Acer Stream Android Smartphone Review
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After the great success of its Liquid, Acer launches Stream, a smartphone that
incorporates all the functions typically for a handheld media player.
The Stream is still running under Android, version 2.1, yet it is
distinguished by an Acer interface, called Acer Touch Interface. Based
on the Qualcomm Snapdragon powerful platform, this model looks
particularly interesting for those who want a device with the functions
of a smartphone and a digital music player. We therefore tested one week
in daily use to check what he is truly capable.
Since its first grip, the Stream has great feelings. The design of the
enclosure is gray-brown in the "modern-rustic", but his aesthetic is not
unpleasant. The materials are of good quality. It is far from low-end
plastic Liquid. The back cover of the notebook is a leather-like surface
that provides a very good touch and a very secure grip. However, the
device is a bit wide. It would have been sufficient in less than two
millimeters to curl perfection. In short, the finish of the Stream is
both well worthy of a high-end device, truly a success.
A good effort on the GUI
The visual interface redesigned by Acer is a bit confusing for a user
accustomed to the classic version of Android. But the first hour of use,
it quickly learns to appreciate its ergonomics. Acer has set up five
home screens available as soon as one leaves the cell waken. The
smartphone is then locked, but it is possible to see directly all the
widgets. These are obviously customizable.
With a gesture, the phone is unlocked, to display a second host
interface from which you can launch all the applications mobile. Three
home pages are then available in addition to the "drawer" (the
application launcher): the left contains a record of all applications
running on the laptop to return directly to the right displays all media
files stored on the smartphone.
Very intuitive and superbly organized, this interface is a real success
in terms of ergonomics. Last but very significant; small widgets appear
in the configuration affecting the system tray of Android. It is
possible to directly handle all applications running in the background,
as well as notifications under: media player, calendar, switching to
Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth, change radio stations, etc. A unique trick for
an Android phone, hats off!
All assets of a player
So, admittedly, this laptop integrates all services of Android: GPS
navigation, Google Maps, Gmail, Exchange, Facebook and Twitter (Twidroid
is pre-installed), YouTube (and Dailymotion management within the
browser), but these applications have almost insignificant deal with
Acer's efforts to transform the stream in real media player pocket.
We find first NemoPlayer, the media player exclusive for Acer, which
already found on Liquid. This player (including the installation file
apk is available on some forums) offers a nice interface and good
compatibility with media formats. The Stream therefore reads all
standard video and audio formats, but not DivX. It is fully compliant
XviD and H.264 (main profile) up to 720p, a good asset for a modern
digital music player.
Finally, note that three