For all Smartphone lovers Ultimate Start will be something special. And I belive it will soon be the first application that any Smartphone owner will want to have installed.
First thing that caught my attention is how user friendly this application is. After few minutes of usage, you can tell that developer is active user of this platform. Every functionality is where it suppose to be and allows you to do what you want with fewest key presses possible. So lets start a little deeper.
Ok...I can't help it...i'll start with this bonus feature. Audio routing for Skype!!! Yes, when Skype is an active application it will route audio to an earpiece so that you can finally use it in a right way. One small problem is that this feature can't work on all devices because it's device specific (Developer says it will probably work on most HTC devices and it is tested on s740, s730 and HP Voice Messenger...it works on my s740 very well). Anyway, as you will see, this application is so good that even if this feature doesn't work on your phone you can be more than happy with all the other features that Ultimate Start offers.
Main feature of Ultimate Start is of course Start Menu. It looks really nice. The thing that you will use the most is T9 search of the whole Start Menu tree. You are probably use to that in Contacts application and we all know how fast you can get to any contact. Well now you can use that in your Start Menu to get to any application that you have installed. But that's not all. This Start Menu has some special folders. Bookmarks folder contains folders for every browser that you have installed (IE, Oper Mini 5, Iris) and it is filled with all the bookmarks from corresponding browser. So instead of scrolling through your default start menu to open appropriate browser and then going to bookmarks list and finding the bookmark that you want to open, now you can with just few key presses open bookmark in your favorite browser. Bookmarks can be opened in default browser or in corresponding browser (default). Since not all sites look good in all the browsers, this is very useful. Second special folder is Java applications folder. This folder contains direct shortcuts to all of yours Java applications. This works for Esmertec Jbed java emulator. Navigating between pages of Start Menu is animated and is really working fast and smooth.
There is a task and process manager with standard features of closing application/process and activating applications. Both of them also allow T9 search and ascending/descending sorting of a list by CPU usage, RAM usage or name.
Tools page has some very nice icons with following features : turn screen off, reboot, shutdown, flashlight (white screen), mirror (black screen), screen rotation and taking screenshot in 10 or 20 seconds.
Switching between pages is nicely animated with gear rotating icons in the middle at bottom of the screen. There are 6 types of animations and random option. Animations are somehow optimized according to a speed of your device. When you change animation or smoothness/speed on Settings page than application needs to run the animation a few times to optimize it. Also battery and RAM status are always visible above menu buttons which is very useful. Order of pages can be changed through Settings but I think it's best the way it is. Wherever you are in the application, you can press '0' to get list of keys and actions that are available on current screen.
Also nice thing is that Ultimate Start costs only $4.99 which is very affordable and you can find demo version here.
Edited by amaric, 05 March 2010 - 08:50 PM.