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Change

Posted on Oct 8, 2011 by in Mobile, News | 12 comments

Change

It’s really funny how things change so fast. At the begin­ning of the year, I let go of my Sam­sung i8910 and I got a new Android phone, the Desire HD. At that time it was the cream of the crop — later came the Sam­sung Galaxy S2, which still reigns supreme. Now my Desire HD is now look­ing dated; it weighs a ton, it’s thick as ever, it has a washed out Super LCD screen, a single-core proces­sor and poor battery-life. Such is the trend year after year.

Some phones seem to last though, those phones that are really good at a par­tic­u­lar thing. The Nokia N8 for instance is still the best camera-phone around, the iPhone is still one of the most styl­ish and app-rich phones and… well I guess those are the 2 big ones. Every other phone seems to have faded to black. My assump­tion is that the Sam­sung Galaxy S2 will have the same fate as every other phone. It’s really good at the things that keep get­ting bet­ter on phones and not much else. It has an awe­some proces­sor, great screen… great every­thing really, but it won’t be so hot a year from now unlike other phones. In fact, it will prob­a­bly be over­shad­owed in every way like the Sam­sung Galaxy before it — by another Sam­sung mon­ster (I’m look­ing at you Nexus Prime).

I like hav­ing images in my posts. I guess the one I picked is appro­pri­ate for this piece because we spend a lot of change chang­ing phones and such. The Desire HD is a mediocre phone. I can not say it ever blew me away. The i8910 for instance had lots of poten­tial and that drove me to the whole report/petition thing. The Sony Eric­son K800 Cyber-shot, which I had before it, blew me away with its amaz­ing cam­era. That cam­era still amazes me today with the Xenon flash and amaz­ing still shots even when the cam­era is moving.

From now on, I’m all about good prod­ucts that last. Prod­ucts that are sup­ported for as long as they are relevant.

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  • Raheel Kumar

    Whoooaaaaaaaa you’re still here xD

    Awe­some post,

    I have to agree that the mobile phone indus­try is evolv­ing too rapidly for comfort.

    The devel­op­ments made in the hard­ware part of the indus­try is truly rev­o­lu­tion­ary an will con­tinue to develop pro­por­tion­ally with Moore’s law I guess. There’s no stop­ping it for a ‘dou­ble take’ and a fix here and there ( i.e. HP Touch­Pad :-/), or you’ll seri­ously fall waaaaay behind in the industry.

    Well you also know how they make their sales, they make amaz­ing phones, make you feel like you need ‘em to be tonnes more pro­duc­tive in your daily life. But then surely you end up with a load of regret(especially con­sid­er­ing the money you spend on these devices which you need so much, that it becomes a limb).

    There will always be some­thing bet­ter in terms of tech­nol­ogy, I rec­om­mend we shouldn’t fol­low it so closely unless we are uber-rich, or unless we are actu­ally devel­op­ing it. I mean I paid $1300 for my I8910 in 2009, and $1080 for my Moto Atrix at the start of the year (NZ prices are ridicu­lous). Bet­ter than being hooked on a con­tract for two years and a more advanced phone show­ing up in its man­u­fac­tur­ing process a a day later.….…. it is sad.

    Well as always soft­ware is the key, I’m cur­rently doing my research based on arm v7 assem­bly code, I’m hop­ing to make my phone last a bit longer than its  successor’s and its prov­ing to be a huge chal­lenge for me (lol).

    Any­ways, great to know your still here for your awe­some posts, cheers.

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  • http://anphase.com Anphase

    Ae, I’m glad some­one is still read­ing! I agree with you com­pletely, I’ve spent far too much on these mobiles and the man­u­fac­tur­ers keep out-doing them­selves. I should prob­a­bly apply for a job at Voda­fone as a device tester or some­thing lol. Right now I’m feel­ing left behind with all the dual-core phones on the mar­ket. Prob­lem is, if I do buy one, the inevitable quad-core phones next year will make me THAT phone look bad. Keep me posted on that arm assem­bly code research!

    Cheers

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  • Jax667

    In my opin­ion you didn´t choose your device wisely. I for myself look very closely at what is avail­able at the mar­ket and what fea­tures are built in and then decide wether to buy it or not. Let us take my N8 for exam­ple: It was avail­able in novem­ber in 2010 and the 12MP cam­era is still unmatched. The alu­minium uni­body design is solid with no scratches, the amoled dis­play is still a good deci­sion, fea­tures like HDMI out, FM Trans­mit­ter or USB OTG are rare to find in other hand­sets. The N8 will get updates even if Sym­bian will (at least for the moment) be phased out in one or two years. It got Sym­bian Anna, it will get Sym­bian Belle and after that Sym­bian Carla will make its way, too. Even after that I can expect updates for browser or nav­i­ga­tion to keep on com­ing. All use­ful apps are avail­able (Sym­bian is more than 10 years old, so prac­ti­cally every­thing is avail­able, though not always in the Ovi Store).

    My device is now more than 1 year old and did I make a good deci­sion? You bet! Android devices keep com­ing every month, so your smart­phone gets old very fast. Per­son­ally, I don´t like HTC, because their prod­ucts feel cheap even with Alu­minium and I def­i­nitely can´t go back to LCDs after using amoled tech­nol­ogy. Of course there are other devices too which stay up-to-date like the Omnia 7 with Win­dows Phone 7. Luck­ily, Microsoft´s hard­ware restric­tions ensured that. The Iphone 4 is also not regarded as an old phone, Retina Dis­play, build qual­ity and the 1Ghz proces­sor with the strong gpu unit will guar­an­tee apps, games and updates to keep on com­ing. The Sam­sung Galaxy S (not even the sec­ond one) got an update and will prob­a­bly get an update to Ice Cream Sand­wich (but no mat­ter what, Roms are already avail­able vor the Galaxy S).

    You should´ve asked me, Anphase :)

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  • http://anphase.com Anphase

    Nice reply! Your reply couldn’t have come at a bet­ter time. I’m now look­ing for a device to replace my Desire HD. I have to say I agree with every point you made, the Desire HD does feel rather cheap and flimsy. So, which phone would you rec­om­mend I get? I was eying the Galaxy Nexus but I’m still open to sug­ges­tions if that’s not a good pick. Win­dows Phone is also devel­op­ing quite well and the Nokia Lumia is get­ting great reviews. Suggestions?

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  • Jax667

    First of all one ques­tion: I found two anphase home­pages, which one do you use or keep up to date, because on both sites the last post is from octo­ber, the 21st?

    My rec­om­men­da­tion? As to the os itself you have to decide for your­self, I can´t and shouldn´t tell you which one to choose. IOS and Android are the most used ones nowa­days, fol­lowed by Sym­bian and Black­berry OS. Per­son­ally I pre­fer Sym­bian. Why? Because of the hard­ware (N8 with alu­minium body, 12 MP cam­era with xenon flash, usb on the go, hdmi out) and the world­wide offline nav­i­ga­tion for free. The soft­ware is now quite nice with Sym­bian Belle, the browser is still lame but most peo­ple includ­ing me use the no. 1 mobile browser called Opera Mini which runs smooth and fast.

    I know you for quite some time now since the I8910 Hd times, so I am aware that you used Sym­bian and after that the Desire HD with Android which makes sense, because both oper­at­ing sys­tems are basi­cally the same and very sim­i­lar to each other. Win­dows Phone and IOS share the same sit­u­a­tion, because Microsoft took the Apple approach regard­ing mobile soft­ware (no system-wide file man­ager, no Blue­tooth file trans­fers, no USB mass stor­age mode, no Flash (nor Sil­verlight) sup­port in the browser, too depen­dent on Zune soft­ware for file man­age­ment and sync­ing, no video calls, no true mul­ti­task­ing, no DivX/XviD video sup­port etc). If I had to rec­om­mend you an os it would def­i­nitely be Android, because IOS and WP7 are too lim­ited when you come from Sym­bian. Android is already well estab­lished with lots of apps and high­end smartphones.

    If you choose Android, there is only one man­u­fac­turer I would con­sider a good option: Sam­sung. Don´t get me wrong, I don´t wanna hate on other play­ers like Sony Eric­s­son, LG, HTC etc, but they just can´t reach the level of a Sam­sung Galaxy S2 for exam­ple nei­ther in terms of hard­ware (Super Amoled Plus, MHL USB, audio qual­ity, bat­tery life, cam­era qual­ity) nor in terms of soft­ware (fluid Android user expe­ri­ence, browser, speed). Of course the build qual­ity could be bet­ter and some metal would have done won­ders, but gen­er­ally the S2 is still the best Android device until now. I read a lot reviews (GSMarena being my favourite site) and other Android Smart­phones show a weaker per­for­mance in some of those points men­tioned ear­lier. The Galaxy S2 will get an update to Ice Cream Sandwich.

    For me a Galaxy S2 isn´t an option, because I don´t like the design, it is too big, I don´t like the cheap plas­tic bat­tery cover and the cam­era is infe­rior com­pared to the N8 to say at least. I will replace my device only with one which is supe­rior in every sin­gle aspect. There is a rumour of a N8 suc­ces­sor with Sym­bian Carla andalso an improved cam­era (a very impor­tant aspect for me), so this one will prob­a­bly replace my N8.

    Thats for Android so far, the other oper­at­ing sys­tems are cov­ered up pretty eas­ily. The future of Win­dows Phone 7 is uncer­tain since it per­fomed very bad in terms of sales, but with Nokia a new hope arrived (oth­er­wise it would have been a dead os already). I can´t rec­om­mend the Lumia, because it basi­cally equals the Sam­sung Omnia 7 in every aspect (cam­era, dis­play, speak­ers) and costs way too much. If RIM keeps on being slow and ignor­ing the con­sumer mar­ket I am not sure if they sur­vive 2012. I don´t like their os and BBX seems to take years…if you seri­ously aren´t keen for qwerty key­boards and busi­ness solu­tions, then just look away…the best IOS device is the Iphone 4S, but the Iphone 4 is still a really good choice. Another option is using an Ipod Touch for every­thing except phone calls and a sec­ond device for mak­ing calls and sms :)

    Android: Sam­sung Galaxy S2 for 390 Euros (best device, but there are also a lot of cheaper and still good solu­tions like a Huawei X3 for 100 Dol­lars)
    Sym­bian: N8 for 300 Euros
    IOS: Iphone 4s 16gb for 650 Euros, Iphone 4 16gb for 550 Euros, Ipod Touch for 280 Euros
    Win­dows Phone 7: Sam­sung Omnia 7 for 280 Euros (wow, it went up from 200 since the Nokia Lumias)

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  • http://anphase.com Anphase

    Wow bril­liant! This web­site is my main one by the way, the other one just mir­rors this one. Thanks for the thor­ough and swift reply. I have to say I’m blown away by your insight. 
    I already have an iPod Touch so the iPhone 4s is out of the ques­tion. I think Siri is awe­some but it’s not enough to jus­tify get­ting the iPhone when I’ve already got iOS 5 on a decent retina dis­play with the Touch. As for Win­dows Phone 7 you’re right, its future is not cer­tain. The last thing I would want is to have a phone on a dead plat­form. That’s the rea­son why I didn’t even con­sider the N9 although the hard­ware is tempt­ing. The hard­ware on Win­dows Phone 7 also seems to be lag­ging behind the com­pe­ti­tion; sin­gle core proces­sors and 512MB ram and all. The Lumia doesn’t even have a front fac­ing cam­era yet they’re crop­ping up on other WP7 phones and Microsoft bought Skype!
    I do agree that Sam­sung has some of the bet­ter hard­ware out there. The Galaxy S2 seems like a very good option for me. The Galaxy Nexus will be the first to get any ICS updates for at least the next year though. Major prob­lem with the Galaxy Nexus is the 5MP cam­era – reviews say it’s pretty bad com­pared to the S2 and obvi­ously the N8.
    If there is going to be suc­ces­sor to the N8 I might as well wait. The cam­era isn’t all that impor­tant for me (maybe because the one on the Desire HD sucks so much!) but great build qual­ity and bleed­ing edge updates are. Thanks for the reply, it’s really made me rethink this whole thing much clearer. Cheers :)

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  • Jax667

    Thank you very much! I am just inter­ested in the mobile space like you and many peo­ple ask me which smart­phone to buy :)

    As for Win­dows Phone, the near future is safe enough, per­haps I was exag­ger­at­ing. Nokia will release many new devices and devel­op­ers will release many new apps. In my esti­ma­tion the patient will be alive for at least one year and after that it depends on suc­cess. Microsoft HAS to do every­thing to ensure they are rel­e­vant in mobile, because here inno­va­tion and tech­nol­ogy are more impor­tant than in every other indus­try. It is the first time since their dom­i­na­tion in the PC indus­try that they are afraid of los­ing sig­nif­i­cant mar­ket share and there­fore power. Look at the Iphone, it made peo­ple buy Macs, Mac­books and other Apple hard­ware, because they are fas­ci­nated by IOS. If a Linux mobile oper­at­ing sys­tem like Maemo would dom­i­nate the mobile space with 80 %, peo­ple would begin to ask them­selves why are stuck with Microsoft Win­dows on their Desk­tops and Note­books because every­thing that binds them to that (Games, Office, just every­thing) wouldn´t be rel­e­vant any more. That is why Microsoft paid Nokia bil­lions to stay with them and that is why Microsoft will do every­thing to make Win­dows Phone a success.

    So buy­ing a Omnia 7 would also not be a bad idea. There is metal involved in the con­struc­tion, I like the rec­tan­gu­lar look and the Super Amoled dis­play together with a decent cam­era round off the device. But as I already men­tioned ear­lier, a Win­dows Phone doesn´t make much sense for some­one own­ing a IOS device.

    http://www.gsmarena.com/samsung_i8700_omnia_7-review-522.php

    Regard­ing Sym­bian I can´t rec­om­mend it under all cir­cum­stances. Devel­op­ers retreated and apps aren´t com­ing any more, so in my opin­ion you have to live with what is already avail­able. I know Sym­bian pretty well, that is why I am very pleased with the selec­tion of apps. There are enough games (Dun­geon Hunter 2, Eter­nal Legacy HD, Angry Birds, Hawx HD, Spi­der­man HD etc..) and just about every use­ful app you can think of (I had some dis­cus­sions with IOS and Android users about what seems not to be avail­able on Sym­bian and they soon real­ized being wrong). So if you are okay with the momen­tar­ily sit­u­a­tion, you should take advan­tage of the price drop and take a Sym­bian Smart­phone. As for the N8 suc­ces­sor, you have to decide for your­self if you want to wait 3 or 4 months.

    In your spe­cial case, you already have an IOS device, so if I were you I would get a cheap phone for calls and sms. But you already have a Desire HD, so I assume you want to get a high­end smart­phone? Firstly I would decide wether or not to wait until new smart­phones will be pre­sented in feb­ru­ary in the Mobile World Con­gress in 2012 and sec­ondly keep in mind that those will be expen­sive when they appear in april. If you are look­ing for a new smart­phone now, I would take one which is already avail­able. High­end Android devices are the already men­tioned Galaxy S2 (400 Euros) and of course the big brother Galaxy Note (500 Euros).

    My advice for you: Get a Nokia C7 or the newer model 701. Both with beau­ti­ful designs and good hard­ware (701 with 1 Ghz proces­sor and 512 MB Ram, GPU is stronger than Iphone 4 on both smart­phones), with a decent cam­era (Edof, no aut­o­fo­cus). The 701 has Sym­bian Belle already and together with the world­wide offline nav­i­ga­tion, 250 Euros are a good price-performance ratio which is hard to find in the competition.

    http://www.gsmarena.com/nokia_701-review-660p3.php

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  • http://anphase.com Anphase

    I hadn’t even thought of that, get­ting a low end phone. That’s a pretty good idea. I agree with you on Sym­bian phones for that, low end Android phones are mostly pretty ter­ri­ble; stuck on Android 1.6 or some­thing. 
    I got the Desire HD around early Jan­u­ary this year and the Galaxy S2 was announced at MWC 2011 in Feb and released around April I think. Some new hard­ware will be announced at MWC 2012 for sure and the devices will be expen­sive when they finally come out later in the year. The 701 per­forms extremely well (from the GSM Arena video you linked) but the screen looks rather small for my lik­ing. I’d have to try it in per­son to see just how well it works for me. The screen size is why I’d been aim­ing for the Galaxy Nexus, or even the Note although I think the Note is really on the edge of phone and tablet. 
    I think I’ll give it a few weeks to see what devel­op­ments crop up. I’m con­sid­er­ing get­ting more focused devices like the PS Vita for gam­ing, a sim­ple Sym­bian phone for calls, iPod for music/apps, point and shoot cam­era for pho­tos etc. But I really wouldn’t want to lug so many devices around lol. Thanks again for the input! Much appre­ci­ated! :)

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  • Jax667

    A Huawei Vision for 300 Euros with a 3,7 inch Dis­play and a Nokia X7 with a 4 inch Dis­play is also worth con­tem­plat­ing. Both good design and build quality.

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  • Jax667

    P.S. Nokia X7 for 250 Euros.

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  • Jax667

    P.P.S. Hope I could help and please let me know which smart­phone you chose. That is always inter­est­ing to me :)

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  • http://anphase.com Anphase

    I really like the X7, it’s the per­fect bal­ance of size, power and price! Thank you so much for the invalu­able help. I prob­a­bly would have made a regret­table deci­sion with­out your input. I’ll keep you posted :-)

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