4G Android phone megathread

SumnerH

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Couperin47 said:
 
Google decided 2 years ago that removable storage media was "a security issue" and the OS has actively removed the ability of any maker to provide this option BY DESIGN. Nothing Android is going to have it going forward. Yeah it shits...
 
This isn't right.  Google decided that the setup where every app can read and write to the whole SD card was a security nightmare, and tightened up security controls--apps can now only read and write to folders that they've created (or been given ownership of).  So app A can't create (or delete) files in a folder owned by app B, and vice-versa.  Those security changes can be turned off via a ROM tweak, but manufacturers are not allowed to do so out of the box--they can (and do) still support external SD cards with the new permissions model.
 
This definitely caused some problems with apps moving to Kit Kat, as they need to move to the new security model and apps that stored things in other locations often broke (leading some people early on to believe that saving to SD cards was forbidden in Kit Kat).  Most of those have been fixed by now.  And there are non-security benefits to the new model, too (e.g. when you delete an app, it can be fully removed along with all data, instead of leaving random files behind).
 
http://www.androidcentral.com/kitkat-sdcard-changes?nopaging=1 has some discussion.
 

SumnerH

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Apisith said:
Airdroid does everything you want it to do without actually connecting it to the computer, right?

I've used Airdroid for transferring pictures and other stuff and it worked fine.
 
On the G2 you just turn on "wireless storage" and it shares out the drive as a Windows share (SMB).  No need to install airdroid or anything:
 
 

Scoops Bolling

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Any recommendations on an older generation Android? I've got an unlimited plan from Verizon that I can only keep by buying a new phone retail, and I'm not looking to drop $750 on a new model.
 
EDIT: For reference, I'm upgrading from a Thunderbolt...it's been a while since I looked at new phones.
 

Foulkey Reese

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Scoops Bolling said:
Any recommendations on an older generation Android? I've got an unlimited plan from Verizon that I can only keep by buying a new phone retail, and I'm not looking to drop $750 on a new model.
 
EDIT: For reference, I'm upgrading from a Thunderbolt...it's been a while since I looked at new phones.
What's your battery life at this point? 40 minutes?
 
Can't go wrong with a used Moto X or Galaxy S4.
 

Seven Costanza

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You're still using a Thunderbolt?
 
Basically anything released since then is going to be 1000 times better than what you're using.  Check out gazelle, swappa or ebay or whatever. 
 
I'm not kidding- like ANYTHING is better than that phone.  /first week Tbolt user
 

Scoops Bolling

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Foulkey Reese said:
What's your battery life at this point? 40 minutes?
 
Can't go wrong with a used Moto X or Galaxy S4.
I bought the extended battery when I bought the phone, so I'm still getting a solid day of battery life.
 
That's about the only good thing I can say about it.
 

Trautwein's Degree

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And for anyone complaining about Touchwiz - use a launcher. There are many good ones. Unlike rooting a phone and installing ROMS, they are very simple to install. I'm using the Google Now launcher and it is pretty damn close to owning a nexus on my GS4. 
 

Joe Sixpack

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Scoops Bolling said:
Any recommendations on an older generation Android? I've got an unlimited plan from Verizon that I can only keep by buying a new phone retail, and I'm not looking to drop $750 on a new model.
 
EDIT: For reference, I'm upgrading from a Thunderbolt...it's been a while since I looked at new phones.
 
What's your budget? I just bought a Galaxy S4 for $230 off ebay.
 

Couperin47

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SumnerH said:
 
This isn't right.  Google decided that the setup where every app can read and write to the whole SD card was a security nightmare, and tightened up security controls--apps can now only read and write to folders that they've created (or been given ownership of).  So app A can't create (or delete) files in a folder owned by app B, and vice-versa.  Those security changes can be turned off via a ROM tweak, but manufacturers are not allowed to do so out of the box--they can (and do) still support external SD cards with the new permissions model.
 
This definitely caused some problems with apps moving to Kit Kat, as they need to move to the new security model and apps that stored things in other locations often broke (leading some people early on to believe that saving to SD cards was forbidden in Kit Kat).  Most of those have been fixed by now.  And there are non-security benefits to the new model, too (e.g. when you delete an app, it can be fully removed along with all data, instead of leaving random files behind).
 
http://www.androidcentral.com/kitkat-sdcard-changes?nopaging=1 has some discussion.
 
The moment Google gained control of Motorola they announced that no further Moto phones would include an external storage slot and they are distinctly hostile to the whole concept. 
 

sibpin

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Couperin47 said:
 
The moment Google gained control of Motorola they announced that no further Moto phones would include an external storage slot and they are distinctly hostile to the whole concept. 
 
The Moto G 4G, Moto G 2nd Gen., and Moto E all have Micro SD card slots.
 

Couperin47

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sibpin said:
 
The Moto G 4G, Moto G 2nd Gen., and Moto E all have Micro SD card slots.
 
So now they have reversed their position ?, but weirdly the Moto X and the follow on..(being called the Moto X+1, but I hear the 'official name" will be New Moto X) both omit any slot...so they are keeping the option from their flagship phone? I guess the only explanation is they were intent on removing the option when the X was designed, the New X is an evolution where they don't want to completely retool...
 
What's frustrating is I have no option except the branded version from my carrier and they never offer any option except the phone with the minimum amount of memory...
btw I love the Moto X, but it would be nice to have more storage...
 

JerBear

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Couperin47 said:
 
So now they have reversed their position ?, but weirdly the Moto X and the follow on..(being called the Moto X+1, but I hear the 'official name" will be New Moto X) both omit any slot...so they are keeping the option from their flagship phone? I guess the only explanation is they were intent on removing the option when the X was designed, the New X is an evolution where they don't want to completely retool...
 
What's frustrating is I have no option except the branded version from my carrier and they never offer any option except the phone with the minimum amount of memory...
btw I love the Moto X, but it would be nice to have more storage...
Google sold Motorola mobility to Lenovo so they aren't making the call any more.
 

Couperin47

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JerBear said:
Google sold Motorola mobility to Lenovo so they aren't making the call any more.
 
Umm yes they are, the sale closes in 3rd quarter 2015, whatever product decisions made during the last year, and right now are the Moto team under the direction of Google, Lenovo's input atm is advisory at best over general strategy. The reversal of plans and design of the Gs and Es all happened before the negotiations for the sale were even started.
 

deconstruction

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Scoops Bolling said:
Any recommendations on an older generation Android? I've got an unlimited plan from Verizon that I can only keep by buying a new phone retail, and I'm not looking to drop $750 on a new model.
 
EDIT: For reference, I'm upgrading from a Thunderbolt...it's been a while since I looked at new phones.
 
Scoops, if you want a subsidized phone but want to keep your UDP, there's a loophole that jayhoz and others have used with Amazon and Best Buy online. Basically, there's an option on those sites to "keep your existing plan," and then when they ship you the phone, you simply replace the new sim card with your current sim and your UDP is re-upped for another 2 years. (With Amazon, you need to select the 2GB for $30 option I believe, but you will retain your unlimited--jayhoz can correct me here.) In your case (T-bolt), I think you'd need to trim the card down to the micro or nano size before switching. The key is to not turn the phone on with the new sim card. 
 
And Amazon has the G3 for $50 now.
 
But if you're happy with a 2013 phone and/or don't want to enroll in another VZW contract, then no need for this method. 
 

jayhoz

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deconstruction said:
 
Scoops, if you want a subsidized phone but want to keep your UDP, there's a loophole that jayhoz and others have used with Amazon and Best Buy online. Basically, there's an option on those sites to "keep your existing plan," and then when they ship you the phone, you simply replace the new sim card with your current sim and your UDP is re-upped for another 2 years. (With Amazon, you need to select the 2GB for $30 option I believe, but you will retain your unlimited--jayhoz can correct me here.) In your case (T-bolt), I think you'd need to trim the card down to the micro or nano size before switching. The key is to not turn the phone on with the new sim card. 
 
And Amazon has the G3 for $50 now.
 
But if you're happy with a 2013 phone and/or don't want to enroll in another VZW contract, then no need for this method. 
Essentially correct. The only slight correction is that with Amazon you select "keep existing plan" but that defaults to the 2GB plan later on in the order processing. Had Verizon pushed me to a 2GB plan I was going to tell them that I chose to not make changes to my plan and if they didn't honor that then they needed to take the phone back.
 

Scoops Bolling

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deconstruction said:
 
Scoops, if you want a subsidized phone but want to keep your UDP, there's a loophole that jayhoz and others have used with Amazon and Best Buy online. Basically, there's an option on those sites to "keep your existing plan," and then when they ship you the phone, you simply replace the new sim card with your current sim and your UDP is re-upped for another 2 years. (With Amazon, you need to select the 2GB for $30 option I believe, but you will retain your unlimited--jayhoz can correct me here.) In your case (T-bolt), I think you'd need to trim the card down to the micro or nano size before switching. The key is to not turn the phone on with the new sim card. 
 
And Amazon has the G3 for $50 now.
 
But if you're happy with a 2013 phone and/or don't want to enroll in another VZW contract, then no need for this method. 
I read about this loophole yesterday, but I'm quite hesitant to try it with the concern that Verizon would at some point clamp down on it. I use simply monstrous amounts of data (100+ GB a month; I run pretty much everything in my house off my phone's hotspot), so I'd much prefer to avoid any possibility of Verizon coming to me in the future and forcing me into a different data plan due to using that loophole.
 

PortlandSoxFan

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Google Voice is finally being integrated into Hangouts.  Does anybody besides me still use it?
 
Also, not to pee in the iPhone user's cornflakes, but is this revolutionary new payment system from Apple any different than Google Wallet, which I have been using to pay via Tap n' Pay on my Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 for like 2 years now?
 

JerBear

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I still use it and hope that included in the integration is the ability to send texts from the Google Voice directly to my contacts rather than sending to the routing number that you get when someone sends a text to me.  I've started saving the routing number to the my contacts with a custom label so they get texts from the right number.
 

zenter

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JerBear said:
I still use it and hope that included in the integration is the ability to send texts from the Google Voice directly to my contacts rather than sending to the routing number that you get when someone sends a text to me.  I've started saving the routing number to the my contacts with a custom label so they get texts from the right number.
 
I was using the GVoice app for communicating (mainly via text) with realtors and it is a very Gingerbread-y feeling all around. If they fully integrate Voice into Hangouts, I'll do a dance of joy, and be yet another step closer to porting my long-held number to Google. If they add true MMS (including multi-recipient) capabilities to Voice, I'll do it within the week.
 

PortlandSoxFan

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I've been using my GV number for a few years now (which makes it nice when you switch carriers).  I was doing the same thing regarding customising my contacts with their GV number so I could send/recieve GV directly in Hangouts.  It works, but it's cumbersome.
 
I honestly don't use MMS much but obviously wish it worked.
 
I installed the new Hangouts Dialer and the APK of the latest Hangouts, and it's pretty slick.  The server-side change of migrating Voice to Hangouts hasn't happened to my account yet it seems.  But the VOIP calling is a nice new feature.
 

johnmd20

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I just got the Galaxy S5 three days ago, upgrading from an S3. 
 
In summary, the phone is awesome. It's fast and easy to use. It's not as clunky as the S3 was. As well, the battery is in the game. I have been using my phone since 6am today for medium use, not heavy but not light, (some Sirius streaming, work Email running, and a lot of texts) and I'm at 74% right now. That's pretty good. I'm very happy.
 
The texting is faster, the web browser's(whether it's dolphin or chrome) are great, and the XLTE network is such an upgrade from the Verizon LTE network. This phone isn't that new but it's a smashing success for me.
 
One of the main reasons I don't want to go to the iPhone is because of Swiftkey. I feel Apple's keyboard is horrendous compared to the Android's. And that's a dealbreaker for me. Whenever I get stuck using even the iPad keyboard, I marvel at how effin' annoying it is.
 

Dollar

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Does anyone know if it is possible to use my Verizon S3 with the grandfathered unlimited data plan as a mobile hotspot?  When I try to activate it, it says this is not available on your plan.  Maybe there is some external app I can download?  Or maybe rooting the phone (I've never rooted it so I have no idea about that)?  If anyone knows, I would be forever in your debt.
 

jayhoz

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Dollar said:
Does anyone know if it is possible to use my Verizon S3 with the grandfathered unlimited data plan as a mobile hotspot?  When I try to activate it, it says this is not available on your plan.  Maybe there is some external app I can download?  Or maybe rooting the phone (I've never rooted it so I have no idea about that)?  If anyone knows, I would be forever in your debt.
If you root and flash the cyanogenmod rom you can do this. That was my method. There are likely other ways.
 

SoxFanInCali

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I have my personal number on Google Voice, running on my work phone, and have it set up to ask whether to use Google Voice for each outgoing call.  If I say yes, the call comes from my personal number, if no it comes from my work number.  I send work texts through the phone's messaging app, and personal ones through the GV app.  Yeah, no MMS, but it's a minor annoyance that doesn't really affect me.  This setup has worked great for me for a while.
 
I have no idea if I'm going to be able to keep working like this when everything is moved to Hangouts.  From what I'm reading, there are features and settings that haven't made the move to Hangouts because they wanted to focus on the "primary functions" and worry about edge cases later. There is plenty of talk about making VOIP calls, but honestly I couldn't care less about that. Why use data (which has usage limits) to make calls when I don't come anywhere near my minutes limit every month?  I guess I will see over the next few days how this ends up working.
 

Huntington Avenue Grounds

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Dollar said:
Does anyone know if it is possible to use my Verizon S3 with the grandfathered unlimited data plan as a mobile hotspot?  When I try to activate it, it says this is not available on your plan.  Maybe there is some external app I can download?  Or maybe rooting the phone (I've never rooted it so I have no idea about that)?  If anyone knows, I would be forever in your debt.
 
I used PDA net for several years (pretty sure I did with my S3) and loved it.  Free version works fine, just no secure site access, few bucks to buy and that's fixed too.  Saved me countless times on the road with no reliable net. Even used it for three weeks last summer when in new house before cable/net was installed. Ran 10GB that month on my (then) unlimited plan.
 

PortlandSoxFan

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SoxFanInCali said:
I have my personal number on Google Voice, running on my work phone, and have it set up to ask whether to use Google Voice for each outgoing call.  If I say yes, the call comes from my personal number, if no it comes from my work number.  I send work texts through the phone's messaging app, and personal ones through the GV app.  Yeah, no MMS, but it's a minor annoyance that doesn't really affect me.  This setup has worked great for me for a while.
 
I have no idea if I'm going to be able to keep working like this when everything is moved to Hangouts.  From what I'm reading, there are features and settings that haven't made the move to Hangouts because they wanted to focus on the "primary functions" and worry about edge cases later. There is plenty of talk about making VOIP calls, but honestly I couldn't care less about that. Why use data (which has usage limits) to make calls when I don't come anywhere near my minutes limit every month?  I guess I will see over the next few days how this ends up working.
You could right now do all messaging through the hangouts app, before the update.  You can open the GV app and have it receive SMS through your messaging app (in this case hangouts).  The annoying thing is the texts come from that GV translation number, then you have to add that number to a particular contact (although the text says who it is from if you don't feel like adding the number to your contacts).
 
From what I read, when you respond to a text it will come from whatever number it was sent to.  That part of the integration hasn't happened to me yet, so I don't know for sure.  As for VOIP calls, the only time I'd ever use this is if I was somewhere where I had poor/no phone signal but good wifi...I don't see myself ever making a VOIP call while on mobile data.
 

kelpapa

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johnmd20 said:
One of the main reasons I don't want to go to the iPhone is because of Swiftkey. I feel Apple's keyboard is horrendous compared to the Android's. And that's a dealbreaker for me. Whenever I get stuck using even the iPad keyboard, I marvel at how effin' annoying it is.
Every time I go from my S4 to my iPad I try typing using Swifkey for one word before realizing the shittiness of the Apple keyboard. It's a pain in the ass, and like you said a dealbreaker. 
 
Swifkey is coming to IOS 8, and I can't wait to upgrade my iPad to that.
 

SoxFanInCali

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PortlandSoxFan said:
You could right now do all messaging through the hangouts app, before the update.  You can open the GV app and have it receive SMS through your messaging app (in this case hangouts).  The annoying thing is the texts come from that GV translation number, then you have to add that number to a particular contact (although the text says who it is from if you don't feel like adding the number to your contacts).
 
From what I read, when you respond to a text it will come from whatever number it was sent to.  That part of the integration hasn't happened to me yet, so I don't know for sure.  As for VOIP calls, the only time I'd ever use this is if I was somewhere where I had poor/no phone signal but good wifi...I don't see myself ever making a VOIP call while on mobile data.
Yeah, I'd rather keep the texts from the 2 numbers separate (my GV texts come in the GV app now while work phone texts go in the standard phone messaging app), and doing it that way eliminates the translation number problem (no translation number when they come in directly to the GV app). It doesn't sound like I'll be able to keep them separate now. I'll have to play around with it once the integration becomes available to me.
 

JerBear

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SoxFanInCali said:
Yeah, I'd rather keep the texts from the 2 numbers separate (my GV texts come in the GV app now while work phone texts go in the standard phone messaging app), and doing it that way eliminates the translation number problem (no translation number when they come in directly to the GV app). It doesn't sound like I'll be able to keep them separate now. I'll have to play around with it once the integration becomes available to me.
integration just got my account. You can select either always mobile, always voice, or whatever received the text from settings.
 

SoxFanInCali

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JerBear said:
integration just got my account. You can select either always mobile, always voice, or whatever received the text from settings.
I just got it myself.  So far, it looks like I can keep doing what I'm doing, receiving only my GV texts in Hangouts but my work texts in the standard messaging app. Too bad it doesn't import the old texts that are in the GV app into Hangouts, but I can deal with that.  As long as I can still choose which number to call from when I make an outgoing call, I should be all set.
 
The UI of the Hangouts app is definitely an improvement over the GV app. I am cautiously optimistic that this transition won't completely screw things up.
 

JakeRae

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The new Hangouts app UI is a massive upgrade from the mess that Hangouts was previously. And, while I understand that VOIP calling is not a huge deal for most people, as a T-Mobile $30 plan user, being able to make calls from my GV number again without using minutes is a pretty big deal for me. 
 
It's also worth noting that the call quality via Hangouts is excellent, at least so far. I don't notice a difference between it and a regular voice call, which has never been true for GV based calling in the past. I'm not sure how I'll ultimately feel about moving my texts into Hangouts. I like the layout much more than Voice, but the combination of GChat and text in one interface is probably going to get confusing when communicating with the people I interact with via both formats.
 

PortlandSoxFan

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SoxFanInCali said:
I just got it myself.  So far, it looks like I can keep doing what I'm doing, receiving only my GV texts in Hangouts but my work texts in the standard messaging app. Too bad it doesn't import the old texts that are in the GV app into Hangouts, but I can deal with that.  As long as I can still choose which number to call from when I make an outgoing call, I should be all set.
 
The UI of the Hangouts app is definitely an improvement over the GV app. I am cautiously optimistic that this transition won't completely screw things up.
 
 
Looks like if you migrate, you have 3 settings for sending SMS...from GV only, from 'Home' only, or 'Smart Reply' which replies from the last number used with the contact, even if you are starting a new conversation.
 
I haven't tried MMS yet; not really important to me.
 

jayhoz

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LG is running a promotion where they are giving new purchasers of the LG G3 a free second battery and charger.
 
http://www.lg.com/us/mobile-phones/g3/promotions
 
If you purchased the phone prior to the start of the promotion (9/8), you can send a kindly worded email to the address below and they will send you a battery as well.
 
lgg3promo@hsadusa.com
 

Boggs26

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OK, time for new phones for my wife and I. We're coming from LG G2s, and I think its between the G3 and the S5. Looking for input from owners or just android tech junkies. Convince me one way or the other...
 

FL4WL3SS

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I think there's plenty of info in this thread about both phones. Nobody will make the decision for you, they're both good phones.

Stop being lazy, read the thread and do some research. Go to the store and play with both phones.

It's annoying when people come to this thread and want people to rehash everything that's already been said and make a decision for them.
 

Boggs26

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FL4WL3SS said:
I think there's plenty of info in this thread about both phones. Nobody will make the decision for you, they're both good phones.

Stop being lazy, read the thread and do some research. Go to the store and play with both phones.

It's annoying when people come to this thread and want people to rehash everything that's already been said and make a decision for them.
Thank you for assuming I'm lazy and don't follow the thread. I've actually spent a large amount of time researching both phones - as I do every time I get a new one - and have found that the specs are remarkably similar. I cane to this thread looking for some personal experiences from the many tech savvy people on this site. Despite the thread being incredibly long, I reread back through the last couple months of posts and didn't find much that was any more specific than "love this phone" or "had it for 3 days, so far so good".

Then after you decided to make your little macho stand for the good of the thread, I went back through the last 10 pages again and found exactly 1 real hands on review of each of those phones. Forgive me for thinking that there might be more than 2 people on this site with hands on experience with the phones in question.

so while I thank you for your vigilant thread policing, I'm going to leave it in your court to back up the fact that I'm lazy by showing me more than one person's helpful opinion on these phones.

It's annoying when people come into this thread and see a legitimate request for information and decide to berate and name call rather than help.
 

Trautwein's Degree

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They're both great phones. Look at the main features and decide from there. If you like music, you may want HTC. The screen on the G3 is amazing. It's kind of like trying to figure out if a Lexus is better than an Acura. No bad choices. Just some minor differences that may or may not matter to you at all.
 

jayhoz

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I have the G3 and love it. The amount and quality of the screen they crammed into such a small footprint is amazing. One thing to note is that the buttons are on the back and that takes some getting used to. I believe that was the case with the G2 so it shouldn't be an issue.
 

crystalline

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I looked back through the thread but want to make sure I'm not missing something.  I switched to a T-Mobile no-contract plan 1.5 years ago, and bought a Nexus 4 from Google.  That just died on me (recklessly carried it with no case and dropped it on pavement; subconsciously I think I wanted it to die).
The battery life was terrible - I couldn't make it through a day without charging and I was burned a few times while traveling or meeting someone when the battery emptied.  I liked the phone otherwise.  I'd love to get a Nexus 5 ($350 new), but I'd prefer a phone with a better battery or with a swappable battery.  Any suggestions for <= $400 for a phone with N4 or better capabilities with no contract?   A used Galaxy S5 is $400-500 on ebay right now, which is a little high for me.
Edit: I just got a quote from Replay in Allston who said they could fix the N4 for $120 and swap out the battery for $15.  I'm on the fence between that or a N5 for $350, though I'm sorely tempted to do the S5 with replaceable battery for $500. 
 
AlNipper49 said:
yeah google voice would rock if it didn't suck for stuff like that.  Don't forget MMS message as well.  So frustrating.
 
Agreed.  MMS is tough because it's used for multi-recipient texts and if anyone puts my Google Voice number on a group text the message gets silently dropped.  I know why - because carriers don't like google voice and MMS requires negotiating with each carrier, unlike SMS which is a standard - but it still stinks.
 

jayhoz

Ronald Bartel
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SoSH Member
Jul 19, 2005
15,731
Boggs26 said:
How's your day to day battery life jayhoz?
I am a pretty heavy user and I'm typically at 30% when I get home. There is a promotion going on at LG's website for a free battery and charging dock. Should eliminate all battery worries.
 

jodyreeddudley78

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 22, 2007
1,838
orange county NY
crystalline said:
I looked back through the thread but want to make sure I'm not missing something.  I switched to a T-Mobile no-contract plan 1.5 years ago, and bought a Nexus 4 from Google.  That just died on me (recklessly carried it with no case and dropped it on pavement; subconsciously I think I wanted it to die).
The battery life was terrible - I couldn't make it through a day without charging and I was burned a few times while traveling or meeting someone when the battery emptied.  I liked the phone otherwise.  I'd love to get a Nexus 5 ($350 new), but I'd prefer a phone with a better battery or with a swappable battery.  Any suggestions for <= $400 for a phone with N4 or better capabilities with no contract?   A used Galaxy S5 is $400-500 on ebay right now, which is a little high for me.
Edit: I just got a quote from Replay in Allston who said they could fix the N4 for $120 and swap out the battery for $15.  I'm on the fence between that or a N5 for $350, though I'm sorely tempted to do the S5 with replaceable battery for $500. 
I'm on a N5. I think it is a great phone and probably the best value in an unlocked phone given the price point. However, if your main concern is the battery you might want to look elsewhere. My only complaint is the battery life. It simply isn't great. Heavy usage will drain the phone quickly. You can do the traditional things to make the battery last longer, but those limit the functionality of the phone. At this point I would probably wait to see what the N6 offers, or check out the new unlocked Motorola (G or X) editions if you want a relatively pure Google experience.
 

crystalline

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 12, 2009
5,713
JP
jodyreeddudley78 said:
I'm on a N5. I think it is a great phone and probably the best value in an unlocked phone given the price point. However, if your main concern is the battery you might want to look elsewhere. My only complaint is the battery life. It simply isn't great. Heavy usage will drain the phone quickly. You can do the traditional things to make the battery last longer, but those limit the functionality of the phone. At this point I would probably wait to see what the N6 offers, or check out the new unlocked Motorola (G or X) editions if you want a relatively pure Google experience.
Thanks. I found this comparison on Anandtech: http://images.anandtech.com/graphs/graph7517/60092.png
The N5 is significantly better than the N4 and the better phones are much larger and more expensive.
I ordered an N5 a few hours ago. I also bought an external battery pack which I will throw in my computer bag/man purse: http://www.amazon.com/13000mAh-External-Portable-Compatibility-Charging/dp/B00BQ5KHJW/ref=zg_bs_7073960011_1
The Moto G was tempting but I decided I wanted the phone with better specs.
 

PortlandSoxFan

Father of Idontgiveafuckism
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jan 31, 2003
6,373
Colchester, CT
crystalline said:
I looked back through the thread but want to make sure I'm not missing something.  I switched to a T-Mobile no-contract plan 1.5 years ago, and bought a Nexus 4 from Google.  That just died on me (recklessly carried it with no case and dropped it on pavement; subconsciously I think I wanted it to die).
The battery life was terrible - I couldn't make it through a day without charging and I was burned a few times while traveling or meeting someone when the battery emptied.  I liked the phone otherwise.  I'd love to get a Nexus 5 ($350 new), but I'd prefer a phone with a better battery or with a swappable battery.  Any suggestions for <= $400 for a phone with N4 or better capabilities with no contract?   A used Galaxy S5 is $400-500 on ebay right now, which is a little high for me.
Edit: I just got a quote from Replay in Allston who said they could fix the N4 for $120 and swap out the battery for $15.  I'm on the fence between that or a N5 for $350, though I'm sorely tempted to do the S5 with replaceable battery for $500. 
 
 
Agreed.  MMS is tough because it's used for multi-recipient texts and if anyone puts my Google Voice number on a group text the message gets silently dropped.  I know why - because carriers don't like google voice and MMS requires negotiating with each carrier, unlike SMS which is a standard - but it still stinks.
 
 
Still not sure how group texts work, but it seems now you can send images via GV/MMS.  I just tested it and it sends the recipient a link.  Not a perfect solution, but seems better than what it used to be.
 

Fratboy

Mr. MENsa
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Nov 29, 2003
15,996
McCarver Park
Boggs26, your wife's coming from an LG G2, that's a pretty big phone as it is, and new stuff is even bigger, so if she's got smaller hands, it might be worth it to play with some devices beforehand.