View Full Version : Android-powered smartphones: cheap ideas?


Logseman
10-12-2010, 06:22 PM
My iPod Touch (secondary eBook reader) died not too long ago, and I've decided to ditch my dumbphone and stop carrying two things when I can carry only one. However, I'm getting slightly scared about the prices I'm seeing for phones like the HTC Desire (which seems btw a great thing). What would be ideas for Android-powered phones with humbler price tags?

jeffcobb
10-12-2010, 10:14 PM
I am loving my X10 but the price tag is not humble. I know there are cheaper ones out there. FWIW, I was never a smart-phone dude before but man it seems like there is nothing this thing cannot do. I watch movies, take movies, take pictures, play games, use it as a street-level GPS (GPS + Google street maps is a wonderful thing). If social networking is your thing this keeps you wired into everything. I am only doing the Facebook thing so I am not getting my "all" out of it but at a touch I can see what all my friends are up to and if one posts something cool with a touch of the screen I can call them up. More, mine has facial recognition built into the camera so if I (say) take a picture of a friend, it knows it and automatically labels the picture with their name, also it can tell when people are smiling in the view-finder so it waits to take the snap until they are. There is a lot more but you get the idea. Through Android I get the ebook readers, I can watch the news, do all of the usual web/net stuff. The X10 Mini is about half the price but there are a ton of models inbetween (Ask KennyC about his Droid)....the choice is yours for once.

kennyc
10-12-2010, 10:28 PM
Well, I didn't compare them all, just went for the Droid X based on reviews I'd read and knowing it was big .. e.g. a bit more bulky to carry, but to be honest not much more than the iPhone 3G I carry for work (so now I carry two big phones :) ).

I love love love my Droid X and have been using it a lot for ebook reading on my early morning walks. It's wonderful for that. as well as everything else it does, mp3 player, video player, phone, browser, etc etc etc.

Love it! It was $200 with a two year contract commitment.

The biggest sticker shock for me was the more than doubling of my monthly service fee from about $45 - $95 or so. I dropped DirecTV though ($47/mo) which makes up for it. :p

My son has the HTC Hero (but has had a few issues with it after the upgrade to Android 2.2) my other son has the original Google Phone (not sure of the model).

bill_mchale
10-12-2010, 11:38 PM
Sprint just announced a trio of new Android Phones. Two of them are available now, the Samsung Transform has a 3.5" screen with the same resolution as the original iPod Touches, and costs $150 with a two year contract. Then there is the Sanyo Zio; its got a high resolution screen, but initial reports are not terribly favorable but it costs $100 with a contract. The third phone is available at the end of the month and its the bargin of the lot; its the LG Optimus S. Initial reviews seem quite favorable and it is only $50 with a two year contract. Of course, like most contract smart phones they make you get the data plan, if if the phone supports wifi; on the bright side, Sprint still has the most affordable smart phone plans out there. You might look and see if Cricket, Virgin Mobile or Boost Mobile to see if they have any smart phones that support wifi... they might let you get the phone with just a voice plan and then you can use wifi for connecting to the internet.

--
Bill

Logseman
10-13-2010, 03:22 PM
I've finally picked up a Samsung Galaxy S. Actually it wasn't on my list, but my carrier made me an offer that a shiny-addicted can't refuse, and I took the plunge. Thanks for the advice, I guess Iíll be hanging on this subforum as well (it's not like I need an excuse to lurk in MR anyways :p).

See you!

kennyc
10-13-2010, 05:37 PM
Congrats!

grooks
10-15-2010, 04:42 PM
Now they are beginning to roll-out Froyo 2.2 for Galaxy S owners in Europe.

Logseman
10-15-2010, 05:07 PM
Samsung doesn't release Kies for Linux. Plus, seemingly Froyo doesn't give any significant update in performance. After installing and enjoying the One Click Lag Fix, it'sm going to be hard to go back to the standard.

jeffcobb
10-15-2010, 09:43 PM
Kies? wtf? Is that the code-name for some version of Android?

Dopedangel
10-16-2010, 12:11 AM
Kies? wtf? Is that the code-name for some version of Android?

No that a something that is worse than itunes never thought I would say such a thing.
But as its Android you can work around it and don't need to install it unlike an Iphone where you would be stuck with Itunes.

@Logseman

I am waiting for this to get a stable release after that goodbye Rfs

http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=809109

by the way a guy in xda just recently released an open source flasher that you can use to flash in linux. But it doesn't restore your settings like kies does.

bjones6416
10-16-2010, 12:18 AM
I've finally picked up a Samsung Galaxy S. Actually it wasn't on my list, but my carrier made me an offer that a shiny-addicted can't refuse, and I took the plunge. Thanks for the advice, I guess Iíll be hanging on this subforum as well (it's not like I need an excuse to lurk in MR anyways :p).

See you!

A friend of mine has that phone, and it has a beautiful display! I hope you enjoy it!

(I have an LG Ally, which is an entry-level Android phone, but I am blown away with what I can do on it. I love Android, and have lost all desire for an iPhone now.)

SlowRain
10-16-2010, 01:56 AM
I've finally picked up a Samsung Galaxy S
Congratulations. I picked up my Galaxy S GT-I9000 this week, too. What are you using for reading e-books? So far, I'm just using Aldiko, but an updated version from the market, not the one that comes preloaded on the phone. I changed the colors around to make it easier on the eyes: sienna background with black text.

I've heard Froyo/2.2 gives a noticeable improvement when surfing the internet.

Logseman
10-16-2010, 05:16 AM
Kies is the phone's management suite. Since I don't have Windoze, I can't give word about its perfotmance.

As an ebook reader, I'm ssriously underwhelmed by Aldiko (the version which comes with the phone). It takes more time than my PB to boot with thephone having WAY much more horsepower, and its catalog is reduced to Feedbooks. I'll go get the market update. Eventually I'd like go delete my carrier's crapware, but that will have to wait ntil I research a bit more about what Roms are available. As you can guess, I DON'T want to brick this.

SlowRain
10-16-2010, 06:58 AM
Aldiko from the market isn't any faster, but it's more customizable. No note-taking feature as far as I'm aware, though. I'm going to give that Android eBook reader clients (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=70921) thread another read to see which one meets my needs. I came from Mobipocket on a Palm OS device, so I'd like something similar.

kennyc
10-16-2010, 07:17 AM
I use both Aldiko and FBReader.

I've also got the Kindle app which is good as well for kindle books and access to your Kindle library at Amazon.

SolRaven
10-21-2010, 02:14 AM
I love love love my Droid X and have been using it a lot for ebook reading

Same here. I couldn't be happier with my Moto Droid X and am glad I waited instead of almost getting the HTC Incredible.

wodin
10-21-2010, 03:00 PM
Well, I didn't compare them all, just went for the Droid X based on reviews I'd read and knowing it was big .. e.g. a bit more bulky to carry, but to be honest not much more than the iPhone 3G I carry for work (so now I carry two big phones :) ).

I love love love my Droid X and have been using it a lot for ebook reading on my early morning walks. It's wonderful for that. as well as everything else it does, mp3 player, video player, phone, browser, etc etc etc.

Love it! It was $200 with a two year contract commitment.

The biggest sticker shock for me was the more than doubling of my monthly service fee from about $45 - $95 or so. I dropped DirecTV though ($47/mo) which makes up for it. :p

My son has the HTC Hero (but has had a few issues with it after the upgrade to Android 2.2) my other son has the original Google Phone (not sure of the model).

I feel the same about my HTC EVO 4G, and (not counting 4G service) the specs are nearly identical to those of the Droid X. While the initial cost is the same, the TCO is less because Sprint's reoccurring fees are somewhat less. And sprint has better service in my area. 4G is a plus, but I rarely use it because it's a battery hog and reduces my battery life by about half.

So, if Sprint has adaquate service in your area, it's worth considering.

Metal Mick
10-21-2010, 07:08 PM
Hi all,

I have a Motorola Droid (Milestone in Oz), and I am very pleased with it. Droid X is its more modern cousin.

Great screen at 480 x 800 - I'd suggest this is the resolution to aim for. I very rarely use the slide-out keypad, because the "soft" keypad is so good. A capacitive touchscreen is better than resistive, and make sure your phone has a flash - it can be used as a torch in emergencies - it amazes me how some phones lack this seemingly basic feature.

Current pricing seems quite reasonable now. I bought a dock for it, and it now serves as my alarm clock whilst charging overnight.

Cheers,

anabolina
11-02-2010, 03:12 PM
There's always something newer and better on the horizon though. I was at dinner with friends and brought out my new phone (new as of this weekend) and one of my freinds complained that he bought it the week it came out and it was really hard to choose between it and the Nexus 1 and he really regrets buying the Behold 2 instead because it came out a few weeks earlier. I can definitely understand that. The Behold 2 is a really buggy device and won't be upgraded beyond 1.6. :( Still I was able to buy it knowing this so I wasn't disappointed like the early adopters were. I know you already got your phone, but if anyone else is looking at buying a cheap Android phone, I paid $110 shipped for mine and it was brand new down to the stickers on the screen and came with all the accessories. I'm really cheap so I use it with the $10 data plan I set up on my poor Nokia Nuron 6 months ago and haven't had any problems so far. First thing to do with it though is flash it to a decent rom. :)

I wish you the best of luck with your new phone :)