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New Phone

charliebruce

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Hello LPF - it's been a while. I've been away working on other projects:

http://reprap.org/wiki/RepRap - Prusa Mendel
Things involving LiPo batteries - Quadrotor Blade Test - Clamped - YouTube
Things involving even bigger motors: imgur: the simple image sharer
Things involving lots of code: imgur: the simple image sharer

Enough about that, though. I come to you today with a question - it was recently my 18th, and for it, my parents agreed to get me a new phone, to replace an old BB 8900 that I've been using for far too long and now can't last a day without rebooting itself.

I've been unable to decide between an Android handset of some sort, and the iPhone 4/4S. I'm a regular Google/geeky user and don't particularly buy into the app model that Apple seems to have chosen, and the Android app market more suits my interests in general, but I like the music player and display on the 4/4S, and would be OK with the camera too.

Factors in my decision:
  • Good screen
  • Responsive touch or physical keyboard
  • Battery life of a few days or better
  • Music Player usable
  • Tie-in/integrate with Google Mail/Contacts
  • Camera with HD video would be nice
  • Not going to need massive tweaking/upgrades/re-jailbreaking every update - ideally an unlocked handset with no annoying software restrictions I'll want to hack out

Cost is obviously something to bear in mind since my parents are paying, but there's no hard upper limit if the phone's worth the money. I treat my phones fairly well, have no particular bias towards or away from a manufacturer (except RIM - no BBies!), and don't mind too much about size or weight within reason.

With those factors in mind, can anyone share their mobile experiences or suggestions?

Thanks,
Charlie
 



00Giorge

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Good luck finding one that the batteries will last a few days. I have an Android Razr and my daughter has an I phone 4s. I prefer my Razr over the I phone, my daughter doesn't. Depending on how much we use our phones the battery lasts from 4 to 48 hours for both.
 
D

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Hello. I wouldn't buy an iPhone. It's like being in prison, you can't do much tweaking to the background or anything. Heck, you can't do anything!

I myself own a Samsung Galaxy S2 (I don't know what they are called in the US) and it's a great phone. It has all that you want. The battery lasts around 4-7 days if you only use it for calling and texting. But as Giorge above said, if you are using it a lot, it's going to end in 4-48 hours.
 

Lase

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I too have the Galaxy SII and a Sony Ericcson Xperia Arc. The battery on both lasts 2 days max depending on use as said.

Personally I like the Arc over the SII as a phone, and the iPhone doesn't compare to either.

Plus the fact that the iPhone is much more expensive and apps that are free on the Android market cost money on the iPhone.

Lase
 

00Giorge

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We have the Samsung Galaxy also, I almost got one but I got the Razr since it came with a lot of goodies for the same price. Angry Birds runs my battery down fast. I had a the first Droid and really liked it. I didn't care for the I Phone since I have been able to compare them side by side, yeah it will do things my Droid won't and my Droid will do things the I phone won't. It just depends on what you like. But the Droid gets free apps and the I phone doesn't.
 
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D

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I too have the Galaxy SII and a Sony Ericcson Xperia Arc. The battery on both lasts 2 days max depending on use as said.

Personally I like the Arc over the SII as a phone, and the iPhone doesn't compare to either.

Plus the fact that the iPhone is much more expensive and apps that are free on the Android market cost money on the iPhone.

Lase

I haven't had good experiences with Sony Ericssons. During the late 90's and beginning of the 00's the SE's were all over Sweden (guess why?) and that was basically the only choice. All of my SE's has broken on me after some months. They have worked for one year, tops.

Since 05 I'm only using Samsungs, they never break down. I had the "Ultra Touch" from Samsung and it is still working since the release of the phone. I have dropped it a lot of times and all, it still works. Could be compared to a iPhone that doesn't even take one hit to the ground and can't handle big temperature swings.

My Galaxy S2 works really good for me and I have intentionally dropped it from 2 metres because I was so confident that it would handle it, so did my friend with his iPhone. His glass broke (there was a big big crack), mine works perfectly still.
 

Lase

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My Arc has been dropped on concrete many times and still runs fine. I've never had an issue with this phone nor with the w995a that I also had. But that's only been in the last 3 years. I have no experience with them before this.

Lase
 
D

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My Arc has been dropped on concrete many times and still runs fine. I've never had an issue with this phone nor with the w995a that I also had. But that's only been in the last 3 years. I have no experience with them before this.

Lase

They might have been getting better during the last years, I haven't really had any of the new modern SE's. Lets see how they will do now when they bought Ericsson out of the company. From now on, I'm going to call them by their current name, Sony.
 

Lase

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Lets see how they will do now when they bought Ericsson out of the company. From now on, I'm going to call them by their current name, Sony.

When did this happen? The recent releases here are still Sony Ericsson.

Lase
 
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Lase

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Oh yay!

I love my Arc most because of the Bravia engine in it. It works much better as a TV than my SII, but my SII makes a much better computer...

I find it funny that phones can't just be phones any more.

Lase
 

Sigurthr

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I have an iPhone 3GS, and I'm completely happy with it.

1) There is no 3G service where I live no matter the network. We have EDGE and that's it.
2) I use my phone to check my email, take notes, make calls, check my bank account balance, listen to music, and get directions/maps (GPS) when I'm out and about. The only time I use the internet browser on it is when I'm in a WiFi zone and away from my computer. Most of the time I won't even check email unless in a WiFi zone.
3) I keep it plugged in on the charger whenever it is not in use and even after two years I still get 4 days of standby time or more than 6 hours talk time.

For my needs I don't have any use for customization or fancy apps or video processing power or "freedom" from the app store.
 

ped

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As has already been said, the Galaxy S2 (i9100) is the one to go for. The AMOLED screen makes the 4s's "retina" display look like a wristwatch.
 

charliebruce

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As has already been said, the Galaxy S2 (i9100) is the one to go for. The AMOLED screen makes the 4s's "retina" display look like a wristwatch.

I've heard good things about the Galaxy S 2 but it seems like the Galaxy Nexus might be worth the extra £40 - higher-resolution screen again, faster processor, newer model, ICS by default. The lower-resolution camera, and apparent lack of memory card expansion/usb data mode, seem to be odd omissions for Samsung to have made - do any other Android phones not support connecting via USB for Mass Storage mode? Would rooting the phone make this possible? (Bold so other Android people read it as well)

@Sigurthur I had an iPhone 3G a year ago before it was stolen - I liked it but it felt sluggish, and if I ever forgot to put it on charge one night it'd be touch and go whether or not it made it through the next day. The non-changeable battery is also a pain (though I'd already taken it apart to replace the screen so it wouldn't have voided the warranty). I do occasionally find myself wanting to shoot decent-quality video, so having the horsepower to deal with 1080p compression would be nice from time to time, but isn't absolutely vital.

@Lase Having a rugged phone is nice but probably not necessary from my usage, I've not broken a screen yet despite having an iPod touch from launch. The Xperia Arc does look pretty good though.

@Ginhev123 I never liked the restrictive feel of the iPhone - all mine were jailbroken with quite a few tweaks (keyboard changes and a couple of others). Most of my usage will be texting, but I'll occasionally check emails or websites though, and rarely shoot videos or mess around in a SSH window/game, so I should be OK with the Galaxy S II in terms of battery life.

I might go to the shops and play with the Galaxy S II, Xperia Arc and Galaxy Nexus, and if they have the Motorola Razr Droid too. Then I guess I'll go for whichever one feels nicest or best suits me.

Does anyone have experience with the Galaxy Nexus?

Thanks for the help so far, it's given me a few good pointers.
 

Things

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I have a friend that recently got the Nexus, and the lack of external uSD port is indeed a weird and kind of limiting omission. I have a Galaxy S2 and love every bit of it. HD video recording, battery lasts around a day of heavy use, awesome screen contrast because of the AMOLED. iPhone screens look like complete junk after you see an AMOLED device. See if there is a phone store nearby, and you go compare for yourself.
 




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