Working with a mouse rather than a finger makes for a less fluid experience. Worse, you'll need to use the keyboard too. Ever present on the right side of the screen is a tab you can click on to slide out a tray of pre-installed application icons. All of them launch with a single click. In the case of Settings, that click presents a full-screen list of options. You can click on any entry to display - again, full screen - the sub-menu. Further clicks take you down through the menu hierarchy.
The menu lists are easy to navigate - when you figure out how
But to get back you have to hit the Esc key - there's no 'back' arrow to click. If the menu has more entries than the screen can show at once, you'll see what appears to be a vertical scroll bar but is actually just a visual guide - clicking on it has no effect. You click and hold to drag the menu up or down, a move you'd make naturally on a tablet but not with a mouse. If you get that far: the item underneath the pointer will highlight, so you think you're selecting something and you let go. We spent ages using the arrow keys to scroll up and down list before we discovered the click-and-drag manoeuvre.
The main screen has four icons along the bottom - all taken straight from the original Aspire One's Linpus OS and they weren't particularly attractive when they appeared over 18 months ago - to fire up a version of Firefox unfortunately called Minefield, plus Webmail, GoogleTalk and Calendar. The last two require a Google account - if you don't have one, you're encouraged to set one up when you first launch Android - but Webmail will work with a variety of other providers. There's a separate Email app for POP and IMAP accounts, and it'll configure most accounts with just the email address and password.
Clicking and holding Email's icon allows you to drag it off the Applications panel and onto the desktop, and you can move those already there around in the same way, though the snap-to-grid mechanism spaces them so far apart you'll have to use multiple screens if you want more than a dozen of them.
Or fewer still, if you add widgets, which take up more screen space than their pixel dimensions would suggest. Widgets you can choose from: the clock, a Google search bar, a (static) picture frame, a music playlist and a calendar. Right now there's no Android Market app so there's no easy way to download more apps or widgets. Not that with a three-screen desktop you have room for many more.
Click the right-side tab for the application list
The apps that are included provide quick access to the D250's Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3G modem and webcam. You can view photos and play music, but not video. Unlike other quick-boot OSes, this one won't list media stored on the netbook's Windows C: partition, which frankly makes it next to useless. Who wants to keep two copies of everything, one for Windows, another for Android?
"Why would Android have NTFS support?" Well, hmm... maybe because Linux has had NTFS support since 3 days before forever. Kind of ridiculous that a free, open-source module couldn't come pre-installed to support this. And what if you want to plug in a USB hard drive formatted with NTFS? Just stupid. If I read the article right, you can access the Linux partition from Windows and Windows has always needed an add-on to access EXT2 or 3 partitions, so this is even more inexcusable.
All in all, sounds like a slapdash effort at best.
@AC @When will they listen
Thanks for the pointer to Novatech, great hardware and everything can be bought without any OS pre-installed: I think that's where I'll be shopping next.
I really like the Acer Aspire One 10" with 6 cell 5800mh battery I have. Unfortunately the promised 6cell Linux version of the netbook never quite arrived so I ended up buying the XP version. (I loaded Fedora on it and have been quite happy with its performance.) Especially the 7.5 hr battery life.
For me to get another Acer netbook it would have to provide 8+ hr battery life, a vertical display resolution higher than 600, and Linux instead of some version of Windows would definitely help tip the scales toward upgrading... (The only reason I got the last one with XP is reports that Microsoft hand reduced OEM cost to as low as $5 each in an attempt to "win" the market back from Linux.)
Why the "justice department" does not prevent the Microsoft monopoly from "rice gouging" or keep Intel/Microsoft from strong-arming vendors into providing only low-RAM, low resolution display versions of netbook is also disturbing...
What can I say? - We in the US have the best government that money can buy... (Too bad only some of us seem to believe our representation should not be for sale...)
Acer Aspire One D250 with Android
As a Tmobile G1 user. i know i can INSTALL A FILE MANAGER AND use it to BROWSE the the phone SD CARD plus u can create differents PARTITIONS on the SD card.i never had a chance to play with ANDROID in the netbook/desktop computer yeaht,because the OS is not ready yeaht to be downloaded, BUT I`M 100% SURE that if u install the FILE MANAGER u`ll be able to SEE and ACCESS THE ROOT OF THE C: DRIVE. also I`m SURE u can PLAY VIDEO with ANDROID.
U GUYS SHOULD HAVE LOOKED AT THE ANDROID MARKET FOR ANY ADDITIONAL APPS.
To quote Andy directly : "? I don't want one of these machines, or any fecking desktop, laptop etc, with Windows on it".
Sounds like he was talking about all kinds of boxes (not just netbooks, eh?), and you can buy all kinds of boxes including netbooks without Windows either white label or DIY.
Do try to keep up, and stop staring at goats...you make them nervous...