New to Droid 2 World - seeking guidance

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions & Site Assistance' started by SharpasaMarble, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. SharpasaMarble
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    SharpasaMarble New Member

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    Hi folks,
    I just purchased a Droid 2 Global phone. I used to have the Blackberry phone which recently crashed.
    My reasons for joining this forum are simple:
    1) it appears there is a super knowledgeable crew of wizards here
    2) want to tap into the potential of my new smartphone
    and the biggest reason:
    3) struggling to make a smooth transition from Blackberry to Droid 2

    Before you clobber me for not having read the FAQ page...I did, but many of the exchanges were about my current pay grade. And yes I messed with several "settings" with limited success. Bear with me, I really appreciate the help.

    Enuff of the fluff, let me jump right in with a few newbie questions:
    a) my USB cable currently is not working. It keeps asking me to download some software, etc. Honestly I just want TO CHARGE my fricken way-too-smartphone. How can I accomplish this? Example: my office pc, home pc and laptop are not allowing my phone to charge, BUT I went into a different office work station and cancelled out of the first prompts and my phone was charging. So, how do I make my primary computers virgin again..if you catch my drift?

    b) on my blackberry, when I set calendar reminders...I loved how the entire blackberry screen was taken over with alert/reminder notifications. Is there anyway to do this on the Droid 2. All I get are super small little icons at the top of my phone screen. I have downloaded the Notes, CalWidget and Springpad app with limited success.
    b1) also, should I uninstall these calendar apps (do they drain power)?

    c) all this talk about Kill app/battery managers...the Verizon store put the Advanced Task Killer Free :greendroid: on my phone. Is this the most efficient FREE battery/app allocation manager, or should I uninstall and something more useful?

    d) is there anyway to set my phone to ring via vibrate only (for phone calls)? do i just have to move the phone to silent mode and then select "vibrate only when in silent mode". Access to ringer settings on the BB was super cake and user friendly.

    e) is there a battery upgrade available for purchase for the Droid 2?

    You deserve a medal if you made it this far. If you got frustrated reading these questions, please re-read my handle...i need help.

    Thanks in advance for any input.
    Regards,
    SharpasaMarble
     
  2. Hawaiian Princess
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    Hawaiian Princess Moderator

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  3. Hawaiian Princess
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    Hawaiian Princess Moderator

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    d) yes u can set ur phone to vibrate. turn ur volume on the side of the phone all the way down till it vibes.

    Swyped with an Aloha from Hawaii
     
  4. Hawaiian Princess
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    Hawaiian Princess Moderator

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    e) battery upgrade? or do u mean extended battery?
    u can get the BP7X but it'll fit snug so u would also need backing for it.

    Swyped with an Aloha from Hawaii
     
  5. al19
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    al19 New Member

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    First, a disclaimer. I am not one of the super knowledgeable people but I did make the transition from Blackberry to Droid 2G three months ago. It is an adjustment. There are some things a Blackberry does really really well (email, notifications, battery life) and a Droid won't do those as well. There are also things that a Blackberry really sucks at and a Droid does really really well (web, maps, going without regular battery pulls). There are also things that a Droid does that you wouldn't dream of doing with a Blackberry (turn by turn navigation, full web, translations, tons of apps). There is a trade off and it takes time at least for me to make the change but I think it well worth it. I hope you get to that point before too long. As for the PC problem it seems like a setting on your computers. It would help if you mentioned what operating system and version so someone using the same may be able to help with the settings. Sorry not to be more specific. Good luck!


    Sent from my DROID2 GLOBAL using DroidForums App
     
  6. Laur3nNewm4n
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    Laur3nNewm4n Member

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    a) Unless I'm thinking of the wrong thing, it wants you to install the drivers for the phone. If you plug the phone into the computer, it can charge it, but it can also act as an external storage device. In order for your computer to interface with the phone, drivers are needed, which helps the hardware talk to the software.

    b) If you put your finger on the top notification bar (with the little icons, including the battery, signal strength, etc.) and drag down, it will expand the notification bar, and you can more easily see what your notifications are. If you click on one of the notifications, like the calendar event, it will show you that event. This is good for my purposes, so I haven't looked into widgets that show the notification full screen.
    b1) You don't HAVE to uninstall them. If they are constantly updating themselves in the background, that may affect battery life slightly. To see what apps are using how much battery, go into Settings > About Phone > Battery Usage, and this shows you which processes are using the most percentage of your battery. If you find that your calendar apps are using a high percentage, it could be beneficial to get rid of them. In my opinion, you probably don't need more than one specialized calendar app.

    c)You don't need a task killer. They're actually kind of bad for your performance. Apps that stay in memory open quicker. What you should be concerned about is CPU usage. Try Watchdog Lite. It manages what's using your processor and what's using too much of it, and slowing down your phone. I advise that you uninstall the task killer.

    d) You'll need to pick how you want to handle vibrate from Settings > Sound. If you have it set up to vibrate only when in silent, obviously if you have your phone in silent it will vibrate. Going into silent mode can be accomplished in the lockscreen by dragging the right locker to the left, or by using the buttons on the side of the phone to turn the volume all the way down.

    e) This is one example of an extended battery for the Droid 2: Seidio Innocell 2800mAh Extended Battery for Motorola Droid 2 Global, Droid 2, Droid - Android Batteries - Android Central Store. Typically, they extend out of the phone, and have a different battery door you put on to hold it in. Additionally, sometimes the phone won't recognize that it's an extended battery until it's calibrated properly. Seidio is a pretty reliable extended battery vendor.
     
  7. SharpasaMarble
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    SharpasaMarble New Member

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    Wow, this place rocks! Hawaiian Princess, al19 and Laur3nNewm4n thank you for your input. I will respond to your thoughts here:

    Hawaiian Princess:
    First, the new to forum intro link you posted has excellent info.

    a) are u using the charger the phone came with?
    Answer: yes, I'm using the wall charger...but I often work on the move and would normally utilize a USB charger into my laptop while working and I leave my wall charger at home.

    d) Thanks to you and Laur3nNewm4n...I got the vibrate question under control. :icon_ banana:

    e) battery upgrade? or do u mean extended battery?
    u can get the BP7X but it'll fit snug so u would also need backing for it.
    Answer: yes, I meant an extended battery solution - just wanted to check to see what was available. Not really interested in having the phone get any larger. Thanks.

    Al19: Just wanted to thank you for weighing in. I can clearly see that my Droid can run circles around some of the BB features. This site is helping me with my learning curve.

    Laur3nNewm4n: Great post and many thanks.

    a) ok, where would i find the Droid 2 drivers to download to the multiple computer(s) I utilize?

    b) good info. i'm starting to condition myself to view the status bar at the top of the screen and did stumble into the drag down ability.
    b1) makes sense. i guess if i'm no longer using them at all, since there is no need for multiple calendar apps..i could uninstall them. but then again, if i wasn't using them, they likely wouldn't impact my battery usage - just my overall memory space.

    c) ok, i have read several articles agreeing with your position so i will try your advice and uninstall the task killer. (and will install/try watchdog lite)

    d) see above. :)

    e) i guess until i have a better understanding of how to control/utilize my phone and its features, i will wait before feeding my need of bigger, better, longer, more powerful, more more more.

    New question:
    What are the different color lights in the upper right of my device? (blue, green, and maybe red, sometimes flashing - and perhaps others)

    what does each of them mean? how about when they are flashing? can you turn them off / will that help conserve a meaningful bit of power? (i know making this adjustment on my BB DID help with battery life)

    Thanks again!
    SharpasaMarble
     
  8. Laur3nNewm4n
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    Laur3nNewm4n Member

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    The light is the phone notifying you that a notification is waiting for your attention. It's the LED light. Typically it flashes green. If you have an app set up to notify you of an action, when the action occurs, the light will blink until you respond to it. Typically there will be an icon in your status bar too. Green is what most apps will use (email, facebook, twitter, etc.) red is usually the battery being low, and for me, blue is for Google voice, but I'm not sure if you're using that app, so I don't know what the blue would be for you. To my knowledge, they cannot be turned off. The good news is, they are really not going to impact your battery in any kind of meaningful way. There are a variety of apps (here's one: http://www.worthytips.com/11713/customize-android-led-alert-notification-with-blink.html) that allows you to change the colors, etc. of the LED according to what it's trying to notify you of.

    Also, Windows will typically install the appropriate drivers for you when you plug in a new device. What exactly happens when you plug your phone into your computer(s)?
     
  9. SharpasaMarble
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    SharpasaMarble New Member

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    hi Laur3nNewm4n,
    Thanks again. I downloaded the necessary drivers and my Droid 2 can now charge properly via USB on all computers. Much appreciated.

    Good to know the info on the LED lights. As a friend once said, more will be revealed.
    Hmm, I guess I'm going to have to get more advanced with my questions - clearly my initial wave was child's play. Ha.

    Thanks for playing the role of CliffNotes in my Droid learning experience!
    Until next time,
    SharpasaMarble