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Mobile Blogging with Android

Blogging is fun. Blogging is creative. Blogging is possible anywhere with today's technology.

Ever since I got my Samsung Intercept SPH-M910 SmartPhone, I had been blogging with it the entire time. All of the posts I written on this web-site in the past month had been written entirely on this Google Android phone. In fact, this article had been written on this SmartPhone.

Some times I write articles directly on this web site. Other times I write it in the "Scratch Paper" Android app first. It is a little safer to write it in the app first as you might unintentionally navigate to a different web page, losing your article, because your friend just happen to entice you with the "Like a G6" music video in a spontaneous text message.

But after blogging on the Samsung Intercept SPH-M910, I found one key feature to be absolutely necessary; and that is a physical keyboard. It is frustrating enough to write a short (unabbreviated) text message to your friend on a touch keyboard made popular by Apple iPhone. Can you imaging a writing whole blogging posts with it?

Personally, I give the Transcriber in the Microsoft Windows Mobile 6 a two-thumbs up. It translates your natural handwriting into typed text on the fly. What's more natural than writing your blog post by hand?

I have generated numerous blog posts using the Transcriber with the stylus and would swear by it. But nowadays, iPhone has made the touch keyboard so popular that even Windows Phone 7 is going that route. That sends us, mobile bloggers, looking for better solutions.

My current preferred solution is the physical keyboard. Luckily my Samsung Intercept SPH-M910 has one. And it has worked wonders. Bloggers who absolutely need a Galaxy S can move over to Samsung Epic 4G on Sprint as it is the only Galaxy S phone that has a physical slide-out keyboard.

Bloggers stuck on SmartPhones without the physical keyboard--iPhone, Nexus S, etc.--will probably not even attempt to blog on their phone. But perhaps a physical Bluetooth keyboard will help.

Another emerging technology that could possibly change the playing field is an Android input method app called "SlydeBoard". Instead of simulating the tradition key tap on a tradition keyboard, the "SlydeBoard" input method emulates only the traditional QWERTY key positions. And based on these key positions, you can tap, slide, and make gesture motions to generate the character. The beauty is that you already know the QWERTY keyboard layout. And with practice, you can train muscle movement like touch-typing. No more looking at the keys on the touch keyboard and hitting the wrong one because the button are so small and so close together.

Still an emergy technology because the app was written for higher resolution devices. Last time I tried on a 240x320 Android phone, it took up the whole display and you couldn't see your edits. However the most recent update made it more friendly for 240x320 devices. I expect it to get even better soon.

Bottom line... technology for mobile blogging is already among us. If you haven't started, pick up a SmartPhone--preferrably with Android and with a physical keyboard--and start writing, be creative, and have fun.

We love to hear about your mobile blogging experience and the devices/tools you use. Please feel free to share your bag of tricks.

Chieh Cheng
Fri, 10 Dec 2010 07:41:59 +0000

That's awesome Chieh!

Hopefully my technology won't be emergy ;) much longer... Version 2.0 dropping tonight! Drop it like it's hot!

Dan
Fri, 17 Dec 2010 08:26:22 +0000

I got a Motorola Xoom from my brother for my upcoming birthday. One of the first thing I decided to try was to test how well the touch keyboard works for mobile blogging. I wrote the "Tron Legacy - Initiate Sequence" just a few minutes ago. And I wrote this one.

I found the phones with the physical keyboard better and less tiring. They are lighter so you can write longer. The tactile feedback are better so you make less mistakes. They are smaller so you can take them anywhere. They have arrow keys for easier editing.

The tablets are much heavier. So writing only a few sentences while holding the tablet with both hands causes me to shift positions several times. Balancing the tablet on my leg while tapping with my fingers is the most comfortable. Because the touch keyboard is small compared to a full size keyboard, poking at the keyboard works best.

Chieh Cheng
Mon, 21 Mar 2011 02:47:42 +0000

I am using the Motorola Xoom now with the Protective Portfolio Case. It allows the Xoom to stand at two different angles. I am using it at a 45 degrees angles now. It works really well as a single panel computer. And I can almost touch type with the on screen touch keyboard. It makes writing blog entries almost as easy as pie. I would say any stand that lets you use two hands to type on a table is absolutely necessary for mobile blogging.

Using the tablet on a stand could beat the physical keyboard on a phone. However, it's a trade-off between being stuck to a desk and chair or being free on the move.

Chieh Cheng
Tue, 22 Mar 2011 07:56:09 +0000

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