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Community Soapbox – AndroidSWAG Joins The Droid Guy in NYC for PepCom Holiday Spectacular!

By Aaron Kasten, Owner of

Wednesday September 16th I joined @thedroidguy in NYC for the PepCom Holiday extravaganza.  After nearly 12 hours hopping flights from one airport to another, and an hour cab ride to go 12 miles from JFK to downtown I pulled up outside the venue to see three members of The Droid Guy Staff patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for me outside.  Everyone was looking good, rocking some fine AndroidSWAG.  After dropping my bags at the coat check we headed in and split up to get our own takes on the event.

My Nexus One had only minutes of battery life left, knowing this I made a bee line to the Energizer table to see if they would provide a little juicy to a needy phone.  Fortunately they were demoing the Energizer “energi to go” backup battery.  I popped the energi to go in and was able to get another 90 minutes of talk time!

Next stop Price Grabber, a nice free Android application that facilitates your shopping experience.  It includes a gift slot machine with the ability to lock in a specific price or gift category.  Price Grabber also includes a barcode scanner to help you find the best local or web price of the item you scanned.  Best of all the barcode scanner portion of the application is provided by our good friends over at Big in Japan (shopsavvy).  You can set favorites, store your barcode scan history, read reviews and browse products.  Price Grabber is still in it’s early days as an android app but brings another solid shopping contender to the Android market.

After grabbing a bite to eat and a drink I stopped by to say hi to some friends at the Samsung mobile table and spent a few minutes playing with the Epic 4g, a phone I believe is the current leader in the army of Android devices currently available.

Skype was on the scene although I have not had the luxury of using the Android app that is currently exclusive to Verizon phones, I am certainly looking forward to using it when it becomes available for the rest us.

Qik was on the scene showing off their video chat, recording and location functionality.

Duracell was demonstrating the myGrid Cell Phone Starter Kit   with it’s drop-and-go technology. All you need is a Duracell Power Sleeve™ or Power Clip™ on each of your devices and simply place them on the myGrid to charge.  Fortunately the myGrid Cell Phone Starter Kit comes with Power Clips designed for most cell phones, handheld devices and MP3 players.

One of the highlights of the night for me was visiting the Nvidia table and spending a few moments with playing with a ViewSonic 10” widescreen 2.2 (froyo) running Tegra 2 tablet with HDMI out, no market and no Google applications.  My first impression was how heavy the device was.  I didn’t have much time to really put the tablet through it’s paces it ran smooth but not impressive.  The tablet had a sim card slot, wanting to see the functionality with a cellular or 3G connection I popped the sim out of my Nexus and dropped it into the sim card slot not realizing there was no receptical hearing it rattle down into the depths of the device.  Fortunately for ViewSonic while the device may be heavy it is also sturdy because the next several minutes were spent shaking the tablet trying to get the sim card accessible enough to get out of the tablet, we succeeded!

I also met with Jump Start, developers of an adventure based learning game for kids.  Jump Start is like a MMO for kids with an educational spin.  Best of all they will be launching an Android application releasing early in 2011.

I had a great time chatting with the team from GAMEFLY the #1 online video game rental service. Has a fancy Android application that provides up to the minute gaming news, cheats and codes, videos, and complete info on popular, new, and upcoming games.  You can even share content with Facebook and Twitter friends

Even Lego was on site demonstrating the soon to be released Lego Universe, a Lego MMO! Scheduled to be publicly available in about 3 weeks, My question to the team was would we see an Android application that would allow us to access the Lego Universe.  Although I got the typical pr spin about “analyzing the mobile market” I did get a bit more out of one of the others on the team telling me that they were very interested in an Android application and we might see one in the future.

Last but certainly not least I had the pleasure of meeting the great guys at Slacker Radio, the personal radio with a massive library of content.  If you move from the basic plans of slacker to the pro version you get some pretty sweet features.  If you purchase a 12 month subscription you will see no adds, have unlimited song skips, unlimited song requests, and you can even cache songs for those times when you have no network access but still want to listen to great music.

All in all it was a great event, and I hope to attend others in the future.  We met great people, had a great time and I was able to meat up with the great team at The Droid Guy!

See you at the Big Android BBQ!!!

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