Smartphone search

Laptops, PDAs, Cell Phones, and all other tech that you carry with you.

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Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:52 am

Can somebody point me to a non-iPhone that's modern and isn't huge.
I have been searching for a few days; either I have a mental block or they don't exist.
Looking for ~4" GSM [single/dual] phone running an OS with minimal problems.
TIA.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:02 am

I left Android and went to Windows Phone 8. Won't turn back, very happy. Simple and stable phones. Currently I have a lumia 620, but will upgrade to a 920. Maybe a little to big for you at 4.5". You can also see the 820 which is a little smaller (4.3"). The 720 is the same size but lower specs. The 925 is a upgrade to the 920, thinner and lighter, but looses some traits like wireless charging.

As for Android phones the list of available phones is huge so I will let the experts talk you through. If I was on the market for one I would probably choose something like the NEXUS 5. But, to big for you I think.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:06 am

If you want a smaller Android phone with no compromises, Sony's Z1 mini (aka Amami or Z1f) should be coming to the States soon. 4.3" 720p screen, Snapdragon 800 SoC, 2 GB RAM, and the same really nice 20 mp camera as its big brother.

Other 4.3" phones to look at that are available now would be Galaxy S4 mini, and the HTC One mini; both are cut down a bit from their larger brethren though.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:11 am

oldDummy wrote:Can somebody point me to a non-iPhone that's modern and isn't huge.
I have been searching for a few days; either I have a mental block or they don't exist.
Looking for ~4" GSM [single/dual] phone running an OS with minimal problems.
TIA.



I would suggest the new Motorola Moto G, which is being lauded as the budget phone to get right now. It costs $179 off-contract and has a 1280x720 4.5-inch IPS display, Snapdragon 400 SoC (quad-core Cortex-A7), 1GB RAM, 8GB or 16GB of storage, and a 5MP camera. Currently ships with Android 4.3 with a guaranteed update to 4.4.

http://www.engadget.com/2013/11/26/moto-g-review/

http://www.theverge.com/2013/12/2/5156546/moto-g-review

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFD0Nm2d ... 83R_U4JriQ <-- MKBHD review

http://www.slashgear.com/moto-g-review-07307962/

http://gizmodo.com/moto-g-review-the-be ... 1479588299
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:48 am

Jon1984 wrote:I left Android and went to Windows Phone 8. Won't turn back, very happy. Simple and stable phones. Currently I have a lumia 620, but will upgrade to a 920. Maybe a little to big for you at 4.5". You can also see the 820 which is a little smaller (4.3"). The 720 is the same size but lower specs. The 925 is a upgrade to the 920, thinner and lighter, but looses some traits like wireless charging.

As for Android phones the list of available phones is huge so I will let the experts talk you through. If I was on the market for one I would probably choose something like the NEXUS 5. But, to big for you I think.


Thanks for your reply.
Yes I currently have a N5 and while it has all bells and whistles it measures 5.5+ inches with a bumper.
Have used the HTC 8X and it might be my fallback option.
Got a replacement Nokia 928 ..it didn't impress me. Felt cheap and clunky.

DreadCthulhu wrote:If you want a smaller Android phone with no compromises, Sony's Z1 mini (aka Amami or Z1f) should be coming to the States soon. 4.3" 720p screen, Snapdragon 800 SoC, 2 GB RAM, and the same really nice 20 mp camera as its big brother.

Other 4.3" phones to look at that are available now would be Galaxy S4 mini, and the HTC One mini; both are cut down a bit from their larger brethren though.


Thanks.
will have to research the Z1 mini.
Love the specs of the HTC one mini but it isn't mini.
S4 mini still not mini but will look into it.


Kurotetsu wrote:
I would suggest the new Motorola Moto G, which is being lauded as the budget phone to get right now. It costs $179 off-contract and has a 1280x720 4.5-inch IPS display, Snapdragon 400 SoC (quad-core Cortex-A7), 1GB RAM, 8GB or 16GB of storage, and a 5MP camera. Currently ships with Android 4.3 with a guaranteed update to 4.4.

http://www.engadget.com/2013/11/26/moto-g-review/

http://www.theverge.com/2013/12/2/5156546/moto-g-review

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFD0Nm2d ... 83R_U4JriQ <-- MKBHD review

http://www.slashgear.com/moto-g-review-07307962/

http://gizmodo.com/moto-g-review-the-be ... 1479588299


Thanks for your input,
The Moto G is something I will research; but again, it is not small.
I do like the specs.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:18 pm

Just what exact dimensions do you consider mini, BTW? If you are looking for something iPhone-esque in size, the S4 mini is less than a mm longer than the iPhone 5s, and 2.7 mm wider. The HTC One mini is of course a bit bigger, due to its stereo front facing speakers. From what I can tell, the Z1 mini will be a tad larger than the S4 mini, roughly 5mm longer and wider than an iPhone. The water & dust proofing adds a bit of bulk to it.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:30 pm

DreadCthulhu wrote:Just what exact dimensions do you consider mini, BTW? If you are looking for something iPhone-esque in size, the S4 mini is less than a mm longer than the iPhone 5s, and 2.7 mm wider. The HTC One mini is of course a bit bigger, due to its stereo front facing speakers. From what I can tell, the Z1 mini will be a tad larger than the S4 mini, roughly 5mm longer and wider than an iPhone. The water & dust proofing adds a bit of bulk to it.

Seconded. I have the S4 mini and it is about the same size as an iPhone. This is 2013 and you won't find a "higher end" phone like the old 2011 Xperia Ray if you are in the Android camp. The world has moved on and you pretty much have to live with it. The rumoured Z1 mini will be larger anyway. What kind of dimensions are you really looking at? If you want to go smaller manufacturers have already relegated those sizes as the low end and you will get crappy hardware on the Android side.

The current "even smaller" phone with a smartphone OS that is not totally crippled is the Nokia Lumia 52x, but do you really want to move to Windows Phone?
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:53 pm

It's not the newest, but the Nexus 4 is still within the boundaries of "not being too big."

That said, I am happy with the 32GB Nexus 5 I have been using for the last few weeks.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:14 pm

DreadCthulhu wrote:Just what exact dimensions do you consider mini, BTW? If you are looking for something iPhone-esque in size, the S4 mini is less than a mm longer than the iPhone 5s, and 2.7 mm wider. The HTC One mini is of course a bit bigger, due to its stereo front facing speakers. From what I can tell, the Z1 mini will be a tad larger than the S4 mini, roughly 5mm longer and wider than an iPhone. The water & dust proofing adds a bit of bulk to it.


Will do research; one mans large is another mans small.

my take: how it feels in the hand.

On closer examination of the specs, looks good.

Again, thanks for your input.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:34 pm

Flying Fox wrote:Seconded. I have the S4 mini and it is about the same size as an iPhone. This is 2013 and you won't find a "higher end" phone like the old 2011 Xperia Ray if you are in the Android camp. The world has moved on and you pretty much have to live with it. The rumoured Z1 mini will be larger anyway. What kind of dimensions are you really looking at? If you want to go smaller manufacturers have already relegated those sizes as the low end and you will get crappy hardware on the Android side.

The current "even smaller" phone with a smartphone OS that is not totally crippled is the Nokia Lumia 52x, but do you really want to move to Windows Phone?



How do you like the S4 mini?
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:53 pm

oldDummy wrote:my take: how it feels in the hand.
That is fine. I am in the same camp. However, after holding so many phones in my hand (dummy and real ones), I have a rough idea on dimensions. For example, I would prefer 60-65mm width and I couldn't care less about length and thickness (no idea why they keep thinning it, if they stay with 8-10mm thickness the battery situation would not have been this bad). However, I have also found that the curve-ness or how tapered the edges are may allow me to accept one that may be >65mm. So what is yours? If you have not nailed down the numbers, you can tell us which previous phones and recent models that you have tried feel good in your hands? From there we can extrapolate.

oldDummy wrote:On closer examination of the specs, looks good.
I would say beware of Sony phones. They have a tendency to disappoint and you do need to know what you are getting yourself into. Since the Z1 mini (official name still be be unveiled) is still in the rumoured stage, we won't know for sure the final specs. My previous phone is the Xperia Arc so I can say a thing or two about them. I believe they have improved a lot on the OS update side so you don't have to worry about that. However, the screen is still an issue with complaints of the yellow hue and not "true" IPS (i.e. still viewing angle issues). And yes, even on the flagships Z1 and Z Ultra. Plus, Sony has stated on record that they are not going to focus on the US market for the near future. This means you either have to pay full prices for importing or buying direct from Sony or its affiliates (Amazon and Newegg are included, so it is not that bad). There is also the fear that they won't even have North American variants available (especially ones with compatible LTE bands) or the NA variant will be released much later compared to the rest of the world. And the last thing: they are almost always overpriced coming out of the gate. You can't beat a Nexus and the Moto devices price wise.

For me, I got tired of waiting for the Z1 mini and reluctantly switched to the Samsung camp for the S4 mini. Granted I paid full price for an import so I had it before the US carriers released it.

oldDummy wrote:How do you like the S4 mini?
It is the first "mini" version of phone other than the 2011 Xperia Ray where the specs are not that crippled. The S3 mini was stripped down too much from the S3 and IMO is crap. The S4 mini features a non-pentile AMOLED screen which is nice. The size is small compared to my Arc (mainly the slightly smaller width and the tapered back). The dual core and 1.5gigs of RAM are actually good enough for the qHD screen, with the added benefit of lower power consumption. The GPU is the Adreno 305 so it is not last year's model as well. I really do wish it were 720p (which would be the Z1 mini, SP, and the ZR that I was looking at during my decision time), but the S4 mini did not seem to have the nagging issues of the SP/ZR. I just convinced myself to switch camps.

I haven't added all my accounts for syncing yet (the worst offender battery wise is Exchange), so battery use has been great so far. :P I imagine I will have to go back to larger daily charging cycles once I have synced everything and installed all my apps. I just did not have time to load all the stuff up yet (and to read up on how to root the thing, I heard that Xposed is super powerful).

Edit: I can comment on the stock software later, but for now I should bring this up as well: the S4 mini does have a removable battery, if that is your thing.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 3:52 pm

I have had: HTC 8X, LG MS690, Nokia 928, Nexus 5, Droid x

Droid X was a novelty. worked well enough. large.
The MS690 felt best in hand.
Voice sounded tinny to callers.
Currently underpowered and obsolete running android 2.2.
8X while a bit long felt fine in hand. Guess it is the sloping edge...
worked fine while it worked.
Hardware design problem with sim tray.
Nokia 928 isn't comfortable in hand.
Works well.
Nexus is too large for me.
Works well.

Ordered a S4 mini.
will give it a go.
Thanks for the input.
Last edited by oldDummy on Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Wed Dec 18, 2013 6:25 pm

(and to read up on how to root the thing, I heard that Xposed is super powerful).



EDIT: just answered my own question with a search.

http://www.addictivetips.com/mobile/top-10-reasons-to-root-your-android-phone-2/
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Re: Smartphone search

Postposted on Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:30 pm

Ha,

Samsung S4 mini placed second behind .....wait for it........iPhone 5c.

http://www.phonearena.com/phones/best/Mid-range
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