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General Photon or Galaxy S2

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by snowcrash, Jul 9, 2011.

  1. viber

    viber Android Enthusiast
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    I've been using the Photon and ET4G for about a week.

    The Photon is a good phone, but the Galaxy S II, especially the Sprint version, is clearly the most powerful, most responsive, and most smooth operating Android phone ever made.

    In terms of user experience, no other android phone comes close. Even Iphone 4's iOS, which has an excellent user experience, gets rocked by the GS2

    None of this makes the Photon a bad phone. It's a good phone, but the ET4G is a game changer, and the standard by which all Android phones will be measured until the GS3 drops.
     

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  2. whatsitsname

    whatsitsname Android Enthusiast
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    Too bad their signal reception is pretty bad. I really had high hopes for Samsung.
     
  3. clgwli

    clgwli Well-Known Member
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    Admittedly I didn't... but I think I've owned one too many Samsung phones. Love them for other things, but no thanks on a phone unless they make changes.

    I hope soon to play more with the GS2 more. What little I saw of it looked nice, but I dislike the oversaturated screen. I have zero plans to switch to this phone, but I am curious how it will really stand up next to the MoPho in my opinion. I just can't seem to find a store that isn't full of people playing with it or hovering while you are trying to look at it (hate it).
     
  4. viber

    viber Android Enthusiast
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    Reception is not bad any means. It's better than my wife`s EVO in both 3g and 4g, and miles better than my nexus s 4g. 4g is strong and holds long enough to be highly usable.
     
  5. amerving952

    amerving952 Lurker
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    I owned the Epic 4g, it had a lot of glitches and lag, battery life was extremely poor, required a lot of rebooting during the day, bad sound quality, overheating, slide keyboard was useless. I havent messed around with the S2, but traded in the Galaxy S for the Photon less than a month ago, and I wouldnt trade it back. I think the Samsung would have a good product if they matched or incorporated some of the Photon's speed and functionality.
    However, the Photon is a bit bulky, especially with a case. Sprint has limited choices when it comes to accessories, so I ordered a black silicone case online for less than half the price of Sprint.
    The outdoor quality is really nice.
    The downside of the Photon is the camera sound, you cant shut it off, so I resorted to downloading SilentCamera from the market, which works great with no sound when I dont want the awkward shutter sound.
    The camera options on the Photon are limited, and not as much variety as the Galaxy S.
    I wasnt too thrilled with the layout, so I downloaded SPB Shell 3D, and love the added features.
    The battery life on the factory battery on the Photon is actually really good for a smartphone. I like the factory installed Task Manager, and that the Photon doesnt have all those unneeded games that came with the Galaxy S.
    I also like the button placements on the Photon, the power button is on top and sound is on the side, so I am not constantly accidentally hitting the power button when I'm trying to turn the volume up or down.
    Lots more options on the Photon, ease of use, attractive, powerful, practical and reliable.

    The kickstand is awesome, but you cant use it when it is charging, unless you stand it upright, but then your movie or video will be sideways. The placement of the charging port was not a good plan as far as this feature is concerned.
    It's a great phone...until the Photon II comes out! :)
    :cool:
     
  6. Citizen Coyote

    Citizen Coyote Android Enthusiast
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    Flip it over so the charging port is on top. The kickstand is plenty strong enough to support the phone like this, and was designed to do so. :)
     
  7. Damar1979

    Damar1979 Android Enthusiast
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    Both phones are awesome, and both have individual strengths as well as weaknesses. But if you are going to compare phones, dont compare the current epic touch to yesteryears epic 4g. Completely different phone with none of the epic 4gs flaws. And for the record, the epictouch is by no means slow. Its probably the fastest phone out at the moment currently with no lag at all regardless of what is thrown at it, but various people have complained about signal strength (i havent experienced it). The photon is awesome in terms of signal reception and call quality, but sleep of deaths and random reboots kill the experience. But in the end it all boils down to whats best for the user, and we will always pick favorites. But if you are going to compare, do so without bias and point out each others pros and cons equally.
     
  8. nemesys06

    nemesys06 Well-Known Member
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    both phones are amazing. With that said, the gps in the galaxy s2 seems to be one of the best I have ever used. Huge turn around from the original. As for the screen, thigh it is lower resolution, it still looks better than any other screen in the mobile market. If you are looking for which phone will perform better, I would suggest the galaxy s2. But like I said, either phone would be a good choice.
     
  9. nemesys06

    nemesys06 Well-Known Member
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    Sounds like you never even seen the epic touch. It is an amazing phone and nothing compares to it performance wise. I have over 400 apps, tons of widgets and a demanding live wall paper and I cannot get it to lag up at all. The photon is great, but I think samsung set a, new standard. They listened to all the complaints about it's predecessor and fixed all the major issues. as for signal, thus has the best reception from all the phones I had. And the best gps.
     
  10. apinkel

    apinkel Android Enthusiast
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    I do think the Epic Touch is a pretty amazing phone but there are issues with signal loss on a large percentage of phones. They've got a poll going in the Epic Touch subforum and it looks like somewhere between 20-50% of the folks who have posted have experienced the issue. It's not affecting everyone but it does appear to be a legitimate issue.

    I think the big question now is will samsung fix this? Based on Samsung's past track record with post release issues I think it might be wise to wait a bit to see how this shakes out.

    The photon has had issues with random reboots but moto/sprint seemed to be actively working on the issue (if it's not already taken care of). I hope Samsung can be as effective.
     
  11. drexappeal

    drexappeal Extreme Android User
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    I personally felt like the phone was too big. It's paper thin, but overall just didn't feel comfortable holding, despite it being so thin. Other than that, the thinness and screen are awesome.

    Not compared to the EPIC 4G (SGS 1) or the EVO 4G. I personally feel like any case on any phone makes it bulky. Because of that, I've abandoned using cases and just use skins.

    FAQ's are always helpful to get information. This was resolved VERY soon after the photon was released with an APK file that was made by someone that posted on the Motorola forum
    https://sites.google.com/site/enforcedstreamsilencer/
    This silences both the rear and front facing camera.

    Yes, you can. It's in the manual. The kickstand can be used on either side, while charging. You don't need to use it upright. Just flip the phone to be used on the other side, and the kickstand is strong enough to stay open and hold the phone up with the charging port coming out of the top. Check out the FAQ's at the top of the Photon forum and you'll see MANY of those answers have already been given:
    http://androidforums.com/motorola-photon-4g/388756-photon-4g-tips-faqs.html
     
  12. drexappeal

    drexappeal Extreme Android User
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    Quite honestly, for any former Samsung owner, I can understand the hesitation. The OP did mention that he or she was a former Epic 4G owner. So, with that experience alone, I could understand the hesitation.

    Samsung has always made great products, especially on spec, but the mobile support history is absolutely awful. On top of that, Samsung phones have also had a reputation of GPS and radio signal issues w/ regards to phone connectivity. Keep in mind, that's just based on overall reputation. That doesn't necessarily mean that the ET4G is going to be the same as all past Samsung products. It remains to be seen how the ET4G is supported by Samsung. If it has as many as delays for support as in the past, that's unfortunate and a big reason I still won't consider another Samsung phone until they change up the reputation. If they get better and on par with HTC and Motorola, then I may consider future Samsung's.
     
  13. nemesys06

    nemesys06 Well-Known Member
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    I have owned quite a few samsung devices in the past. the instinct, behold2, vibrant (tmobile galaxy s), and now the e4gt. Plus a few others before those. I have known of all the issues, however I had faith in samsung considering that price they are taking in this phone (galaxy s2 in general). their phones have had some short comings but in the end they still create some of the best phones on the market. Especially for multi media. When I had the tmobile g2x, I missed the music player on my galaxy s. If you are that curious about the two devices and you know you want one of them, then you should go to best buy and get the phone. They offer a 30 grace period with hardware. 14 days before you are locked I'm the new contract but 30 to exchange the hardware.
     
  14. drexappeal

    drexappeal Extreme Android User
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    Fyi-45 day return for silver best buy rewards
     
  15. DoYouMoto

    DoYouMoto Newbie
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    The guys over at XDA cracked the bootloader the third day after the photon was released so thats incorrect and whoever told you or wherever you got the idea that the photon is unrootable??? is complete garbage because it is rootable like all other android phones being that it is linux as well and ive rooted mine so i know its being done.....not being mean or rude just letting you know mate :)
     
  16. lite blue

    lite blue Well-Known Member
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    really? i think i posted that 2 months ago, it was a rumor before the photon came out. glad it was wrong

    now can the photon or galaxy s 2 join a citrix vpn with a group name? if not i hope it is included in ice cream sandwich
     
  17. apinkel

    apinkel Android Enthusiast
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    As with most motorola phones the bootloader is signed and encrypted. The phone can be rooted, you can load custom roms, themes, de-bloat, etc, but you can't change the kernel (because the bootloader starts the kernel and the only kernel the bootloader will work with is the stock kernel).

    When I had my droid X I didn't find it to be much of a limitation but it does bother some people.
     
    twospirits likes this.
  18. BigHouseFan

    BigHouseFan Newbie
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    I had one and returned it on the last day of my 2 week trial period for that very reason, the reception and/or radio signal was very weak (3G/4G,WiFi), in my office I couldn't EVER get into the market, get online etc., consistently. Traded it in for the Photon and the Photon has no problem what so ever. I had an EVO before this upgrade and the EVO never waivered also. My office is in a huge brick and steel building, outside though the ET4G was a beast, but inside a building, no way, and since I spend 8+ hrs a day, 5 days a week in that building, wasn't going to work for me
     
  19. charliehorse

    charliehorse Newbie
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    My wife and I just switched to Sprint and got new phones. I got the Galaxy S2 and she got the Photon. We got the different phones because we were torn on the 2 and wanted to compare them, and then take advantage of exchanging them within 14 days if we needed to. We were originally looking at the EVO 3D and the iphone 4s too.

    So far, the phones are very comparable. I think I might switch to the Photon though. Here is my review (btw, I am new to android and sprint, I had tmobile blackberries for a while).

    Galaxy S2
    Pros (when compared to Photon) - The camera is better. The screen is "prettier". It has a wow factor when people see it. The interface is a little better looking (ie, the clock, and icons just look cooler than the photon - but I think you can customize the photon).

    Cons (when compared to Photon) - The screen colors are also a little "fake". Once the wow factor is gone, people poke fun at the huge screen and size (they call it a tablet or an ipad...ha). It feels cheap. It is uncomfortable to hold in your hand while talking, texting, and browsing.

    I also put the phones side by side and did a few browser searches for various sites and the photon was faster every time. sometimes by only 1 or 2 seconds, but sometimes by about 10 seconds+.

    Also, when we've been out and about, the photon shows up as having a few bars more than the G2 SOMEtimes...

    So bottom line, the G2 is a cool looking, fast, awesome phone with a nice camera. The photon is a fast, cool looking phone with great reception and a durable build. The camera on the photon sucks (but you can quickly edit them to look okay). It really is a toss up on these phones, the G2 is cooler, the photon works a bit better, but they are very similar.

    Based firstly on the way they feel in my hand, and then secondly on the reception/speed, I will likely be returning my G2 for the photon. If it wasn't for the G2 having a better camera, I already would have changed them out.

    one last thing - they make an otterbox for the photon (best case for ME by far) and they do not for the Sprint G2....

    I'll reply if I change them out and I will post pictures from both cameras to show you what I'm talking about......
     
  20. Exit24

    Exit24 Member
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    I'm stuck between the Photon and the Galaxy S2 also. I have heard so many LOS problems with the S2, and on top of that I read that the S2 has a big problem playing games. How do you like the dual LED flash on the Photon?
     
  21. charliehorse

    charliehorse Newbie
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    After further review between the 2, the Galaxy isn't slower than the Photon. I would say they're equal and one of them always seems to want to go faster.

    I haven't had a problem with the games, but I haven't connected to any online games yet.

    The photon takes better pics with the flash than it does without, but I'm not really sure why the dual flash is special. Either way, the pics are always worse than the Galaxy.
     
  22. charliehorse

    charliehorse Newbie
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    Also, the photon is starting to experience some problems....

    The calls go mute (as I've read here) and the phone says "not connected to the internet" SOMEtimes when trying to search, even though there are 4-5bars of connection. Niether of these are game changers for me.

    Bottom line - these phones are pretty much the same.
    Galaxy has a better camera
    Photon feels better in your hand
     
  23. charliehorse

    charliehorse Newbie
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    What does this mean? :)
     
  24. drexappeal

    drexappeal Extreme Android User
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    Hmmm...mute call issue was resolved after the 1st update that was pushed to the phone. Did you double check to see if there are updates that need to be performed on your Photon?
     
  25. TheBundo

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    LOS = loss of service (signal)
     

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