Thursday, October 18, 2012

Need Advice on Which Smartphone to Get

Last month, after three long years, my smartphone contract with Bell finally expired!

This contract had me locked away from the exciting developments in the mobile device market. Although not completely cloistered and clueless, I really need help in choosing my next device and carrier.

I had a BlackBerry Curve for the last three years.  Although it served me well and I love its keyboard, I have found that accessing apps is often difficult with BlackBerry. As a mobile researcher, I need timely access to the popular and cutting-edge apps, so as reluctant as I am to not buy a Canadian company's product, I will not be going with BlackBerry.

I'm not an Apple fan for various reasons, so those devices are out.  Even though I've heard positive reviews of Microsoft's mobiles, I'm not convinced. So that practically leaves only Android phones.

I like the more open ecosystem of Android and the large number of apps on the platform.  What do you think, is Android the way to go?

I also don't have a tablet or netbook. I really like something highly portable so I'm not keen on those devices, but the new superphones seems to be a compromise between portability and decent screen size.  I am worried that superphones won't fit in my pocket as that's where I always carry my device (if I need to carry the phone separately  or in a knapsack, I'm not apt to always carry it with me).

I was drooling over the Samsung Galaxy in a store. Any one have any experience with this  - caveats or concerns?

I will never lock in again!  I hate long-term contracts, so I won't deal with any carriers that don't offer a no-contract option.

My dealings with Bell's customer service have never been great and recently it has been horrible (it took 5 technicians visiting and over 12 hours on the phone over 3 weeks to get Bell to hook up my Internet access, telephone, and Bell Fibe tv).  Dealing with Bell was like having glass ground into my eyeballs. Their customer loyalty is also non-existence, so I'm eager to leave them behind.

I checked out prices and options and Wind Mobile seems to be the best. But I heard their network coverage is only good in major cities and even then conks out. Any one have any advice on Wind Mobile or other carriers to consider?

I'm presenting at the ASIS&T (American Society for Information Science & Technology) conference at the end of the month on my research on location-based services on mobile devices. I'd love to show up with the best new device so I greatly appreciate any help that will make it less difficult to get my next (heavenly) device.

1 comment:

Sacha Chua said...

I switched to WIND Mobile from Fido, and so far, things have been great. I've been pleasantly surprised to discover that my $29 unlimited call/text/data plan (no longer offered, sorry) worked in Niagara, and I haven't had problems with reception in downtown / west end Toronto. I've heard customer service can be a little poor, but I'm hoping to not run into that yet.

I totally like my Android phone. =) While I'm sometimes envious of the apps that people get on iOS, I do like the fact that Android apps talk to each other, and I'm looking forward to programming for it too.