Help me decide please :)


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  1. boomboy

    boomboy Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Greetings All,

    I would like to start off by saying I have learnt loads about Android OS after getting to this site. Thanks to all you guys... this site rocks.

    Am planning to buy a Android phone.. My friends think IPhone rocks and I did think its pretty cool to own one Iphone. But lately I was drawn towards Android as its open source and its easy to customize.

    I am planning to buy HTC Hero and would want you guys to give me a unbiased opinion. Can you please tell me, is HTC Hero as awesome as everyone says in here?? I thought of HTC tattoo too...guess its kinda small screen and doesnt sound as sexy as Hero. I need to spend quite amount of $$ to get a Hero by my budget..so please, no fanboys!! hope you understand and help me here...If you do say, go for HTC hero... how long do you think I can survive with this phone? I mean, will it become obsolete in couple of years?? sorry for this rant...gotta think of all aspects before investing my savings in it...

    Thanks and appreciate you guys taking your time off to help. :)
     

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  2. jim_h

    jim_h Well-Known Member

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    Hi boomboy,

    I think the answer to your question is hard to give objectively, especially on an Android forum. Having said that...here's my 2p worth.

    I've come from 3yrs of using Symbian on Nokia smartphones (E61, E71) and had some serious moments of worry before getting the Hero due to the young age of Android and some of the review criticisms.

    Most of my friends own an iPhone and love it. I played with it and read the reviews, but discounted it for a couple of important reasons (to me anyway). First, it won't multitask. That's a biggy on its own. Secondly, I really hate the idea of Apple dictating to me what I can or can't run on my phone. If they don't like an app, they ban it from the store or patch the phone to prevent it working - at least that's what I read. No thanks.

    The Hero is far from perfect. I think choosing it boils down to whether you can live with the flaws, some of which are going to be addressed with Android updates, coming soon. Yes, the Hero will become obselete soon, but you could say that about any mobile these days. If you wait 3mths, there will always be a new, better, faster model of mobile out to beat whatever you have that's cutting edge now. There's no way around that.

    I am a bit of a fanboy of the Hero after only a couple of weeks with mine. There are some irritating things about it, like the lag that happens sometimes, the lack of bluetooth file transfer (which I used a lot with Symbian). As far as I know, the HTC 2.1 firmware will speed up the phone to some extent and will enable bt file transfers. You also have the option of patching your phone in order to gain root access to the Linux OS itself. I haven't seen the need to do this yet, but ymmv.

    You'll find a large number of apps and games in the Google store. Most of them seem to be free, lite versions of the commercial ones or fully commercial. Even the full apps that cost money appear to be very cheap.

    There are some downsides to the Hero as I mentioned. But, as smartphones go, it's a lovely bit of kit and well worth getting. Of course I am biased, but I don't regret getting the Hero at all. It's a pleasure to use, has a mind boggling number of customising options and Android is great now, but will continue to improve as Google update.

    I hope that helps a bit. These phones aren't cheap and can be a huge investment financially. You can't test drive them properly until you get one, so places like this forum are the best to look at to work out what's good and bad with the phone.

    All the best,
    Jim
     
  3. boomboy

    boomboy Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks a ton Jim. I appreciate it. I've never used a smart phone before and hence the apprehension. I was wondering, do we have good apps for Android? I realize we have some great apps..but how about maps? I mean, do we have to use GPS to use maps??
    2. Whats the SD card size limit for Hero??
    3. Will I have enough memory to load good number of apps?
    4. Will I be able to change the case of Hero? If am bored of black case, can I go for white??
    5. I heard about Hero being slow and lags a lot..do you think its manageable?

    Again, sorry guys for my long list of questions.. Hope you understand am just excited and cautious about getting myself a "smartphone"... thanks :D
     
  4. jim_h

    jim_h Well-Known Member

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    Your welcome boomboy. But, make sure you compare my answer to others as they might tell you more or something completely different! :)

    1. Google maps seems to use the gps automatically. I can't find an option to prevent it using the gps. There is a main phone setting outside the map app to switch gps on and off, but I can't tell whether Google maps ignores it or not.

    2. I'm not sure what the upper limit is, it's not even mentioned in the official manual. I've heard of people using 16gb cards without an issue though. You do get a 2Gb card with the Hero and as you can't currently install apps directly to it (without root), then the 2Gb will probably go a long way.

    3. I'd say yes to that. I went mad when I got mine and just raided the marketplace for dozens of apps and games. You do need to keep an eye on how much ram you have left, but you'd need a lot of software installed to fill it up. This is one of the criticisms levelled at the Hero - that you can't install apps directly on the sd card. If you're click happy and install dozens, then you will fill it up. After a while, I tend to settle on one app for each task, like memory management, notes, file manager, sms client etc.

    4. You can get replacement backs for it, but that's all as far as I'm aware. The extended batteries come with a replacement back too, to accommodate the extra thickness.

    5. This really worried me and nearly stopped me from getting the Hero. Lag can be a pain, but if you manage the way the apps are run on the phone (which takes time to learn about and play around with - this forum helps a lot with that!), then it's a minor issue. Other people hate it, so it's a tough one to say for definite. If the phone starts to lag, you can force apps to close rather than wait for Android to do it for you. The cpu on the Hero isn't the fastest, but I do think even with the lag you get sometimes, this phone is much faster than the Symbian I was used to before.

    Please wait for others to post too boomboy as I'm not claiming to be an expert on the Hero at all.

    Just about everyone in this forum is helpful and very tolerant of noobs asking loads of questions. That's one of the best things about it for me.

    Cheers,
    Jim
     
  5. boomboy

    boomboy Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    wow the length you go to help someone... /me bows down. Can't thank you enough... guys who are viewing this thread, please throw some light... any info would be appreciated. Thanks again guys!
     
  6. Xyro

    Xyro 4 8 15 16 23 42 Moderator

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    For maps you have anything from full blown sat-nav apps (which are pretty expenisve as apps go) down to google maps, which is just like the normal pc version but with GPS. It can also locate you using WiFi networks and mobile phone towers, which is probably what's caused the confusion there Jim :p.

    There is a decent ammount of space for apps, although I'm not sure of the exact space either. It's not a problem for me since you can install apps to the sd card if you're willing to go through quite a lot of hassle (and potentially void your warrenty :p). I have heard this might be a feature coming in next month's update, although I'm not sure if that's true.

    As for the lag, I think it's pretty subjective. I haven't used any other smartphone, and so think it performs well. Do bear in mind though that if you search the internet for reviews, the ammount of lag has been reduced with OS updates, so early reviews might not be fair any more.

    I also second what Jim said about the benefits of multitasking and not being limited to only apple approved content.
     
  7. walkinhotdog

    walkinhotdog Well-Known Member

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    Before the hero, i used a dumbphone, and a smartphone that ran on windows 6.1 and unofficial 6.5 roms. I have to say this phone beats the hell outta my old phone, which had the same cpu speed. Its got plenty of memory to install all your apps. I have about 15 apps/games total (very little) and the phone is pretty dam quick. Virtually no lag issues at all, other than maybe a little when scrolling through contacts or text messages. Love the sense ui and how it is so customizable and the variety of apps is great. I think you will have a lot of fun with it. the phone is ~2 years old so new stuff will be coming out, but with the 2.1 update coming out, i think well hang in with the new tech just fine. best 230 bucks i ever spent. though you will probably spend a lot more. ;)
     
  8. Jaffa

    Jaffa Well-Known Member

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    RuOne thing to bear in mind is you need to be a little bit computer/tech smart with the hero, iPhone spoon feeds you, anyone can use it, Android devices need a little more input.

    Saying that, that's what sets it apart, its intuitive, it works with what you need, apple tell you what you need. Personally its as much a statement of who you are.
     
  9. Anthony1

    Anthony1 Well-Known Member

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    I'd hesitate recommending the Hero right now. I love mine, but bear in mind that the realease of the Legend and the Desire are just a few weeks away. Depending on how much your budget is you may be better off waiting for one of these instead.
     
  10. heronaddict

    heronaddict Member

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    Agree with Anthony1
     
  11. boomboy

    boomboy Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Thanks a ton for all your replies guys. Honestly, dont think I can wait for Desire or any new product as am stretching with my budget for hero..am sure the new ones will cost more!Thanks again
     
  12. Anthony1

    Anthony1 Well-Known Member

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    If you're really stretching your budget then I'd definitely say hold off for a few weeks. The price of the hero will come down after the new phones come out and you'll get one cheaper.

    There should also be quite a few second hand ones around from all those people who are selling their Heros to get a Desire....such as mine :)

    Incidentally where are you based? My advice is pretty much specific to what's going on here in the UK. Not sure it'll apply to the US.
     
  13. daveybaby

    daveybaby Well-Known Member

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    The hero is a great phone and a worthy purchase, but i have to say that if i was buying now i'd wait a few weeks and buy a Legend instead. Basically its a slightly tweaked & improved hero (better camera, a bit more CPU).

    Although obviously the hero will be cheaper once the legend replaces it.
     
  14. boomboy

    boomboy Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Am in India. I have a friend of mine who owns a mobile store. Hoping he can get me a hero for a less price as promised :) Thanks again guys. You rock!
     
  15. AstroDonut

    AstroDonut Well-Known Member

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    Ditto

    I love my Hero (not intimately!!), I've also come from the Nokia Symbian stable and my Hero wipes the floor with it, I was tempted to stick with my e71 for a bit longer... but then thought... what the hell...

    I wish I'd waited a little longer only because of the new releases due out.

    We all know what technology is like, as soon as you get something new there's a better product being released within a few weeks/months...

    My honest opinion... 'The Future is Bright... The future is ANDROID'

    Whatever you get you'll love it
     
  16. Elpelco

    Elpelco Well-Known Member

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    I will say this about the Tattoo; it's not getting Android 2.1, which means you won't be able to use a lot of new apps. Also the weird screen size means there's a lot more compatibility issues on top of that. And it has a resisitive, no capacitive touchscreen.
     
  17. Jaffa

    Jaffa Well-Known Member

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    Tru dat!
     
  18. Griever

    Griever Well-Known Member

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    Well I fell in love with HTC phones from my last one HTC touch diamond. this was WinMO based and I loved it. My first brush with the hero was on a random browsing session, it kinda jumped out at me. I still had a few months left in my contract before I could upgrade. I spent those months researching what phone I wanted next.

    After browsing various phones and having the hero jump out at me, I started to look into various reviews/blogs on the hero and lurked in these forums. Needless to say the more I read about it, the more I wanted it-regardless of flaws. The biggest flaws are as said, camera and bluetooth. Camera can be ok as long as it is used in good light. Lack of bluetooth as well didn't seem to bother me, as i don't use it often. However both will get a boost with the upcoming 2.1 update.

    Sense UI is an amazing feature and the customisation is unheard of in any other mobile phone. So far I am yet to have the phone lag on me. As much as I have read about this happening.

    Another thing I love about HTC/Android is the google account link, long are the days gone where there is hassle putting all your appointments/contacts on EVERY new phone(annoys the hell out of me and as much as the sim back-up is there you still have to mess about with mobile/home numbersof the same contact etc). Android links to an online google account as long as you stay on android your contacts/calendar are just an e-mail address away. Ok the downside is it needs to be an android phone...is that really a bad thing ;)


    Bottom Line(for me):-
    HTC Hero is a great phone. I got it, my fiancee got a samsung jet - she wants a hero now. My cousin played about with mines - She's the proud owner of a new HTC hero. One of her friends played with her hero - he now owns one.
    Hope you get the idea...
     
  19. AstroDonut

    AstroDonut Well-Known Member

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    Two guys I work with are 3 months into a 2yr contract and they now want a Hero/Android phone, the courier who collects my parcels wants one too...

    I really hope the Apple v HTC thing doesn't damage the Android progress

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