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Trying out a Droid Charge

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by tuanster1119, May 20, 2011.

  1. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    So I've been tasked with testing out a Droid Charge at work. During my week trial, I have used Google Voice to forward my calls to the Charge and I've basically shut down my TB for a week. The purpose of this post is just to post my personal experiences from comparing both devices for anyone who may be considering this switch. If you're happy with your TB, then I'm happy for you and I'm not here to say you're an idiot or anything like that. Feel free to ask any questions or post a test you'd like for me to run.

    Initial impressions so far:
    Screen - The screen is gorgeous! No questions about it, this screen blows the TB's screen away. I was always skeptical about how much better the screen could be, from reviews, but it really is superior.

    Battery life - After 2 days of usage, it's obvious that HTC really screwed up the battery life on the Thunderbolt. I don't think that's news to anybody here. I have tried everything on my TB to extend the battery, short of turning my phone into a hunch-backed monster. I'm running both phones with Gmail and Exchange email set to push. I sync facebook, google reader and twitter. I've also tried the HTC Express 1700mah batteries. It's really refreshing to have a phone that doesn't suck down the battery or force me to turn off all of the useful features on the phone.

    Touchwiz - It's really not as bad as everyone says. Sense has better widgets and more features but I find it much smoother than Blur (on a DroidX). I ended up replacing it with Launcher Pro and I'm very happy, everything runs smoothly but if I was stuck with Touchwiz I wouldn't complain.

    Browser - The browser on this phone is completely unacceptable. After going to a couple pages and having it basically freeze on me, I installed Dolphin HD and I'm happy. I would prefer a working stock browser, but this is a work-around.

    Overall, if I could swap this phone for my Thunderbolt I would. The phone is smooth and I haven't noticed some of the slowdowns I've seen on my TB. For example, when playing Hex Defense I the Charge just chugs along compared to the TB. For me, the Charge just feels like a more complete experience. At this point, I'm seriously considering the possibility of selling my TB to purchase a Charge. I'll report back with anymore issues or observations.

    jroc and jvbaseball like this.

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  2. makerofdrums

    makerofdrums Newbie

    How's the 4g /3G switch? Does it lag like the TB (data hanging)?
  3. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I live in the Washington, DC area and get really great LTE coverage. I haven't experienced any switching yet but I'll keep an eye out for it. I'm heading into the city tonight so we'll see.
  4. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Quick update: GPS seems to be quick and accurate. As a user of Foursquare, I can appreciate this.
  5. JEcht

    JEcht Member

    Hate to get off topic but what is foursquare?
  6. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    It's a check-in app. I've also noticed that when I open up my Facebook notifications they update properly. On my TB, the Facebook notifications would not update unless I hit the refresh button.
  7. AustinTech

    AustinTech Android Enthusiast

    What do you think about the physical buttons on the phone? Are they easy to press? How about the look of the device?
  8. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    The physical buttons are nice. They're much easier to press and more responsive than the DroidX's physical buttons. Initially I found myself not applying enough pressure, to the buttons, since I was used to the TB, but I've gotten used to it. It was a minor adjustment.

    As for the looks, it looks much better than it does in the pictures. The phone feels much thinner throughout and the only part where it is as think as the TB is the hump at the bottom. In your hand, the bump is out of the way. It is not as dramatic, of a bump, as the Droid X but it's similar in that the bump stays out of the way and is not noticeable. As for weight and the plastic construction, it definitely feels lighter than the TB and doesn't feel as sturdy. I would rather take my chances with the TB if I was asked which phone I would rather drop. While the TB feels tough enough to use naked, I would definitely recommend a case with this phone, just for peace of mind.
  9. Viper505

    Viper505 Newbie

    Regarding battery life on the TB, have you confirmed the BlockBuster app is not affecting the battery. I am referring to the PVMtpServiceStart app that sucks the life out of TB in 3-4 hours. Anytime I power off or restart the phone I must go into applications and kill this app.
  10. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Yup I've killed this process. Like I said, I can get sporadic battery life out of the TB. Some days I'll get 14, some days 10, some days 5. More often than not though, I tend to get about 5-10 which, in my book, is unacceptable.
  11. Gravytrain

    Gravytrain Android Enthusiast

    The battery life is very sporadic... I wonder what the reason is for this?
  12. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I don't really know and quite frankly, I've given up trying to figure it out. I never had any issues with my DroidX or my wife's Incredible.
  13. Gravytrain

    Gravytrain Android Enthusiast

    I really really hope that gingerbread will resolve most of these issues.....
  14. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I hope so too. A poster in the Charge forums made a very good point. A lot of the Charger's issues are software related while mosy of the TB's problems are hardware relates. I would have more confidence in software issues getting fixed rather than hardware.
  15. Gravytrain

    Gravytrain Android Enthusiast

    What hardware issues do you speak of with the tb? I would say its majority software as well.
  16. WizeGuyDezignz

    WizeGuyDezignz Android Expert

    I am asking the same question. What hardware issues?

    If someone thinks a hardware issue is causing the battery life problems, then they are sadly mistaken.
  17. Gravytrain

    Gravytrain Android Enthusiast

    If it was a hardware issue, I would've definitely traded in for charge or X2, but I'm pretty sure its all software related. But I have been wrong before....
  18. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Has there been any proof one way or the other? I'm asking seriously, not as a smart-ass reply. :)
  19. droidSPARX

    droidSPARX Well-Known Member

    thanks for the write up.
    I'm on DX and considering getting either either one.
    But I'm leaning towards Charge because of the screen and battery.
  20. jcnyc

    jcnyc Android Enthusiast

    I've had the bolt for 2 months now and from what I've observed, it could be both. First of all I'm on a 1700 mah battery and I probably use my phone moderately at best. I can usually judge the battery drainage of my phone by how hot the phone is. When it really heats up and is hot to the touch, you know your battery will be get owned in a matter of hours. Even if it's warm, battery life will be drained faster. If it stays cold, battery life is pristine and will last me the day.

    Usually, when the phone heats up, something is causing it and using watchdog, I can usually find what process is using up processing and will end up killing it. Other times, watchdog shows me nothing and it's just hot for no reason. At this point, you either reboot your phone or just let it run its course and hope it'll cool down within an hr (at which point, battery life will be pwned). When I am using my phone heavily, the phone will heat up without fail which is expected. However, the perplexing issue is there will be times where I'm not doing anything at all (not using my phone whatsoever) and the phone will heat up.

    Whether this is bad software on HTC's part or perhaps the 1 ghz singlre core processor not being able to handle sense, 4g, froyo, whatever, that is a question to be answered. Either way, I've realized that if the phone gets really warm, it's bad.
  21. nateap87

    nateap87 Android Enthusiast

    ^^^i honestly usually get decent battery life. this is mainly due to the fact that i don't use check my facebook as often as i used to. i'd root my tbolt and run a vanilla rom if i could just keep my tbolt's dialer :(
  22. rcyphermd

    rcyphermd Android Expert

    I switched from the TB to the charge last week. Love it. GREAT battery life, gorgeous screen and I love the light weight. No more brick in my pocket. The vibrant screen is something to see. And I can enjoy all it's features without turning things off to save the battery.
  23. elements

    elements Member

    I agree with your heating up scenario. Mine gets not any time I use 4g even when cool I need to charge 3 times a day. The honey moon is starting to fade. There are a lot of cool things about this phone but it's a constant pain in the ass. The only time my battery lasts is when I barely use it. I'm a heavy user. I love out but it's not working for me when I need it to
  24. tuanster1119

    tuanster1119 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    This is precisely my experience with the tb. It's a nice phone but it feels like you're constantly struggling with it if you want to use the features. I like a robust phone that you don't have to always have to monitor and switch things on and off with. I had this with the Droid X. I had this with my iphone 3gs The two HTC phones I've had have been a hassle. I didn't buy an LTE phone just to turn the feature doff 90% of the time.

    Anyways some more tidbits about the Charge... 4g/3G switching seems to be faster and smoother than the Thunderbolt. There were times where my tb showed a connection but I cannot get any connectivity. I haven't seen that on the Charge. I've also noticed that the battery seems to charge faster while the phone is plugged in. This is just an observation and I haven't run any actual tests to prove it scientifically.
  25. AustinTech

    AustinTech Android Enthusiast

    How would someone just switch phones without paying through the nose? I don't see this as an option for anyone on a budget.

HTC Thunderbolt Forum

The HTC Thunderbolt release date was March 2011. Features and Specs include a 4.3" inch screen, 8MP camera, 768GB RAM, Snapdragon S2 processor, and 1400mAh battery.

March 2011
Release Date

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