This has been something that's been on my mind for several days. But now that i'm currently on medical leave from work, and not really been able to do much, it's been something that's been nagging me to think about, and wanting to at least vent, if not gain some perspective from others. Apologies in advance if this gets wordy, but I'd be doing a disservice to you and myself if I "tl;dr" this. Anyone looking for that, well... chances are you're not going to have much to contribute to this, anyway. Even from the beginning of smartphones showing up, Android appealed to me for the fact that it seemed more designed for power users from the beginning. Things like removable batteries, easy rooting and recovery, and having pretty solid and even budget phones having excellent options for external storage and the like just meant that there were many great options to tune and tweak to my heart's content. And for a while there, if I needed to, or wanted to, upgrade my phone, the benefits were real, tangible, measurable, and usually led to a greater experience. However, lately, it just seems like the Android ecosystem has somehow lost its way. First, it was things like how a build of the Facebook app not only tried to make itself startup with the phone, but effectively replace the OS of the phone entirely. Then there were things like Samsung's Knox, which were marketed to be toward making the phones secure. Then we started seeing high end phones sold without the ability to replace the battery at all, culminating with the recent reports of exploding Samsung phones. We have many a Sony phone that unless you had some specific sub-model, has no avenue to root whatsoever. Then we have google pushing Android OS updates that basically block or brick the access to any form of external storage whatsoever, which still boggles my mind. And the more recent attempts by google to basically bury Project Ara harder and faster than - to put a parallel to it - when the WWE buries any up and coming star by making them lose to John Cena. To put it in perspective... here at home I basically have two phones left. One is a galaxy note 3... that for whatever reason, because it's not carrier locked (SM-N900), all the ROM and mod makers pretty much ignored. Xposed won't even try to make a version of their framework that would even work on any Samsung phones rocking Android 5 or better. And that phone certainly has the guts to handle Android 6 in my opinion. But no such luck for it from anywhere. Couple this with it lacking any of the LTE bands, I had to start looking elsewhere after a year... even after basically buying it new for ~$530 + another $65 for the Zero Lemon battery that only seemed to get me two days of battery use compared to anywhere from four to six days like I got with prior phones. More recently, I have been using a Moto X Pure that I paid $400 for on April 2016; I hated having to spend that much on an NRB, even then. on the software front, it's been great to basically have a rom that is rooted from the beginning without any companion apps required, and between Xposed and such, it's performed very well, usually. At the time, I chose it because it was the only phone that had all the US carrier bands supported, and external storage support via the SD card slot. That said, I can't say that my experience with the phone has been anything but smooth. OEM charger pretty much stopped quick charging altogether, and kept getting slower and slower, forcing me to spend more money on both a new wall charger, car charger, and a power bank for it since of course, the stupid non-removable battery that I have always loathed. To say it's been a misadventure is an understatement. I've so far had several USB cables ruined that I'd tried using for charging the phone, and just like the Xperia T2 Ultra that I used to have, I would have fits where it would basically refuse to charge. Only, rather than it popping up a dialogue box telling me "oh, I can't charge anymore", it would simply get hot, drain the battery pack and not actually increase in %age. Even though this would imply some kind of hardware fault, Motorola wouldn't do a damn thing about any of it. So worse than I initially feared, having to have a power bank is basically costing me more money in having to frequently replace usb cables because they all keep getting broken. And then of course it never fully charges the phone, so it just drains itself faster and I'm then having to juggle between what to charge when I do get home, because I only have the one quick charging port for both the phone and pack, and attempting to daisy-chain (wall charger -> power pack -> phone ) just leaves the power bank completely flat and it refusing to charge at all, which then makes it not want to deal any current to the phone. All this, and even with what should have been good conditioning and training, and I damn sure don't get anywhere near the "all day battery" that these phone makers tout and toot about on their advertising pages. Not ever. Even the best of days, GSam basically says I only get about five actual hours of screen use with this stupid moto x pure (usually only getting 3~4), where I was getting anywhere from 11~20 with the Note 3 + ZL battery. At least with the extended battery, even if it took longer per charging cycle, it was for sure charged, and would last me for at least a solid day, if not more. Ever since I started buying phones outright, I usually at least tried to keep a mind of having "one good alternative", so that if something happened catastrophically and suddenly to whichever I was using then, I still had one I could be happy with if I had to replace it. I used to be able to always have a model in mind in that respects. However, it just seems like this era, there literally is no such thing, from any manufacturer, or any OS that I could see. Apple's finally got phones with full carrier band support as of the 6S, and while the MSRP of the 7/plus is a fair chunk less, the NRB and the lack of headphone jack are two things I cannot ignore or abide by. I haven't ever ruled out Windows phones entirely, at least on the OS portion. The 550 that my fiancee insisted on having has not been bad - removable battery, SD storage support, excellent pricing. But neither Microsoft nor anyone making windows phones make one that support all the carriers like I'd prefer. Android presently, just feels like staring into a discombobulated mess right now. I just want an actual power users' phone again. One I can then actually put an extended battery on like I did before. Despite google's hate boner for any non-cloud storage, I know that with an SD slot, I have a ready-made way to do an image backup and quickly recover if either had something bork spontaneously or just plain bit rot and be back up and running usually within 5~10 minutes. As far as the bands go... that's more or less stemmed from my experiences with the carriers in general. I've had so many instances of basically phones that used to work well just suddenly not able to get a signal anymore, and being fed up enough to want to switch, only to be forcibly delayed because now I have to buy another phone to do it. Having one that at least supports most of the carriers (if not all) enables me the power to walk away if a carrier wants to be a brat to me. Looking at the Android landscape now... there just seems to be literally nobody attempting to make anything that meets this criteria. At this point, it's like no phone anywhere seems to be meeting this need. Not just none on android, no phone period. And they want us to spend $800+ to basically rent a flagship phone that will just go flat within a year. Even more aggravating if say, the service suddenly gets awful, and I want to switch carriers, but now have to buy a replacement phone for the new carrier because the existing phone I invested in both doesn't work and won't even fetch 1/5th of the value I paid for it. This Moto more or less has only justified my prejudice toward phones with non-removable batteries, because it has been doing exactly the same thing every other phone I've ever had with an NRB do. Refuse to charge, get hot and drain other power but not actually charge, drain too fast, need to be plugged in at least twice a day... and now not only having to juggle extra baggage with the power bank, but then basically having to buy replacement USB cables that get ruined or smashed when I have to stow it in my pockets. So, I guess if I had to make a tl;dr version? Hating this NRB phone. Can't justify spending more than $200 for an NRB phone because I know they won't last. If it exceeds $200 USD, I consider it an investment. But nobody seems to be making a phone at any price that has the ability to replace the battery (with an extended capacity version), with the carrier bands, and support for external storage.