Returned the Droid RAZR. Ordered a 4S. Anyone do something similar?

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
I just ordered my Verizon iPhone 4S. I'm psyched for it, but it wasn't the first "new" phone I recently purchased.

Just over a week ago my wife's OG Droid finally stopped working. It was having tons of issues, and to top it off the front mic was busted and she could only use it in Speakerphone mode (she doesn't care for headsets). We're in the % of "Cell Only" adopters, and don't keep a home phone so this is an issue. With two kids under the age of 6 we pretty much need back/forth communication available between us 24/7 as the way we work out our work schedules there's always one of us home w/ the kids so we don't have to send anyone to day care.

So I went to order her an iPhone 4S (she was dying for one, as she was over Android) and low and behold... out of stock everywhere. Now I know the site says "Dec 9th" but a friend at a retail store said it should be before that if you order online but we couldn't wait even a few days. She needed a functional phone as I was about to start my work week. That sealed the deal. I've had an iPhone 4 since launch on Verizon so I gave it to her and went to get a new phone.

So... I went and purchased a shiny new DROID RAZR. I'd seen the commercials, read the reviews, and drooled over the idea of 4G LTE in one of my devices. I figured I'd used Android in the past so I should be able to customize it to my liking and get battery life pretty decent via disabling a bunch of stuff. I'm a huge fan of my iPhone, but I figured... it's been a bit since I used Android, and it's still extremely popular among phone adopters so maybe the new hardware they're using to power it is what I was missing on attempt #1.

I picked up my RAZR, and the very first thing I did was a speedtest. 22mb/s down and 6.5 up. Oh hell yes. The thing is paper light. Huge screen. Insanely fast LTE. Huge leaps over the Droid OG I had previously so I was happy. It was short lived.

Voice quality was great, but the screen seemed... I don't know. A bit dull is probably the best way to say it. I didn't have a "gripe" but something didn't click. The paper thin but durable design (Gorilla on the screen, and a kevlar back to give it a little bit of durability) was nice, but it also pushes it a tiny bit wider to get those electronics somewhere.

The things, though, that ultimately made my decision was:
- Battery Life
- I kept comparing things to the iOS counterpart(s).

Let's start w/ the second. Switching between screen's just wasn't as fluid as it was on my iPhone 4. There's noticeable "hiccups". It's not major, but I'm used to a fluid transition. Also some of the "identical" apps just seemed a bit behind. I'd gotten used to things like the new Facebook iOS design, and other apps, and they felt behind. Then just the little "how it works" things kept getting compared to my iPhone 4. I realized... if I'm constantly comparing these to iOS than this may not be the phone for me.

The "deal breaker" though was the battery life. I expected a drop due to the 4G LTE but I wasn't aware how drastic it is compared to my iPhone 4.

On my iPhone I leave WiFi activated 24/7 and disable notifications so as soon as I'm home it'll jump onto my home network, but the WiFi in general stays on all day. The only time I'm really on the 3G connection is in between home/work and if we're out so it's minimal at most (under 1GB a month probably... way to go with my UNLIMITED plan! lol). With my iPhone normally with a bunch of SMS, a few short calls to the wife, some browsing, apps, etc, normally by end of day I'm around 50% after roughly 14 hours of use. Not bad. I figure with WiFi on, and constantly running the screen pretty bright (preference) that's about right. Sometimes it's at 80%+ or more if I don't use it much.

Same scenario with my RAZR. I left WiFi on at home so it wasn't hopping on the 4G connection. Disabled auto-sync, background data, and went into the apps that like to auto-sync and set those to manual too. I took it off the charger at 6am when my daughter woke up feeling under the weather. I sent maybe 2 dozen messages to the wife, and spoke to her 3-4x. I maybe used the LTE for 10mins total when I was waiting for my daughter to get out of school. Battery life... in the red. 10%!

I need my phone to last if I'm out because my job, when I'm on call, can call me at any time to assist in a major incident resolution. That just wasn't cutting it. I did a few more days, and it was about 1/3 of the battery life of my iPhone 4.

Lastly (added after the fact). Camera. I was VERY underwhelmed by the camera. No matter what device I've used they just haven't come to terms with the overall quality of the iPhone 4/4S and I was hoping the brand new flagship DROID phone for Motorola would have something decent but encountered very sub par pictures overall. Not bad in full sunlight, but everything else was just "meh". I've got two kids that I love taking photo's of. We go all over and constantly have my T2I with me to take pics, but I can't always lug around a DSLR. So when we are out and about w/ the DSLR I loved the quality of my iPhone pictures. Just didn't work here. I wasn't excited to take pics w/ the RAZR.

I decided... I'm spending too much time worrying and comparing to my iPhone. I returned it, and ordered my iPhone. Took the wifes busted Droid, threw a new ROM/Kernel on it so it's not a complete slugfest, and sync'd it to my Jawbone and I'm sticking it out til delivery.

The RAZR, and where Android is heading, is nice... but it's not the same. It just doesn't feel as polished, and based on the 4G experience I can see why Apple is waiting a bit. It just destroys your battery, and that's not an option for me. I don't dislike Android. It's a solid OS, but for me it really came down to what I personally enjoyed, and I just missed too much about my iPhone.

I hope it comes before the 9th! Anyone else have a similar experience?
 
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TM WAZZA

macrumors 68000
Sep 18, 2010
1,967
0
Hamilton, New Zealand
Came from iPod touch 4, went to SGS2, sold it, bought 4S

I don't hate Android or Samsung, when I save up money I'll try out another Android phone in the future. Maybe when quad core phones are out.
 

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
** Updated original w/ a comment about the camera **

Just figured I'd put my current experience and why I'm going back to my trusty iPhone after going "latest and greatest" for a moment on the Android front.

I think Android is going in the right direction but they just wont get that level of polish we see on iOS due to the limited hardware variations it's based on.

Hopefully at some point it gets where everything hardware is mature enough to compensate, but too many little things right now. At least for me.

I'm part of the phone generation. I use it for everything (photo's, pictures, email, games, scheduling, maps, etc) and that battery life just haunted me.
 

mysterioustko

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2011
423
0
** Updated original w/ a comment about the camera **

Just figured I'd put my current experience and why I'm going back to my trusty iPhone after going "latest and greatest" for a moment on the Android front.

I think Android is going in the right direction but they just wont get that level of polish we see on iOS due to the limited hardware variations it's based on.

Hopefully at some point it gets where everything hardware is mature enough to compensate, but too many little things right now. At least for me.

I'm part of the phone generation. I use it for everything (photo's, pictures, email, games, scheduling, maps, etc) and that battery life just haunted me.

Limited hardware variations? You've got to be kidding. The number of hardware variations is the whole premise behind the fragmentation argument. Out of the issue that do exist in the android world "limited hardware variations" is most definitely NOT one of them.
 

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
I meant iOS being more polished due to limited variations compared to Android. The fact that there are only a few variations of hardware supporting iOS 5 (and previous iOS 4) make it a much more polished experience as you have less variations to design for.

Not the other way around.
 

silverblack

macrumors 68030
Nov 27, 2007
2,676
838
Was disappointed that apple gave us the iphone 4s instead of the 5, went with a white sgs2. It was a very nice piece of hardware, light, slim, and beautiful even lower resolution. But android was really a mess. It seemed like the stock rom never worked for any phone. For sgs2, the 2.3.3 rom had battery draining problem, requiring 2.3.5.

Customization was a strength for android, but also a weakness. In a way, you need to install all kind of apps to get your phone to work properly. E.g., silent the beep when fully charged at the middle of the night, remove the vibration icon when you want your phone to vibrate all the time.

Finally, the problem that made mr switched back was the instability. All the widgets and custom launcher which made the UI pretty, also made the phone very unstable. I.e., crashing and needing constant restarting. One time in a 1hr meeting, my phone crashed 3 times, and that was it for me.

A suppose this is the reason why apple chose to opt out of widgets, as they are resource consuming.

----------

I meant iOS being more polished due to limited variations compared to Android. The fact that there are only a few variations of hardware supporting iOS 5 (and previous iOS 4) make it a much more polished experience as you have less variations to design for.

Not the other way around.
Exactly like Mac computing vs windows. My experience with android was like that with windows, felt unstable, slow and bloated even with faster hardware.
 

mysterioustko

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2011
423
0
I meant iOS being more polished due to limited variations compared to Android. The fact that there are only a few variations of hardware supporting iOS 5 (and previous iOS 4) make it a much more polished experience as you have less variations to design for.

Not the other way around.

Oh ok, I follow what you're saying. Yeah you're right, it's much easier to code for a small sampling of hardware..less variables to account for. Though to be fair, iOS does have it's hiccups too despite the smaller sampling of hardware they write for and it being a less sophisticated OS.
 

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
Oh ok, I follow what you're saying. Yeah you're right, it's much easier to code for a small sampling of hardware..less variables to account for. Though to be fair, iOS does have it's hiccups too despite the smaller sampling of hardware they write for and it being a less sophisticated OS.
I won't disagree. I mean the recent battery debacle is proof enough. Ironically, though, the iPhone 4 running 5.0.1 my wife is using CONSTANTLY still has 4x better battery life than my Droid was getting (she was just below 50% when I was at 10% and she was using mobile facebook all day long).

I just think, at least to my personal preference, iOS is a much more polished experience. I'm all about the experience. I could care less what's under the hood as long as it performs top notch, and even w/ underclocked A5 chips and a smaller screen I find that my overall usage is much smoother and it holds it's own in performance to those "top of the line" phones.
 

mysterioustko

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2011
423
0
I won't disagree. I mean the recent battery debacle is proof enough. Ironically, though, the iPhone 4 running 5.0.1 my wife is using CONSTANTLY still has 4x better battery life than my Droid was getting (she was just below 50% when I was at 10% and she was using mobile facebook all day long).

I just think, at least to my personal preference, iOS is a much more polished experience. I'm all about the experience. I could care less what's under the hood as long as it performs top notch, and even w/ underclocked A5 chips and a smaller screen I find that my overall usage is much smoother and it holds it's own in performance to those "top of the line" phones.
As a person who has had quite a number of the high end phones (I change phones a lot, it's something of a hobby/obsession lol), I will say iOS overall is smooth but I find it smooth at the expense of functionality. For example, no background processes. So if I want to check the news, I have to actual download it instead of it already being ready for me when I'm ready to check it. This is one of the reasons that I chose not to use my iPhone 4 and eventually sold it, that and I just don't find it the homescreen set up to be very functional (static grid of icons...in '11 I think they could have figured out how to do more). I went back to using my Nexus S (I was using a Sensation) which I have to say is pretty smooth expecially for a single core device. But to be honest the real reason I went back to it is because of being able to use the phone as a credit card (NFC). That has been incredibly convenient in different places like the gas station, Best Buy, Dairy Queen, drug store, etc. I've been spoiled now with NFC lol. So I decided my next device has to have a high res screen (like the Sensation) and has to have NFC, so I ordered a galaxy nexus from the UK Friday, hopefully it will be here this week.
 

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
Definitely comes down to preference. I love the static icons, but that's because I'm a "clean" freak. I put all my core apps into a few folders, and then the rest get tossed to screen 2 in folders themselves.

I love to have background pics of the family and stuff and don't care for icons covering it.

I get what you're saying, though. I was in the same boat when I bought my OG Droid. Those were all things I loved, but as I progressed I found more to like off my personal habits. I liked Android a bit more once you root it, and install custom ROM's tweaked to your personal preference... but that's like me installing Cydia and adding Widgets, Icon changes, etc, as well. So it ended up being in the same boat as far as that side of things.

I dig, though, the fact you're pretty neutral and give "credit where it's due".
 

thewitt

macrumors 68020
Sep 13, 2011
2,102
1,523
Several guys in the office switched, then switched back. We have more than 30 iPhones and 2 Androids - other than the devices for software testing...
 

mysterioustko

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2011
423
0
Definitely comes down to preference. I love the static icons, but that's because I'm a "clean" freak. I put all my core apps into a few folders, and then the rest get tossed to screen 2 in folders themselves.

I love to have background pics of the family and stuff and don't care for icons covering it.

I get what you're saying, though. I was in the same boat when I bought my OG Droid. Those were all things I loved, but as I progressed I found more to like off my personal habits.

I dig, though, the fact you're pretty neutral and give "credit where it's due".
Yeah I'm more of a tech geek, I just love technology lol. Heck though I don't use one day to day I still have iphones in the family, I just prefer more functionality. My current set up has 3 things on the main screen, and that's 3 widgets. A local news ticker on the top, and a forex market news ticker on the bottom, with a clock/weather widget in the middle. It looks very clean and nice, and more importantly for me is it's functional. When I turn my phone I see any important local news, I see any important forex market news, and I can see the time and check the weather..all without doing anything more than just turning the screen on. I have really become spoiled with that lol. As far as the iPhone is concerned, I just don't like the one size fits all approach though I do think they do a good job of providing a consistent experience. My issue is that the experience they provide (for me anyway) is a bit humdrum. I think if they gave people a bit more control over the layout of their device they'd have a better product even if they still kept the OS fundamentally the same (simple).
 

Neverbepeace

macrumors 6502a
Jan 14, 2009
770
227
New York
http://www.technobuffalo.com/miscellaneous/apple-iphone-4s-boring/

BrandoHD 16 hours ago

Apple fanboys only want what they have in their hand not what is desperately needed, they did not want flash, but when skyfire was released, they crashed the servers, they had no issues with the notification system, but when they got the new system, the OS is now perfect, now they don't want bigger screens, and when the bigger screen comes, all the fanboys that were crying about their phone having to fit in their hands and their pockets, will line up around the block to get it

The true definition of a cult, where if the leader says no, they all say no, and when the leader changes their mind, guess what, their mind changes also, if the browser is removed from the iPhone as part of an update, they would all say, who needs a browser anyway, I have a desktop, how many times have you heard an apple fanboy have an issue with their iPhone, according to them, the phone is perfect and "just works"
Any time I see a fanboy make that comment, I already know what they are...

Apple has to release two updates to fix a battery issue, and most of them would say, nah, my battery is really good

Unimaginative contented followers

Who the hat fits, let them wear it…..



LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL:D
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,908
1,193
Washington DC
What a horror story, how you survived is a miracle.
You seem to be confused. I think you were trying to post this in one of the threads made by someone who posts a 3-sentence "this happened" post that doesn't help anyone.

But see, you accidentally posted your comment in a very well-written thread by someone who cares about this community and wants to contribute by sharing in-depth, well-researched thoughts. You know...the kind of post that makes Mac Rumors helpful to people.

Since you clearly don't want to discourage the good, helpful posters around here, I can only assume your post was an accidental faux pas that you must feel just terrible about.

We understand, it's easy to make mistakes sometimes. But please, be careful in the future! We don't want to scare away the posters who spend hours of their time providing free information for the rest of us. Why, such a thing could really ruin this site and I'm sure that's not what any of us want.

Right? :mad:
 

silverblack

macrumors 68030
Nov 27, 2007
2,676
838
Apple fanboys only want what they have in their hand not what is desperately needed, they did not want flash, but when skyfire was released, they crashed the servers, they had no issues with the notification system, but when they got the new system, the OS is now perfect, now they don't want bigger screens, and when the bigger screen comes, all the fanboys that were crying about their phone having to fit in their hands and their pockets, will line up around the block to get it

..........

Who the hat fits, let them wear it…..
I kind of agree with part of what *I think* you said. Features are always limited by technology. To gain something, you lose something (e.g., bigger screen - poorer battery life; more widgets, less free RAM). What Apple did was no miracle, they tend to sacrifice features and limit customization to get better stability. Sure, it's no magic. You can use Android phones with everything stock and get great stability too (but then if you do that, you may as well go back to iOS).

So it comes down to personal preference (Who the hat fits, let them wear it). Those who prefer stability (dummy-proof, "just works", tech-phobia, or whatever you want call it, will and should choose iOS). Others who like to tweak and tweak, and then tweak day after day are best to go else where.
 

hamlin

macrumors regular
Aug 31, 2010
141
0
Ontario, Canada
I had a similar story. I originally had a blackberry bold 9700, I saw all my friends with iphones and wanted one, but I didn't want to have the same phone as everyone else so I bought a Samsung Galaxy S2. Awesome phone, great hardware in the phone but something was missing. I tried my friends iphones and for some reason everything worked better, loaded faster, was smoother switched between pages. I couldn't return the phone because I had it for a while but instead I earned an upgrade and "upgraded" to a iphone 4 8 gig for 49$. I sold my galaxy online and havn't looked back. This was a prime example of how Software > Hardware
 

Pipper99

macrumors 68030
Aug 14, 2010
2,798
1,343
Fort Worth, TX
You seem to be confused. I think you were trying to post this in one of the threads made by someone who posts a 3-sentence "this happened" post that doesn't help anyone.

But see, you accidentally posted your comment in a very well-written thread by someone who cares about this community and wants to contribute by sharing in-depth, well-researched thoughts. You know...the kind of post that makes Mac Rumors helpful to people.

Since you clearly don't want to discourage the good, helpful posters around here, I can only assume your post was an accidental faux pas that you must feel just terrible about.

We understand, it's easy to make mistakes sometimes. But please, be careful in the future! We don't want to scare away the posters who spend hours of their time providing free information for the rest of us. Why, such a thing could really ruin this site and I'm sure that's not what any of us want.

Right? :mad:
Seriously, thank you for this.
 

ProwlingTiger

macrumors 65816
Jan 15, 2008
1,329
218
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

Neverbepeace said:
http://www.technobuffalo.com/miscellaneous/apple-iphone-4s-boring/

BrandoHD 16 hours ago

Apple fanboys only want what they have in their hand not what is desperately needed, they did not want flash, but when skyfire was released, they crashed the servers, they had no issues with the notification system, but when they got the new system, the OS is now perfect, now they don't want bigger screens, and when the bigger screen comes, all the fanboys that were crying about their phone having to fit in their hands and their pockets, will line up around the block to get it

The true definition of a cult, where if the leader says no, they all say no, and when the leader changes their mind, guess what, their mind changes also, if the browser is removed from the iPhone as part of an update, they would all say, who needs a browser anyway, I have a desktop, how many times have you heard an apple fanboy have an issue with their iPhone, according to them, the phone is perfect and "just works"
Any time I see a fanboy make that comment, I already know what they are...

Apple has to release two updates to fix a battery issue, and most of them would say, nah, my battery is really good

Unimaginative contented followers

Who the hat fits, let them wear it…..



LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL:D[/url][/url]
I use an iPhone because the user experience is simply better (see OP). To call all iPhone users blind sheep makes you as much an anti-Apple cultist as the so called Appe cultists. Ever think about that? Whenever the Android fansites say "no", you agree. Whenever they change their mind, you change your mind. No different.

The OP was very subjective in his post. He had all the same issues with Android that I, or anyone else who switched back, has had. I don't want a phone that requires me to disable features just to get good battery life (LTE). I don't want a phone that lacks smooth screen responses. I, independently, without Apple's prodding, made that decision.
 

DakotaGuy

macrumors 601
Jan 14, 2002
4,037
3,320
South Dakota, USA
My experience was different. I had 2 Droids before this Droid RAZR. A Droid 1and Droid 2 and one of the main reasons I got them in the first place was because the iPhone was not available on Verizon at the time.

This time around I naturally decided to try out the iPhone 4S because as I have read on here it is supposed to be the best phone in the world and no one else can come close. Sorry I was really underwhelmed. The experience wasn't anything different then I already have on my iPad and the screen seemed even smaller then the 3.7" that I had on my first two droids. Some will argue that higher resolution is more important then screen size, but after using both I disagree. The 4.3" display on the Droid RAZR is great. I also didn't like the fact that I can't customize the homescreens with widgets or make it my own. Apple is just the standard old icons in a row that we have seen for years now.

Some will also say that CDMA 3G is just fine and will be for the next 2 years of contract, however I'd rather have something that is ready for the future. I only have 3G at my house, but yesterday I drove into a 4G LTE area and the speed was running anywhere between 10000 kbit/s and 24000 kbit/s down. That is crazy fast! We are supposed to get 4G in the next 6 months so I am really looking forward to that.

I also really like the RAZR design. Both the iPhone and RAZR are very nice looking, well built phones. I have had no issues with battery life and Smart Actions are a great way to help save battery. Maybe you had a bad phone if your battery ran down so quickly? Mine has been doing very well considering the screen size and processor. I also find that MotoCast works well to sync media with my Mac. I have heard that the iPhone 4S has battery problems of it's own, so I am not sure if a person went with an iPhone 4S that they are really going to find the battery to be any better.

The RAZR is a great phone as is the iPhone 4S. Each phone has pros and cons and about the same level of performance. You just have to decide what is more important to you. For me it was the larger screen and 4G LTE for other it might be different.
 
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Rocko1

macrumors 68020
Nov 3, 2011
2,070
4
*
I think Android is going in the right direction but they just wont get that level of polish we see on iOS due to the limited hardware variations it's based on.
.
You will never see the polish for two reasons. 1) You don't have one company making(or in control of making) the hardware and software and PC interface. 2) Google doesn't give a **** like Apple does. They like every other Android maker, ship out crap products that have multiple know bugs and have not interest in fixing them. Apple has a very high level of expectations for their products, way beyond anyone elses. Without that, it will never match up to Apple.
 

digitard

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Sep 15, 2004
666
51
Gilbert, AZ
Apple tends to take a "when it works with our philosophy" approach. They won't throw something in because it's the latest and greatest. They'll start looking at it, but won't implement it until the technology is mature enough that they can put it into their devices w/o sacrificing their overall performance/etc philosophy.

I'm good with that. With my overall experience w/ the 4G LTE and seeing that battery drain of doom is the norm for people with it I can get behind that. If the phone can't deliver what the previous phone did then what's the point? I get that.

I'll be happy when they put in LTE/4" screen, but until then I'm just happy with the ecosystem of choice for me.
 

Wide opeN

macrumors 68000
Aug 27, 2010
1,726
958
Georgia
You will never see the polish for two reasons. 1) You don't have one company making(or in control of making) the hardware and software and PC interface. 2) Google doesn't give a **** like Apple does. They like every other Android maker, ship out crap products that have multiple know bugs and have not interest in fixing them. Apple has a very high level of expectations for their products, way beyond anyone elses. Without that, it will never match up to Apple.
Agreed!!!!
 

DakotaGuy

macrumors 601
Jan 14, 2002
4,037
3,320
South Dakota, USA
Apple tends to take a "when it works with our philosophy" approach. They won't throw something in because it's the latest and greatest. They'll start looking at it, but won't implement it until the technology is mature enough that they can put it into their devices w/o sacrificing their overall performance/etc philosophy.

I'm good with that. With my overall experience w/ the 4G LTE and seeing that battery drain of doom is the norm for people with it I can get behind that. If the phone can't deliver what the previous phone did then what's the point? I get that.

I'll be happy when they put in LTE/4" screen, but until then I'm just happy with the ecosystem of choice for me.
No doubt that battery life will get better with newer LTE implementations in the future, but it is quite likely that it will still be at least a couple more years before LTE ever matches 3G for battery drain if it ever does. I'd say even if Apple waits another year or two to implement it they will still have to work hard to manage battery life.

I just look at it as being a connection option. For us Verizon users it allows us to talk and surf without a wifi connection and also when you need fast downloading speed you can turn it on. Nothing wrong with that.

I just hear so many on here say that the iPhone is *the phone* and no one can compete with it. That just hasn't been my experience at all. The iPhone has it's strengths, but other Android phones have strengths as well. I guess I am one of the few who likes playing with different technology. Like I said I am an iPad owner so I know all about iOS and owning the RAZR gives me something new and fresh to play with. I am not one of those who have to have everything exactly the same. I deal with having an iMac at home and a Windows 7 laptop at work just fine. Actually it is kind of fun to me.
 
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