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Old October 31st, 2012, 08:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default I want a new phone but need help!

Hello everyone. I have been with virgin mobile for a few years now and I want to upgrade to their $35 per month beyond talk plan and get myself a new smartphone. This is the first one I have ever had and I really don't know much about them. I don't want to spend a lot of money but there are 6 phones within my range.
I would ideally like to spend less than $100, but I could be convinced to go higher if it is worth it. I would also most likely want a slider phone for texting, as I have large hands and I find my friend's touch screens hard to use.
Other than that, I want all the usual gps/music/camera ect. I'm a very techy guy and can boost that I have built computers, but I don't know anything about smartphones. I would also like apps, but I have no clue how the app system works. Thanks!

LG® Optimus™ Slider

// 523 Reviews

$129.99


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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:06 PM   #2 (permalink)
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That phone seems legit,..
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Old November 1st, 2012, 07:09 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Rise or Elite
I would go with the rise.
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Old November 1st, 2012, 08:04 AM   #4 (permalink)
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This sounds exactly like my situation except 3 months later – lol.


I was comfortable with an actual keyboard on a “dumb” phone and hated touch screens. The good news is, you do get used to the touch screen. I still make errors, but fixing them is made easy by having the word suggestion thing. Also “speech to text” helps a lot. I ended up going with the Elite, and I love the phone. The biggest problem it has is DATA, which seems to be related to the area you live in. Personally, I just leave DATA turned off when I am not using it. Not a big deal in my situation, since Wi-Fi is available most of the time. But some people have actually given up on the Elite because of its DATA issues.


On pricing, I bought the Elite at Radio Shack for $99 and recently it was on sale there for $69. So if you can wait, I would watch for sales. (Slickdeals.net is great site for doing that.)

Apps are AWESOME!!! Every Android phone has an App Store icon that gives you the access to the Market and a very large portion of the apps are free. Three months later and I’m still downloading random stuff to try – hehe.


And then there is rooting and roms ….. more fun!!!!

You have a great resource in this forum. You can research many phones by checking out their threads, and there are a lot of good folks that will answer any questions you have.
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Old November 1st, 2012, 01:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As a general rule, the better the phone the higher the price. And, like a computer, how much power you need depends on what you are wanting to do. For gaming you will likely want a higher end phone, for just checking email and surfing the web, you don't need as much phone. There is also the problem, with Android, of what version it comes with -- unfortunately most phone manufacturers don't create the drivers needed to update their phones to newer versions of Android. This is part of the reason so many here like rooting and custom ROMS, putting user created versions of Android on your phone that don't come with the "pre-installed software" that the carriers install, have more options, and often offer updates to newer versions of Android.

As a minimum, currently, I'd likely want at least a 1 Ghz processor (top of the line is a 1.5 Ghz dual or quad core), 512GB Memory (top typically is 2GB currently), 1GB storage at a minimum (high end is at least 16GB) -- this does not include microSD card storage, more on that in a bit.

Most high end phones are currently shipping with screens 4" or larger; how large you want your screen is a matter of personal preference. Some prefer larger screens to make things easier to see, others prefer a smaller screen so that the phone fits more easily into a pocket and/or in their hand. Also, there is the screen resolution, most high end phones have a vertical resolution of 1024 or higher.

As for storage, the reason for having at least 2 GB is so that you have room for Apps. While you can "move" apps to the SD card, at least part of the app has to stay in main storage. At the same time, Android also takes up a few hundred MB of storage -- so the less memory you have, the less apps you can fit on the phone. Also, some apps must stay in main storage and others don't support being moved to an SD card.

As for apps, most apps you will likely buy from the Google Play Store. Unlike Apple, you can load apps from other locations. One example is the Amazon Appstore for Android. As with PCs, you need to be aware that you get your apps from trusted sources and may wish to be aware of what permissions apps want; for example, some apps will want access to your contacts or phone log despite not having a need for that information. At the same time, many apps want access to your phone status, this is largely so they can pause if you get a phone call.

The last issue, is data and data speeds. One major complaint about Virgin Mobile is their data speeds, though that depends a lot on where you live. For example, I switched from Virgin to T-Mobile because I was typically getting download speeds of 300 Kbps or slower -- and in some areas could do no better than dial up speeds (under 100 Kbps). Virgin does offer WiMax that has download speeds up to about 10 Mbps, but that requires buying the Evo V and is only available in larger cities (you can see the VM coverage maps to see where it is available). All Android phones can also connect to WiFi, which has the advantage of not counting against your data limit and is typically faster.

There tend to be two types of "data limits". First is where you have a set amount of data you can download -- after which you have to buy more data or are just completely cut off. This is fairly rare anymore; most mobile companies instead provide "unlimited" data, though they throttle after a set amount; throttling meaning they slow down your data speeds. For Virgin Mobile, you get your first 2GB each month at full speed, after which they throttle. The exception, again, is with the Evo V -- Virgin is not throttling people who have the Evo V, which is 4G (WiMax) capable.

As I mentioned before, Virgin Mobile has been quite slow in some areas. You can get some idea of it from PC Mag's report on the Fastest Mobile Networks (just select a city on the right side), though that information is now about 6 months old. Of particular interest is the far right column, that shows the percentage of downloads they did that were greater than 144 Kbps. For example, looking at Houston you will see that only 45% of their download speeds were faster than 144 Kbps, while every other provider (other than Metro, which isn't in Houston) was roughly 98% or higher -- that really highlights just how slow VM has been in Houston.

I'd recommend talking to friends who use Sprint/Virgin Mobile/Boost in your area and see what kind of data speeds they are getting. If Virgin Mobile has decent speeds in your area (1 Mbps or better) then great. OTOH, if Virgin is slow in your area you will likely find yourself frustrated, just like if your home Internet is running slowly. And, unfortunately, which carrier is best for you depends on what city you live in and, sometimes, even what neighborhood you live in and the areas you frequent.
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Old November 1st, 2012, 03:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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One question guys. Att, verizon, sprint, and t mobile all have their own networks yes? And all the budget brands like virgin mobile and boost use sprint?

Also I'm still looking for advice on these phones if anyone else has any suggestions!
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Old November 1st, 2012, 04:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chili dude96 View Post
Att, verizon, sprint, and t mobile all have their own networks yes?
Correct.

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Originally Posted by chili dude96 View Post
And all the budget brands like virgin mobile and boost use sprint?
Not correct. There are tons of "budget" brands. Sprint Nextel Corp. happens to own the Boost and Virgin Mobile brands.

Most of the other budget brands buy wholesale capacity from the "big four" national carriers and resell it to end users under their own brand. To give you an idea of how many there are, take a look at this link:

List of MVNO's in the United States
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Old November 1st, 2012, 05:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by chili dude96 View Post
One question guys. Att, verizon, sprint, and t mobile all have their own networks yes? And all the budget brands like virgin mobile and boost use sprint?

Also I'm still looking for advice on these phones if anyone else has any suggestions!
As was mentioned, Sprint owns Virgin Mobile and Boost, so naturally they use the Sprint network. Also, Cricket and Republic Wireless both contract to use Sprint's Network.

Straight Talk, if I understand correctly, originally used Verizon's network, and still does for their phones that are talk/text only. For smartphones, Straight Talk uses either AT&T or T-Mobile. Users, depending on location, may be given a choice between AT&T and T-Mobile when they purchase a Straight Talk SIM card/phone.

T-Mobile Monthly obviously uses T-Mobile.

MetroPCS uses their own network, though it appears (so long as it is approved) that they will merge with T-Mobile.

AT&T's Go Phone obviously uses AT&T's network.

I think that is most of the major prepaid brands, though, as tcomotcom mentioned, there are a lot of mobile providers in the US. Of the providers mentioned above, T-Mobile and Straight Talk have the advantage that you can "bring your own phone", they allow you to use any compatible phone that is compatible with their network.
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 06:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Rise or Elite
I would go with the rise.
+1
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 07:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Virgin Mobile is getting the SII according to the collateral my store got today.

I'm only seeing the white model though.
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 08:59 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Virgin Mobile is getting the SII according to the collateral my store got today.

I'm only seeing the white model though.
?
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 09:18 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Virgin Mobile is getting the SII according to the collateral my store got today.

I'm only seeing the white model though.
How much money do you think it will be, roughly?
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 09:26 PM   #13 (permalink)
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349.99
Just like boost mobile unless they lower the price to 300 to compete with the Evo
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Old November 2nd, 2012, 09:36 PM   #14 (permalink)
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349.99
Just like boost mobile unless they lower the price to 300 to compete with the Evo
Damn. Thats out of my price range lol.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 01:01 AM   #15 (permalink)
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What I've found from being here on the forums is that the biggest complaint people have with their cell phone is not having enough room for apps.

Research the phones by viewing online written reviews, YouTube reviews, and reading each phones respective forums to see what others have to say about their phones. Make a list of the pro's and cons for each.

The next question to ask yourself is weather or not you wish to root the phone and add a custom rom. From the list you already have from your research, find which devices have the strongest support in the dev community.

Your strongest weapon is your own research (and don't forget to research the different mobile carriers as VM USA may or may not be what you want). It will help you make a well informed unbiased decision.

I'll point you here first. This is a bit of a read, but the info is well worth the time spent: Fastest Mobile Networks 2012 | PCMag.com
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 01:41 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Virgin Mobile is getting the SII according to the collateral my store got today.

I'm only seeing the white model though.
Pics and any more info possibly? I'm really looking forward to this phone. Getting kind of bored of the Evo now.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 07:27 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Pics and any more info possibly? I'm really looking forward to this phone. Getting kind of bored of the Evo now.
I'll be posting pictures of what I got.
I didn't get the dummy phone but I did get the fact tag and the collateral mentioning it.

I think it's likely this phone will be around $349 - $369.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 09:58 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I'll be posting pictures of what I got.
I didn't get the dummy phone but I did get the fact tag and the collateral mentioning it.

I think it's likely this phone will be around $349 - $369.
Awesome! I'll be checking back soon.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 11:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Pics.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg uploadfromtaptalk1351959831149.jpg (56.8 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg uploadfromtaptalk1351959840849.jpg (33.6 KB, 38 views)
File Type: jpg uploadfromtaptalk1351959882119.jpg (50.3 KB, 35 views)
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 12:22 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I can't wait! I hope they have the black one too.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 11:21 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I can't wait! I hope they have the black one too.
They aren't showing any color but white and they discontinued the black for Boost. They are showing, however, a "titanium" colored model on our new collateral for Boost Mobile.
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Old November 4th, 2012, 01:34 AM   #22 (permalink)
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They aren't showing any color but white and they discontinued the black for Boost. They are showing, however, a "titanium" colored model on our new collateral for Boost Mobile.
Titanium?! Is that the color that was leaked on a thread in this forum a while ago? That would be the perfect balance between white and black for me.. I just hope it comes to Virgin too.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 12:47 AM   #23 (permalink)
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I think that would be awesome if VM could get you guys more color options!
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Old November 12th, 2012, 01:31 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Whatever you decide definitely rule the intercept out, it was the first prepaid Android on the market and was low end when it was introduced 2 years ago.
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Old November 14th, 2012, 07:25 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Whatever you decide definitely rule the intercept out, it was the first prepaid Android on the market and was low end when it was introduced 2 years ago.
I ended up getting a kyocera rise. I like it a lot. Sometimes applications like temple run will freeze up or lag, but its not that bad. On a side note, all my friends want me to get snapchat. But snapchat for android only works with a front facing camera. Is there any way to get around that?
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Old November 14th, 2012, 08:55 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I ended up getting a kyocera rise. I like it a lot. Sometimes applications like temple run will freeze up or lag, but its not that bad. On a side note, all my friends want me to get snapchat. But snapchat for android only works with a front facing camera. Is there any way to get around that?
I would check Google to see if someone Modded it, side note snap chat is only fun for a little bit then it gets boring
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Old November 14th, 2012, 11:21 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I ended up getting a kyocera rise. I like it a lot. Sometimes applications like temple run will freeze up or lag, but its not that bad. On a side note, all my friends want me to get snapchat. But snapchat for android only works with a front facing camera. Is there any way to get around that?
Definitely a decent phone for $80, I thought that I needed a physical keyboard when I got the Intercept, that and it was the first and only prepaid Android at the time but after upgrading to the Wildfire S then the Triumph and now the Evo I really don't miss it at all, considering what you gain just by giving up the keyboard is definitely worth it for me. You have 30 days to play with it and who knows what Cyber Monday has in store. If the One V goes on sale for a similar price I would definitely recommend it, the upgraded screen and camera will definitely make you miss the keyboard a whole lot less. And I have fingers the size and shape of sausage links so trust me you'll get used to the on screen keyboard. No matter what, enjoy the new toy.
One last thing, the One V also has a larger dev community if you're ever looking to customize your phone.
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