Best smartphone deal currently available

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Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:55 am

https://play.google.com/store/devices/d ... exus_4_8gb
Nexus 4, fully unlocked, directly from Google, for $200/250 (depending on storage capacity). You won't find a better deal for off-contract smartphone of equal capability. No LTE but has wireless charging built-in (you need to buy charging plate separately) which is extremely convenient. Latest Android OS without carrier-installed crapware. I might actually get one too as a spare and for international traveling...
Google has lowered its price because they are preparing for next Nexus with larger (5" or more) display.
Last edited by JohnC on Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:59 am

Urgh. Get this now, or wait for the Nexus 5 coming out in the next month or so?
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:01 am

If you want LTE and larger display - you should wait (or get the HTC One or Samsung Galaxy S4 today, straight from Google, also fully unlocked). If not - then you shouldn't.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:38 am

Even then, 250 bucks for a phone that is more than capable in any metric that matters is too good to pass up. I will probably just buy one because it's so cheap.

The dev community is like free money too.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:25 am

Now that I've got LTE and a pretty steady 10-15mbit, there's no way I'd give it up to go back to 2-5mbit HSPA+ in my area. Not that I stream a ton, but that every internet app is instantly more responsive when I'm not home.

Killer price, though. If I had never tasted LTE I'd see it as a great upgrade from teh One S I just replaced.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:42 am

Yeah, I live in a pretty good T-Mo 42 area. I have VZW currently, so I have LTE, but I'm already eligible for an upgrade and I won't be resigning another contract.

I have to say though, in dense metro areas (I work in the middle of downtown Boston) VZW LTE inches along. I'm talking ~1-2 Mbps up and down. Frustrating.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:23 am

My contract is up in a couple of weeks, and I need a plan.

Currently, my contract costs a boatload because it's a subsidized plan for my Galaxy S2 (because my phone cost $500 more than I paid for up front, which means that $500 was rolled into my monthly contract). I'd really like to lower my price. I wonder if I could just continue using my S2 on an unsubsidized plan for much cheaper until it dies. But I'm worried Sprint won't allow me to use my same phone and shift to a unsubsidized plan with it. And I'm worried no other carrier could work with it because it doesn't use a sim card.

Actually, I think I could survive without data for it, just using wifi when it is available. But how does GPS work then? And getting routes for traveling?

Or there is an option like the Nexus 4. What unsubsidized carriers are you guys using? I suppose service is determined by the metropolitan area you live in? What do you do to cut your monthly payments?
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:28 am

LukeCWM wrote:My contract is up in a couple of weeks, and I need a plan.

Currently, my contract costs a boatload because it's a subsidized plan for my Galaxy S2 (because my phone cost $500 more than I paid for up front, which means that $500 was rolled into my monthly contract). I'd really like to lower my price. I wonder if I could just continue using my S2 on an unsubsidized plan for much cheaper until it dies. But I'm worried Sprint won't allow me to use my same phone and shift to a unsubsidized plan with it. And I'm worried no other carrier could work with it because it doesn't use a sim card.

Actually, I think I could survive without data for it, just using wifi when it is available. But how does GPS work then? And getting routes for traveling?

Or there is an option like the Nexus 4. What unsubsidized carriers are you guys using? I suppose service is determined by the metropolitan area you live in? What do you do to cut your monthly payments?


Buy a new unsubsidized smartphone and use this:
http://www.t-mobile.com/bring-your-own-phone.html
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:38 am

LukeCWM wrote:Or there is an option like the Nexus 4. What unsubsidized carriers are you guys using? I suppose service is determined by the metropolitan area you live in? What do you do to cut your monthly payments?


I live in NYC and use a Nexus 4 on T-Mo's pay-as-you-go plan that's $30 a month for unlimited text and data, but only 100 minutes of voice. T-Mobile's service is great in NYC, but quickly goes to crap once you get away from major metropolitan areas. It's a pretty solid package overall, and incredible for the money.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:40 am

DancinJack wrote:Yeah, I live in a pretty good T-Mo 42 area. I have VZW currently, so I have LTE, but I'm already eligible for an upgrade and I won't be resigning another contract.

I have to say though, in dense metro areas (I work in the middle of downtown Boston) VZW LTE inches along. I'm talking ~1-2 Mbps up and down. Frustrating.

Have you talked to people who are on T-Mobile? I know where you live is different than where I live, but where I live is kind of spotty. I found it to fluctuate wildly between 13-14mbit in my apartment (where I don't really need it because of wifi) to EDGE-only in downtown Pekin (which isn't huge but it's a city of 30k+) to GPRS in Morton, IL (around 16k people) and basically GPRS all over the rural areas where I frequent. Voice coverage is solid, so I stuck wiht it. And I guess in metro areas it's great. I dealt with it because for the price it's great, but once I moved and couldn't get service except by the window, I went to Verizon. In the 11 days (going back to the 17th) that I've had it, I've never lost a signal and only rarely drop down to EV-DO. (basically, what Beelzebubba9 said - away from the huge cities, it gets weird).

I'm sure someone else can say the same thing about VZW or ATT or Sprint, too. So if you can get good service from a GSM carrier and a Nexus 4 for $250 (at this point I wouldnt' really consider 8GB of storage without a micro SD card) you should dive in. I used to say 8GB was plenty but now that I've got my music collection on my phone and no longer have an iPod, more storage is definitely better. That's why I went with a GS4, because it's the only top-tier phone with a micro SD slot. If I'm going to be stuck with this thing for 2 years, I figured I better go top-tier.

Oh, and I guess you can still unlock AWS LTE on the Nexus 4 so if you're in a major metro area with LTE, you'll have that going for you.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:48 am

derFunkenstein wrote:...stuff.....


I hear what you are saying, but I just don't frequent rural areas enough for it to matter to me. I live in Cambridge,MA and work in downtown Boston. My family lives in Wichita,KS and Austin,TX. T-mo coverage is more than adequate in those areas. I'm on a family plan with my siblings @ VZW right now and it still costs me 75 a month. I don't really see any downside to going T-Mo and unlocked phone. Then I still have the option of grabbing a StraightTalk ATT SIM or something if i know i'm going to be in an area where T-mo is spotty and ATT is better. Unlocked GSM is just so nice. T-Mo LTE rollout, 1900MHz HSPA+ 42 in my area, and price have all convinced me to jump on over. I"ll probably keep my VZW line on for a month or so until I can figure out if it's really going to be good enough for me to use all the time.

Anyway, great deal. If you're looking for an unlocked GSM phone just get this.

edit: sorry, I didn't even answer your question. No, I haven't really talked to people on T-Mobile up here.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:59 am

Just an advice for people who will get it - you should also buy a wireless charger for it, something that uses Qi standard, like this:
http://www.amazon.com/LuguLake-Qi-Enabl ... qi+charger
Or any other (eBay is also good place for such things). It's much more convenient than connecting a wire - less mechanical stress on phone's USB connector and if you are not afraid of some manual work you can "integrate" such thing into your table/nightstand's surface. You know, make it completely "flush" with the surface of the table/nightstand and paint it the same color. You can also do the same if you have large flat area in your car.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:24 am

JohnC wrote:Just an advice for people who will get it - you should also buy a wireless charger for it, something that uses Qi standard, like this:
http://www.amazon.com/LuguLake-Qi-Enabl ... qi+charger
Or any other (eBay is also good place for such things). It's much more convenient than connecting a wire - less mechanical stress on phone's USB connector and if you are not afraid of some manual work you can "integrate" such thing into your table/nightstand's surface. You know, make it completely "flush" with the surface of the table/nightstand and paint it the same color. You can also do the same if you have large flat area in your car.

The Nokia one is Qi as well, right? Their charger seems to be always on sale.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:30 am

Yes, the wireless charger for Nokia Lumia 920 will also work.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:01 pm

I get ~42Mbps on my non-LTE phone that's T-mobile and ~10-100Mbps on LTE @ T-mobile. Only seen 100 a couple of times though. Oddly in my most used places, the HSPA+ is solidly 42Mbps, but LTE will dip under this all the time. That could just be the difference between the Sony's radio and Apple's radio though.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:05 pm

Just so you know: You can enable LTE on the Nexus 4, the hardware supports it.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:21 pm

You can enable a single LTE band, with a custom ROM. Not very useful for AT&T's network, though :wink:
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:44 pm

DancinJack wrote:
derFunkenstein wrote:...stuff.....


I hear what you are saying, but I just don't frequent rural areas enough for it to matter to me. I live in Cambridge,MA and work in downtown Boston. My family lives in Wichita,KS and Austin,TX. T-mo coverage is more than adequate in those areas. I'm on a family plan with my siblings @ VZW right now and it still costs me 75 a month. I don't really see any downside to going T-Mo and unlocked phone. Then I still have the option of grabbing a StraightTalk ATT SIM or something if i know i'm going to be in an area where T-mo is spotty and ATT is better. Unlocked GSM is just so nice. T-Mo LTE rollout, 1900MHz HSPA+ 42 in my area, and price have all convinced me to jump on over. I"ll probably keep my VZW line on for a month or so until I can figure out if it's really going to be good enough for me to use all the time.

Anyway, great deal. If you're looking for an unlocked GSM phone just get this.

edit: sorry, I didn't even answer your question. No, I haven't really talked to people on T-Mobile up here.

Straight Talk and Net10 have discontinued their ATT SIMs. I looked at going that route (and other prepaid options like Virgin/Boost and ATT Go) before I went to VZW. All I could find was T-Mobile SIMs. A great deal if the coverage works where you'll be :D

And the phone is both better and cheaper than most of what T-Mobile sells. Definitely better than the Optimus L9 at the same price for the 8GB, and better than the Galaxy Exhibit at $250 for the 16GB Nexus.

If I was still on a GSM carrier under contract with a phone that isn't as nice, I might just grab a nexus, shove my SIM in it, and put my contract phone in a drawer for a spare.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:22 pm

Just a warning to people considering this, make sure to get a protective bumper because the N4 has glass on both sides and it's very fragile. Yup, found that one out the hard way. On the plus side, one can get two N4s for the cost of a normal high-spec smartphone. I may do that myself with this deal, the replacment screen is over 150 bucks.
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Re: Best smartphone deal currently available

Postposted on Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:44 pm

LOL, the bumper won't do anything against accidental drops - the physical shock from an impact can crack the glass even if glass itself won't hit anything, or the glass may hit some protruding object like an edge of toilet bowl... If you are afraid of physical damage - you should get an aftermarket insurance from SquareTrade (their deductible is pretty high but still cheaper than the cost of new phone) or just buy another Nexus 4 as a disposable spare :wink:
Just treat it well - do not put it into same pocket as your home keys, do not rub it against the table surface with breadcrumbs on it, do not put it on top of very hot/cold surfaces, use a permanently mounted (secure it with a double tape or something) wireless charger at home and you won't need any bumpers/cases/screen protectors.
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