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General X2 vs Charge, my conclusions

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by Zohar127, May 28, 2011.

  1. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    Hi everyone! First post here after doing a lot of research on android devices. I'm completely new to the smartphone world and have been on the hunt for what device I will upgrade to. After a lot of digging, reading reviews, browsing forums, and watching youtube videos, I think I've come to a conclusion.

    At first I was a dead ringer for the Droid X2. That is, until the Droid Charge caught my eye. Like many people I found myself torn between the two similar devices. I decided that the only way I could make an informed choice between the two devices was to learn as much about them as I could and come up with a quantitative analysis between the two. That is exactly what I did.

    You can view this analysis two ways:

    1.) Because I've never owned a smartphone or an Android device before you can consider my opinion completely unbiased.

    2.) Because I've never owned a smartphone or Android device before you can consider my opinion completely uninformed and useless.

    Hopefully the hours of research I've done on each device have made option number 2 less of a worry.

    My ultimate goal is to hopefully help some of the people who are in the same boat as I am in. I've seen several posts on this forum comparing the two phones, so hopefully the information I provide here, even without the scores, will solve problems for people.

    My scoring scale: I used a 5 point system that is designed to represent my own personal research of the given category. The information I based these scores on comes from a myriad of reviews and forum posts and youtube videos I found over the last couple of days on both devices. My hands-on time of each device winds down to a few minutes of screwing around in the local VZW store, so I had to rely mostly on the information I could glean from sites such as this, infosyncworld and Engadget. I tried to get as much varying opinion as possible, as to not end up with a slanted score. I hope I've come up with a fair set of numbers. I don't see anything in my research that stands out as being overtly wrong, but feel free to point it out for me if you see anything!

    So... uh... here it is!

    [​IMG]


    At the end of the day, I feel like the DX2 is a solid, time-tested device that leaves out just a little bit too much in order to hit that price point and still fit the nifty new Tegra2. Overheating issues and the RAM issue are a little off-putting to me. I don't want to end up being an early adopter of all the problems Motorola hasn't ironed out yet.

    The Droid Charge is probably overpriced, but the inclusion of 4G and a pre-installed 32GB microSD card are big pluses. Combined with a top-of-the-line camera and screen the Charge almost justifies it's price tag. If I didn't have a $50 upgrade discount and couldn't get another $50 knocked off by Amazon I would probably go for the X2. Unfortunately, any phone with the letters "4G" attached to it is going to run the consumer a price premium. Normally, I'd shy away from a product like this, but what the phone lacks in horsepower it makes up for in other areas.

    That said, at a final price to me of $199 and the knowledge that the 4G network will be enabled in my area next month, the Charge is probably going to be the one I get. If software updates solve the performance issues, this phone will be a very solid device for the price I'm getting it for.
     

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  2. Halcyon

    Halcyon Well-Known Member
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    Nice write up.... now go get your Charge ;)
     
  3. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    Thanks Halcyon. I plan on hitting the VZW store again and spending a serious amount of time messing with both devices again before I make my final choice. I'm also going to try and dig more for the 4G rollout plan for my area. Local business papers are saying June. Need to have that confirmed before I decide.

    Gotta choose quick though! Upgrade time is the first week of June and the unlimited plan is gonna be gone very soon. I -do not- wanna miss out on that gravy train.
     
  4. jinwons

    jinwons Android Expert
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    Nice research and analysis of two phones. Indeed DX2 seems to suffer some heating, memory problem. Now that Revolution came to 4G line up, it will be interesting to do this kind of comparison for Charge vs. Revolution. Revolution seems like a very solid phone.
     
  5. carlosp

    carlosp Newbie
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    Great material! Somewhere in this post i found some info about the crazy memorial day sale to be taking place at Amazon on Monday so this might just make your decision more of a "no brainer". I am also pleased to tell you many of the performance issues have almost been eliminated by using LauncherPro as a home replacement and Dolphin HD browser insteaf of the stock, these are two applications that have made my experience with the Charge very pleasant; i love this phone and have not looked back ever since the first day i laid my hands on it. Enjoy your new phone!!!
     
  6. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    Thanks guys! Yeah as it turns out Verizon has officially announced that 4G is coming to my county on June 16th. My upgrade is on the 5th, so unfortunately I will probably miss out on the amazing Memorial Day sale on Amazon. Really sucks, that one. Hopefully they are still offering it for $199 when my time comes to upgrade.
     
  7. jinwons

    jinwons Android Expert
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    I just read through your review link. Nicely written with detailed list of comparison. Overall you seem to prefer Charge and a bit biased against DX2 though. The issue that part of RAM is eaten by GPU also applies to Charge, not just DX2. It's probably more issue in DX2 though as its dual core generates more heat with small available RAM than Charge would.
     
  8. Dark Jedi

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    Research never replaces real world hands on. It comes down to personal preference and not what others think.
     
  9. jinwons

    jinwons Android Expert
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    Zahar127, did you take into account signal reception in your research? I forgot to mention it after reading. I only see call quality that you rated 5 for DX2, 3 for Charge. If you meant only voice call quality, I think Charge should be given 4 at least.
     
  10. Dark Jedi

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    Then come up with your own review chart. Those are what he thought they should be and not what you think they should be for him to use.
     
  11. jinwons

    jinwons Android Expert
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    I didn't mean to argue with his chart. Just asked for some clarification. :rolleyes:
     
  12. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    Thanks Jinwons. Yeah I'm probably leaning a little in favor of the Charge but that's mostly because it's more fully featured.

    I just spent about 40 minutes at the Verizon store in town and got plenty of hands on time with both units. First I used the X2 and was pretty impressed with it. The screen is nice and everything was nice and zippy. The browser was fast but not without slight choppiness and I liked the clean appearance of motoblur. The device itself was sleek, but a little unimaginative and boring. It's not something I feel like I could whip out and impress anyone with. I downloaded the system panel app and confirmed that something was off with the RAM. It stated the phone at 41mb of RAM free, which amounted to 10%. That means the phone has somwhere around 410mb of free RAM. The camera was alright and seemed to take nice pictures, but I didn't like the interface.

    I then moved over to the Charge and the first thing I did was swipe across the home screens and use the browser to view a couple of websites. Surprise to no one, but yes, it was a tad choppy when swiping across home screens and appreciably worse than the X2 in the Browser. Taking Phandroid's advice I went in and switched plug-in mode to "on demand" this immediately resulted in a very fast and smooth browser experience. I tried the Dolphin HD browser app but it didn't seem much faster than the stock browser app.

    The hardware in the Charge is more than capable of providing a smooth and lag free experience on other phones, so this is purely software, and very saddening. I reached over to the HTC Thunderbolt sitting nearby and it had none of these issues despite having a very similar hardware configuration. Hopefully these issues can be solved in future updates. Until then I may try using LPP if I get a Charge. App loading and moving around menus was fine. I never felt like I was waiting for anything to happen.

    As far as the samsung UI goes, I didn't really have any problem with it. It looked nice and functioned just fine. The messaging interface seemed to be pretty decent but I didn't get a lot of time with it. I really liked the drag down notification bar. I haven't owned an android device before, but as far as I could tell, the interface is fine. If TouchWiz is the cause of the lag issues though, I'd be happy to see it go. As far as the physical design goes, I really liked it even more in person. It looked and felt modern and cool.

    The camera on the Charge has a much better interface and took vastly superior pictures to the X2. It was without comparison. I didn't get a chance to check the system panel app on the Charge, but I really wish I had. I was in the process of downloading it when the (very friendly) representative came over and started talking to me. Maybe a Charge owner can come in and give some info with the System Panel app.

    I intentionally left the screen comparisons for last because that's a major difference here. When I picked up the X2 I went on a website and zoomed in on text and put the phone right in front of my face. It felt like my eyes were being tickled. Don't really know how to describe it. The high resolution was good and as far as I could tell, it seemed like a decent screen.

    When I went over to the charge I immediately noticed the screen had exceptionally vibrant colors and blacks that were deep and impenetrable. I did the same close up test and the screen left my eyes comfortable and relaxed. Even with the device 2 inches from my (20/15) eyes, I had a hard time picking out pixels or any aliasing. It was far better at viewing text and the colors were just amazing.

    After messing around with the Charge for about 20 minutes I went back to the X2 and it was almost staggering how much worse the X2 screen looked by comparison. That Super AMOLED+ screen on the Charge really is that much better. I don't care about the slightly higher resolution on the X2. The Charge screen was a generational leap ahead of the X2.

    Finally, I loaded the same handful of websites on both phones and I didn't notice any difference in internet speeds. Sorry to say, but I felt both phones were pretty slow. I loaded Phandroid and Giantbomb and both sites loaded about 80% pretty quick but the last 20% were struggling to get there. Videos on Giantbomb were slow to load on both devices. 4G on the Charge is going to blow the X2's 3G speed out of the water.

    My trip brought me to the conclusion that the Charge is the phone for me. It's easy to get mired down in the specs and comparisons of all the minutia, but it really takes a hands on experience to choose. With a detailed hands-on comparison of both devices I found the Charge to be the all around better built and better featured device. The Droid X2 is a great device too, but doesn't bring enough to the table to win my money.
     
    YankeeDudeL likes this.
  13. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    No problem man. I got my info on the reception from a few user reviews on youtube and on some e-tail store sites. I noticed a common complaint was that the Charge got lower reception than other phones, even when side by side. Combined with the professional reviews that state the call quality is average at best, I decided to give that category a 3. A 3 just means it's unremarkable. It's not bad, but nothing special. I don't give much weight to user reviews, but the average call quality was a common thread in pro reviews, so I figured the 3 was a fair mark.

    The X2 got a 5 because most reviews state the device has excellent call quality and I haven't found a single complaint about it's signal strength.
     
  14. jinwons

    jinwons Android Expert
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    Thanks for nice second review! Now I can understand your conclusion better. Hope you enjoy Charge.

    As for Dolphin HD vs stock browser, the browsing speed is not so different from my experience. But Dolphin offers more features, settings and according to other Charge users it solves the lag, choppiness problem in zooming, scrolling pages. Glad that you found setting plug-in to "on demand" also works fine.

    I'm probably getting LG Revolution soon. But Charge is also looking like decent 4G phone and I'm sure that 2.3 Gingerbread will solve most of UI lag problem when it hits Charge.
     
  15. jphila1v6r

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    Zohar. Call verizon *611. Tell them you'd like to change your upgrade date to today instead of the 5th. You'll keep getting them telling you they can't. Say thank you and call back in 5 minutes. I did this three times, and on the third the customer service person was able to change my upgrade date from the 5th to today. So if amazon does indeed do the big sale on monday, I'm able to participate. You just have to keep calling until you get someone who says yes. I promise this works, I just did it today. My upgrade was also for june 5th. Now it says upgrade available. And to make sure, I went to amazon and check my number eligibility and it said I was eligible. Woo hoo.
     
  16. Zohar127

    Zohar127 Member
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    Wow thanks JP. I'm gonna give that a try!
     
  17. jphila1v6r

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    Oh, and cross your fingers that upgrades can get the free phones too :p
     
  18. Startir

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    FYI...
    I am pretty impatient when it comes to waiting for things to be shipped..
    I went to Best Buy yesterday, pulled up WalMart on my Thunderbolt (that I was exchanging) and showed them that Walmart had the Charge for $199. They honored it!
    Just sayin....
     
  19. ellover009

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    What you were seeingwith your eyes was really the x2 pentile screen that gave it a less desirable iq. The screen also ghost a bit and edges are too sharp. What samsung needs now on their amoled plus screens is throw in more resolution to finish putting retina display in it's place.
     
  20. Steven58

    Steven58 Reformed PH
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    I guess they're still making 3g phones because most of the country doesn't have 4g, but that's the way we're going. My next phone will be LTE.
     
  21. stueycaster

    stueycaster Well-Known Member
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    4g is really nice. Indianapolis had it all Memorial Day weekend. I love my Charge. Of course I live on the fringe of the Indianapolis airport. But it used to switch between 3 & 4g. Lately it's been steadily on 4g. Man has that been nice.
     

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