A Good Use

Back when the G1 (Google Phone) was first released, we were in the process of changing phone companies and plans. We were using Sprint and using my in-laws' plan. I didn't like either of those ideas so we jumped ship. I thought it would be nice to be at the leading edge of tech for once and after much hmming and hawing, I opted for the HTC G1 phone from T-Mobile. And it was awesome!

Right out of the box, I get to read my email from my gmail account. Google Maps apps has more than once save my lost ass. I eventually got a twitter client for it. It was all coming up roses with the phone! But over time, that's all I really did with the phone, with the occasional game of solitaire or Pac-Man. It didn't seem quite right.

Don't get me wrong. I love to be able to read my email anywhere, make tweets to twitter (approaching 1500 updates thanks to my phone), and looking up info about products. My favorite use had to be seeing the wait times for the H1N1 vaccine while standing in line. These are all very good uses but none of them yelled "killer app" for me.

Then, several weeks ago, a new app entered the Android market called Google Listen. Listen is a podcast aggregator for the Android OS. It allowed you to do searches for podcasts and subscribe to them and then it would queue them up for you. This was an app I've been looking for.

I like listening to podcasts. They entertain and educate on my way to and from work and sometimes while I'm at work. It's only about a 20 minute drive but those 20 minutes add up over the week. The local radio stations can only do so much for me at the intellectual level. A couple of my favorite podcasts include Seattle Geekly and Stackoverflow.com. While these podcasts are good, it was an enormous pain given the setup I had (a 2GB mp3 player).

After finding Listen, the enormous pain went away. Instead of hooking up my mp3 player to my home computer, trying to remember which was the last podcast I listened to for a particular series, grab that one (or a bunch as it happened), upload, remember to bring the mp3 player with me in the car, all I had to do was do a search for the podcast in Listen, click(touch?) subscribe and away I went! Wheeee! Since I had my phone with me most of the time, the managing of podcasts became a lot easier.

I didn't keep up with my podcast subscriptions because of the pain it was to listen to them. I got behind. I had to listen to dance music on repeat. Dance music is awesome but it gets real old when you hear a particular song 3 or 4 times in one day and you only listen to the radio for 40 minutes. It got old. Podcasts give me that new car smell all the time!

So with the coming of Google Listen, I found my killer app for my G1. I think I have 5 subscriptions to various podcasts but I go through them pretty fast. I'm on the look out for new ones that keep my interest. A shoutout to samwhoo to suggesting "This Week in Google". I think that will be a good fit for me. Wouldn't you agree?

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