I knew it almost right away - this little baby was going to be trouble. Just the kind of trouble I'd been looking for.
I loved the look of her, that's for sure. Slipping neatly out of her pretty packaging with USB cord furled and charger neatly stowed. Just the right size, too - smaller than an iPad but bigger than a smartphone - and she fit snugly in my hand, easy to hold and to carry.
I got the hang of her quickly - pressing the right buttons and stroking the smooth screen made her come alive. The initial setup connected me almost right away with my email and my social networks online, and I could already see it coming together: the Dell Streak 7 was going to be a serious distraction.
She plays videos or sweet music smoothly, she captures a gorgeous picture, and she can take quality video too. She connects to the cloud and lets you move data back and forth easily, taking advantage of some of the latest features in cloud computing. I use this mainly for music storage and playback, but it works with Google Docs too.
The customizable Dell Stage operating system acts as a simple window dressing for the native Android 2.2 platform. Though she prefers the luxurious widescreen display (and who doesn't?), turning the device orients the screen vertically or horizontally for most applications.
And she plays Angry Birds, and other games, beautifully.
I use the Streak 7 only as a WiFi device, so I can't speak to how well its 4G capabilities work. But its WiFi connects reliably and easily, it remembers previous connections, and it rarely fails to connect when I need it to.
Sure, she can be a little finicky sometimes. Once in a while the interface seizes up and won't orient correctly, and sometimes the camera won't start. Times like these, I just have to start over to get her revved up again, which only takes a minute or two. The volume buttons on top are placed in reverse order to what I would expect, so sometimes she gets louder when I'd rather she be quieter, or vice versa. I never seem to get used to that - habit, I guess.
She's a thirsty one, too. She uses up the juice fast, sometimes faster than I can handle. She'll have a full charge in the morning, but by evening (sometimes even afternoon) of average use she needs more. Push it too hard and she'll just run down and quit on you until you can get more. Frustrating, sometimes, but if you're prepared it's not the end of the world.
Since I've started using the Streak 7 she's become a constant companion. I use her for pictures and video, I've blogged and written reviews with her, I've surfed the net with her, I've grooved out on good tunes and kept up with friends thanks to her. I can log into my bank account or check my email with her. She's come with me on planes, trains, and automobiles - she even helped me check in at the airport.
I knew I was in trouble when my girlfriend found me out. She pointed out how much the Streak 7 has spoiled me. When I forget to take it with me (rarely) or when the battery is dead (often), I get a little frustrated at having to wait a whole five minutes (!) for my laptop to crank up to do what I could have done in a few seconds on the Streak 7.
The Dell Streak 7 may not be the prettiest or the smoothest of the bunch, but she's got some style and for the most part, she fits just fine. She may have her issues, but in the end, she's worth it.
THE DISCLAIMER TO END ALL DISCLAIMERS: I received the Dell Streak 7 as a free offer in exchange for a review of it. Yeah, baby, yeah.
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About the reviewer
Rich Stoehr (GlassIsland)
I often hide behind a pithy Douglas Adams quote or maybe some song lyrics. I guess it makes sense that much of what I share is reviews of things I like (or don't). People … more
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