Buying a new phone or tablet is exciting, but it can also be the source of some stress. Every manufacturer, carrier and company out there seems to think it knows what you want and need. They often force features into your phones and sometimes there isn’t even an option to get rid of them.
There are some things manufacturers just have to stop doing, and here are my biggest gripes when using a new smartphone or tablet.
The long-dreaded bloatware. This one is a classic and I am sure many of you will understand. This problem is much more common in the USA. Carriers have a huge say on what goes into our phones, but manufacturers are also to blame at times.
The phone is meant to come with pre-loaded apps, sometimes the system even needs them, but these often come with some applications you will never use. Bloatware comes in many forms and shapes, from carrier-branded apps to lame sports, streaming or music apps you will never use.
Ok, so you may use some. That’s cool, but what about the ones you don’t like? You are out of luck, guys, as most times bloatware is forced into your devices. You can’t uninstall them (unless you do some complicated tinkering).
You will just have to get used to have these apps taking both visual and storage space. Thankfully, you can hide them with some launchers, but they are still taking place in your hard drive.
Don’t you just love it when you first turn on your phone and your home screens are plastered in widgets (often from those bloatware apps)? The answer is probably no. This just creates more work for users. You may keep one or two widgets, the rest you will just have to take away… one by one.
The worst is when companies turn widgets into complete home screen pages. An obvious example is HTC’s Blinkfeed. Don’t get me wrong, I kinda like Blinkfeed. I just wish it didn’t take a whole home screen in the stock launcher.
Notification area shortcuts and toggles
I will have to say I love shortcuts and toggles in the notification center when they are done right, but they are often not. These often create more clutter than they offer functionality.
I have used devices in which there is so much clutter in the notification center that you can barely read one or two notifications at a time… in the notification area!
What really gets on my nerves is when there is no way to clean these of or at least customize them to optimize your own usage. This problem is improving with most manufacturers, but it’s still an issue I see from time to time.
Notification sounds and ringtones
This one is more about personal preference, but one of the first things I do when I get a new phone is change the notification sounds, ringtones and touch sounds.
These can often be over-bearing and annoying, especially when you have a phone a lot of people have and you hear the same noises everywhere. A perfect example would be the Samsung water sounds and whistling tone, as well as the classic Nokia ringtone.
We just want simplicity
We understand there’s a lot of politics and deals going on behind the scenes. This could be why you push some of these services via new smartphones. Honestly, I really don’t mind that.
The problem is not really that these things are there, the problem is that we often don’t have a say on whether we want those “features” to stay in our phones or not. Simplicity is were everything is moving, even if it may be limited.
This is why so many users love the Google Play Launcher. It’s simple and gets the work done. That is all we want!