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Do you like your cell phone?

Displaying poll results.
It is fantastic.
  5633 votes / 18%
A few nits, but it's pretty good.
  8498 votes / 27%
It suits my needs.
  7120 votes / 23%
It aggravates me, but not enough to switch.
  3399 votes / 11%
I hate it.
  1965 votes / 6%
I don't own a cell phone.
  1873 votes / 6%
I only hate everybody else's cell phones.
  1936 votes / 6%
30424 total votes.
[ Voting Booth | Other Polls | Back Home ]
  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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Do you like your cell phone?

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  • Honestly... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Vegan Cyclist (1650427) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:02PM (#39078323) Homepage
    The cell phone itself is fine, it's what my carrier (Rogers in Canada) did to cripple it. : \
    • Indeed. My cellphone provider (Virgin Mobile) has done pretty well with the Motorola Triumph. However, their recent decision to being throttling data connections is beginning to annoy me. I'm not even in the category affected by the cap (got an email saying my historical use, according to their records, would not impact me), and yet I am annoyed beyond belief by their decision. VM, you had unlimited data for the past several years, why the change? With the costs for fast connections constantly dropping, I c

      • Spectrum is scarce (Score:4, Informative)

        by tepples (727027) <tepples AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday February 18, 2012 @08:12PM (#39089051) Homepage Journal

        With the costs for fast connections constantly dropping

        It's not the backhaul they're concerned about as much as the spectrum. Each tower can have only so many Mbps going through it for each MHz that a carrier owns.

        It's not like they aren't making enough, and have had several years now, to upgrade their towers.

        Conventional wisdom is that NIMBYs make it hard to put up more towers.

        I wish I could get Windows 7 to let me access it for programming / debugging (it's apparently an involved process)

        So you're trying to get the Android Debug Bridge to work, but it's "an involved process" to find properly signed drivers for it because Microsoft's anti-rootkit strategy relies on end users not being able to act as their own CA for signing kernel-mode drivers. Does installing Xubuntu make it any easier?

        I'm going to wait until someone makes a compiler for Android for the various languages I like

        It's not a compiler, I'll grant, but there is SL4A.

    • Rogers is, quite frankly, evil incarnate. They're not even the lesser of the evils, they are just plain evil. It takes real effort to make Bell look like a better option, but Rogers manages to do it. (and no, I don't think Bell is any good, either, they just suck less than Rogers).

      My advice to you: next time you need a new phone, buy it at retail and don't tell Rogers. There's some surprisingly good phones available for the $300 range, and any Bell or Telus phone will work on Rogers' network if you unlock i

  • by Cazakatari (1403081) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:11PM (#39078443)

    Smartphone = $$$phone to me. Prepaid phone that can text is all I need.

    • by Anrego (830717) *

      I currently go that route as well.

      GPS would be handy from time to time, as well as the ability to quickly look something up. What I really _want_ is a phone with GPS and a very minimal data plan. Problem is where I live (Atlantic Canada) you really can't get that. It's either "basic calling / texting" or "full blown minimum $70 a month plan.. oh and you want caller id.. better take our "extras" package which is $15 more (can't just offer that one feature by itself..)".

    • To be clear, does that mean you own a smartphone and voted "I hate it" or own a standard phone and voted "Its fantastic"?

      yes its a slow day indeed....

    • by Ironchew (1069966)

      Alternatively, I like my N900 smartphone, but I use it as a pocket-sized computer and I don't have phone service on it. Does that count?

    • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:58PM (#39079149) Homepage Journal
      You know what's funny? I resisted getting a cell phone for a long time. It wasn't until smartphones came around that I got interested. Calling up people on the go just isn't something that interested me, nor is getting ripped off on text messages. It was only when my phone was really just a portable computer that I could program and connect to the internet that it offered some value to me. It was actually kind of funny when I was shopping for my first house, my realtor was flabbergasted that I was a young techie male with a good job and no cellphone. This was 2005 or so. My first phone was a Blackberry, back when they started to get a halfway decent browser, although previous to that I did have a Palm VII (with the cellphone connection), but it was a pretty lackluster device and I only had the bare minimum data plan for it. I did keep using it until they shut down the data service that it used though.
      • by srussia (884021)
        I understand completely. I only got a (basic) cellphone when my wife was about to give birth, so that I could be located anytime.

        Now, some 12 years on, I carry around a portable computer with phone capabilities (Nokia N9). I don't make any calls on it. And the only people who call me are my wife and my lawyer.
      • by Tom (822)

        You are not alone.

        I've been saying this ever since it was released: The iPhone is the PDA I've always been looking for.

        I used to own a Palm, I used to own an iPaq, and one other dumb device I forgot the brand of. None of them made me happy. The iPhone does, and the phone functionality is probably one of the least-often used.

    • by Cimexus (1355033) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @12:36AM (#39083005)

      Best of both worlds here: smartphone, but on a very cheap prepaid plan (usually ends up less than $15/month with my usage, which is generally maybe a dozen calls per month and 500 MB of data or so).

      I'm not a heavy phone user but I do find the data capabilities of smartphones very useful on occasion. GPS, looking up phone number and addresses on the road, checking my email when travelling etc. Also tethering the phone to my laptop has saved my ass countless times when I've been at customer sites (I'm a consultant) and they can't provide me with proper Internet access.

    • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @01:51PM (#39086397) Journal
      Dumbphones can cost more. The reason I got my last phone (Nokia N80) was that it had WiFi and a SIP client built in. Calls made over SIP cost less than calls made over the mobile network (and I don't make enough calls in total for a landline's line rental to be cost effective). The difference in cost between a cheap smartphone (I now have an HTC Desire) and a dumb phone is a lot less than the difference in cost between making all of my calls via the mobile network and most of them via SIP for the lifetime of the phone. This is especially true when travelling abroad - calling home using hotel WiFi is very cheap compared to roaming charges...
  • by DickBreath (207180) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:11PM (#39078447) Homepage
    Slightly off topic, but . . .

    Quick Tethering Quiz.

    Which costs more and which puts more stress on their network:
    1. A 1 kilobyte packet transmitted between my phone and the tower.
    2. A 1 kilobyte packet transmitted between my phone and the tower.
    (Please note in the case of (1) the packet was from my mobile browser, and in the case of (2) the packet was from my laptop browser.)

    If I have a 2 GB monthly data limit, which of the following activities will use more data on the network:
    1. Downloading 2 GB of data to my mobile phone?
    2. Downloading 2 GB of data to my laptop?
    • Tasting plan (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DickBreath (207180) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:12PM (#39078471) Homepage
      I have an interesting situation. My water utility sells me metered water for washing dishes, watering the lawn, showering, and other limited purposes.

      The utility offers a Tasting plan for an additional monthly charge. Under this plan, I am allowed to use the water also for cooking and drinking. (Even though my water use is metered, and each gallon of water for cooking and drinking is delivered by the same pipes!)

      Dear customer: our records indicate that you have been using water for cooking and/or drinking. Please upgrade your water rate plan to our convenient Tasting plan that allows for this usage. If you continue to use water for cooking and drinking, you will be signed up for the Tasting plan automatically.

      I think the Tasting plan is just a fee that they made up. It isn't a service they provide. They just want more money from me. I've got a workaround of using a container to obtain water from another room for the purposes of cooking and drinking.

      Some people shout: Theft of service! But what service? They're already delivering water to me, and metering it, and I'm paying for it, and its delivered by the same pipes!

      Some people shout: but you signed an agreement and using the water for cooking and drinking is a breach of that agreement! Ask a lawyer about the term "unconscionable contract". Nobody in their right mind would agree to this if they had any actual choice in the matter. Just because they have the power and can force you into paying this ridiculous fee or doing without doesn't make it right.

      I say that this Tasting "service" is no service at all, it's just a fee for delivering nothing at all extra to me. It's a case of the utility wanting something for nothing. Yet people seem to think it is somehow wrong to use the water I'm paying for for drinking or cooking unless I sign up for the more expensive Tasting plan.

      In order to add legitimacy to their Tasting plan, the water company says that the Tasting plan is actually delivering something: it includes an additional 2 Gigabytes of water per month, giving you 4 total Gigabytes of water.

      But what if I only need 2 Gigabytes of water and therefore my existing monthly 2 Gigabyte plan is plenty? The water company already charges $10 per extra Gigabyte of water I use over the limit. So if I used excess water, it's not like they wouldn't get paid.

      Furthermore, once I sign up for the Tasting plan, they don't make any distinction between water used for drinking/cooking and water used for other purposes. I could use 3/4 of it for tasting, and 1/4 for bathing/dishwashing. Or any other split. Or all of it purely for tasting. So then if I paid for Tasting and used only 2 Gigabytes of water, which I already had paid for, then why did I need the Tasting plan?

      I seem to be very confused about stealing water for tasting. Someone please set me straight.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:52PM (#39079047)

        ...your water utility bills you in gigabytes? Mine bills in gallons and litres. Odd.

      • I'm looking at last month's water bill so I'm really getting a kick out of this thread.

        Water System Charge: 61.60
        Water Use Charge: 5.42

        That's right. My actual water consumption makes up 8% of my water bill. And it's just a water bill. Not water and sewer or water and trash or some other combo. If the water company had their way, I'd have a 2" connection at nearly $200/month (plus usage) just because I have some land. Nevermind that less than half an acre is developed and has water service.

      • by saibot834 (1061528) on Sunday February 19, 2012 @06:10AM (#39091385) Homepage

        Your analogy does not explain why the carrier do this, because it's the other way around: You get a flatrate for a device and they assume that you're not going to use it completely. If you use it with another device, though, you actually might use all of it.

        So, by modifying your analogy, you get a flatrate for at max 1 cubic meter of water per month, but you may only use it for drinking and cooking. No one uses that amount of water for drinking and cooking of course, so the carrier calculates that you actually use much less. If all the customers do, that means $$$ for the stockholders.

        Now, if you break that agreement and use it also for washing dishes, watering the lawn and showering, you will use much more. This means less $$$ for the company and that's why they want to forbid it.

        What they are selling you, therefore is not a real flatrate, it's something like "1000 free* phone minutes! (*expires after 24h)". It's a crippled flatrate, where they try to make sure you don't actually use it or only in a minimal way.

    • by Macman408 (1308925) on Friday February 17, 2012 @08:16PM (#39081167)

      My ISP (sonic.net - so far, I'm quite happy with them) offers static IP service on DSL. For residential use, 1 static IP is free, 4 go for $10/month, and you can get 8 for $20/month. For business use, they charge $10/$20/$40 for the same 3.

      One of the things I like about them, though, is that they're a lot more down-to-earth and upfront than most companies. From the CEO's blog [sonic.net]:

      Wondering why business IP pricing is higher than residential? Honestly, it’s what the market will bear. There is a dearth of well-priced broadband offerings that incorporate static IP for business customers. Product designed revenues are not always a direct reflection of actual costs, and some things contribute to billing at a higher level than others. That’s just the way things go.

      In almost every industry, there are examples of this, where there are two products that cost approximately the same to produce, but one charges a premium: Generic versus brand-name drugs. Top-tier versus regular gasoline. Celeron versus Pentium versus Core. Yes, there may be some differences between these (brand-name drugs might taste/dissolve/look better; top-tier gas has different detergents that may or may not help your car; a Celeron can be a high-end chip that has some of the cache or various features disabled - possibly because they didn't work, or just because you wouldn't pay more to have them enabled). But those differences aren't the driver for the price difference - the fact is, people will pay more for them. Intel may sell a particular CPU at 3.33 GHz, 3 GHz, and 2.66 GHz. These all cost the same amount to produce, but some of them are capable of running faster. Intel would be stupid to not charge extra for the faster ones.

      Similarly, your phone company can prevent you from tethering, and can charge you to enable it. This is nothing new - they've long offered features (say, Caller ID) that cost them virtually nothing, but they charge you for them anyway. It's what the market will bear. If you don't like it, don't pay for it. If enough people don't like it, the market won't bear it - or another company will try to undercut your phone company by offering it for free.

      Capitalism sucks. Just like everything else.

    • by SixGunMojo (177687) on Friday February 17, 2012 @09:43PM (#39081831)

      For. Fucks. Sake.

        Any jackass knows that a pound of lead always weighs
      more than a pound of feathers.

      Geeze. Moron.

    • by dubbreak (623656)
      The problem is the phone company is run by people that think a lb of lead is heavier than a lb of feathers and will argue tooth and nail to that end.

      I recently had an issue with an online magazine subscription supplier. The magazine company stopped doing business with the online company (which I had to find out for myself).

      I asked for a prorated refund back to my credit card. Let's say the magazine was $10 for the subscription and I received 20% of my subscription.
      "Easy!" you say, "They owe you $8 be
    • by DeathFromSomewhere (940915) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @01:37PM (#39086321)
      A lot of people on this site seem to make the incorrect assumption that prices are based on cost in some way. They're not, prices are based on what people are willing to pay. Of course for commodities what people are willing to pay tends to fall in line with costs, but mobile broadband isn't a commodity just yet. For your example, people are willing to pay more to use their laptop on a cell network then their phones. Thus the higher prices.
  • I have an LG "Thrill". It works great as a phone and has lots of neat features (WiFi connectivity, WiFi hot spot, GPS, bluetooth, etc.). The only problem is that if I try to use the features, I need to have it plugged into a power source. Anything other than using it as a phone and the battery goes dead in a (very) few hours.

    Cheers,
    Dave

  • The first thing I did when I retired was to throw my cell phone away. Never missed it.
    • Re:First thing (Score:5, Interesting)

      by idontgno (624372) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:41PM (#39078889) Journal

      I have to assume there was nothing wrong with the phone. Just the people you had calling it.

      Telephones don't annoy people; people annoy people.

      I have a personal cell. A smartphone, in fact. It's mostly a mobile computing/browsing platform with a voice telephone number. But almost no one has the phone number, and those few are almost exclusively immediate family.

      If your employer demands your phone number, tell 'em to give you a phone, and give it back to 'em when you quit/retire/move on. Your personal phone should never appear in any company phonebook.

      • by amiga3D (567632)

        I gave my number to my bosses. It's not a problem. When I get home I leave the phone in the car.

      • by mooingyak (720677) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @03:00AM (#39083559)

        My brother-in-law often asks me why I never answer my phone. I tell him it's because I have caller ID. He never seems to understand I'm not joking.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by geoskd (321194)

        If your employer demands your phone number, tell 'em to give you a phone, and give it back to 'em when you quit/retire/move on. Your personal phone should never appear in any company phonebook.

        When my employees tell me that, I just laugh. It actually doesn't bother me that much, but it makes their job much harder because there are often times when I have information that they need to make their job easier, and if I don't have a way to get hold of them quickly, sucks to be them. Almost needless to say, the only person who hasn't given me his or her number is the die hard in the bunch, and I'll bet he'll change his mind when he realizes he works an extra hour a week that his co-workers avoid...

  • by subreality (157447) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:23PM (#39078617)

    I switched to the Galaxy Nexus recently and I'm NEVER GOING BACK. What a pain to run my own software on the iPhone. What a breeze it is on the GN.

    I voted "a few nits" because Android definitely doesn't have the consistent UI design that the iPhone had. All the settings in one place was nice instead of having them scattered around. iOS was really good about making the UI a pretty logical hierarchy with a "back" button on the upper left; Android comes up with a new UI in every app.

    So on the whole it's certainly missing a little refinement, but the advantage of not having to fight Apple for control of my own damn device completely outweighs any downside.

    • I like my Galaxy Nexus as well and voted "a few nits". Lack of ability to mount as usb mass storage device and poor battery life with the screen active are my chief complaints. I get the occasional Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) quirk here and there. Upgraded from Motorola Droid running Froyo.
      • The "no mass storage" problem is because it has a big internal flash instead of an SD card. Upside: you don't have to juggle for space for apps and data on your internal storage and you don't have the problems that many apps can't run off the SD. Downside: you can't unmount the FS, so you have to use MTP instead of mass storage.

        Personally I think that's a much better compromise than the old way.

    • Back button (Score:5, Interesting)

      by csumpi (2258986) on Friday February 17, 2012 @10:52PM (#39082331)

      I have the opposite back button experience. I found the back button on the iPhone inconsistent, as many apps didn't use it, moved it from the top of the screen to the bottom etc, and the back button only worked on the views of an app.

      On Android there's an actual back button, so it's always there and in the same place. The back button works great with the activity stack, not only can I go back in the same app, but I can go back to the previous app (for example I just opened an email, opened a pdf from that in quickoffice, opened a link from there in the browser, then three taps on the back button got me back to the list of emails).

    • by data2 (1382587) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @12:21PM (#39085855)

      My android, as well as most other upper tier, have a back button. Exactly the back function is something I find so amazingly annoying about the iPhone, that I am surprised you used that as an example. The look is more consistent though.

      • The thing about the Android back button is it's highly modal and it doesn't communicate the mode. For example, if I'm in a web page, it might go back to the previous web page. If there's no previous, it goes back to the previous app. There's no visual change to indicate the different behavior.

        On the iPhone, if you go into a menu, there will be a back button labelled with the name of the previous menu. I know exactly what will happen when I push it.

        Mind you, I very much like the Android-style back button

      • No one goes backward with the iPhone these days. We just keep going forward. Marching forward. Progress.....progress...new shiny progress..

  • I'm still only using it because it has a very handy qwerty keyboard. I don't use any of the other crappy windows mobile 6 functionality, including wifi.

    • by Hentes (2461350)

      Luckily HTC has included their own interface with which you can also set up wifi. Which is lucky as I still haven't figured out how to do it in windows mobile.

  • Still going strong after ten years of service. I love this phone.
  • Android Sucks (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TheNinjaroach (878876) on Friday February 17, 2012 @04:44PM (#39078949)
    I hate my Android. I feel like the usability of Google apps continue to go backwards from how well they worked when I first bought the phone. They continue cramming more never-used buttons and options into the Maps app, which crashes all the time when it used to run like a charm.

    I just don't think Google spends enough time focusing on the polish of any one piece of Android. It's like suburban sprawl of app features all over my phone, and I find myself more and more frustrated with how poorly the whole thing works.
    • by Nemyst (1383049)

      I don't know on which planet you're living, but Ice Cream Sandwich feels like the most polished release to date by a very long shot. Clean, minimalist style, more uniform UI, faster, better default apps, more logical menus...

      Perhaps it's not Google, but <insert manufacturer here> that you despise? A vanilla build of ICS outshines any past version.

    • by rdnetto (955205)

      I'm not particularly fond of Android either - it survived for about a day on my tablet before I installed Ubuntu. It just feels too limited compared to what I'm used to expecting from an OS. Smartphones should be an extension of their owners, augmenting their abilities, but both Android and iOS cater to the lowest common denominator without providing the flexibility that would allow power users to take this further.

      I'm extremely fond of my N900, even if the hardware is getting a bit dated. (The N9 is nice,

  • The n900 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 17, 2012 @05:14PM (#39079359)

    It's fantastic.

  • I just got a Galaxy Nexus. Love it. Can't wait to write some apps for it.
  • I had one of those "big" Motorola flipphones (still have it, haven't tried it lately, probably doesn't work. It has the GTE logo on it) and fidelity was great especially in high noise environments. Had to abandoned it when all cellphones went digital and first thing I noticed is how bad the audio was. Some people with a heavy accent I cannot understand as it seems the phone does poorly at recreating the analog sound. But maybe this is all moot as more and more text message.

    Speaking of fidelity, look at th

    • by Matheus (586080)

      What phone did you switch to? I've been a Motorola user since my first phone (actually since my Dad's one before me was I think the same flip you're talking about) I sold those flips when I worked at Best Buy. By the time I could afford one my first phone was the StarTAC. It sounded way better than the old flip did. I think around my v60 the sound got a bit quieter but clearer... this was fixed by my RAZR and even better with my RAZR2. Now I'm on an Atrix4G and it sounds fantastic.

      Other features aside

  • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday February 17, 2012 @06:04PM (#39079861) Homepage Journal

    It's pretty stupid, but I could definitely go for a stupider mobile phone. I really miss my old Razr V3 it was the perfect level of stupid which made it highly useful.

  • I recently switched to a Rumor Touch from a more traditional slide-out feature phone. The touchscreen /sucks/, and it's worse since I've used smartphones with proper touchscreens and know what I'm missing.

    Two things going wrong here:

    1) Using a cheap resistive touchscreen instead of a proper capacitative. Even after calibration it's only got a rough idea of where my finger is, and the scrolling is jerky and slow.

    2) Bad UI. Some of it (like looking at missed messages) requires precise finger placement to a

    • My friend bought that phone and after using it I demanded that she return it to the store. She balked, but did so provided I tag along for moral support. They were surprisingly understanding, accepted the return with no hassle or charge. You don't have to keep a phone you don't like. I believe we had 3 days to return it before it became problematic.
  • IPhone (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 17, 2012 @06:15PM (#39079961)

    I'm lazy, I admit it freely. I have too much work to take the time to tweak a lot of settings and load my own mobile phone software. I like sitting back and letting Apple make the major mobile OS decisions.

    I like working with the non-jailbroken apps of my Iphone4. I like carrying my easy-to-read contacts, calendars, converters, and calculators. I like reading with the mobile e-book readers, roadmaps with the descent GPS capability, and rearranging my daily to-do plans on my phone.

    Lazy, but loving my mobile anyway.

  • by lga (172042) on Friday February 17, 2012 @06:38PM (#39080195) Homepage Journal

    I bought a Samsung Galaxy S2 about 7 months ago and it is the best phone I have ever had. I've had all sorts of dumb and smart phones over the last 16 years and I've always wanted to upgrade to something better but now I am completely happy with my phone. (Albeit with the extra battery sleeve.)

    • by ichthus (72442)
      Me too. I owned the Motorola Cliq XT before, which is probably the absolute worst Android phone ever made. I never knew it could be so good, but after having owned the GS2 for a month now, I am quite happy.

      I ran Cyanogenmod on my Cliq XT, and I've rooted the GS2, but I think I might (maybe) be sticking with stock roms this time around. I've really enjoyed the free Wifi calling (T-Mobile) without having to set up any kind of SIP service. Then again, the added battery life that CM9 will almost certainl
  • I have an a flip phone from virgin mobile, I hate contracts and I had a smartphone for about 2 weeks and i found it pointless. I have a computer, a tablet , a laptop so a smartphone would be pointless, I use about 400 minutes and maybe 20 texts a month. I am not knocking anyone with smartphones, just not for me, not a facebook, twitter, google+ social media kind of guy and it really seems thats what smartphones are built around.
  • by Gordonjcp (186804) on Friday February 17, 2012 @07:10PM (#39080495) Homepage

    So many comments have been along the lines of "hurr i only want a simple phone that makes phone calls" and "oh I got rid of mine and I only use a landline" type of thing.

    Why?

    What possible use is a landline phone? You can use it within five feet of the wall socket. Great. "Oh it's for emergencies" - wonderful, like presumably some sort of emergency that takes out mobile phone cellsites but leaves fragile telephone lines intact?

    Why do you put up with all this shit about tethering, and paying to receive calls, and indeed paying to *make* calls and send text messages? You're being ripped off. Get together and sort it out with the mobile phone companies.

    Sort it out, guys, really.

    • What possible use is a landline phone? You can use it within five feet of the wall socket. Great. "Oh it's for emergencies" - wonderful, like presumably some sort of emergency that takes out mobile phone cellsites but leaves fragile telephone lines intact?

      I think the general case is power outages. Landline phones (except fancy or cordless models) get their power via the telephone lines, not from the wall. The phone company is required to have backup power for their landline systems, including powering customer phones. If your power goes out, you can still usually use the phone.

      This is especially true for extended power outages - after a few days, your cell phone will be out of batteries, and you may have no place to charge it, even if the cell tower is still

      • by Gordonjcp (186804)

        The landlines run off gennies for just as long as the cell sites do. And, if I can't find somewhere to charge my phone up after a day or so then I really ought to hand in my geek card.

        Furthermore, landlines won't power your phones if the lines have failed.

        • According to The Internet [citation needed], most cell sites only have 2 to 4 hours of battery backup. Only some critical locations have generators. The FCC looked into requiring an 8-hour backup battery, but that never made it into the regulations.

          But that's according to The Internet. Looking at the actual regulations [gpoaccess.gov], it looks like 8 hours is now the minimum for cell sites, while central offices require at least 24 hours of backup power.

          • by Gordonjcp (186804)

            Hm, I'm not sure about the US. Most of the cell sites around here have at least eight hours of battery backup, and the larger ones have a genny. Obviously there's no point bothering for the infill sites.

            Like I said, anything that's going to take out the power lines is likely to take out the telephone lines. Any time we have wind over about 70mph here, my phone line is down.

      • by JustNiz (692889)

        According to head math:
        I generally experience 1 power outage about every 3 years. Perhaps I'm lucky.
        Anyway, Of those, maybe 1 in 5 last longer than about 5 minutes.
        Of those, my actual need to phone someone during a longer power cut is maybe 1 in 3.

        I can't see the need to be paying the monthly fee to maintain a land line for what amounts to a 1 in 45 year event, which BTW includes the probably erroneous assumption that the power cuts always take out my cell phone too.

        • According to head math:
          I generally experience 1 car accident about every 10 years. Perhaps I'm lucky.
          Anyway, of those, zero have been severe (let's say 1 in 10 would be).

          I still wear my seatbelt every time I get in the car, and am thankful for having airbags too, even if it is a 1-in-100 years event that I would die from not having my seat belt and airbags.

          Point being, it's the major events where it matters - if I had a heart attack in Japan the day after the tsunami, I'd be pretty thankful for paying for a

    • by Yaztromo (655250) <yaztromo AT mac DOT com> on Saturday February 18, 2012 @06:38PM (#39088403) Homepage Journal

      So many comments have been along the lines of "hurr i only want a simple phone that makes phone calls" and "oh I got rid of mine and I only use a landline" type of thing.

      Why?

      911 service. With a traditional POTS phone, it's attached to a physical address. If you need emergency service (fire, police, ambulance), dispatch can have someone on their way to the address attached to your landline phone even if you can't speak for some reason, and before you have an opportunity to describe where you are if you can.

      Many places have E911 service for cell callers, and these work in two ways. If your cell phone has a GPS built in, it can send your coordinates to a roughly 10m radius, but without the E911 system uses cell tower triangulation with a resolution of approximately 300m radius. This may not seem like a big problem if you live out in the country, or are stranded at the side of the highway, but what if you're in a situation where you can't speak, and you live in high-density housing? E911 can't tell dispatch or the responders which apartment or suite you live in, and the time it takes to determine that information could mean the difference between life and death. By way of example, if you're alone in a 7th floor apartment in a 10-story building and are choking severely enough to require emergency assistance (in which case, you probably can't speak), which would you prefer to call from -- a landline that gives dispatch your exact building and apartment number, or a cell phone that can only inform dispatch that you're in or around the building? The extra time it would take emergency service to walk around the building and knock on all the doors in an attempt to find you would be the difference between you being found dead on the floor, or alive enough to be revived.

      True, these situations don't happen to specific individuals all that often, but it just happens that that one in a million time when it does occur that suddenly becomes the most important thing in your life.

      Yaz

    • What possible use is a landline phone? ...like presumably some sort of emergency that takes out mobile phone cellsites but leaves fragile telephone lines intact?

      It makes phone calls and, because of a dedicated connection does not run out of bandwidth if a large number of people try to make calls at the same time. It is also far cheaper than a mobile (at least in Canada) and the fact that people can only reach me when I am home or in the office is great - that way when I am out and about I cannot get bothered by others calling me.

      When the cost of a mobile drops below a landline, which has probably already happened in Europe but is far from happening in Canada, I

  • by bazorg (911295) on Friday February 17, 2012 @07:13PM (#39080531)

    Normally I feel I'm the only one around with a Windows phone. My HTC Radar is pretty good, actually. I don't care that much about not having 10000000000 apps and counting, as long as the browser is OK. It turns out that after many years avoiding it on the desktop, I find that Internet Explorer on this mobile is pretty good, and the Facebook+Twitter+Outlook Address book is very well made. If these Windows phones take off, people might be surprised that MS is selling something that is nice to use.

    • Normally I feel I'm the only one around with a Windows phone.

      Thus, we have a realist person here at /.

    • by Osgeld (1900440)

      I have a windows phone, its old so its windows mobile 5, but it works fine and does everything I want it to (make calls, send texts) and some more

  • by BlueScreenO'Life (1813666) on Friday February 17, 2012 @08:37PM (#39081351)

    Desire HD, decent hardware and it's remarkably sturdy given how delicate it looks. I have dropped it on concrete several times from heights up to 2 metres and it hasn't taken any damage other than spotted paint and really minor nicks.

    Hardware-wise one major flaw is WiFi reception drops dramatically when I'm not holding it right (TM).

    It's a shame HTC are being a bit asshole-ish with their failure to port ICS to what was not so far ago their flagship device when it's more than capable of running it.

    I didn't get around to getting a custom firmware yet because I've heard reports of camera issues - I'd like to hear suggestions though.

    • It's a shame HTC are being a bit asshole-ish with their failure to port ICS to what was not so far ago their flagship device when it's more than capable of running it.

      I must correct myself. Apparently the upgrade will happen; I was unaware of recent news [facebook.com].

  • It fits my needs, and I wouldn't buy something that I think is great. Current cellphones are just too expensive to keep buying ones that do more than what I want. When they get too cheap to matter, I'll start to buy great ones. The same aplies to my plan. It is a prepaid with a pay as you go data option. Limited, but enough.

    That said, smart phones are great. Finally my computer can call me without paying exorbitant fees for messages and modem signature.

  • by Skyshadow (508) * on Friday February 17, 2012 @11:13PM (#39082479) Homepage

    At some point, we're going to have to accept that the devices we carry around with us aren't really "phones" anymore. They're powerful computers that happen to be able to make the odd phone call in between accessing the internet, playing games, taking photos and storing data.

    That established, I'm pretty happy with my iPhone 4s. The glaring omission is turn-by-turn directions -- I consider it a public safety issue when I see people looking down at their phones trying to figure out what exit they need to get off on.

    • by blueg3 (192743) on Saturday February 18, 2012 @06:02PM (#39088191)

      We'll probably accept that around the same time that we accept that we should no longer call personal computers "computers". After all, computation is almost never the high-level task they're used for these days and they bear little resemblance to a person hired to perform rote calculations by hand.

    • by Mitreya (579078)

      At some point, we're going to have to accept that the devices we carry around with us aren't really "phones" anymore.

      Obligatory Simpsons:
      Carl: Somebody call 911!
      Lenny: I don't know how to use the phone on my phone.

      On a related note, I was recently helping my mom look for a new phone, and 3-page/8-section smart phone review articles often do not include a "phone call quality" section. However things like "camera quality", "app availability" and "screen quality" are covered in detail. Why?

  • I just loaded a custom rom based on CyanogenMod CM7 on my Moto Atrix. My phone is now what I have expected it to be. Fast, great UI, tons of options, and best of all it's not crippled by the crap AT&T loaded on it.

  • Even though it sucks up a huge amount of my phone's battery charge, I use the TuneIn Radio app while my cell is connected to the car stereo via the Aux jack, and I'm good to go! After a year, I still can't believe I'm driving around town while listening to certain radio stations, in real time. For the record, it's three main stations, Radio Nova (from France), KCRW (Los Angeles) and KEXP (Seattle).

    Everything else, including calls and texting and whatnot, is an afterthought.

  • Granted, I installed Team Nocturnal's modded EVO Stock image. Still, the thing does everything I want, has an app that adjusts my ringer/app/etc. volume and brightness during certain times of day and when I'm geographically at the office. I rarely ever (maybe once or twice a month) have any sort of app crash. My Yahoo and work (exchange) emails both Just Work(tm). The browser does a better job than a few desktop browsers I've used. Youtube and Netflix are actually usable. Apps that are written well perform

  • All my buddies were complaining about their cell phones and plans. So I did some research to find a solution. Started a small business to offer first class phones with a tiny price.

    My efforts were entirely successful. So I decided to start a company selling them.

    No one was willing to buy from someone who wasn't advertising on TV (even though all the services and phones were produced by major dealers)... so now I just say FUCK YOU... LIVE WITH IT.

    You're going to have a cell phone for A LONG TIME, if yo
  • My 3GS has been a great phone, and a reliable one. With iOS 5 though I find the UI can be a bit laggy. I click to begin a track playing, and there's a 3 or 4 second pause before it begins. When booting, there's often lag when I'm asked to enter my unlock code. I can understand lagging in installed applications, but not the inbuilt stuff. It's fine for things to take longer on older hardware, but UI lag should be avoided. Don't give me options if the system isn't ready to process my actions.

    Doesn't happen al

  • The phone is fine, the problem is that you can't get a decent battery for a Nokia 6250 any more - the rip-off clones currently available will only hold their charge for around four days, which is nonsense.

    So it looks like I'm going to have to buy a new phone just to get back to a decent battery life.

  • I just have a Black Berry phone with a keypad for work. Carrying one phone is annoying enough, I can't see myself carrying two. Also, if I did have my own phone it would be a smart phone which, on top of the cost of the phone, would also require a $50 to $100 per month data plan with all of the associated nick and diming.

    I dislike my Black Berry, but I don't have to pay the bill....

  • by DiSKiLLeR (17651) on Sunday February 19, 2012 @05:54AM (#39091335) Homepage Journal

    I owned several iPhones (3G, 4) which were all horrendous. Well. To be fair, iOS 2 and 3 were horrendous, 4 was pretty good. Haven't seen iOS 5.

    I ebayed my iPhone 4 and got a HTC Sensation and haven't looked back. It is AMAZING. I'd never used android before. But my god, this phone is light years ahead of iPhone 4 and 4S and iOS.

    I'm looking at getting the 7.7" glaxytab now, and using that instead of my phone as I never actually use my phone for calls.... so a small formfactor tablet to replace my HTC Sensation might be the way to go. (not that I have any problems with my HTC sensation, I love it, but would like an even bigger screen and the Sensations screen is already way bigger than all the iPhone's.)

  • by MeanGene (17515) on Monday February 20, 2012 @12:41PM (#39100323)

    What this world needs is a flip phone that runs Android. Touch-screen is a huge PITA when you wear gloves or your hands are wet. Not having a physical keyboard gives rise to annoyances like having to wait for a proximity server time-out + screen wake-up (press "1" for English).

    Sliders have the keyboard - but they don't protect the screen!

    Btw, the last flip smartphone seems to have been Blackberry Style [phonescoop.com]....

If I'd known computer science was going to be like this, I'd never have given up being a rock 'n' roll star. -- G. Hirst

 



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