Feeds
75%
Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

The first netbook with Google's OS

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

You could run Windows, open up the D: partition on which all the Android stuff is kept, create a folder called 'Music' and place your content there. Except D: has fewer than 3GB of free space, so don't expect it to hold many tunes. It'll play MP3, Ogg and iTunes-downloaded DRM-free AACs, but not WMAs; ID3 tags and album are are supported. Android will also read SD cards and USB sticks, but surely not having to use these is what fitting a netbook with a 160GB hard drive is all about?

Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

Acer's Windows-based Android config utility lets you avoid the Google OS altogether

So if Android - here, at least - isn't much use for media playback, is there any value to it beyond fast (ish) internet access? Well, not when Windows XP will here resume from sleep in less time than it takes Android to boot: 14 seconds.

Keeping the machine shut down will conserve the battery charge, though. You might think Android consumes less battery power than Windows, but if it does, there's not much in it. An hour or so's tinkering with Android and the D250's 2200mAh battery charge had fallen by much the same as it would have done under Windows.

Now, don't get us wrong, we like Android. The problem is that here it's being used to a fraction of its full potential. When Acer announced this machine, we wondered if we could remove Windows altogether and just run the Google OS. As it stands, even if that's possible - you'd have to tinker with the HDD's partitions, but we think it's doable - you'd leave yourself with a very limited computing experience. You'd be better off installing Ubuntu or Moblin instead.

You'd certainly get more consistency. Among the icons you can add to the desktop are website shortcuts - but only from a pre-set selection. Firefox's bookmarks aren't listed. This is because clicking on an on-screen web shortcut fires up the Android browser, not Firefox. It has the usual Android browser zoom and pan buttons, but these don't work. Neither does Flash playback, which is presumably why Firefox has been added. So why didn't Acer and/or InSyde also ditch the touchphone-centric Android browser?

Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

Android's Browser: nice, but you'll need Firefox for Flash content

After booting up the D250 into Windows, we did get a handful of Android updates come down the line, so there's clearly a possibility that Acer and InSyde will extend the OS' functionality. As it stands, Android is really no better than any other quick-start OS, suggesting the Google OS was chosen for its brand value rather than technology strengths.

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Here's your chance to buy an ancient, working APPLE ONE
Warning: Likely to cost a lot even for a Mac
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.