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Old 04-27-2011, 08:31 AM   #1
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iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I have just about decided to get a smart phone. In addition to getting all the neat apps I want to replace my expensive Verizon Air Card and my low minute VZ talk plan. I pay about $160.00 for the air card and two old phones that share 700 minutes.* My friend has an AT&T plan for his iPhone and pays about $130 for unlimited data and two smart phones plus one regular phone. I think that I am getting screwed.*My questions are:

Would a smart phone be adequate to replace my air card? For the last three weeks I have used a total of*2479268.10 KB. I am not a heavy user but I use the Internet several hours a day but with very few downloads. No music, movies, etc. What about battery life?

I have been told that the PC protocal that leads to data fragmentation is more of a problem on a Droid than the Apple based iPhone. Has anyone had to defrag their Droid?

I have been told that Verizon, whether iPhone or Droid, will not multitask. No surfing and talking at the same time but that AT &T allows this. True?

Apple apps all come from the Apple Store and are safer. Is this true?

Can I plug a smart phone into my laptop nav program and use it as a GPS?


-- Edited by Doc on Wednesday 27th of April 2011 08:34:04 AM
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Old 04-27-2011, 09:56 AM   #2
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iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

WHHHEEEEEWWW!!!!!!! All excellent questions!!!!

1)A smart phone would be a perfect replacement for your aircard. I am going to assume that the number of KBs you posted above is equal to 2.4x gigs without having to strain my brain. I have argued this with another member but AT&T(nor VZW) does not have unlimited plans!!! I know they call them "unlimited", but they have an asterisk with small print. And that small print will inform you of "data caps"...which for both carriers is 2gigs. So your "moderate usage" above would be subject to an overage charge on either carrier(15 or 25 bucks a gig if I recall). As an aside, Sprint is truly unlimited. T-mobile is 5 gigs I think.

2) I am an Android phone geek. I have never defragged my phone nor have I ever heard of the need to. That's all I got reference that.

3)A completely true statement. Sprint is the same way as well since both are CDMA and AT&T is GSM. Now if you are running on Sprint's 4G Wimax network(Clear,etc), then the CDMA radio is still available. I honestly do not know if that is the case with VZW's new 4G LTE network. I don't really find this to be a big issue.

4)I don't know if "safer" is the word you are looking for. Higher quality???? Yes!!! But Android apps are certainly coming around and there are many more free apps on Android.

5) I have always wondered this and do not know. I would imagine there just might be an app for that!!!!....I say that jokingly but there probably is. Obviously I would be hesitant to do this since your smartphone is a Swiss Army knife that is performing numerous tasks at once. But I will say on my phone HTC EVO 4G(Android), I have a Navionics app that works perfectly....I have an HDMI out that will allow you to mirror whatever is on your phone screen.....IOW, if you have a Flatscreen TV in your salon(say a 55 incher), you could have a 55 inch chartplotter!!!! The EVO is one of the very few(and was the first) to have an HDMI out port....pretty nifty. SO you can have a chartplotter on the native 4.3 inch screen(don't laugh. many chartplotters are only 5 inches) or you can mirror what is on your phone to whatever screen has an HDMI input!!!!!

6)Battery drain.....no free lunch here. Smart phones are incredibly capable devices and are also tiny relative to the tasks that are asked of them. I will say that a smartphone wirelessly tethered to a laptop will almost always outlast the laptop battery if that helps.

Summary:

It is all a matter of what you want. If you like perfect packages where everything works well, Apple is the way to go....especially if you are already Apple at home. The downfall to Apple is their lack of power and flexibility. The shutter noise on the camera of the iphone you CANNOT turn off(you can jailbreak it)!!!! Just stupid crap like that. It comes the way THEY want it and that is the way YOU will have it. In comparison,The Sprint Skype app does not work over 3G(wifi only)....the Verizon one does. So I "sideloaded" the Verizon app onto my Sprint phone and it works fine....no root access needed. I could go on and on. The Android platform, while not as polished as iOS, is a lot more powerful and provides you almost endless customization possibilities. And if you care to root/jailbreak your device(I did), you basically have the power of a laptop in your pocket.

This next round of phones appearing this Summer are going to take it up another notch. They will have dual core processors(1gig+) with at least 1 Gig of RAM....that is more powerful than the netbook I am typing on right now. I honestly don't know the specs of the next iPhone but they have a tendency to "conservatively lag" behind the pack...nothing wrong with that! The product that Apple puts out is excellent quality and performs very well. I just like the flexibility the Android platform offers and I don't like Steve Jobs tellimg me what I can and cannot do!!!

*

PS...there are usually no data caps on aircards....just saying!! *And there are no data caps on Sprint.


-- Edited by Baker on Wednesday 27th of April 2011 10:02:48 AM
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Old 04-27-2011, 03:52 PM   #3
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

ahhhh my brain fried is by John's technical knowledge!

To piggyback on Doc's post... we are considering options for wi fi on our boat.

What is my best choice for reliable wi fi? we want to be able to get online with one or two laptops.*

I have an AT&T*iphone 4 which I could use as a hot spot if I give up my unlimited data plan (I have never hit what would be the data limit but with using it as a hot spot I imagine my use would go up).*

Or I could get one of those mi fi things from sprint or virgin mobile.* sprint does NOT have 4g at my marina and I believe there is a cap on 3g use with the mi fi hotspot gizmo.

or we could get some kind of wi fi booster and try to pick up unsecured networks? seems sketchy at best?
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:50 PM   #4
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I just had to decide yesterday on a smart phone. Since I have never owned a smart phone before, all the people I talked to in the office (Cisco) said the GUI for the iPhone was far easier and more "polished and refined". I think I need that more than anything. I also already knew that the Verizon network around here and where we boat is by far the one with the best coverage and most reliable infrastructure.

Yes, I was trying to avoid "drinking the Apple flavored Kool-Aid", but in this case, I think I made the right decision. There are some downsides that I see. No, you can't data and talk at the same time... I doubt I will miss that at all. The iPhone 5 is coming in September, don't care. I am already so far behind the tech curve, I will be so overwhelmed with the 4, there is no need to run right out on the ragged edge. Besides, the 5 is going to be $300 or more. I'm don't want to put that much in right now. Sure, you can jailbreak the phone, but from the standpoint of apps? If you can't find what you need, I would be VERY surprised. Also be aware that you will HAVE to have an iTunes account. Apple uses it to push out upgrades and for backing up your information.

I suspect the iPhone will be MORE THAN enough for me. I didn't want to over think the selection so I decided on just the two most important criteria and not try and pick it apart too far. You'll drive yourself bonkers. If you want "the best" you'll never find it and they will all have pluses and drawbacks. Don't dwell on them so early. As n00bz, we don't know the difference yet.

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Old 04-27-2011, 06:27 PM   #5
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I did have an iPhone, and using it to replace an aircard was doable, but complicated, requiring hacking the darn thing.* I now have an Android X, and with a free download of PDANet, connecting my Droid to my laptop for G3 data connection is as simple as can be.* Don't get an EVO because its battery life sucks compared to Verizon and the Droid X.*
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Old 04-27-2011, 07:33 PM   #6
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I don't mess around. I got an iPhone 4 after I sent my post this morning. I have it tethered with a wire to my desktop computer which uses Vista. That works great. I am having trouble getting my laptop with XP to find the wire from the iPhone. I have not yet tried to create a hot spot and do wireless on the lap top. A giant learning curve but fun.
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:57 AM   #7
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Doc please post when / if you are able to get your laptop online and let us (me ) know how it works out - speed, reliability, all that good stuff.* Enjoy your new toy!
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:42 AM   #8
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I was dealing with Sprint recently and they confirm that the air card data limit is 5GB on the 3G network and unlimited on the 4G network. Above 5GB on the 3G network, excess usage charges apply. If you plan on heavy usage on Sprint, be sure you have 4G at your location.

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Old 04-28-2011, 12:00 PM   #9
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Quote:
Larry H wrote:
I was dealing with Sprint recently and they confirm that the air card data limit is 5GB on the 3G network and unlimited on the 4G network. Above 5GB on the 3G network, excess usage charges apply. If you plan on heavy usage on Sprint, be sure you have 4G at your location.

Larry H
*Larry....5gigs would be tough to overcome!!! *My wife and I use a little over 2 gigs total and we are both pretty heavy users....although I do not use it as our primary internet connection.

Delfin, the EVO battery life is no worse than any other high end Android device. *It got a bad rap early on and obviously that info stuck with you. *It had mostly to do with people leaving the 4g radio on when no 4g was available...the battery will cook just like if you have little or no 3g signal. *The phone automatically turns up the gain on the antenna in search of a signal. *I have used one for almost a year and it will at least get me through an entire day with fairly heavy usage. *That is all you can ask and all any top end smart phone will get you. *The iPhone is a little better on battery simply because it manages tasks differently(read limitations). *But it will slow you down as you navigate through menus...just the way iOS works. *Android leaves apps open and "on deck" ready for your use if needed...and that costs a slim amount of battery but gives you ready access whereas iOS you have to navigate thru the home screen....no "back" button or menu button. *The "back" button on Android devices is what most iPhone converts love the most!...you can go back to the previous task without going through the homescreen!!!! *If you are an iPhone fanboy then you would have no clue because what you don't know doesn't hurt you.

Also Delfin, the hotspot feature is now native to the iPhone 4...no jailbreaking necessary. *Doc, give it a go....there is nothing to it and you don't have to jack with a wire. *Just activate it and then search for a wifi signal on your computer just like you would any other wifi, and connect. *It is also free with the top tiered plan! *Sprint will charge you 30 bucks a month although there are no data caps. *I hacked my phone so it is free for me. *Pineapple girl, the Android devices support multiple users on one hotspot...I would assume the iPhone does the same...although I am not sure.

*There is no wrong choice here folks. *The iPhone is an excellent device...as are the Android devices. *It is wonderful that we have these choices!!!! *It is all a matter of what you want!!!!
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Old 04-28-2011, 12:35 PM   #10
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Quote:
Baker wrote:The "back" button on Android devices is what most iPhone converts love the most!...you can go back to the previous task without going through the homescreen!!!! *If you are an iPhone fanboy then you would have no clue because what you don't know doesn't hurt you.
...*Pineapple girl, the Android devices support multiple users on one hotspot...I would assume the iPhone does the same...although I am not sure.
*the lack of being able to go BACK to what I was doing drives me NUTS on the iphone.* I have never had another smart phone so can't compare but I will look at the 'droids when it is time to reup with AT&T.

Yeah my iphone can be a hotspot I just wonder how well it will work considering how bad AT&T service is.* For a few* more $$ a month should I get a sprint mi fi? Also if we go that route, I and my iphone do not have to be there for my husband to use the wifi.* but again the issue is there isn't actually 4g at the marina so is sprints 3g enough better than AT&Ts service to justify signing up for two years with sprint and the extra $ a month versus using the iphone as a hotspot?? sigh.

*
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Old 04-28-2011, 05:56 PM   #11
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Here is what I have learned: I went to the Verizon store first because that was where my current plan resides. I was planning to buy the iPhone there.

Verizon sales person didn't know squat or lied. He said that the IPhone could not be hard wired and use WiFi....he said only WiFi. Not true. I now have Internet on my laptop with or without the usb cable. I also now have Internet on my desktop with the usb wire. Come to find out, many desktops including my large HP computer, do not have WiFi capability. Who knew???

Verizon states that their iPhones will multi task. True for some tasks but not talking and surfing. At&T will allow talking and surfing.

This was not a bloodless experince. It took me all afternoon with an At&T tech to get set up. I had to update my iTunes and the iPhone itself even though I bought it yesterday. The download of the IPhone update took two hours via my Verizon aircard and the iPhone. ...both were hooked up at the same time to different usb ports.

My advice is to purchase the extended warranty for $69 because that is the only way that you can get high level help over the telephone until everything is right. They stuck with me and called back several times to make sure that every thing was workng.

My senior level tech looked up Offshore Naviagator from Maptech to see if the iPhone GPS would send a signal. She said no. I may try anyway.
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:22 PM   #12
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

My advice to you is to go Sprint!!!! They have gone from worst to first in customer service. And you do not have to pay one cent for it.

Pineapple girl, Sprint is the cheapest out there. I know you think having to spend "extra" for it makes you think it costs more but add it all up...SPrint is cheaper.

And Reference multitasking....I think we are getting confused here. Android phones are much better at multitasking than iPhones....just the nature of the beast. Has nothing to do with whether you can talk and "surf" at the same time....
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Old 04-28-2011, 10:40 PM   #13
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Quote:
Baker wrote:
My advice to you is to go Sprint!!!! They have gone from worst to first in customer service. And you do not have to pay one cent for it.

Pineapple girl, Sprint is the cheapest out there. I know you think having to spend "extra" for it makes you think it costs more but add it all up...SPrint is cheaper.

And Reference multitasking....I think we are getting confused here. Android phones are much better at multitasking than iPhones....just the nature of the beast. Has nothing to do with whether you can talk and "surf" at the same time....
John

*You said it all. Sprint is the best option I could find.*

*
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Old 04-29-2011, 12:32 PM   #14
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

argh!* well i think I am going to be cheap and try the iphone solution first for $15/ mo since I already have the phone. *If it does not work well I can always try the Sprint mifi as plan B.* I think the mifi router do hickey is $80 and the monthly service is $60.
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Old 04-29-2011, 09:59 PM   #15
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

sitting on my boat using my laptop over the iphone wi fi hotspot (AT&T).* So far so good.
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Old 05-03-2011, 07:21 AM   #16
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

And PG....you can do the same thing with Sprint phones....you do not need the mifi....not trying to talk you out of anything...just sayin'. Glad the iPhone deal is going well.
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Old 05-03-2011, 09:44 AM   #17
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

Quote:
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And PG....you can do the same thing with Sprint phones....you do not need the mifi....not trying to talk you out of anything...just sayin'. Glad the iPhone deal is going well.
thanks John, we are stuck with AT&T for phones for now--I guess I could get a THIRD cell phone (my work won't let me use my personal cell??) but somehow I have no desire for three.* Maybe when our contract with AT&T is up we'll take a look at Sprint phones.
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Old 05-03-2011, 11:31 AM   #18
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

we have the sprint mifi thing, it works very well.
we dont have a TV so the kids watch netflix on the pc streamed via the sprint mifi.
i would say it works better than a traditional "air-card" which you plug into the usb.
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:50 AM   #19
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RE: iPhone vs Droid...AT&T vs Verizon

I use the Droid X and Verizon.....cannot be more pleased. The Verizon salespeople all use the Droid, that sold me.
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