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Compatible, rootable, built to last. Is it even possible, anymore? I'm just not seeing it.

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by codezer0, Aug 21, 2018.

  1. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Try as I might, i know this won't be short. If that bothers you, this is not the thread for you.

    First of all, i don't have a lot of spare money to save up for another phone. As it is, my current g4 is already developing battery issues. I could probably just go cheap, get an extended battery and be done with it. Though truth be told, i had been holding off in the hopes i could get myself a suitable lg v20. But seeing that everyone and their dog is charging as much as they do, still, for the model that would best meet my needs and wants ( us996 unlocked ), my chances of getting this phone while it's still usable to me are growing slimmer with each passing day. The fact that the phone still disappears within minutes at around 300 bucks even now is telling, but also discouraging, since I've been getting overwhelmed with crap that I've had to deal with IRL.

    Thing is, i want a new(er) phone. But i also really hate having to buy a phone more frequently than i feel i should have to. I didn't mind terribly with spending more if the phone was built to last and stuff, but nobody makes such a phone anymore, it seems.

    Why do i want to move on from the g4?
    • Nobody will provide a way to root it. At all.
    • Latest pokemon go update blocked my ability to even run the game. I can download and reinstall all i want, but the game refuses to let me log in. And niantic, as ineffectual as they are, refuses to take any responsibility for their busted update.
    Full disclosure: at the recommends of this forum, i last attempted to settle with a moto x pure. That was... For lack of better wording, the worst decision possible. Everything that was wrong with that phone had to deal with the battery being so miserable. And that by the time i had been fed up enough to attempt to repair it, Lenovo in its audacity blocked the ability to buy the parts i needed. needless to say, that was the last straw. And it forced me to sell the thing at a pittance because i couldn't sell it as "used" but rather "for parts". The reason I'm here, asking for advice again, is because i don't really have many options of where to ask that aren't biased toward trying to sell me on something that *they* want to sell, so much as something that *I might want to buy*, if that makes any sense.

    What would be the ideal phone?
    • Easy to root
    • Has the bands to work on most (if not all) US carriers. While I've been reasonably happy with T-Mobile service thus far, I've never been happy with a carrier locked phone for long, and the ability to walk away and keep the same phone is a value that cannot be ignored.
    • Upgradeable battery. Not just being able to replace the battery, but to be able to install a larger one. No factory battery, ever, has even achieved a third of the advertised battery life with me. The only time I've ever had enough battery life to last me a day was with a phone that had an extended battery installed. Unless its battery capacity is at or above 10k mAh, i can guarantee it won't be enough.
    • Headphone jack. Because even as i type this, my current Bluetooth headphones are flat and i forgot to bring the aux cord they came with. And sometimes i just want to wear some cheap headphones or earbuds. Why should that be too much to ask?
    • Sd slot. Keep my personal stuff on there, so i don't suddenly lose a bunch of stuff if i ever have to wipe the phone for any reason.
    What don't i want?
    • I'm tired of phones aping the iPhone's worst aspects. Google especially, is guilty of this with the nexus and pixel phones
    • Spending more than a car payment ($200) on a disposable phone is bad enough. I'm not above spending more if it is made to last. But if It's going to be more than three digits, I'd rather just save up for a gaming notebook at that point. At least it is possible to get something with a gtx 1060 in it for around 1000, and *that* would still be useful and usable two or more years from now, unlike every sealed battery phone ever.
    • Being stuck without root has been in short, miserable. Even navigating this site on the g4 is a chore. Sad thing is if it wasn't for a complete lack of LTE bands, I'd still be using my Note 3 right now thanks to its custom rom support granting it a new lease on life (and the zerolemon battery upgrade).
    If it's going to have a sealed battery, i already don't want to spend any more than i have to. And I'd need to be able to get it somewhere where i can replace it when (not if) the battery starts failing. I refuse to deal with such careless phone design again. I've literally never not had a sealed battery phone from anywhere that didn't develop problems. At the same note, I've also never not had a carrier locked phone that didn't just magically stop working correctly after the first year of ownership. The only phones that have worked well after year one, have only been factory unlocked phones. I'm not joking.

    If you want to help, and recommend something to look into, where's what i need to hear with it:
    1. Why. If you can't justify your answer, it's that much harder to take your suggestion seriously
    2. Any optional accessories for it? Factor them in to the quoted price, please. That helps make the number crunching just that much easier for me, and it's hugely appreciated.
    3. I reserve the right to ask additional questions.
    Since i can't think of what else to add to this post at this time... Here, we go.

     

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  2. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    Hello again! May I suggest the Moto E4 Plus (XT1775 / XT1776)?
    - It's easily boot-unlocked & Rootable,
    - has TWRP custom ROMs (I built many for it),
    - my ROMs for this device work on most/near all Carriers, including T-Mo
    - A 5,000mAh battery I get 3days medium/light use with stock or custom OS, + other great specs
    - Has been one of the best devices I've owned,
    - is around $70-$130

    Hope that falls into your range of preferences, and good luck..
     
  3. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    I'm sorry, the what? As if i didn't have enough negative experiences with motorola phones as of late.

    Both amazon and newegg searches insist this model doesn't exist. Are you sure you have that right?
     
  4. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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  5. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Okay. Still doesn't change that both amazon and newegg insist the phone doesn't exist, though. So, not even able to see specs or anything relevant.
     
  6. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    Amazon and newegg aren't the only suppliers of this device, plus when ppl discovered the Carrier lock workaround, it flew off the shelf like crazy
     
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  7. mikedt

    mikedt 你好
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  8. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    Don't forget, you can also go to your Carrier or Best Buy to purchase..
     
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  9. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    What are you talking about? My carrier, in this case T-Mobile, does not have an E4 plus. The closest they have is an E5 Plus.
     
  10. mikedt

    mikedt 你好
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    Well buy the unlocked non-carrier version directly from Motorola or from Best Buy then.

    You wanted "Has the bands to work on most (if not all) US carriers."
     
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  11. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    I'm sure they have them somewhere.. sometimes they can just call another T-Mo store and send it, most carrier stores are actually proprietary and barely speak good english anyways. The E5 Plus is supposed to be decent as well, I just haven't built for them devices yet..
     
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  12. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Yeah, the problem is I still don't know anything about it. My usual suspects (as stated, Amazon or Newegg) both come up dry for searches, acting like the phone doesn't even exist.

    Never you mind, that I already have a negative experience with Moto/Lenovo, because of the MXPE that was so glowingly recommended the last time I was in this position. The same phone that destroyed so many cables and chargers before destroying its own quick charge functionality. So even as it is, I have to somehow get past that aspect of it.

    Even then, closest local place to me that carries it, is not a Best buy, but rather, a Fry's Electronics: https://www.frys.com/product/9252229?site=sr:SEARCH:MAIN_RSLT_PG And for more expensive than @bcrichster alluded to. That forces me to take pause.

    The only listings close to what were estimated, were on Swappa: https://swappa.com/buy/moto-e4-plus-unlocked and seeing it's a sealed battery, I basically have to assume that 90% of its useful life is already gone.
    I'm not joking when I say that I've never had anywhere close to the advertised battery life on any sealed battery phone, even when new. And it always got worse, never better.
     
  13. mikedt

    mikedt 你好
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    OK, I will leave you to your quest then. Good luck!

    BTW do you actually still play Pokémon Go?
     
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  14. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Yeah, I do. Or rather, did. before this new update seemingly blocked me from even being able to log in, let alone do anything as of this past Sunday morning.
     
  15. Davdi

    Davdi Android Expert
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    WIth Oreo and project Treble, building custom ROMs (and adding root in the process) became a lot easier. see https://www.xda-developers.com/how-project-treble-revolutionizes-custom-roms-android-oreo/ and https://www.xda-developers.com/android-pie-gsi-project-treble/
    If I've understood this right, any devie running Oreo or later that has an unlocked bootloader can potentially have a rooted custom ROM based on AOSP developed relatively easily.

    I'd be looking at generic Chinese phones with large batteries running Oreo
     
  16. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Well, for whatever it's worth, found an e4 plus at Wal-Mart of all things. After seeing it in person... Ugh. I already have no faith it can even run pokemon go at stock. And I'm again anxious because of all the crap i went through with an earlier moto e, moto g, and the accursed mxpe. And at $160? Yeah. I really don't think so.
     
  17. mikedt

    mikedt 你好
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    $160 for a new E4 Plus seems like bit of a bargain to me, especially compared to the $1,000 for a Samsung Galaxy Note9 or similar.
     
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  18. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    I've made a ton of ROMs for it.. One of them even has a wicked version of KernelAdiutor that you can lock the CPU and GPU to max for gaming. And don't forget the 5,000mAh battery. But it's your call and preference
     
  19. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Okay, I'm really getting really tired of your crap. Did you not pay attention at all?

    I've already had the Moto E, moto G, and the MXPE. All of them were spectacularly awful phones to use in their own special, hate-filled ways. And all of them only got worse over time. Why would I pay that much for a phone I know - before I even unboxed it - would just disappoint and tick me off? Why would I pay that much for a phone, from a company, who knowingly and maliciously blocked supply for repair parts?

    Samsung is the same way. They'd rather just kill their user base than make a good phone again, as proven with the Note 7. As sketchy and out there as it sounded, someone at a repair shop implied it was possible to replace the radio in my SM-N900 Note 3 with one that would have the LTE bands to work. If I even had half a belief that would work, I would seriously consider it, because that's the only reason that I am not actively using it as my daily driver.

    I look at the E4 and just see a phone that probably won't even run what I'd want to have installed as an app now, and then have zero battery life in as little as a month from purchase, let alone six, 12, or more. And by then, Lenovo will just ban the ability to buy the parts needed to repair it, forcing me to buy yet another phone. Why should I enable such behavior that is clearly not in my best interests? My previous experience with Motorola (now Lenovo) tells me how bad an idea it would be to even consider another motorola phone again.
     
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  20. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    That's about all the E4 Plus has going for it... that and the relative ease to root. But that number on its own doesn't mean much if I don't know what the SoT is on it. Moto's own page doesn't seem to list that, either. https://www.motorola.com/us/products/moto-e-plus-gen-4
    Moto (Lenovo) only lists stand-by time, which means nothing to me. Unless they did something to make said battery last 8~10 hours of SoT, then it again, is not enough battery life.

    I'm sick and tired of phone makers acting like 3-5 hours of SoT is somehow totally fine. Yeah, maybe, for a 9-5 office job where the person is never out of range of a WiFi hotspot, but that would never work for my daily routine. It'd already be dead before I start my mid-day. And I can't always count on having an outlet. And before anyone says "oh, just get a battery bank" I ALREADY HAVE ONE! THEY'RE TERRIBLE! and I have no idea how much longer this one (that the MXPE destroyed one of the USB ports for) will last. All having a battery bank has done for me was just add another thing I have to charge overnight along with the phone. It makes me pine for when I had a phone with extended battery as my daily driver, because then all I would have to do is charge the one phone.
     
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  21. mikedt

    mikedt 你好
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    ^^^
    #FirstWorldProblems
     
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  22. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    OK.. I tried, have a nice day. I hope you find what you're looking for. ;)

    Edit: my sot is @16hrs right now but I always get at least 8hrs
     
    #22 bcrichster, Aug 24, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2018
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  23. codezer0

    codezer0 Android Enthusiast
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    Why does it seem like everybody hates having a phone that'll actually last? :mad:

    Why is it so ridiculous to believe as a concept that I'd be more open to spending more money on a phone if it were built to last more than just the first year? Or two on a contract?

    Why does every phone maker just want to ape the iPhone harder and harder, for all the wrong reasons?

    We have Samsung trying to explode our faces for a sale.

    We have google making phones more locked down than Soviet Russia.

    We have motorola trying to sue parts resellers, along with Apple...

    Microsoft checked out of the phone environment, again... o_O
     
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  24. bcrichster

    bcrichster Android Expert
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    Nvm, G'Night
     
  25. LV426

    LV426 I say we take off and nuke this place from orbit
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    Ok folks, let's realise that it is frustrating that modern phones seem to have limited battery life, and causes real problems for many people.

    I wish I could provide some useful advice, and if you can, please do.
    But if not, try to refrain from chipping in flippant remarks, which could be taken the wrong way. Thanks!
     
  26. Rico ANDROID

    Rico ANDROID Android Expert
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    Try a used Galaxy Note 4 on amazon. these are very reliable and good battery life
     
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