Twitch, Twitch, New Phone

No, not an iPhone. They’re pretty awesome (swung by the Apple Store and played with one), but I ended up making use of the “new every two” feature of my current contract to pick up a Motorola K1m instead. It’s a sexy little phone, and I like it a lot… physically. The interface, however, leaves a LOT to be desired. This is not Motorola’s fault, mind you: Moto’s standard interface is pretty kickass. It’s Verizon. They made their own UI, and it’s ugly as sin, and literally SATURATED with Verizon and V Cast branding, all the way down to advertising V Cast both when turning the phone ON and when turning it OFF, and when talking on the phone, the outside screen has a giant Verizon Wireless logo glowing, making you a walking advertisement. This is patently ridiculous, with added insult in that they turned off core functionality of the phone to make room for their branded materials. The ever so handy shortcut keys? The only things useful that aren’t just links to V Cast or Get It Now services are the alarm clock, calculator, and calendar. I really wasn’t expecting this level of stupidity, since they didn’t do nearly as much of this with the 710 I was using before.

So, I’ve had the phone for a day, and I’m already poring over sites online about how to change the firmware. It looks like I’ll need to do it in my Windows partition, as there are several tools that are currently still PC only (though ports are being worked on), but otherwise the materials necessary to re-flash the phone are readily available. I really hate that I feel like this is a necessary step to enjoy my phone, but it really, really is. If any VZW reps happen to read this (the chances of which are increased by my including brand names and such), PLEASE stop dumbing down your phones! Leave them as is! Motorola has better UI designers than you, let them do their job! It would do a lot to assuage the perception of you as an “evil corporation” if you stopped fucking over your customers like this. You’re Verizon, we’re not going to forget your fucking name, you reeeeally don’t need to inundate us with your branding when we already have your service.