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Out and about

I’m standing at a bus stop in Harvard Square, realizing that I’m better off posting via Web than by email. Whoops; maybe not, since I can’t set categories this way. Oooops. Ah well.

The first day review of the Hiptop: pretty good, it’ got a very thoughtful design. For example, the @ sign is unshifted, which makes a ton of sense since it’s used so much. There’s decent autocapitalization. The keylock automatically tturns off if you flip the screen open, cause you’ll never do that unless you want to use it.

The core interface is good enough for now. There are some warts; you can’t do an address book lookup while writing an email message, for example, which is dumb since you can store email addresses in the address book. On the other hand, you can launch email from within the address book. The only really annoying quirk is that the email client loses track of attachments if you save a draft message. oh, and it sorely needs cut and paste, or at least a way to delete text from an email message so you don’t wind up quoting the whole damn message each time.

The unit is nicely integrated with the T-Mobile web site. You can import Outlook or Palm address lists via the Web. Nice stuff there.

The physical unit is barely big enough for me to type on, but not big enough to be clumsy on my belt. The case that comes with it kind of sucks; I’m on the lookout for a better one.

Let’s see. Oh, yeah, the camera. Check out Hiptop Nation for an idea of the quality. It’s bad, but the concept is exciting. Realtime pcitures from the mass event of your choice, good or bad? Heady stuff.

Overall I rather like it so far. And everyone in my office wanted to play with it, which has to say something.

[Edit: interesting lack of line breaks. My fault (I set up my bookmark wrong), not the hiptop’s.]


  1. You can’t browse your address book from the email screen, but it does autocomplete addresses in email fields once you type the first two characters – it autocompletes based on email address or name. Works very well for 90% of the things you’d want to be able to browse your address book for.

    Not to say there aren’t scores of issues, among them the others you mentioned. Most frustrating for me has been the lack of copy+paste or any other vehicle to transport URLs back and forth between AIM and the browser.

    Also, autocapitalization doesn’t capitalize after emoticons. I suppose that’s just a scathing indictment of my needing to use emoticons to express myself, though.

  2. Oh, and my normal advice is “don’t bother shopping for a better case, you’re just going to end up dumping it in your pocket eventually,” but you’re probably fastidious enough that you might stick to a case.

    I’ve got to say, it’s surprisingly durable. I’ve had one since it launched, have dropped it from waist height onto carpet 3 times, and the only problem I’ve got is the plastic bit covering the IR port has come off. I probably could have popped it back in with no problem, but I didn’t recognize it when I saw it, and threw it away. The silvery paint is scraping off in quite a few places, but the screen is still perfectly usable. It’s picked up some scratches, but I can’t see them in normal use.

  3. Nice to know about the address book. Also the durability; I was a bit worried about that.

    Alas, my pockets aren’t that big…

    OK, so here’s the solution to your IM woes. In your IM convo, press Menu-M (hold down Menu, hit M). You get dropped into an email with the text of your convo. Send it to yourself, and the email client will recognize the URLs and allow you to launch ’em.

    Kinda messy solution, but it works.

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