Advice on a new phone?

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Puffi
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Advice on a new phone?

Post by Puffi » Thu Aug 04, 2011 2:45 pm

I'm thinking about getting a new mobile phone and I'd appreciate your input.

I really don't need any functions for it beyond calling and texting. I'd still like an OK screen, nice buttons etc, and that does tend to push the price up so the very cheapest phones are most likely out for me.

Touchscreen technology doesn't seem to work well enough on any phone for me to use it properly, and I don't like the feel of them either. Or the fact the screen gets all smudged. I'd like to be able to use the phone with one hand, too.

So who makes the best touchscreens? What phone has the best one? I'd like to see if it's ALL touchscreens that I can't stand or just the ones I've tried.

I've fiddled around with some Nokias as they tend to make more of the simple phones, but they all seem to have a very non-responsive user interface. For example, you push a button and it takes it two seconds to load the calculator. That's just unacceptable. Speed of the UI and keyboard design has been the strongest reasons in the past for me in picking my phones. I've ended up with Samsungs. I got the B2100 now.

If anyone can decode this post and suggest something, please do. I'm kind of out of ideas, and wholly unimpressed with what's out there right now.

jaydeee
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by jaydeee » Thu Aug 04, 2011 11:30 pm

Try to get a blackberry, not to flushy and just perfect for my simple and busy life :)

Johnnie
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by Johnnie » Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:41 am

I'd choose between HTC and Samsung devices.

Puffi
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by Puffi » Sat Aug 13, 2011 11:26 am

Johnnie wrote:I'd choose between HTC and Samsung devices.
What are the advantages of HTC devices? I really don't know a lot about those. What I've seen they only make the touchscreen-type smartphones?

ickarumba1
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by ickarumba1 » Sat Aug 13, 2011 2:18 pm

For your needs, I do suggest a nokia phone. They are reasonably cheap. Well built and dependable. Try them out, not all are created equal.

As you say, you don't need a touch screen, although, which phones in particular have you played with? Some phones have resistive touch screens and they are just terrible. The capacitive ones are what you want. I've had htc, samsung and motorola android phones, and the touch screens are a joy to use.

A blackberry isn't cheap, but I hear they work quite well, but I haven't ever used one, so I can't say much. However, like other smart phones, they offer many other features, but you say you only need to text and call.

mkk
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by mkk » Sat Aug 13, 2011 2:19 pm

I have a simple touch screen ZTE Blade that I use as a PDA, but for calls I'd get whatever low end Nokia that is locally available and doesn't seem too bad. It doesn't sound like a touchscreen is the right phone for you either, but they're useful and fun as PDA's. My current Nokia wasn't exactly cheap as at the time I needed a phone with a half decent screen for calendar use, but when it goes south I'm back to the low end on phones. Handhelds with touch screen eat up the battery fast enough without any 3G/4G activity involved. ;)

ickarumba1
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by ickarumba1 » Sun Aug 14, 2011 1:30 am

True, my motorola atrix lasts only a day with moderate-heavy use.
My old nokia gumstick lasted a good 4 days with some calls, although, I only used it for calls. My atrix has all these cool apps and such that drain battery.

frenchie
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by frenchie » Sun Aug 14, 2011 4:27 am

I use a Samsung Convoy, simple phone, sturdy, call quality usually good, never dropped a call.
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judge56988
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by judge56988 » Mon Aug 15, 2011 2:04 pm

You can keep your iphones and Android touchscreen HTCs and Galaxy whatevers, this is IMHO, still the best phone ever made - for making calls, battery life, signal strength, call quality and ultra reliable bluetooth connection to the car. Still using mine.

David_CA
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by David_CA » Fri Aug 26, 2011 6:23 am

I recently picked up a Nokia C3-00 for it's normal price of $90 (no contract). It's 2G, S40 OS but with a UI face lift to make it more like S60 with a very good customizable home screen (I never visit that Nokia grid except to access the settings menu). I've used a number of Nokia's other budget phones and there is a big difference between them and the C3. The C3 has a bright, crisp screen compared to the more washed out screen on most of the budget Nokias. [Edit: However like most of Nokia's phones you can't change the default power saving settings, so the screen will dim and turn off if you leave it idle]. I never figured out what CPU is inside (it's not published anywhere) but whatever it is it is very responsive. It doesn't have the input lag other Nokia budget phones have - even with the MP3/Video player going in the background it remains equally responsive to input, though I do notice that it takes longer to load the web browser. I was also able to load Age of Empires 3 via microSD and it ran full speed despite being designed for higher end S60 devices.

Volume and voice quality is ok but not anything special, if you are hard of hearing this is not a good phone (by comparison the cheapy 2760 is excellent for old people). The qwerty keypad is very good with raised keys and solid keystroke; I've used a number of Blackberries and wouldn't consider it any less. The navigation keys don't have any issues (the end call/power off has less travel/feedback) though I've found the 2 raised shortcut keys (default to contacts and mail) can be accidently pressed by my flip case if the keypad isn't locked. The overall build quality is high - no creaking and the back is some kind of aluminum cover. I think that Nokia managed to do something very smart with the build quality of this phone, avoiding the cheapest construction and using premium parts in a few key areas to make a S40 phone feel like a high end one.

The camera is 2MP but useless - no flash, poor focus, takes the kind of grainy pictures you'd associate with 'cell phone camera'. The built in mail app also likes to resize any image to 640x480, even if you try attaching them as a file instead of a photo. There is no dedicated camera key and if you need a cell phone camera on a regular basis you should look elseswhere. Speaking of buttons there is one major feature omission - no dedicated volume buttons. This is probably the one problem I would want to see fixed. Since the phone doesn't do multitasking you don't have any way to adjust the volume of the MP3 player if you are browsing a webpage - you have to close the browser, change the volume, then reopen the browser and reload the last page (there is a shortcut to do this).

Other cons are the Bluetooth and Wifi. The Wifi is very buggy (to the point of not working at all with some access points) and the Bluetooth has known problems with tethering (someone has found a workaround using a script to ping the phone in order to keep the connection from dying). I've found a few minor bugs in the software - the included Nokia browser is quite good (though it doesn't allow a fast back function, it needs to fully reload the previous page) with javascript support, in contrast to the also included Opera Mini which feels faster but chokes on a lot of pages due to Javascript (the Nokia browser will choke on some >1MB pages). However I've had bugs trying to move bookmarks, with the browser thinking another bookmark with the same name already exists. There are also several Nokia bookmarks (Ovistore, Myspace) that can't be removed except by a deep hack of the phones xml files.

Battery life is excellent, rated about 7 hours of talk time which has so far matched my real world use (though I've never run the battery all the way down - it may be better then advertised). It seems to cope well with poor signal areas, except for the mail app which frequently gives up on slow to respond mail servers. Combined with the strong build quality the size is also good - not too big in any dimension, easy to hold and operate with one hand, good weight (though the vibrate is kind of weak).

So if you want a phone for basic calling, lots of texting, basic web browsing and music listening this is a good deal for a well built phone. If you want Wifi, camera, 3G, an App store or other features don't waste your time, it may advertise some of them, but it doesn't do them very well (The Ovi Store has very little of quality for this phone, you're better off looking for generic S40 and S60 Java applications elseswhere).

HelenaAndrews
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by HelenaAndrews » Tue May 15, 2012 2:01 am

Try HTC ONE X, ONE S and ONE V if you like HTC phones. I’ve heard nice things about them.

m1st
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by m1st » Tue May 15, 2012 3:24 am

I want to preface this by saying I'm a huge Microsoft fanboy, so take my recommendations with a grain of salt.

That being said, is the Nokia Lumia 710 available where you are? It's available here in the US for $350 without a contract (carrier-subsidized makes it around $40). It's a pretty snappy phone with decent, but not class-leading hardware. It runs Windows Phone 7.5, which is a really neat UI - very responsive and hard to break. It doesn't have all the customizability or app support of Android, but for calling, messaging, and web browsing, the experience is hard to beat.

The screen quality is ok (a little backlight bleed, it has a standard LCD screen, not an AMOLED), and the unit, while not made out of metal, has a very solid feel to it. It's not too big (3.7" screen), and has a decent 5MP camera.

Again, it's not nearly as powerful as an HTC One X, but unless you're doing some serious number crunching or gaming on your phone, I think that power is unwarranted. Making calls, surfing the internet, and messaging will be just as fast, if not faster on a Lumia 710 by virtue of its lightweight UI and fast, single-core processor.

I swear I'm not an ad bot, though this post probably sounds like one. But I would encourage trying out the Lumia line to see if you like it. I've been using a Samsung Focus for about 18 months now and am very happy with it.

HelenaAndrews
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Re: Advice on a new phone?

Post by HelenaAndrews » Mon Oct 01, 2012 5:22 am

I bought Samsung Galaxy S3 last month. It is a unique phone, much better than iPhone and maybe HTC which are my favorite.

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