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What's next for those coming up on their 2yr contracts?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by wrench, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    You might want to wait for the Sprint HTC EVO 4G LTE. You could also just go with the Sprint Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

    They are both LTE equipped handsets, so you will be at the forefront of 4G technology when Sprint flips the switch on LTE later this year. The Sprint HTC EVO 3D and Sprint Samsung Galaxy S II are both great handsets, but they depend on Wi-Max which is dying in a few years.
     


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  2. Lobo89

    Lobo89 Member

    This was a big part of why I chose this phone. :)
     
  3. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    Yes indeed, after doing a lot of research I came to the decision that if my next phone is an Android, it'll be an HTC Evo 4G LTE (ain't that a mouthful). While the SGSIII is impressive, there's just something about the form factor that doesn't appeal to me.

    I had thought about the iPhone 5, as Kitsap did. I have to say, that build quality wise Apple makes a very sexy device. It just looks gorgeous and the fact that the back is mostly aluminum now (instead of a glass panel), I feel a bit better about it. The screen is vibrant and graphics the smoothest around. But... I am still rather ticked off at Apple for the memory price gouging ($100 to go from 16Gb to 32Gb). That's just robbery, pure and simple. Also, the black anodized edging is susceptible to scratches and chipping. And last but not least, it's the "locked down" nature of iOS. I've come to deeply appreciate Android for a number of reasons. The OEM ROM may be suitable for most, but having the option to root and load a variant is just so nice.

    If money was no option, I'd have both. But for now, the iPhone is a "luxury item" that I feel is way over priced for what you get.
     
  4. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    Heh. Well, if you are planning on upgrading in the next few months, then you might as well wait for whatever the NEXT flagship HTC device will be in 2013.

    The Sprint HTC EVO 4G LTE will be approaching half a year old soon enough. I would wait and see what new handsets are released before jumping on "old" hardware.
     
  5. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    I hear you... but I have to say that the Evo 4G LTE is a very capable phone, does everything I want in a phone at the right speeds. And the LTE network has a long way to go before there's a replacement protocol introduced. Plus, the new desirable phones will be $249 or more. An Evo @ $99 is a good thing.

    I think I may be doing it this weekend. While I've thoroughly enjoyed my Hero and its "second life" with custom ROMs, I'm starting to experience noticeable lag in critical things like the dialer and contacts manager. I haven't yet found a ROM that doesn't introduce periodic lag. While the stock OEM ROM had other limitations, there's one thing I have to give it--the dialer never lagged. I have a highly rated Class 6 32Gb SD card installed, which has proven ample fast when copying files to/from, so I don't think it's that with apps loaded on it.
     
  6. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    Good luck to you. I hope you will drop by in this sub-forum once in a while.

    Wow, a 32GB microSD card, huh? I never had anything larger than an 8GB microSD card in my Sprint HTC Hero. I have a 16GB microSD card in my Sprint HTC EVO 3D. Of course, 32GB microSD cards are cheap now.
     
  7. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    ^ Thanks. I actually don't plan on abandoning my Hero. It makes a very viable back-up phone. And when loaded with the right ROM/launcher, it works extremely well considering the relatively anemic processor inside.

    Presently I have an LiGux ROM and Zeam launcher installed. The phone performs admirably now, especially after running the V6 SuperCharger. The developer of V6SC made a nearly "fool proof" menu prompting system to it. All it does is reorganize some of the internal Android configuration options to make things run smoother. And it seems to work.

    The real deal is that Android was built with a number of overly aggressive fail-safes. In time, it has proven that they are more restrictive rather than helpful. And V6SC works around those restrictions to get a little more performance out of the operating system. The great thing is that you can easily roll it all back if it doesn't suit you. And if something somehow goes terribly wrong (which it shouldn't) you can always do a nandroid restore, as this won't be compromised. The HTC Hero is the hardest Android phone to brick.

    About waiting for the next HTC phone, it looks like it'll be the Deluxe. But it's going to be GSM, so not on Sprint. Very nice upgrade to the 4G LTE. Quad core processor over dual core. 2Gb internal RAM, vs. 1Gb. 1920x1080 pixels vs. 1080x720. I expect it'll be sometime in late 2013 when we see a CDMA version.
     
  8. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    Indeed. V6 SuperCharger is a worthy set of scripts. I have used that on my Sprint HTC Hero and B&N Nook Color with CyanogenMod 7.2. Of course, now, my B&N Nook Color is running CyanogenMod 10. It runs pretty great.

    I am not sure what I will do for my next handset. For months I thought that I was 100% on board for the LG Nexus 4. The lack of Sprint support and a few other issues that I have heard about has left me with second thoughts. I am not completely opposed to switching to a GSM carrier to use the LG Nexus 4, but the 16GB of storage, lack of LTE, thermal throttling, and glass back cracking is leaving me tepid on that handset now. I am beginning to be more interested in the Samsung Galaxy S IV. Those handsets always have great developer support. Either way, I have several months until my upgrade is due, so I am just going to keep my ear to the ground and decide when the time comes. I might just wait a bit longer and get the "Nexus 5" next autumn. Who knows. We shall see.
     
  9. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    Honestly, I didn't like the Samsung Galaxy S2. The S3 is better, certainly award winning on specifications, but I'm not all that keen on the shape. It feels "plasticky". Maybe the S4 will be a step up.

    I've long felt that GSM makes more sense than CDMA. I should be able to take out my SIM card and put it in any GSM capable phone to use it. But CDMA seems to have better performance results overall. If I was an international traveler, then I'd definitely go GSM. So far I've been happy with Sprint. The pricing is more advantageous than the competition overall, and I like how anytime minutes start at 7pm instead of 9pm (I make a lot of calls in the 6pm-9pm range). I picked up a free bonus 300 anytime min/mo added onto my plan earlier this year, too. Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T aren't very forthcoming with perks. These days Sprint seldom offers any, but something is better than nothing.
     
  10. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    Hmmmm... there's another answer to contract renewal. TING!

    And that's not a sound, but a cellular provider. They are partnered with Sprint, so if you're happy with Sprint service but not their prices then there's Ting.

    I've done some investigating of this service and it's quite attractive. Unfortunately there's a big cost on LTE phones upfront, but... the savings is in the long run. If you're one of those people who likes the freedom of unlimited calling/text/data, but find that you really don't push it, then Ting may be for you.

    With an employer discount, I'm paying $70/month. Based on my average use, I'd be paying $38/month with Ting. So, with the full retail phone price, I have only a marginal savings for the first year. The next year the savings are huge. I'm really thinking seriously about joining it. Unfortunately, the old HTC Hero can't be used. But it's still a useful WiFi device.
     
  11. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    The Samsung Galaxy S II hardware is kind of plasticky and so is the Samsung Galaxy S III, I agree. One of my friends has the former and another has the latter. They are still well put together phones. It is not a huge issue for me because I usually put TPU cases on my devices anyway.

    The only issue that the friend with the Samsung Galaxy S II has had is that the GPS is slow to lock on and it does not maintain lock very well at times. Ever since he went to Android 4.0 and then Android 4.1, it has been pretty bad, and so has the battery drain. I keep telling him to try AOSP ROMs, like CyanogenMod 9 or CyanogenMod 10, but he likes TouchWiz, I guess. That is his choice and TouchWiz is not terrible as it once was. My other friend, the one with the Samsung Galaxy S III, recently switched to CyanogenMod 10 and he likes it a lot. If I get a Samsung Galaxy S IV, I would most likely go to stock AOSP ROMs pretty fast, and then try newer builds of TouchWiz as they come along.
     
  12. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    ^ I usually wrap my phones in a TPU case as well, but I sometimes let them ride naked like when wearing a suit (so that the phone has a slimmer profile).

    I think I'd probably be happy with the SGSIII if I didn't get the HTC EVO 4G LTE, but I prefer the shape and size of the EVO. And the kick stand would be very useful for me. Looks like it would be easy to make a socket mounting for it in my car, for when it's doing GPS duty. In any case, I'd give the latest Android ROM and Sense a good test run and see how it pans out before going custom.

    I just got a spare HTC Hero the other day ($21 shipped) and it was very interesting to do a side-by-side comparison with my rooted and custom ROM'ed Hero. Sense even on 2.1 is very nice, and most apparent when scrolling icons (i.e. app drawer). It's just smoother. But on the downside it lacks many customized options, which I've found makes it much more compelling to go custom. I may do a video comparison and upload it to YouTube.
     
  13. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    I would like to see your comparison video, if you do that. I always found that HTC Sense on Android 2.1 for the Sprint HTC Hero was smooth too. I always had this feeling that the HTC web browser was hardware accelerated. Pinch to zoom and scrolling is so smooth in it.

    Where did you get your spare handset? I have thought about picking up another one on the cheap as a spare in case mine ever goes kaput. Let me know. Thanks.
     
  14. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    ^ Good, a little inspiration for me to do it. Unfortunately I don't get a strong WiFi signal on my Hero phones, so browser demonstrations won't be worthwhile. But yes, it's really quite impressive to see how fluid and snappy Sense is on 2.1. Of course, the major caveat is that you can't have too many apps installed. And some apps will slow it down.

    I bought my handset off of eBay. Hero's are for sale up there every day. Many of them suffer the typical wear problems, like silver finish on the bezel/buttons and nicks along the casing edges. But some show up in good cosmetic condition. Prices are all over the place. I've seen them go for as cheaply as $12 where functional but cosmetically challenged, and $90 for new-in-box. I got a terrific deal on mine, because the seller posted terrible photos of a smudged screen (he just hadn't cleaned it). Just a few minor nicks and no bezel wear to speak of. MEID checked out A-OK with Sprint. I don't plan on activating it, because doing so will pop me into the extra $10/mo bracket (ANY smart phone change will do that). It'll be an emergency backup, but also serve as a desktop weather/time display instrument.
     
  15. KitsapAndroid

    KitsapAndroid Android Enthusiast

    My biggest issue with Sense on 2.1 was the absolutely HORRIBLE dialer lag. The only other issue I really had with it was KB lag while in landscape mode. Otherwise, Sense in 2.1 wasn't bad. Of course, once I had CM 7 on there, I never touched Sense again.
     
  16. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    I think they managed to fix that dialer lag issue in a minor OTA towards the end of its life. But yeah, the dialer lag was definitely there after the Android 2.1 with HTC Sense update.

    Of course, by then, I was using CyanogenMod 6 or CyanogenMod 7.x. The keyboard lag was mitigated by turning off haptic feedback, but dang it, I liked haptic feedback, so I left it on.
     
  17. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    Yeah I think you're right, that the dialer lag in Sense was pretty much neutralized by 2.31.651.7. I use the Go Dialer EX (part of Contacts EX), which works fast when its in memory. First load after reboot can be a little painful at times.

    Well, I may be leaving Sprint soon. I've been interacting with folks in the Ting (MVNO on Sprint) community and they're a good bunch of people. The HTC Hero has now been added to their white list of existing Sprint phones that can be ported over. Thus, you don't need to buy a new phone. The rates are structured in a way that are ideal for low or sporadic usage customers. You can pay a little more if you use more services one month, then enjoy a discount in another month where you usage is less than usual. Rates are adjusted across three separate tiers: voice, sms, and data. I simply love the fact that there's no contract to worry about.
     
  18. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    Yeah, Ting is intriguing. I was looking over their rates a couple of days ago.

    I am locked into Sprint for a few more months. By then, hopefully new handsets like the Samsung Galaxy S IV, or a Sprint LG Nexus 4, will arrive. No, I will not hold my breath on the latter handset. Then again, I might just jump ship to an MVNO and grab an unlocked LG Nexus 4. I have a lot of options to consider and more will open up as time moves forward and it gets closer to my upgrade. Until then, I will keep my ear to the ground and, hey, it would be nice if Sprint finally deployed LTE in my area.
     
  19. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    They're a good bunch of people too, very responsive for both existing customers and prospective ones. I think you have a good plan moving forward after you're done with Sprint. I've been out of contract for almost 2 years now. I was *so close* to getting the LTE at $79, when it popped up on sale @ Amazon Wireless... but I'm very glad I hesitated, rather getting stuck with a 2-year contract again.

    I was going to activate my HTC Hero on Ting, but then I noticed that there's no cost difference if you use 4G. The rate of new phone models is so quick, it doesn't take long for a new one to get pushed down to a lower shelf. So, I just bought a used very good condition Evo 3D (got it rather cheap @$80). I wouldn't mind the HTC Evo 4G LTE, but $455 is a bit steep. They do have a sale going on though, for $404. Samsung 32Gb S3 is $530. Once the LTE network matures, I'll get one. 4G will be enough of an improvement over 3G to satisfy me for another year, I think.
     
  20. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    That is great, xevious. You will love the Sprint HTC EVO 3D. That is my current handset. It is very powerful and well built.

    Getting it for $80.00 is a great deal. I imagine you grabbed that on eBay as well? Support for the Sprint HTC EVO 3D is still going strong. There are quite a few Jelly Bean based ROMs out there now and they run very well.
     
  21. xevious

    xevious Well-Known Member

    Thanks, LBP. :) Yep, I got it off of eBay. I've been playing around with it and it's such a major leap beyond the Hero. No contest. The only thing is that the Hero has an easier form factor, lighter and feels great in the hand due to the contoured casing. But I'd take the Evo 3D's other advantages over it any day. I'll still keep the Hero handy... makes a great backup alarm clock and supplementary clock/weather display.

    What ROM are you running on your Evo 3D? I just put 4EXT on it. Still S-ON though. I plan to try a few ROMs that are compatible with hboot 1.58, after I give ICS Sense a good run through.
     
  22. LBPHeretic

    LBPHeretic Android Expert

    Sorry for the slow reply. The holidays make things hectic. Anyway, I am running Gangnam Style CyanogenMod 10. It is really great and very smooth.

    You can find the thread for it here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1873926 .
     
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HTC Hero Forum

The HTC Hero release date was July 2009. Features and Specs include a 3.2" inch screen, 5MP camera, 288GB RAM, MSM7200A processor, and 1350mAh battery.

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