32GB MicroSD card for ZTE Blade / Orange San Francisco

There seems to be a bit of confusion as to which 16GB cards are compatible with the ZTE Blade, let alone 32GB ones, but my lust for high quality music required me to upgrade from an 8GB card.

I went with the cheapest 32GB Class 10 MicroSD card I could find on Amazon, despite being a unknown brand, and found that it worked perfectly with about 10MB/s write and 14MB/s read which seems reasonable for the price and size. I can confirm that it works perfectly on my rooted Gen 1 Orange San Francisco phone running CM7, but I would hope that it would similarly work on any flavour of Android you choose to install.

Amazon link:KOMPUTERBAY 32GB Class 10 MicroSDHC Card 32 GB High Speed Micro SDHC with SDHC adapter and USB adapter

CyanogenMod on the Orange San Francisco / ZTE Blade

Since my last post about the ZTE Blade went down quite well, I thought I would post a little bit on the latest changes for owners of the Blade, in particular the first steps towards running CyanogenMod on the Blade.

If you’re not familiar, CyanogenMod (CM) is a ROM based on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) which adds additional features, enhancements and overall improvements both to performance and reliability over the stock ROMs. What’s so special about Cyanogen, at least to Blade users, is that unlike the previous ROMs we’ve been used to which have been custom made and designed specifically for the Blade, CyanogenMod has been compiled for and run on numerous devices from HTC, Google, Samsung etc. From the CyanogenMod site:

CyanogenMod (pronounced sigh-AN-oh-jen-mod), is a customized, aftermarket firmware distribution for several Android devices […] Based on the Android Open Source Project, CyanogenMod is designed to increase performance and reliability over Android-based ROMs released by vendors and carriers such as Google, T-Mobile, HTC, etc. CyanogenMod also offers a variety features & enhancements that are not currently found in these versions of Android.

The most recent version of CyanogenMod is 7 (CM7) , which made ‘Release Candidate’ status a few days ago. This version is based off Android 2.3.2 so satisfies the demand for a Gingerbread ROM for the Blade.

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The Orange San Francisco (ZTE Blade): A Few Thoughts

As an introduction to the world of Android smartphones (and as a replacement for my aging Nokia N95), I treated myself to a San Francisco phone from Orange.

Although I’m not going to give a full review (I want to wait until I’ve had the opportunity to play with the phone a bit more), I’ve got a few  thoughts and pointers to give to any new owners or anyone who is planning to get one.

First impressions

Although it’s only £100, the phone should still be pretty snappy when navigating through the interface. Despite only having a 600 MHz processor ( a lot of the higherend – more expensive – Android phones can be expected to have ~ 1GHz processors), you can expect it to perform admirably despite what you throw at it. In short: Angry Birds will work quite well.

The build quality is fine although the back cover and the power button could be a little sturdier. I wouldn’t want to push it by popping the back off too often or pressing the power button too hard. A turbosim / dual-sim adapter may work, but there’s not a lot of room to work with. (more…)