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BenP
2010-04-03, 17:49
I'd like to get a smartphone but I'm not sure whether I should go for an iPhone, Blackberry, or Android-based one. I think any of the major US carriers would work for me. What other things should I think about? Don't they all offer pretty much the same in the way of apps?

Robo
2010-04-03, 18:05
No webOS love? :(

turtle
2010-04-03, 18:08
I love my Tilt 2 WM6.5 phone from AT&T. The cooked ROMs I put on this thing are awesome too. The stock ROM isn't bad, but I don't normally let the AT&T bloatware stay on my phones for long.

BenP
2010-04-03, 18:11
No webOS love? :(

I'm kind of worried about lack of support down the road, but I wouldn't rule out a Palm phone either.

Edit: actually, the Pre looks VERY nice. Wish it had a better camera, though.

BenP
2010-04-03, 18:14
I love my Tilt 2 WM6.5 phone from AT&T. The cooked ROMs I put on this thing are awesome too. The stock ROM isn't bad, but I don't normally let the AT&T bloatware stay on my phones for long.

I don't think I want to have to mess with that stuff (even basic unlocking) unless it's REALLY worth it. I mean, if there's a huge benefit over anything you could get without tweaking, then it's no problem, but otherwise I'd rather have it just work.

turtle
2010-04-03, 18:24
Sounds like you want an iPhone then.

BenP
2010-04-03, 18:35
Sounds like you want an iPhone then.

Really? Everything else requires some hassle? That sucks..

ezkcdude
2010-04-03, 18:53
iPhone DROID :)

BenP
2010-04-03, 19:05
iPhone DROID :)

Like I said, I'm open to anything - why do you like the Droid so much? The GUI looks a little unpolished to me, although the hardware is definitely slick.

turtle
2010-04-03, 19:16
Really? Everything else requires some hassle? That sucks..

Yeah pretty much. Droid is cool but much like WM in that there is a lot of "features" to it. I've not personally use an Android phone yet so I can't say it's first hand knowledge, just from what I've readi nthe reviews.

My mom has a BB and it's just a pain if your asked me.

Luca
2010-04-03, 22:46
Choice of carrier is very important, at least in the US. Sprint and T-Mobile are cheaper for smartphones than AT&T and Verizon. Look at the details of the plans - Sprint includes unlimited texts for the same price as Verizon's data plan without texting. Sprint's 2-line family data plan is one of the best deals available.

I would definitely wait until summer to get anything. There are some awesome phones on their way from all carriers. Sprint is getting the HTC EVO 4G with a 4.3" screen and 4G capability. AT&T is probably getting the HTC Desire, which is basically the Nexus 1 with a few improvements. Verizon is getting the Nexus 1 and (rumor has it) the iPhone. And Apple is very likely to upgrade the iPhone this summer.

As for iPhone vs. Android, it's really personal preferance just like Mac OS vs. Windows or Linux. Android is highly customizable and hackable, and there's a lot more hardware choices on all carriers. Some of the best Android phones outclass the iPhone in terms of CPU and RAM (Nexus 1 in particular, wth the Desire and EVO coming up). But of course the iPhone will probably get an update soon as well.

Android is definitely less intuitive and slick than iPhone OS, but it's worth it to me at least for the other capabilities. You should try one out, preferably a really fast one like the Nexus 1 or maybe the Droid.

Robo
2010-04-03, 23:11
If you're at all concerned about "polish," than pre-2.1 Android isn't for you, IMO. Even now it's sort of iffy.

I'd go to a mall and just try them all. It's a preference thing, and we can't find out your preferences for you.

I will say that if you like an elegant, non-fussy OS, go with a Pre Plus or an iPhone. Verizon is now including hotspot functionality for free with the Pre Plus, which is really useful if you have a lot of gadgets, though Sprint is still cheaper.

Good luck! And a word of advice: decide on a carrier first. Happy hunting! :)

Luca
2010-04-03, 23:27
Don't go to a mall expecting to try everything. A lot of mall cell phone shops only have display phones. Maybe one or two working ones. The only way to be sure you'll get to try all of a carrier's phones is to go to a corporate-owned store. I went to a Sprint store wanting to compare the Pre to their Android phones, and they only had a single working Pre and nothing else. They explained that they had to buy all their display models and it was just too expensive, but they did point me in the direction of the nearest corporate store.

The Pre Plus is not bad, but I fear for its future support. Everyone has been talking about Palm's death as though it's inevitable. And while the OS is nice, the hardware is unreliable and slow.

Robo
2010-04-03, 23:39
Don't go to a mall expecting to try everything. A lot of mall cell phone shops only have display phones. Maybe one or two working ones. The only way to be sure you'll get to try all of a carrier's phones is to go to a corporate-owned store. I went to a Sprint store wanting to compare the Pre to their Android phones, and they only had a single working Pre and nothing else. They explained that they had to buy all their display models and it was just too expensive, but they did point me in the direction of the nearest corporate store.

The Pre Plus is not bad, but I fear for its future support. Everyone has been talking about Palm's death as though it's inevitable. And while the OS is nice, the hardware is unreliable and slow.

The Pre Plus has double the RAM of Sprint's Pre, which helps. But yeah, COR stores are the way to go.

BenP
2010-04-04, 07:04
I've gone out and played around with the Droid, a couple HTC phones, and the iPhone. I didn't really like the Droid interface but the HTC phones and the iPhone seemed nice with my limited experience. I think I pretty much have to wait until summer, though, like Luca said - new iPhone, the EVO, and hopefully we'll know a little more about Palm's situation.

Iago
2010-04-04, 07:14
I'd like to get a smartphone but I'm not sure whether I should go for an iPhone, Blackberry, or Android-based one. I think any of the major US carriers would work for me. What other things should I think about? Don't they all offer pretty much the same in the way of apps?

I just recently (November) switched from an iPhone 3G to a BlackBerry Bold 9700. I don't miss the iPhone at all. The Bold has a vastly superior battery and the call quality is streets ahead (my iPhone was O2 and BlackBerry is on Orange, but I'm convinced its a hardware thing).

Choice of carrier is very important, at least in the US. Sprint and T-Mobile are cheaper for smartphones than AT&T and Verizon. Look at the details of the plans - Sprint includes unlimited texts for the same price as Verizon's data plan without texting. Sprint's 2-line family data plan is one of the best deals available.

I would definitely wait until summer to get anything. There are some awesome phones on their way from all carriers. Sprint is getting the HTC EVO 4G with a 4.3" screen and 4G capability. AT&T is probably getting the HTC Desire, which is basically the Nexus 1 with a few improvements. Verizon is getting the Nexus 1 and (rumor has it) the iPhone. And Apple is very likely to upgrade the iPhone this summer.

As for iPhone vs. Android, it's really personal preferance just like Mac OS vs. Windows or Linux. Android is highly customizable and hackable, and there's a lot more hardware choices on all carriers. Some of the best Android phones outclass the iPhone in terms of CPU and RAM (Nexus 1 in particular, wth the Desire and EVO coming up). But of course the iPhone will probably get an update soon as well.

Android is definitely less intuitive and slick than iPhone OS, but it's worth it to me at least for the other capabilities. You should try one out, preferably a really fast one like the Nexus 1 or maybe the Droid.

Agree with everything here. Carrier is paramount in the US. I'd also consider more than just the OS. The battery was the main reason I switched from iPhone, but I think as a productivity tool the Bold is streets ahead of the iPhone. The next iPhone is likely to have a significantly improved battery life so that may/should sway you.

CFP
2010-04-04, 07:48
BlackBerry Bold 9700 all the way! I borrowed an iPhone for a week before making a decision, and the BB won hands down.

BenP
2010-04-04, 10:33
BlackBerry Bold 9700 all the way! I borrowed an iPhone for a week before making a decision, and the BB won hands down.

Haha, that's what I need to do, but I don't feel comfortable asking if I can borrow someone's phone for a week. What were the reasons you chose the BB?

Iago
2010-04-04, 10:54
Some thoughts here etc. (http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=33826)

BenP
2010-04-04, 11:03
Some thoughts here etc. (http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=33826)

Awesome, thanks! I'm definitely going to wait until the summer but that will help me a lot. After reading this (http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2010/03/rip-palm-its-over-and-heres-why.ars/2) I think the Pre is out for me, which is a shame because it certainly seems to have great potential.

CFP
2010-04-04, 17:16
Haha, that's what I need to do, but I don't feel comfortable asking if I can borrow someone's phone for a week. What were the reasons you chose the BB?

Well, I say borrow... It was my sister's, and I was staying with her for a week, and luckily she had no problem with me monopolizing it... :D

I know my opinion may not be very popular here. And my reasons are quite difficult to define, just a general overall feeling of preference, but I'll try to pick a few things out.

Practically speaking, I'd agree with Iago's previous comments about call quality - the BB is much superior here. But then, Iago and I are both with the same provider (different to my sister's with the iPhone) so that could be a network thing, like having UMA maybe.

I love the form of the BB. Every button is within reach without moving the hand (much). Very instinctive. I LOVE the BB keyboard, but then I've always disliked typing on a touch screen. No iPad for me...

It's reliable, and fast. I've had it for 3-4 weeks, and never (so far) had to restart or remove the battery to solve a problem. It never seems to hang, which the iPhone did a few times. With the BB, the internet seems snappier than with the iPhone.

The battery is amazing. It just goes on for days. And that's with more than occasional use of media (MP3s, videos mostly), always being logged into IMs, and general excessive bleating over the phone :) IIRC, the iPhone needing charging basically every day.

I was surprised at how good the media capabilities are on the BB. As an MP3 player it's great and syncs with iTunes, the speakers are pretty good and the screen is of way better quality than I expected.

Speaking purely subjectively here, obviously... I think the difference for me is that the iPhone, much as do I like it, feels more like a toy and the BB just feels like the business. The iPhone does have far better apps but I'm not so much into all that except for the basics.

Good luck with the decision! Not a bad place to be really - either way you end up with a good phone.

I'm gonna wait to be dissected and torn apart now... ;)

pscates2.0
2010-04-04, 17:47
iPhone.

Just cut to the chase and get the best and don't waste your time trying to look cool giving some of this other wannabe, "us too!" shit any consideration.

:p ;)

*ducks*

CFP
2010-04-04, 17:57
:lol:

BenP
2010-04-04, 18:34
:) Thanks guys. I've got my list narrowed down to the EVO and the iPhone. I might go the BB route but I think that's unlikely. We'll see what happens in June, I guess... a nice hardware bump for the iPhone would make my choice easier.

Robo
2010-04-04, 19:45
The EVO is hot, especially if it is able to work with the existing Sprint plans (like Simply Everything Plus). And if that hotspot functionality is included, then it'll just be an insane deal. But Sprint really is desperate, so...

torifile
2010-04-04, 19:48
It's a fun time to be smartphone shopping. I can't wait to see what the summer brings.

Robo
2010-04-04, 21:39
It's a fun time to be smartphone shopping. I can't wait to see what the summer brings.

It's not a fun time to be locked to AT&T :(

It's amazing how much the industry has changed. It used to be that you *had* to sign a contract if you used your phone with any regularity -- pre-pay was by-the-minute and expensive. Now pre-pay is *cheaper,* even on the major networks. Crazy.

I think it's sort of crazy to sign a contract in an industry where prices are falling so fast. Look at the price of the cheapest unlimted smartphone plan on a major network. Nine months ago it would have been $100 (Sprint). Six months ago it would have been $80 (T-Mobile). As of three months ago, it's $60 (Boost aka Sprint). Three months from now, who knows what it will be? (I'm hoping $40...with the iPhone. ;))

Ryan
2010-04-04, 22:04
It's not a fun time to be locked to AT&T :(

It's amazing how much the industry has changed. It used to be that you *had* to sign a contract if you used your phone with any regularity -- pre-pay was by-the-minute and expensive. Now pre-pay is *cheaper,* even on the major networks. Crazy.

I think it's sort of crazy to sign a contract in an industry where prices are falling so fast. Look at the price of the cheapest unlimted smartphone plan on a major network. Nine months ago it would have been $100 (Sprint). Six months ago it would have been $80 (T-Mobile). As of three months ago, it's $60 (Boost aka Sprint). Three months from now, who knows what it will be? (I'm hoping $40...with the iPhone. ;))This is why I’m waiting.

(That, and I’m spending next semester in France, bad time to get in a contract :p)

torifile
2010-04-04, 22:47
This is why I’m waiting.

(That, and I’m spending next semester in France, bad time to get in a contract :p)
It may actually be a perfect time to get a contract. If you can show proof that you're "moving" out of the country, they will let you out of the contract without an ETF.

Ryan
2010-04-05, 10:45
Really? I could see T-Mobile doing this but that's who I'm with right now and I'm already on month-to-month with them. If I got the iPhone would AT&T do that? Anyone have experience with this?

In either case, I'll probably have to wait until December/January anyways. I'll be in a better place financially and I could better afford a data plan. Right now I'm on my parents' family plan but if I got a smartphone I'd most likely have to move off that onto my own.