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727 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513237 28-Aug-2011 23:18
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Yup - that's what it looks like.
I'd only go for a "Grade 1" phone, essentially as new.
The only Android phone in my price range is the Samsung Galaxy 550 i5503.
It's a bit hard to track down specific info on it.
First up is the assumption that the particular phones they have, or at least one of the eight, will work on XT. It's not stated.
It's Android 2.1.
2 Mpix camera, which is below my spec, too.
2.8" screen - ok - same as the x1 I think.

Then there's this:
http://androidforums.com/samsung-galaxy-europa-5/218135-samsung-galaxy-5-i5503-major-worries.html

No thanks.

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  Reply # 513381 29-Aug-2011 11:54
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I would say most of the android phones would give you your current GPS coordinates without using data at all. I say this based on the fact that my U8150 does that and it's a pretty entry level device. Whether you can get offline maps or how accurate/reliable it is under bush cover I do not know. Once it has a lock it tells you how accurate it is, I assume that accuracy is accurate!

Also, personally I think QVGA is not that bad. Like keewee01, I also get frustrated with my phone but I use it everyday. As it sounds like you don't use your phone heavily, I think you would find it fine.

Whereabouts to you live/work etc? If you're near me you can come and check out my U8150. I haven't checked but I guess it's similar spec to the X1.

Going through your checklist I note the following points (if I don't mention something then probably that means it meets your requirements):

1) It's easy to completely block 3G (what I usually do) or even selectively block it by use of a firewall (so when I am on 3G only apps I want can access it).
2) GPS, as mentioned, long/lat/accuracy is data-independant. Offline maps? Don't know.
3) Robust, light shower proof? Doubtful. Are any modern phones that robust?
4) I get the feeling that most of the Android phones (especially the cheaper ones) will not see significant updates, still for the price what do you expect? What kind of updates did you get on your old phone? Having said that, there are a ton of apps out there to "update" the functionality of the phone.
5) Voice note/dictation - a good example of an app that I'm sure exists but I don't use it.
6) Syncing contacts by bluetooth to your computer will be unnecessary with Android, because it will automatically sync with your google account (if you don't have one you'll want to get one) and you can access your contacts/calendar etc online. I suppose there must be a way to sync the online google account to your computer too but I have no need for that.

Let me know if you have any other questions.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513427 29-Aug-2011 13:06
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Hey thanks for that detailed response, bazzer.
1, 2: great!
3: well - a guy can hope I guess ;-)
4: Given that perspective, my concerns about this are reduced, but it still worries me a bit that I may not be able to apply an LG update without a Windows machine
5: Yup - I'll find an app I expect
6: I have gmail accounts so that should all be OK.

Can you please give an explicit answer about "geotagging" of images taken by your phone? Is the lat/long recorded in the EXIF metadata automatically?

Thanks for the offer of a look-see too. In the event of a tie-break situation, I may take you up on it!

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  Reply # 513488 29-Aug-2011 14:43
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xarqi: Hey thanks for that detailed response, bazzer.
1, 2: great!
3: well - a guy can hope I guess ;-)
4: Given that perspective, my concerns about this are reduced, but it still worries me a bit that I may not be able to apply an LG update without a Windows machine
5: Yup - I'll find an app I expect
6: I have gmail accounts so that should all be OK.

Can you please give an explicit answer about "geotagging" of images taken by your phone? Is the lat/long recorded in the EXIF metadata automatically?

Thanks for the offer of a look-see too. In the event of a tie-break situation, I may take you up on it!

I don't use geotagging, but there is definitely the option to include the location in the EXIF data. I have that option turned off, so I just don't know what would be recorded normally since GPS is not active all the time, only when apps request it. Once it's activated it takes a while to lock, so how would that impact the data stored in the EXIF I do not know, especially if you are inside and it can't lock. I guess it'd just be approximate. I tried just now and it was reasonably close but I don't know when the last time I got a GPS lock was, probably when I was testing it out earlier before I composed my reply!



727 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513500 29-Aug-2011 15:00
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OK - thanks for that. Where I'd find it useful is to document where I'd found particular reasonably rare plants in the bush so I could try to find them more easily at different times of year, and perhaps even plot distributions. My main interest though is in photography, so I'd normally have my 'proper' camera gear with me and would not be needing the images from the phone camera for much else.

I guess the point is that I'd be outside, and have been there for a while, so the GPS should have a good chance of working.

---

I have to say - the P500 is growing on me - nicer screen, I can probably get my SMB shared videos and offline maps going, faster processor, more memory, reportedly better WiFi reliability, there IS a syncing app for OS X (although I'll have to use an old version to match my old version of OS X).

I just have to apply my new value-touchstone to the problem. These days I assume that consumer electronics only last as long as their warranty periods. The X1 is probably worth $3.25 a week to me, but is a P500 worth $5.75 a week? Probably. (Those aren't the costs of HP or similar, just the effective costs assuming the unit breaks beyond economic repair and with no residual value a day after the warranty expires.)

Still - more advice would be very welcome! The $169 (X1)/$299 (P500) deal at The Warehouse runs until 6 September.

P.S.
Bugger.  I'll have to add $30 for a SIM card for the P500 - one is included in the X1 offer.  That makes the P500 near enough to twice the price of the X1.



727 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513509 29-Aug-2011 15:20
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Ouch!
Problems with updates even for those WITH Windows machines.

wallop:Tried to do the update on my replacement [LG P500] phone today. It killed it, would'nt even power on. Took it back to DSE and they replaced it on the spot. I won't be trying to update this one.


http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?forumid=85&topicid=77229

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  Reply # 513545 29-Aug-2011 16:52
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Why would you want to update the firmware? 90% of people that have just complain about bugs that weren't there before .
IF you have to, use custom ROMs where the developer will actually make changes/fix bugs.
Also, be aware that many, many apps (lots of mapping software for instance) wont be available for the x1 just because it is qvga.

And people brick phones all the time, most times it's from not reading/following instructions.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513552 29-Aug-2011 17:10
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I'd update for Android 2.3 I expect - there are advantages for battery life I think.
No word on when such an update will be out though - just "real soon now".

Thanks for the tip about app restrictions due to QVGA.

I'm going to see if I can source a free SIM for the P500, and if so, I'm leaning that way, but I'm still going back and forth a bit.

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  Reply # 513554 29-Aug-2011 17:13
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Just go a custom ROM and get 2.3.5. It aslo gets rid of the bloatware.



727 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513572 29-Aug-2011 17:43
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blakamin: Just go a custom ROM and get 2.3.5. It aslo gets rid of the bloatware.

Thanks.
I'm just a newby at this Android thing so I want to take small steps.  I wouldn't be surprised though if in a few months I ask myself "Why didn't I just follow blakamin's advice in August?" 

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  Reply # 513602 29-Aug-2011 18:44
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Lol, I've just seen sooo many complaints about the new factory ROM when it came out in other countries, that I decided to stick to the custom path!
I'm also now on my 4th Android device! (actually, 5th if you count my old Okta touch running android)

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  Reply # 513717 29-Aug-2011 22:38
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Ok. Cat amongst the pigeons here: Buy a secondhand iPhone 3GS. They are in the few hundreds $$$ range now. Take a browse through trademe. They do geotagged pics, offline topographic maps (map app NZ is $21) and offline turn by turn (sygic NZ and Aus is $41). Gps works sweet under bush cover. You are obviously an apple fan so why not go the iPhone? :-)



727 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 513729 29-Aug-2011 23:02
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That's an interesting option indeed. Thanks for suggesting it. I'd been assuming that no iPhone would be in the price range I could afford. I'd like some effective warranty cover, so that may make things a tad tricky, but I'll certainly explore the possibilities. 3GS you say? OK - here I go.

---
In other news, I think I've sorted out a no-cost SIM for the P500, if I went that way - all above board, but I can't say how, sorry.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 514429 31-Aug-2011 12:52
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OK decision made.

The Apple option just isn't going to fly, yet, sadly, although if and when finances permit, yes please.

iPhone 3GS 8GB are on "special" at Bond and Bond for $700 - way too much; the TradeMe offerings seem to go for anything from $340 up, and with the cost of a SIM, that puts me over my (already generous, for me) budget, in addition to which, many are a bit bashed up and I'd have no warranty and no easy recourse if it was a dud.

I waxed and waned on the P500. I warmed to it after a discussion with a very friendly and helpful Telecom support person and I read a bunch of reviews, all very favourable, but, surprisingly, some complaints about the screen resolution. I'd even managed to source a "free" SIM, so my price was going to be $299 all up.

I even saw some recent movement in the Android 2.3 for P500 news, and while it's been said before, LG's version is apparently due "any day now".

That raised again a question that has been preying in me: how would I apply the update?
The answer, provided during a very friendly, useful, and frank conversation with an LG support person is - I couldn't. All LG products that can connect to computers require a Windows platform. Further, I was told that since the first question asked when customers call for support is "Have you applied the latest software update?" I'd essentially have no support other than warranty cover for a clear hardware fault. It was also stated that numerous requests for extended support options had been forwarded to LG management in Korea, but nothing had ever been done and the presumption is that lack of support for interoperability with anything except Windows is a matter of LG policy.

So, I'm off to buy a Huawei X1. I know I'll dislike the screen; I know the support may be no better, etc, but given that I'd be so clearly swimming against the current with the P500, I'd rather be frustrated for $170 than for $300.

When the X1 breaks beyond economic repair 366 days from now, I'll look again.

Thanks to all for your input; I appreciate the community support.

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  Reply # 514433 31-Aug-2011 12:56
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I could loan you a p500 for a month...

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