The search for a new phone continues

smartphones - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here

Last week, I mentioned how I am starting to search for a new phone. I laid out what I would require from my new phone, and also mentioned that I had narrowed it down to two choices: either the HTC EVO 4G LTE or the Samsung Galaxy S III. Well, after a lot of great conversation with all of you, and an interesting conversation with my boss, some things have changed in my search.

I work for a small computer company. When I say small, I mean really small. I am the only employee, and there are two guys that own the company. We are all friends, and it makes for a great work environment. When I mentioned to one of them that I was eligible for a phone upgrade, he started telling me about the benefits of all three of us having the same phone, and he was specifically talking about some of the sharing benefits that Samsung phones have. He really liked the idea of being able to instantly and easily share almost anything from one phone to another, or even automatically share pictures.

Now this is great news for me, because he told me if we all get the same phones, then the company will pay for my upgrade. That can be both good and bad – good because I would save over $200 of my own money for a new phone. Bad because I wouldn’t necessarily have free reign over what phone I choose.

The other good news is that, of the three of us, I am the mobile expert, so they defer to me on a lot of things related to mobile devices. This means that even though I won’t have the only say in what phone we choose, I will be the one doing a good part of the digging, and will basically present my case as to why I think we should get a certain phone.

Now even though my bosses really like the Samsung sharing apps, that doesn’t mean that they are 100% sold on getting a Samsung. However, I have Sprint service, and they both have Verizon. This means that whatever phone we choose will need to be available on both carriers. This eliminates the HTC EVO 4G LTE. Here are some of the phones I looked into this week.

Samsung Galaxy S III

I mentioned this phone last week, and it is still on my short list this week. It has one of the biggest screens on the market right now. It is very fast with its quad-core processor and 2GB RAM. It will be running Android 4.1 by the time we are ready to upgrade. Because of how popular the phone is, there is a large developer community. This is important because chances are pretty good that whatever device I get will be rooted shortly thereafter. Overall, I would say this phone is at the top of our list.

Samsung Galaxy Note 2

Speaking of large screens, the Galaxy Note 2 is due to be released at the end of the month. I was looking into the specs of the Note 2 this week, and I have to say I am impressed. Quad-core processor, 2GB RAM, 5.5 inch screen, digitizer pen, and so much more. I spent 8 minutes watching the video on Samsung’s website, and when it was over I think I was drooling a little bit. This phone looks amazing. The biggest concern I have, however, is the size of the Note 2. While screen size is one of the cool things about this phone, it also makes it something that I would need to get used to. When I talked about it with my boss, the ability to have it fit easily in pockets was very important to him.

The Next Nexus

A few of you commented about the new Nexus that is supposedly coming out soon. You mentioned that if I love Android so much, then I should buy the pure Android Nexus. I am open to this idea, but there is one catch for me. If the rumors are true, LG will be making the next Nexus, and I don’t think I could bring myself to buy an LG phone. I’m sure there are a lot of people that will tell me they love their LG phones, and that’s great for you, but every time I have held an LG phone in my hands, I was never impressed.

 The Next New Thing

November 25. That’s the day that one of my bosses becomes eligible for his upgrade. There’s a very good chance that someone will have a new phone available at Christmas time. If not, well, there are lots of other options out there.

So that’s where I’m at with the search for my next phone. But what about you – what other phones would you look at? What are your opinions of the ones listed here?

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Bryan Faulkner

Bryan Faulkner is a former associate editor at Pocketables. He loves to find new ways to use his tablets while working as the Tech Director at his local church. Mixing sound from the iPad is his newest obsession. He currently has a pair of HP TouchPads, an iPad 2, a decommissioned HTC EVO 4G, and a Samsung Galaxy Note II to tinker with.

Avatar of Bryan Faulkner

21 thoughts on “The search for a new phone continues

  • All good choices. I’m going with the Note II since it’s coming to Verizon. The Note II has promise of doubling as a phone and a very portable tablet. Of course, it also has the risk of being a tweener — too big for a phone, too small for a tablet. We’ll see.

  • Avatar of Samson

    It’s rumored that multiple manufacturers will be making a nexus device, let’s see what google has to say in the upcoming weeks :)

  • Avatar of gyffes

    I gotta tell you, I can’t abide the size of the Samsungs.. I feel like Max Smart, holding my bloody SHOE to my head.

    Also, a stylus? Seriously? Laughed my ass off when I saw that in the Superbowl ad. What is this, 1999?

    • Avatar of Andreas Ødegård

      It’s not a stylus, it’s a digitizer pen. It still works perfectly with fingers, but you also have a dead on accurate pen that makes your 5.5-inch device more suited for note taking and drawing than any standard 10-inch tablet using an actual stylus.

  • Avatar of Anony Mouse

    Avoid LG. RUN from LG. My myTouch was a piece of crap with constant issues. LG refuses to continue support to their devices once you buy them, making you have to buy another device to get an upgrade. Their customer support is equally awful. You can check out their fan base by looking at the LG Mobile Facebook page. Thousands of complaints by customers. I wish I had looked at it to know what I was in for before wasting my money. I checked out Samsungs Facebook page prior to getting my SIII and their comments are positive so I was sold. I have called customer support about questions regarding the device and they are super friendly and willing to help, unlike LG who are rude and lie to their customers to make a profit. I like the NFC ability with the SIII. I don’t use a whole lot of the features this device has to offer but that feature is a wonderful thing to have.

    • Avatar of Vakeros

      I would agree with the above comment except if it were a Nexus the updates would be coming from Google, so one major worry removed.

    • Avatar of Bryan Faulkner

      Those are my feelings, about avoiding LG, but I can’t say I’ve ever had bad experiences with them, just not had any experiences. Thanks for the comment.

    • Avatar of closet nerd

      The note II has some really cool features, the preview ability almost sold me but a phablet that would barely fit in my 501’s was a deal breaker

  • Avatar of Robin

    Out of those choices I would go with the Galaxy Note 2. When you are sharing notes and pictures you want to be able to see them clearly and a 5.5 high res. screen will accomplish that. Even at that size it still fits nicely into a pocket. Actually it even feels more secure in your pocket because of the size. A bluetooth headset solves the problem of holding it up to your head. It’s good to get use to with the new driving laws in most places now. Oh by the way, the PlayBook has a demo of devices sharing info between them at the same time. This is a QNX feature that will be released with the new BB phones early next year. Just saying. BB is changing. The Note 2 looks like your best choice.

    • Avatar of Bryan Faulkner

      I’m sure that BlackBerry is doing everything in its power to be relevant, I could never give them a chance unless they were giving away their phones and tablets. They’ve done waaaaay too much wrong at this point.

  • Avatar of hisuwh

    The samsung galaxy range are awesome in my opinion. The choice between the s3 and the note is a tricky one though. I got to play with a note the other day. The big screen combined with the digitiser pen is an awesome combination but it is very large. I’d happily take either of those phones though – shame im not due an upgrade

  • Avatar of Sharonkay

    I vote you get the Note 2, as I am getting the Samsung Note 2 the minute it arrives at Verizon. I have seen and read every review and nothing beats it. Battery life alone its the one to buy, let alone the quad core and 2GB ram. I just need to find a good clip holster for it.

  • +1 for Note 2.

    Really phones have become too small as of lately. I’m glad the trend is changing back into something that my freakishly big hands can hold comfortably and use with out getting cramps.

    If not that one, I would also highly check out the new ASUS Padfone. This has been my dream device for a long time (its a phone, its a tablet, its whatever you need it to be). My only hold off on getting it is that I already own an ASUS Transformer Prime (Best tablet I’ve ever owned and I came from an iPad 2), and the fact that it doesn’t look like they added the keyboard attachment (which is one of the big reasons I love my ASUS Transformer Prime).

    But if not the Note 2 or the ASUS Padfone: I would say go with Galaxy S III. As you mentioned it is a hot selling phone which usually means it will not only have great dev support for it, but also plenty of accessories as well.

    • Avatar of Bryan Faulkner

      I did think about the Padfone. I’ll have to do a little looking into that. My bosses are talking about possibly buying themselves a tablet as well, so that might factor into what phone we get. If they get a sweet tablet, they might just go with a dumb phone, or if we get the Note, they might not get a tablet at all. Or we could get the Padfone and get both. lol.

  • Avatar of Doug Culp

    Probably the Note II. I’m a solid HTC fan and I still have my EVO 4G, but I won’t be eligible for upgrade till June. I would miss the kickstand, for sure (so convenient), but I would also love the bigger screen, the digitizer pen and the 2 gb of ram. The quad core processor sounds amazing g too.

  • Same here, still rocking the OG EVO. Kickstand should be standard on all phones over 4 inches. I’ll miss it dearly. But I’ll welcome the return of smart pen input (yeah, we had some types of this in the old days) . Somebody should make a combo pen/stand for the big ass Note II

  • Avatar of Hayden Smith

    Personally I prefer Sense over Touchwiz but since you need a phone in both carriers there is sadly no good option :(

  • SGIII seems good like a good choice for you

  • Avatar of D. Stroya

    The S3 is great, but if you’ll need the screen real estate, get the Note 2, it’ll have all the same sharing features at the S3.

  • Avatar of Paul M

    If you would benefit from being able to make and share sketches, annotate pictures and will be reading manuals and documents a lot, the Note2 is the winner.

    If making phone calls and portability matters more, the SGS3 or even galaxy S3 mini.

    The padfone is interesting too, shame the p2 loses the keyboard dock of the p1.

    I would also consider the HTC One S or X, they are genuinely nice phones. But lack of swappable batteries may rule them out.


  • Avatar of danindenver

    “LG who are rude and lie to their customers to make a profit.”

    Is this the same LG that has a plant full of 200 idle employees in Holland, MI that have never produced a product for sale? Perhaps they could shift some of those employees over to customer service.


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