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smartphone? worth it?

Discussion in 'Electronic Devices' started by BBoost, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. BBoost

    BBoost Empty Pockets

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    i have always been the bare minimum type of guy. especially when it comes to cell phones. i am a bicycle mechanic by profession but im very active and i can be very rough on my EDC items. most smartphones are now touch screen which i feel might be too fragile for my liking? also is spending 200 even with a 2 year agreement worth it just for apps and what not? my "free phone with 2 year agreement" has always sufficed, but my gf just got a droid and i feel i could benefit from having one, just weighing out the pros and cons and price? any comments/ thoughts?

    (Verizon related phones/plans only please)
     
  2. mbs4298

    mbs4298 Loaded Pockets

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    Smart phones are basically small computers now, especially the Droids. If you want a way to always access the internet, email, facebook, etc. they are great devices. I have a Droid X on Verizon and love it. I have games and apps on there but that wasn't the selling point for me. I loved the screen size and speed of it. It handles email really well which is really important for me and has a great calendar and apps to get you organized. Also, the large amount of storage space they have make it a complete multimedia device capable of holding music and movies like an iphone or ipod touch.

    As far as durability, I am rough on phones too and have dropped mine several times and haven't had any problems. The Samsung Fascinate is supposed to have a nearly indestructible screen that a co-worker has tested a few times already. And the insurance on a $500 retail phone is always worth it.

    You just have to see if the convenience, connectivity and multimedia features outweigh the initial cost and monthly data plan.
     
  3. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    Nope! Not worth it.

    At my last job, I had to wait to be relieved. Nothing like finishing up a shift, waiting for my relief to arrive while sitting in the company parking lot at Midnight . . . And then twenty minutes later realizing I'd have to work a double on less than last minute's notice. Didn't happen a lot. But often enough to become a huge pain.

    One night, after a particularly exhausting shift, my relief was a young guy who had become quite reliable in showing up on time. Midnight came and went, and he didn't call for me to pick him up at the outer gate using the company vehicle. I was so angry, I nearly walked off the job! Then 15 minutes later, I get a call. He dropped his so-called "Smart Phone" while walking down the street. The way-too-early-to-use-it-on-a-phone touch screen technology broke. He couldn't use his phone to dial out. He had to hunt down a working payphone in the neighborhood. (Not an easy task).

    Smart phones are socially acceptable toys for teens and adults. That's all they are. Cool gadgets that are the envy of folks who don't have one, yet. They're toys. Look at the apps available for them. Which ones are actually necessary? I've owned basic and advanced cellphones. I've gone back to basic. You can drop a basic phone on the ground, and still use it as a phone. Had that happen several times with my old Motorola due to the crappy belt case that came with the phone. The only "extras" I've ever used on a phone were the alarm clock and (not nearly as often) calculator features.

    Can you imagine an emergency situation in which someone drops their phone? "Oh crap, touch screen broke. I can't call out. I guess I'm going to die out here."

    That's why they're toys. On a real "smart phone," you won't find gimmicky features that compromise the ability to use the phone as just that . . . a phone.
     
  4. mbs4298

    mbs4298 Loaded Pockets

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    You shouldn't let one incident ruin your presprective of a phone. If we all let that happen with phones, computers, etc we would be a culture filled with neo-Luddites. I have had a smart phone die on me and its definitely frustrating not being able to contact anyone but I have also had a regular flip phone screen die on me. And that makes the phone just as unusable. Fewer and fewer people, myself included, remember the amount of phone numbers we used to.

    And yes they are cool toys but they are also great tools for business. While working out of the office or traveling my phone takes the place of my computer in emailing, researching and scheduling.

    Of course smart phones are going to give users trouble. They are like any other piece of technology but I feel that there overall usefullness make them worth it.
     
  5. a175

    a175 Loaded Pockets

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    Go for it.
    I'm currently using a Blackberry Torch on AT&T (my third Blackbery product...switched carriers) and I love it. The touch screen is a nice feature, especially with the multi-finger and "pinch-zoom" abilities when reading small print. It's not a total replacement for a computer, but it's great for supplementing it. BlackberryMessenger is very useful, as it is available all over the world and it doesn't cost anything to communicate with people overseas if they are also BBM users. Getting email on my phone is probably the simplest thing, but I love it.
    The best part about the Torch itself is that it has an actual slide-out QWERTY keyboard. I like the utility of a touch screen, but I hate typing with it...this phone gives the best of both worlds. They are a LOT cheaper now then when I bought mine...but you have to go through AT&T (I think).
     
  6. DaPro

    DaPro Loaded Pockets

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    I couldn't go a day without my droid.......But.....the battery life sucks, taking care of the batteries isn't the problem either.

    The extra expense is an upset, I have a droid and my wife has a lg envtouch, our bill is $130 a month, 1400 minutes shared (I added my little brother and mom on to my plan too, my circle numbers are mine) $30 a month for unlimited data (5gig cap)

    I managed to drop and spiderweb the screen one day, cost me $89 for a replacement after my monthly insurance payments.....******.... but the screen still worked, I was just very careful using it.
    My replacement doesn't have a scratch on it, screen protector, case...careful of which pocket it goes in.

    Now with the negative out of the way, its the best thing I have ever purchased...unless you always stand still, get the droid 2 with the keyboard, I am constantly texting while moving.
     
  7. Wesker

    Wesker Empty Pockets

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    I recently went from a G-Zone Boulder to a Droid 2 and would have to say that its worth it to me. I like being able to check and write e-mails on the go as well as stay update with my friends, and family. I used to sit glued to the computer screen waiting for some e-mails for class but now I can just go and get them via my phone.

    The screen breaking and not being able to dial out isn't a problem. I just push Home twice and tell it to dial where ever it is I want to dial.
     
  8. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    Sorry for not clarifying, it was far more than just one incident. I pointed out the worst one that happened to me, and it wasn't even due to my clumsiness. Wasn't even my phone. And the young man was lucky himself to have found a working payphone. He nearly got fired on the spot! No call, No show (when your shift is due to start) . . . Yeah, he nearly lost his job that night. I ended up having to explain things to our supervisor so that she could go to bat for him against our scumbag account manager. Still, there have been numerous other incidents which caused me to switch back to a basic model. The above incident actually took place after I went back to using basic models.

    I had a Nokia phone that accidentally had its screen break. It was my fault. Couldn't see much on it. Friend of mine who owned a cellphone retail shop at the time offered to replace the screen for me, for free. But he told me it would take 3 weeks to special order a new screen for my Nokia. And for the next 3 weeks, I still used the phone. Couldn't see the numbers I was dialing. Had to dial each one manually without using shortcuts. But the phone still worked for making calls. I write down important numbers. I still memorize the very important numbers.

    Seems those phones are great for folks who originally needed cellphones. But how many folks out there who own a "Smart phone" are actually business men? Nearly everyone I personally know owns one. None of them are business professionals. I've had broken, basic, cellphones that still worked for making phone calls. I can't say that about Smart phones. For someone who only needs a phone for keeping in touch with loved ones, checking in once in a while, or making emergency calls; sorry, but they'd be better off with a basic model. (Battery-life on basic models tends to be better too.)
     
  9. DaPro

    DaPro Loaded Pockets

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    I understand your point.......

    I actually am a businessman, I make a living on my phone. I do cheat with vonage being my main line at the house, but I can't go an hour without my cell ringing off.
    My droid can go the day with me talk talk talk....but the battery is about pooped by 5-6pm, I just pop in another battery and off I go. I do have an old alltel flip phone (very basic) that stays in my drawer incase I mess this up.

    It is very important for me have:
    internet
    google maps is the best program to me
    txt....I text my drivers more then anything
    email....alot of my drivers love that I email their load info and directions to them

    I can do everything with my droid that I can on my pc...but faster typing on the pc. We have electricity fits alot around me, no problem with the droid handy.
    Also using pdanet, I can hook my droid up to my laptop, and have internet anytime.

    The +++'s for me out way the cost

    I just talked my FIL into verizon so he has cell service at his house, he has to drive a mile away to get service with at&t??? Don't know why he even bothers to keep them active, my MIL almost never has it with her, and she keeps it shut off......but guess what...She wanted a droid 2, unlimited text and internet....she got it , but will never use it. When we were looking at phones, she was tapping the screen with her nail repeatedly, the most she does on the computer is check email and play solitaire. So I understand your point of not needing it.
    Two droids (MIL and SIL(16)) and a Samsung Haven (Basic, not even a camera) for my FIL

    [​IMG]
     
  10. mbs4298

    mbs4298 Loaded Pockets

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    Google maps and navigation is awesome on the droid. I am going to stop carrying my Garmin GPS because the phone works so well.

    Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk
     
  11. Aonghus

    Aonghus Loaded Pockets

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    @ Monocrom: Why couldn't you make a call on a smart phone with a broken screen? My iPhone would still make a call using voice recognition unless it was more than the screen broken (entire phone smashed = smart phone OR flip phone no workie)

    @OP It really depends on your daily use as to whether a smart phone would be useful to you or not. How often do you use a computer? How often do you use a phone? What thing will the smart phone do for you that will eleviate using either? How much money are you willing to drop...cause they are expensive to operate.

    In my own personal instance, my smart phone (an iPhone) allows me to check my multiple e-mail accounts more regularly and much more easily than even my computer (which I also lug around all day). That alone has simplified my life. I also use my phone for calls (of course), texting (which is a :censored: on a flip phone), navigation, (light) research, homework (I keep track through a Blackboard App), down time (yes, there are games), making purchases (and comparison shopping), my integrated calendar containing my business (staff, room availability, vacation time, etc.) and family, and the list continues. It's much more simple and quicker to use than a computer for many tasks.

    It really has replaced my computer for most tasks, making me less tied to a desk and more mobile at home and for my work.

    That said, it's damned expensive. The phone wasn't much considering what it does, but the data plan is ridiculous, especially seeing that I don't use that much cellular data, connnecting most often through WiFi at work or home.

    In short, evaluate what you will do with it and if it will make YOUR life easier. If it won't, it's not worth the money and (as monocrom states) is just a symbol or toy.
     
  12. Garland

    Garland Loaded Pockets

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    I bought my wife an Iphone 4 a few weeks ago, and she really likes it. Me, I am happy with my 6 year old Samsung. No camera, no internet, no texting, just phone calls. I have dropped in the toilet once and it has gone through the wash twice. Dried it off good, fired right up-the moisture behind the screen even evaporated. All the faux-chrome is worn off, too-it looks like hell. I always pull it out to impress when people are showing off the lastest greatest thing. But it will hold a charge for a full week without recharging if I turn it off at night, whereas my wife is charging her phone daily.

    I may be a convert one day, but for now the old technology is fine for me.
     
  13. grayman

    grayman Loaded Pockets

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    My iPhone is paid for by my company and I use the he'll out of it. Voice, email, testing, maps/navigation, editing attachments, etc...... I can even remote into Amy of the four computers in my office if needed. Internet access makes research relatively fast and easy. Oh, I'm typing this on my phone while waiting on my truck to be serviced at the dealership.

    I buy Otterbox Defender series cases for my phones. I've dropped them down flights of stairs, in the parking garage, and just generally beat the he'll out of and have no problems.
     
  14. P35

    P35 Loaded Pockets

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    not for me, all I need is a durable cellular TELEPHONE, the rest is just fluff
     
  15. Swoosh

    Swoosh Loaded Pockets

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    Get an iphone and a decent case, as tough as any phone out there, and you'll wonder how you ever managed life before it. Use mine almost hourly, there are endless, endless things you can do with them. Depends on what you are after really, if you want something that works out of the box that you don't need to worry about being hacked get an iphone, if you want to play around with configuration and constantly reboot then try one of the other operating systems. Pro's and Cons for all as with everything.
     
  16. seeker_two

    seeker_two Loaded Pockets

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    +1....I've had my Torch for a week, and I'm finding it indespensible. In addition to the features listed, it can also read documents, spreadsheets, and PowerPoints. And it's taken over for my MP3 player for storing and listening to podcasts...it'll even connect to your car's aux port with a 3.5mm headphone cable. Pretty good camera (with flash) too....
     
  17. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    I couldn't disagree with Monocrom more. I find my smartphone indispensable. I currently have a Motorola Droid and have a Droid X on the way. I have all my contacts and calendar info at my finger tips, all sync'd up with both home and work. I check the weather and current radar. I can buy cool gear on Amazon, eBay or any site with a mobile experience while I'm on the train coming to or from work. If I'm bored, I can watch TV, movies or Youtube EDC gear reviews. I have an scanner app to listen to police, fire and other emergency response traffic. I can listen to free tunes on Pandora. The Droid X has a 8 MB camera and 720p video recording capability, which will save me from having to haul around even more stuff.

    By the way, the Motorola Droid screens have gorilla glass, which is scratch resistant. You notice I didn't say scratch proof. Some idiot will drop his naked phone face first and then complain about the build quality of the device. Get a case - period. Also get a screen protector if you're so inclined (I don't use one). You wouldn't want to drop kick another piece of expensive kit without it being protected so why be stupid with a $500 phone? I just don't get people sometimes.

    Anyway, I use a Seidio Innocase Surface on my Droid. Very low profile, has a nice tactile feel, and a raised surface around the screen so it takes the beating and not the screen if you drop it face first. I've done that a couple of times and the case got beat up but the phone came away relatively unscathed
     
  18. nbmaine2007

    nbmaine2007 Loaded Pockets

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    This is quite comical, watching people be against smart phones because of durability. I have had several different ones over the last decade, never broken one. People are funny.
     
  19. creAtive

    creAtive Loaded Pockets

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    look into a Motorola Defy. its a more rugged smart phone. I don't own one but it may be what OP's looking for. If I had more of a smart phone need I'd probably get it
     
  20. Monocrom

    Monocrom Loaded Pockets

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    @ Aonghus:

    The young man's Smartphone had a touch-screen keypad only. That's what broke. He basically had a phone with no keypad. He couldn't access anything.

    @ TARFU:

    No offense, but you didn't point out a single thing about your Smartphone that makes it better, as a phone, over a basic model. For business men, yes; I can see some advantages over a basic model. However, if I'm stranded somewhere, being able to check current weather and radar . . . Well, I'm outside already. If it's snowing heavily, I don't need a phone to point that out to me.

    And everything you mentioned after "radar," perfect example of what I was talking about in my first post in this topic. You're using your Smartphone as a toy. Stranded in the middle of the road, it's no better than a basic model. Sure, you can enjoy all the extra features on your Smartphone on a daily basis. But those features don't improve its use as a phone.

    @ nbmaine2007:

    When you're done working an exhausting shift, and your relief is no call, no show . . . You have absolutely no clue where he is . . . Possibly have to work a double on less than last minute's notice . . . hungry as Hell . . . Yeah, you wouldn't find it so amusing. Be honest, you really wouldn't.