Oct 22nd, 2015
About five years ago I left corporate life behind, and with it my two mobile devices (one iPhone 4, one Blackberry Bold). After a very brief and very unsuccessful attempt with an early Android phone, I acquired my first Windows Phone (a Lumia 800 on WP7), and I have been on the platform ever since. In fact I have loved it almost every step of the way, and been one of its biggest evangelists.
Which is an introduction to saying that I just kissed the platform goodbye and gave my beloved Lumia 1020 (“Griff the Griffon” for reasons too long and complex to explain) to my Mum. The reason is quite simply that living where I do and having the outdoors lifestyle that I do, there is zero point in having the best mobile phone in the world (and that was what I thought the Lumia 1020 was) without it being waterproof. I was waiting for Microsoft’s big announcement last week to see if maybe one of the new phones (950 or 950XL)would have this feature, but they don’t, and unfortunately the only phones that do are Android. For a long time I have objected to Google as a company as I do not like or approve of an Internet driven by advertisements, and whilst I am prepared to give my info to Microsoft on the grounds that I know what I am buying from them, I am not prepared to become the product in an advertising deal.
So I am trialling the Moto G3 with Cyanogen Mod and none of the Google features installed. Instead of using the Google Play Store I am working with a combination of Amazon, F-Droid (open source app store), and very cautiously downloading APK files (the Android equivalent of .exe files) from sites which may or may not be entirely safe. The penalty I will have to pay for having a waterproof phone without Google tracking me about is constant vigilance against malware – and this is one area where I would recommend that people do not try this at home. So far it is going OK and I am even quite liking some of the phone’s features, but I know from past experience (I lasted three days with Linux as an OS after the original Snowdon revelations) how easy it would be for me to lapse and end up buying one of the new WPs.
So please, Microsoft or someone – bring out a waterproof Windows Phone and save me from Android. Until then, I will post my progress with the new platform.