Phones Best Android phone for T-Mobile?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by paulbennett95, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. paulbennett95 macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    Long Island, NY
    #1
    I have an iPhone 4S on T-Mobile ($30 100 min 5GB data plan, i use Google Voice) and I'm currently looking for an Android smartphone to try out. I'm having trouble finding a relatively inexpensive (under $300, don't care if its used) phone that supports T-Mobiles Band IV 3G (1700/2100) AWS spectrum.
    I've looked at the HTC One S, the Motorola Atrix HD, and some Xperia phones. I just received an Xperia T in the mail but must return it as its the AT&T version which doesn't support AWS 3G.
    The One S looks nice but I'm worried about the lack of microSD and that it only has qHD resolution (I'd prefer 720p)
    The Atrix HD also looks nice but it lacks in the ROM department (specifically Cyanogenmod)
    So, any suggestions? Can anyone with the One S calm my fears about the resolution and no microSD? Any Atrix HD owners know of any reliable 4.2 ROMs that remove the AT&T bloat? Any other suggestions?
    It HAS to support both the 1900 MHz 3G AND the 1700/2100 (Band IV) 3G spectrum. MicroSD is very much preferred (unless I'm convinced otherwise) and 720p is preferred.
    Thanks.
     
  2. Explicitic macrumors 6502

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    #2
    If $300 is your budget, the Nexus 4 (from Google Play Store) is hands-down the best option for you. The 8GB/16GB storage capacities with no microSD support may be a problem for you, though. It is a pentaband phone so it will support T-Mobile's 3G network.

    Actually, a used T-Mobile Galaxy S3 could work for you as well. There's a microSD slot capable of 64GB mSDXC cards and since it's a last-gen Android phone, it's quite affordable.
     
  3. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #3
    I've considered the Nexus 4, but the lack of MicroSD and impending successor (which would mean a price drop for the current model) has swayed me away.

    I've also considered the GS3 but its a bit pricey on Ebay ($300+)

    I'm considering going for a no-name brand phone, the Bear Pro specifically. Any considerations I should have?
     
  4. Explicitic macrumors 6502

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    #4
    If you're willing to take the risk, go ahead and purchase the Bear Pro. I myself wouldn't trust a product like that.

    I see T-Mobile Galaxy S3 devices around $320. That isn't too much over your budget. I recommend you look around on Swappa.
     
  5. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

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    #5
    Used GS3 is the best choice at the $300 price point. Yes, better than the Nexus 4.
     
  6. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #6
    I'm definitely considering the GS3, but I'd really like to hear from any Atrix HD/One S owners (if any exist...) on what they think, and if my fears of the devices are relevant. I like to be an informed buyer :)

    I'm considering buying a GS3 with a cracked screen and replacing it, does anyone know if that's a particularly difficult process? I've replaced the battery on my iPhone and I built my own desktop PC so I'm pretty handy, and I figure it'll be cheaper if I have to go the GS3 route.

    Thanks
     
  7. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #7
    How cheap is the broken screen S3? I've seen people on CL replacing S3 screens for under $100. There are tons of videos on YouTube about it too.

    I would be wary buying a broken phone though. The person who you buy it from might report it lost/stolen to claim insurance. You're then left with a blocked phone that won't work on any GSM carrier in the US. As long as you can make sure that this won't be done and its cheap, it might be a good idea.

    And skip the One S. Its old and HTC recently just said that they won't update it any longer (which is ridiculous). If you like having up to date software, Samsung does a great job.

    The Atrix HD...not sure about it. You probably will never see updates for it.
     
  8. Explicitic macrumors 6502

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    #8
    The front glass itself is actually very cheap and can probably be picked up for less than $10. If the digitizer/LCD needs to be replaced...well you should probably just buy a used working Galaxy S3.

    There's a guide to replacing the glass on XDA - http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1945494
     
  9. sectime macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2007
    #9
    It amazes me to see so many iPhone 5, Galaxy S4, and other new Tmobile phones for sale locally. The local used phone companies are getting burned and have stopped buying them.
     
  10. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #10
    After doing research it seems the GS3 screen might be a bit too difficult for me to replace, and I don't want to risk it.

    So my current options are a GS3, an Atrix HD (if any current/prior owners want to tell me of stable ROMs to use), or a One S (if I can be convinced the lack of microSD and low resolution aren't as bad as I think)

    NOTE: I plan on installing a custom ROM on my phone, so lack of official updates isn't an issue, but lack of stable ROMs is.
     
  11. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

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    #11
    Bingo. They're all sketchy these days. It really sucks for small stores where this is their main source of income. Too many losers selling their phones and then claiming insurance on them to get another one.

    I've become very careful on CL these days because everyone is out to screw someone over.

    Make sure to get a picture of the seller, picture/copy of their ID, etc. If they aren't willing to, then walk away from the sale.

    ----------

    If you are gonna use custom Roms, the GS3 has the largest Dev community. So many awesome Roms.

    No one actually bought the One S or Atrix HD, so the Dev community is small. Go check on their respective sub sections on XDA
     
  12. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #12
    Thanks for the tip! I checked the XDA forums page for the Atrix HD and it seems there ARE some stable ROMs for it. It looks like I may be purchasing the Atrix HD after all, wish I bought it first instead of the Xperia T so I wouldn't have to worry about if the model I was getting actually supported Band IV.

    Thanks for the help people. If anyone with an Atrix HD has any suggestions for ROMs, I'm open to hear them, if not I'll do my own research.
     
  13. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #13
    Glad to hear you made a choice!

    How much are you paying for it? I've seen them on CL around here for around$150 BNIB when I was looking for a backup.

    And if you buy a locked one and need the unlock code, lemme know. Ill try to get it for you via my AT&T account.
     
  14. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #14
    It looks like an unlocked one costs around $165 on eBay (I like using eBay over CL because of buyer protection and I need to build my feedback)

    But I noticed the Galaxy Nexus is similarly speced and priced, but includes a gyroscope, NFC, and has a bigger ROM community, but lacks microSD support.
    Questions for anyone who knows: is a gyroscope necessary if my phone has an accelerometer, and with a custom JB (4.1 or 4.2) ROM, are apps able to be put on an SD card ( I think I can do it on my Nook Tablet running CM10.1), because if not ill have no need for an SD card as I don't take pictures and I stream all my music and video.
    Thanks
     
  15. JeffiJers macrumors 6502a

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    #15

    No chance.. would N4 any day over the s4
     
  16. paulbennett95 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    paulbennett95

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    #16
    He said S3 not S4, and I really don't see how the N4 is vastly better than the S4 or S3.
     
  17. JeffiJers macrumors 6502a

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    #17

    meant to say N4 over the S3.

    for same price you are getting a brand new phone vs used.
     
  18. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #18
    What makes the N4 so much more special that the S3?

    With the Nexus 4, you're stuck with a phone that has poor RF performance, screen, battery life, and build quality. It is a poor device that deserves its bottom barrel price tag.
     

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