BlackBerry Bold vs. Motorola DROID 2
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Thoughts?
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr (+14950) 11 years ago
If that was my only choice I would go with the Droid. I currently have a Blackberry Storm and I am disappointed with the operating system/phone. I wasn't thrilled with Android either, but I think a lot of my issues were related to the specific phone. At least Android is making an effort to fix the problems in their OS.

Personally, I am done buying phones until the iPhone is available. I think it is a better all around device than anything anyone else has to offer.



[This message has been edited by Richard Bonine, Jr (9/30/2010)]
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
My phone is due for an upgrade. I am with Verizon because that is the company's plan, so I have choices between various Droids and BlackBerries for Smartphones. I have the BB Curve now. It has been a great phone for me, but like many of the BB reviews, it does sometimes lock up and require that the battery be removed to fix. I'm sticking with the Droid 2 out of the Droids because I want the QWERTY keyboard, and I think I've decided on the BB Bold instead of the Tour because of the poor reviews for the Tour, so I guess that is why I am down to picking between the Bold and the Droid 2.

Thanks for the insight Richard.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Blackberry is in big trouble right now. The Droids are a far better phone in every way unless you're really addicted to BBM or something. My brother recently got a Droid Incredible and instantly made his wife hate her blackberry (which she previously loved). I think she has a droid of some sort now as well.

[This message has been edited by Levi Forman (9/30/2010)]
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Posted by J. Dyba (+1350) 11 years ago
The Incredible is named very appropriately.
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
I looked at the Incredible very seriously, but I'm old-fashioned and like the slider QWERTY keyboard. However, I should give that some consideration. What are your experiences with the virtual keyboards? I've always steered clear of the touchscreens because anyone I ever knew had a problem with the sensitivity (not registering a key strike, registering the wrong key, etc.). I heard nothing but complaints about this issue with the Storm.

[This message has been edited by Denise Selk (9/30/2010)]
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Posted by Bill N (+64) 11 years ago
I would try out a Droid with the Swype keyboard before deciding that you need a physical keyboard for your phone. I have a droid 1 and I don't think I've used the physical keyboard at all since I got the Swype keyboard. I don't know if it comes with the Droid Incredible, but it does come with the Droid X.
Even if you decide you need a physical keyboard, I think the Droid2 is superior to any blackberry in almost every way... unless you want to sync a corporate email account.
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Posted by Doug and Sami (+200) 11 years ago
I recently upgraded from a Blackberry and Now have the Droid 2. IT's awesome. Very easy to get familiar with and alot of free apps. I highly reccomend this phone.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Touchscreens have gotten a lot better in recent years and I don't miss the physical keyboard at all. The Blackberry Storm was pretty much an epic failure in all ways, keyboard included. I have an incredible and I think that if I was going to Verizon for a phone today I would get the same one but if you really want the keyboard, the Droid 2 is a very good phone. The main difference is that Motorola's skin (blur or whatever it's called) is generally less popular than HTC Sense that comes on the Incredible. Also, I don't believe that the Droid 2 has been upgraded to Froyo (latest version of Android) which has considerably better performance and several handy features. It should be upgraded shortly though I would think. You really can't go wrong with a Droid X, an Incredible, or a Droid 2 though, they're fairly similar and all great phones.

[This message has been edited by Levi Forman (9/30/2010)]
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Alright, I'm down to the Droid Incredible or the Droid X. I was leaning toward the Droid X as I see that Swype is available for the X (is it for the Incredible? I see conflicting info.). It appears that X ships with 2.1, but that Froyo is recently available for update on the X. It also appears to me that the Incredible has major issues with battery life. Has that been your experience Levi?
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
I've also been considering upgrading. I assume, from what Levi just posted, his advice indicates that the "Droid Incredible" is probably the best phone currently available for the Verizon Wireless network?

Key things I'm looking for:

- Bluetooth (check)

- GPS (as in if I lose my phone, or someone steals it, can I can look up where it is at?)

- Intuitive easy to use interface (?)

- Full web access (?)

- Something resembling a Qwerty keyboard (virtual or not) that can actually be easily used if necessary (?)

- Good sound quality in/out when talking (non-Bluetooth) on the phone

- If you put it in your pocket, it won't get bumped and accidentally randomly dial somewhere (?)

[Edited to add the following after Denise's post]

- Battery life (will it last being used on and off all day without having to be recharged?)

- If you drop it, is it going to break? (?)

Also, if I wait a month, is there an already pre-announced upcoming new version that would be better at that point? I suppose I could google all of this stuff (and I probably will) but it's a side-issue at the moment.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr (+14950) 11 years ago
When you finally make your decision, post a picture of you and your new phone.

[This message has been edited by Richard Bonine, Jr (9/30/2010)]
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Posted by Tracy Walters (+302) 11 years ago
Well .. I'm clearly in the minority here, but I really like my Blackberry Storm. It works reliably, has all the apps I need, is very durable, never crashes and is the most secure smartphone on the market.

I'm not sure why folks here hate it or call it an epic failure...would you care to elaborate? If I am missing out on something, I'd like to know.
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Richard, I'm not sure what posting a picture will do to my self-esteem, when the phone is prettier than me.

Anyway, this is what I LOVE about milescity.com and why I keep participating. The ability to ask opinions of those you trust because they have no vested interest in steering you wrong (well except for Gunnar, of course, but the greyhound has to exercise once in a while), and who have knowledge and experience that you may not, is without compare. I always read online reviews, however I sometimes wonder if all of the reviews are legitimate. They could be written by company employees for all I know.

I also really enjoy the banter back and forth. I know that sometimes it gets heated, and occasionally less than civil, but for someone who works from home, the interaction with people who also have an interest in Miles City is immensely valuable.

Thanks for your vision and hard work Larry, which is greatly appreciated, and thanks for everyone's input on the phone issue. I'm still weighing the X and the Incredible. I'm really hoping that the Incredible's battery life isn't as bad as I'm led to believe.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Swype comes preloaded on the X but you can easily download it from the web on the Incredible. I use it and I like it pretty well although I'm somewhat less enthusiastic about it than I was when I first got it.

Probably the biggest factor between the X and the Incredible are screen size. The X is BIG. If you like to watch movies and such on your phone, this is a good thing, but some people find it too large to comfortably carry in their pocket etc. Go down to the store and play with both of them before you choose.

As far as Larry's list goes, I think any of the big 3 droid phones would satisfy everything on your list except the location using GPS. They do all have GPS and built in turn-by-turn navigation which is free but as far as I know there is not a way to locate it remotely using the GPS.

With regard to battery life, the Incredible gets through the day, barely. I don't do anything to manage my battery (leave wifi and GPS on all day) and if I take it off the charger at 7 AM it's usually dead by 7 or 8 PM. I don't make a lot of phone calls but I do listen to podcasts most of the day so it's usually doing "something". I think that my experience is probably worse than most people's because I am out in the country where the coverage is either spotty or non-existent most of the day so the cellular radio is constantly searching for a signal. When I've been in Billings in good coverage I've had it last overnight and into the next morning without being plugged in. I think if I managed my battery a little better and wasn't out in the sticks it would probably get through the day easily but I chose to solve the problem by buying a second battery and a charger that can charge the battery outside the phone (don't get this from Verizon, they're WAY cheaper on ebay). I just carry the spare battery in my pocket and if I'm not home by 7 or 8 when the phone starts to die I throw the other battery in the phone and it's good until morning. Long story short, the battery is adequate for me but not ideal. I don't know how it compares to the other droids.

As far as the Storm goes, I have never used one or even seen one so I'm not sure what the problem with them was but I just know that they are generally sneered at on the gadget blogs.

If you're looking for cell phone reviews, check out

http://www.engadget.com and http://www.gizmodo.com.

As far as new phones on the horizon, yes, there has been a new android phone at least per month all summer and a new generation is promised in time for Christmas. The big wildcard is Microsoft's new operating system, "Windows Phone 7" which has gotten a lot of buzz and pretty good reviews despite the general crappiness of it's predecessor (Windows Mobile). They totally threw everything away from Win Mobile and started from scratch with reportedly pretty good results. With the atmosphere right now though, if you start chasing that next big superphone that is coming out next month, you will never get a phone because they are just cranking them out one after another. It's really a fantastic time to be a cell phone customer because there are many very good options on pretty much all carriers right now and these phones are just amazing. They can do pretty much anything a computer can do and they will definitely change how you think about your cell phone forever.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Also (as if my previous wall of text wasn't enough) I would suggest getting the $6 a month insurance. If you break your phone and have to replace it off-contract, these things are all like $600.
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Posted by Bill N (+64) 11 years ago
There is an app called, "Where's my Droid". If you send a specific text message to your stolen or lost phone it will turn the ringer all the way up and ring the phone. You can also send a different message to your phone and it will text back it's gps coordinates. I've never tried the gps part, so I'm not sure it will work like the Webmaster wants, but it sounds like what he's looking for.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
Thanks for the advice Levi and Bill.

The local Verizon store is manned by employees that don't seem to know much (they just call Verizon Wireless in regards to practically everything -- something I could have done myself), and the phones on display are fake plastic things -- which basically only allow you to look and feel. I don't think there is an option to try any particular one out before you buy (although I may be wrong).

I suppose I'll try calling Verizon Wireless and ask about the GPS thing. Lost a phone once, still have no idea where it is (along with the data in it -- phonebook/call records/photos/etc). Tried calling it, but no one ever answered.

Would be nice to simply go to VerizonWireless.com or use whatever other measures available to find the phone should it be necessary.
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Thanks everybody! X it is.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
It appears from a very, very quick search ... this place offers a free service that can track down your phone.

http://www.instamapper.com/

I'll have to read about it more though.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago


One of the cooler Android features IMO.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
That's pretty cool. Microsoft has been working on this stuff forever, but for some reason they have their collective thumbs up their asses. I'm tired of waiting for "Windows Phone 7" -- which I know how to develop for and would have purchased -- but I guess it's going to be a "Droid" instead.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
Anyway, I picked up an "HTC Droid Incredible" from the Verizon store this morning. Cost $99 (since my previous contract had already expired) + bought a plastic thing to protect the screen + a charger that works in the car.

It is actually pretty cool. Amazingly, the guy I dealt with was quite knowledgeable and helpful, and (although I had already decided) I asked, and he confirmed to pick up a better aftermarket battery.

Also what was funny is when the paperwork printed out, he goes "oh wow, today is all binary". (10/01/10).
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Check out http://global.ebay.com for extra batteries and accessories. The Verizon store nails you so bad on the prices for that stuff. I got 2 1500 mAh batteries plus a charger for $9.99 on there when just one battery costs $40 from Verizon. I was suspicious but they take paypal and the stuff worked fine when it got here, shipped direct from Hong Kong.
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Larry, when you purchased your phone, were you given a brochure on the Total Equipment Coverage with Mobile Recovery? I just received my phone, and the brochure says that mobile recovery is included with the $7.99/month TEC fee (insurance coverage Levi was speaking about). Apparently the service includes location (see a visual history of where you phone has been and use GPS to get current location), alarm (sound the alarm, even if it is on silent or vibrate), lock (secure your data and prevent access by triggering phone to lock itself) and wipe (remotely erasing your contacts from lost or stolen phone).

It appears to me that as long as you pay for the insurance (TEC), mobile recovery is included by downloading the app from mymobilerecovery.com.

Interesting.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
Yeah, I read some stuff online and the guy at the Verizon store pointed out various options as well, but I opted not to get the insurance. IMO, the phones are expensive enough as is.
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Posted by Tracy Walters (+302) 11 years ago
If you are in Billings, batteries are available for most phones at Batteries Plus...usually cheaper too.

Also...on the insurance, if it's the one you get through Verizon...my advice is don't get it, unless you are really absentminded. My son has had it...not only does he leave things everywhere, but he works in an oilfield, and seems to routinely trash or lose everything he has.

He has lost his phone several times, and with the insurance, you pay $50 for a refurbished replacement...and there is a limited number of times they'll do that...seems like it was twice in a 12 month period if I can remember correctly. The replacement takes quite a while to get there, too.

On a different tack, if you get a Verizon phone and travel a lot, get Verizon Navigator ... $10 a month and one of the coolest GPS add-ons there is. I'm running it on my Blackberry Storm and it is pretty incredible, even giving me warnings of traffic congestion in some more populated areas. The search function for restaurants, movies, bars and hotels is pretty sweet, and very functional. I even use it to check what movies are playing in Billings because it's quicker than the Internet.
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Posted by Richard Bonine, Jr (+14950) 11 years ago
get Verizon Navigator ... $10 a month and one of the coolest GPS add-ons there is.


That is pretty antiquated. The Android phones let you navigate on top of a satellite photo and have turn by turn directions. I am using a VWZ mifi with my iPad and an App called GISRoam. This has nearly replaced about $4000 of Trimble GPS equipment.

Blackberry is dead and will soon be jam.
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Posted by Corrina (Sturdevant) Harrell (+70) 11 years ago
I have not had that experience with insurance at all. I have 4 children and have had to replace quite a few phones. I usually had the replacement phone within 2-3 days. And they replaced 3 phones in a 12 month period. It is costly if you never have to use it, but without it I never could have replaced my the phones, so beneficial in that case. 3 of my kids have Droids now and they absolutely love them. I am trying to decide which Android phone I would like to get as my contract is up. Decisions, decisions....
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
I didn't have insurance in the past and I might not still if I was living in town. I got it after I turned my previous smart phone's screen into a spiderweb and had to spend 3 months using an old RAZR I got from a friend waiting on my contract to finish. I am far too addicted to my phone now to go without it until I'm due for another upgrade and I can't really afford to drop $600 on a replacement so insurance it is.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10001) 11 years ago
Hmm, perhaps I should get the insurance (assuming I can still add it on). If it does get lost, broken or stolen it would be quite expensive to replace.

The voice recognition doesn't like my name though, which is rather irritating. I'm not as happy as the guy in the video above in regards to that.

I can call the local pizza place, without knowing its number, but if I say to call me at home -- it comes up with "Antrum" (the correct pronunciation, but not the correct spelling) -- so it can't find the number in the phonebook.

I tried mispronouncing my name as "AntRAM", but then it came up with "Tantrum". My significant other is probably still giggling about that.
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Posted by Tracy Walters (+302) 11 years ago
Richard....you might be right about the Blackberry being dead, but for now it works very well for me. I hope they make it, because I like the security and useability of the unit. I have several people with Androids in my company, and they've been a pain to configure for our email system until recently. The Blackberry always Just Works.

I still maintain the Verizon Navigator is pretty cool...no, it doesn't have satellite maps built into it, but the road representations and turn by turn directions are fantastic and very clear...always warning me well in advance on some pretty convoluted overpass arrays (I'm referring to the 5 level one in Dallas and the absolutely beserk mess in Albequerque)

But...each to his own.
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Posted by Levi Forman (+3712) 11 years ago
Denise. Don't know if you already got your Droid X but if you're still in your 30 day return window a new phone was just announced that might be just what you were looking for. It's called the Droid Pro and it's got a very blackberry-esque keyboard.



It's also got a GSM radio so you can roam outside the US if you want. Not sure when it's due out but probably shortly. Specs are similar to the other droids currently available at Verizon.

http://www.engadget.com/2...-unveiled/
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Posted by Denise Selk (+1670) 11 years ago
Cool Levi. It definitely is very Blackberry-esque. I have my Droid X and am very happy with it. The virtual keyboard is taking some getting used to, but I am very impressed with the phone's capabilities. Count me as another former Blackberry believer converted. Thanks for all of the assistance.
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