Sept 24, 2013

Early 2013, I made the switch from my iPhone. Mind you, I have had every iPhone since the beginning so this was a big deal.

In the Beginning

In 2007, I had long trashed my flip phone for a chocolate bar then graduated to an iPhone. There were not a zillion apps for it, touching the screen was weird, and it was foreign in many ways. However, I loved it instantly. There was virtually no learning curve with loads of people to help me for as long as it took if I didn’t understand something. Making devices intuitive and easy  for the average (non-programmer or super techy individual) to use is something I have always loved about apple products. They have also been excellent for doing audio and video in addition to the usual phone needs.

Annoyances with the iPhone

No One Way Syncing (Or DLing info)

Over the generations, I began to become infuriated with my need to do one way syncing (or simply download things from my phone to my computer without having things from my computer go back to my phone). There was a way to do this, but with as much info as I had, it would have taken so much work that it was not worth it.

Reloads OLD Contacts Deleted or Changed

I was forced to enter my contacts as “Jane Doe This One” to “Jane Doe No Really This One” to “Jane Doe Jan 2011” Jane Doe Dec 2012” etc. You get the idea. It was ridiculous! I had hundreds of phone numbers of attorneys that I needed while I was working for an economist in 2007 that I had zero desire to still have on my phone 6 years later but the “syncing” did not accommodate that since apple did not really sync, it puts info up to a cloud and copies to the device and computer. This became an increasingly important issue for me.

I decided to make a big change!

I decided to try a windows phone. I got the Lumia 920 when it came out earlier this year (though the new 1020 looks Ah-mazing with the even better camera, this is where I am at the moment). By in large, I use PCs for gaming and nothing else. Windows, by nature, tend to be set up in a completely unintuitive way, often sending the user on a long, numerous, winding paths, of poorly named avenues instead of simply making it a one, aptly named step taking the user exactly where one wants to be. I have always had the feeling that MS hates me and enjoys confusing me. I feel certain that their processes are logical, just not intuitive whatsoever.

Despite this rant, I have hope of loving my phone completely someday

There are THREE THINGS that make me want to throw my windows phone into a garbage disposal: 1) the lack of apps 2) its un-intuitiveness and 3) MOST IMPORTANTLY the STUPID BING BUTTON. Only Call of Duty and that *&$^%##*@(^$(@_)*@! button (that cannot be turned off) make the veins pop out on my forehead, makes me cuss like a sailor,  and raise my heart rate to unhealthy levels.

I have learned that MS will never get rid of it. Maybe if zillions of people switched to a phone that Sony made, they would go back on the need for that button :D

Anyway, I have found a way to not wanna claw out my eyes over this obtuse button. The first trick I came up with was almostperfect. I stacked reinforcements (yes office supply reinforcements) over the bing/search icon then covered them with a thin piece of sheet metal that was thick enough to resist pressure from an accidental touch, then topped off that with a convex heart shaped jewelry charm. BUT it was just a tad too small so it would still click Bing while I was taking photos and occasionally while doing other functions, which brings me to another thing I hate.

Who the heck puts all the buttons on the side of the phone where you hold it?!?!

SRSLY! did they have one single Q/A test group try this thing out before they made it? Surely someone picked up the phone and said, “oh hey! when you hold the phone and look at it, the pad of your palm inadvertently hits the bing search and your thumb hits the power button. Having all the buttons on the right side of the phone is stupid (since 70-90% of the world’s population are right handed. Maybe the buttons should be on the top where no one, right or left handed, unintentionally touches ever”.


I found the perfect cover for the Bing Button at Michaels. I really do not like heart jewelry at all anyway, so this was like a super duper win since I do like crowns.

Next, cut off the loop at the top and make sure it looks just like you want in the end. I dremeled off some orange dots to make it all silver.

Then smooth off the edges (I used my dremel to do this). I had not smoothed off the Heart charm in my first attempt and that slight grating on my fingers was irritating after a while.

Once you have your charm exactly how you want it, Carefully put E6000 glue on the slender edge and place it over the Bing Search icon. I had tested where exactly the bing button sensitivity edge was so I was sure to cover it.

Voila! It was a perfect fit. I am 100% positive that not everyone would see this as a viable option, but it works perfectly for me since I inadvertently hit that stupid button and took myself out of my current task every single time I used the phone.


Nine months later, I can say that for the most part, I can navigate my way around the windows phone.

Some things still drive me crazy. For example, let’s say you are in Messages, you see messages most recent to oldest, that makes sense, but you don’t readily see John Doe, who had just messaged a day or so ago.

What do you have to do? You can scroll down all the messages you have received since you got your phone and hope you don’t accidentally scroll past OR you can simply press the search icon magnifying glass at the bottom. Oh wait, no you can’t because it isn’t there! Wait what? Nope. You have to exit messages, go to the main screen, go to the contacts icon, once inside, then search.. but wait you start to put in the name John and EVERY SINGLE GUY NAMED JOHN (or has John in their name) IN YOUR FACEBOOK shows up! UGH! seriously! I only know about 10 guys named John in real life, but because I don’t necessarily know every person’s last name readily. [I know you might be saying, well then don’t have your phone sync with FB or twitter, but that is how you are able to load photos and other functions so you just gotta live with it]

Back to the non easy search for a message. I Scroll down until I find the correct John, then click, swipe from the left past profile, past the “What’s New”, Photos, to wooo hooo the History page where I can then find our past messages to each other. WTH?! So ya, pretty sure a simple search button at the bottom of the messages would be A LOT better, but then again, that is what iPhones do. HOWEVER, I now have learned the cryptic path to get almost everything I want out of my phone, given enough time and provided I google and search the internet for the key to translate the perplexing, hidden map to my desired objective.

PS- though it is not absolutely needed. I have found that fur kids make excellent assistants in projects like this, for morale, if not actual physical assistance

*steps of rant podium

*looks around to see if anyone is even still reading, hears crickets, closes laptop, and goes to bed. G’night all ^_^


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