By now, you probably know that we've been quite impressed by the San Francisco, the £89 Android-based super smartphone, that's only available from Orange for the time being. Here are a few things that may help you decide whether the SF could be your next phone.
It can be overclocked; the Qualcomm MSM7227 processor that powers the San Francisco can be overclocked from 600MHz to a head turning 825MHz, a near 40-percent increase that provides a tremendous boost to performance even if it comes at the expense of battery life.
It can be unlocked for free. We bought the SF last week and we tried to unlocked it for free online and we succeeded at our first attempt using this simple 5-step tutorial (see here). Although the process technically voids your warranty, there are tutorials online that provides with an easy way of reverting your phone back to its original state.
The Orange San Francisco is manufactured by the Chinese telecommunications giant ZTE, which we predict will become as popular as HTC in 2011. It bears the codename Blade and is also available in France at SFR, which is part owned by Vodafone. Whether this means that the red team will stock the SF at some point in the future remains to be seen.
Android OS 2.2 can be easily installed on the Orange SF and it is easier than you might think; there are a number of tutorials online to assist you. Froyo will bring some exciting new features to the phone including Android Marketplace, the ability to convert the phone into a wireless hotspot, support for Adobe Flash 10.1 and better performance.