apps compared to other platforms until I realized that Apps for business people essentially allows them to customize the phone to work the way they want it to. For example, my complaints about the Dialer further up should mitigated by simply installing a different Dialer App, something you will find literally dozens of on Android, for example. But I couldn't find one decent one (and there were only 1-2 total, I believe) to run on the Q10. And that's just one example. In theory ever gripe I have above should be solvable via an App of some type, as it would be on iOS or Android. But not on OS10 - at least not yet. What has me VERY attracted to trying an S4 right now, despite the lack of physical keyboard, are the endless customization options, starting with the built-in widgets. So this isn't a deal breaker but can go a LONG way towards customizing the perfect phone for a business user - just not on OS10 right now. And sideloading isn't an option for me, as battery leak would just contribute to the battery problems I am already experiencing.
I think I'll stop there and I hope this was helpful. The biggest challenge for me has been battery life. I need a phone that can do 3-4 hrs talk time + Exchange Push e-Mail + 12-13 hrs of standby and unfortunately this phone just can't do it with the normal battery. This phone is good for 2.5-3 hrs of talk time + 9 hrs standby with Exchange Push in an area without the greatest reception. The irony here is that the battery life is good enough for most to the point that you can't buy an extended battery or skin, which is a deal killer for me. All of my other Cons above are just general gripes that will likely be ironed out as further versions of the OS are released. Frankly, for a business power user like me, many of the Cons above are just inexcusable for general release software (even relatively early versions) that should been easily caught and fixed in Beta Testing. That being said, this phone was enough of a good communicator that I could probably deal with all of the cons if the battery lasted longer or if there were other options, as it really is a workhorse that is extremely efficient. But, for now, I'm going to return this phone, try the Galaxy S4 with a 5200 mAh extended battery, and see if I can deal with the lack of physical keyboard on a much more customizable and mature/polished OS. If that doesn't work then I'll give my wife the S4 and continue to use my dependable Q9c until an extended battery option appears for the Q10, if ever. For now I can only keep my fingers crossed, as I will probably return to the Q10 if more power becomes an option.
Thanks again for everyone's help and enjoy OS10!