Where do I go now?

Where do I go now?
So where do I go?  I should explain…

The last time I upgraded, I plumped for the HTC Desire.  If I recall correctly, there wasn’t a huge amount of choice (feel free to flame me in the comments…) and it was the sister phone of the Nexus One, which was only available direct through Google.  A no brainer for a phone geek who wanted Android, and not an iPhone.

Now, I’m due an upgrade in March.  so what do I plump for this time?  What is going to tickle my smartphone fancy?  The Samsung Galaxy s2?  The Motorola RAZR? An LG? One of the new HTC’s?  Should I go for dual core or quad core?  What about the battery life on these behemoths?  A groovy screen that massages my eyeballs, screens that are so fast that they start moving just with the power of thought and thickness of an credit card that has some sort of eating disorder?  How long will the battery last?  As pretty as they, and other new models coming out soon to tempt me are, what’s the point of they don’t last long enough for a day?


And this thing will have to last almost two years.  What’s the point of a phone made out of fancy papier mache, as its so thin, I could possibly shine a torch through the casing and still light up a room?  I am relatively active, and I do venture outside occasionally, and as its England, it’s often raining or muddy.  Usually both.  Neither of which are great for a phones health.

So then I have to have a case.  Which adds bulk.  and stops me enjoying the aesthetics of a superphone, the tactile plstics, the kevlar weave (looking at you RAZR [wink]).  Then there is the trauma of which case to go for.  Thin?  Silicone?  Rubber?  Rigid plastic?  Strange designs on the case?

The gorgeous screens…  yes, they are bright.  They are clear.  They are so amazing with their SuperAmoled this, and their pixel density that, that I have no doubt they will cure me of my mild astigmatism overnight. But have you seen the size of the screens now?  Massive!  Huge!  Mahoosive!  How are my tiny hands supposed to use these phones while I’m using my spare hand to hold a drink/hold a cigarette/hold my sons hand/scratch myself inappropriately?  And if I want to make my battery last longer than, say, a fag break, I have to turn the brighness down.  Which I feel kind of defeats the point…

Oh and then the accessories issue.  Got an iPhone?  Then there is every accessory that you can possibly think of, and probably some that you can’t, so that you may indulge in pimping your phone to within an inch of its life.  Got an Android phone?  Good luck.  You can find gear online, but you are pretty restricted.

Lordy.  The OS prickly pear.  So… do I want Gingerbread? Or do I get ICS?  Do I want AOSP or am I happy to have a skin on there like Sense, Motoblur, Touchwiz or heaven forbid a phone from a network with so much crapware on it that that it struggles to even manage a text message.  Do I get a phone with a skin on the basis that some genius will eventually unlock it, S-Off it, defeat the bootloader, develop a custom ROM and make the kernel work well?

Then when I do manage to wade through that minefield and choose a phone, I do so in the knowledge that it will be out of date in a week and a half.  Samsung Nexus S anyone?

It’s a good job I’m a phone geek, and I can wade through all of that without losing the will to live and walk into a store and order an iPhone.  But I can see why other people do.

HTC Rezound Hands On.
HTC Sensation XE headed to Orange
  • Nail. Head. Hit.

    I love my Desire. Brilliant phone, but where is my next phone? The trend seems to be bigger, I don’t want bigger. The Desire is a perfect size, comfortable for the pocket. Not to mention that the bigger the screen the more power required.

    Come on, someone give me my next phone! I’m almost at the point where I’m paying for an upgrade that I’m not getting! I don’t want to cancel the contract and a week later here that the Desire 2 is on it’s way out!

    Help! Please let one of the those HTC codenames be my next phone.

  • Patch

    I was waiting for the iPhone 4s a Xmas but to be honest I’m getting pulled more towards the Nokia lumia 800 ….

    Don’t know why as the specs aren’t as good but want to give them a try again …strange?

  • Great piece. I’m out of contract as of last Sunday, but there’s nothing on the market as we speak that entices me away from my Desire. Sure, there’s the Sensation XL, but will I regret not waiting for the Galaxy Nexus? And what about the HTC Edge? It looks like the perfect phone, but can I wait until April? Which, imho, is my two pennies worth on your dilemma. If you’re still under contract until March, you will have just enough time to stretch your fingers in preperation for grasping the newly released Edge (or whatever they’re going to call it). Just count yourself lucky that you’ve got four months to think about it. Help me instead! :o)

    Sent from my Asus Transformer Tablet

  • Dav_w

    Surprised how many ppl are in the same boat! My desire is just about up and the whole Nexus, S2, Galaxy Note, Razr … is hurting my brain! I think ill crack my Nokia 3210 out with Snake II and 3 months battery :)

    • Anonymous

      Many, many people all picked up a Desire around launch time with 18 month contracts.

    • Anonymous

      Many, many people all picked up a Desire around launch time with 18 month contracts.

  • Roverduk

    my desire contract was up October 1st, do i get the XE or The XL but then o2’s coming soon tells us the Razr and the nexus s is coming oh shhhhhhh.
     But for me it comes down to the fact HTC and Motorola lock their bootloaders, so Samsung it is.

    • Anonymous

      HTC don’t lock their bootloaders any more and haven’t for a few months now.

    • Anonymous

      HTC don’t lock their bootloaders any more and haven’t for a few months now.

  • Scot Cull

    Upgrade due 15th November …. new Nokia Lumie 800 out 16th … upgrade time here we come.
    I love my Desier but it is fealing a little long in the tooth and slugish….. and Windows phones aer my guilty pleasure

  • I’m in the same boat, looking to upgrade my Desire.  I took a look at the sustainability of smartphone manufacturers and wrote a piece here: http://brencud.wordpress.com/2011/11/01/sustainable-smartphone/

  • Peter Jones

    I made the plunge from the Desire to the Samsung Galaxy 2 after being a HTC user for 8 years! Gears helped me decide.

  • Peter Jones

    I made the plunge from the Desire to the Samsung Galaxy 2 after being a HTC user for 8 years! Gears helped me decide.

  • Anonymous

    You’re deliberately making it complicated in order to write an article.

    Look at HTC and Samsung phones, ignore the rest. Your contract doesn’t run out for 4 months, this article is very premature to say the least. Being a geek you know (except the Razr) they’re all 2011 phones that will be eclipsed in a matter of months.

    Right now I’d only get an HTC Sensation XE, Samsung Galaxy S2 or Galaxy Nexus. I’d likely plump for the SGS2 but that’s not got ICS on-board, so I’m waiting for the Q1 2012 phones, which will all have ICS on-board. I don’t trust OEMs to release ICS swiftly and getting a phone with Gingerbread now is crazy. It’s a year old.

    My Desire contract ran out last month. I’m waiting now. As good as the SGS2 is, it was released 6-7 months ago.

    The Motorola Razr has nice hardware but (despite being toned down) it’s still got the awful MotoBlur and Motorola are rubbish at issuing Android upgrades to anyone outside of North America. Forget them.

    It’s all about HTC and Samsung, which makes your choice much easier.

    If you want a mid-range phone, look at the HTC Rhyme (similar to Desire) or a budget one, look at the HTC Explorer (like the Wildfire S but much newer).

    It’s really much simpler than you make out.

  • Anonymous

    You’re deliberately making it complicated in order to write an article.

    Look at HTC and Samsung phones, ignore the rest. Your contract doesn’t run out for 4 months, this article is very premature to say the least. Being a geek you know (except the Razr) they’re all 2011 phones that will be eclipsed in a matter of months.

    Right now I’d only get an HTC Sensation XE, Samsung Galaxy S2 or Galaxy Nexus. I’d likely plump for the SGS2 but that’s not got ICS on-board, so I’m waiting for the Q1 2012 phones, which will all have ICS on-board. I don’t trust OEMs to release ICS swiftly and getting a phone with Gingerbread now is crazy. It’s a year old.

    My Desire contract ran out last month. I’m waiting now. As good as the SGS2 is, it was released 6-7 months ago.

    The Motorola Razr has nice hardware but (despite being toned down) it’s still got the awful MotoBlur and Motorola are rubbish at issuing Android upgrades to anyone outside of North America. Forget them.

    It’s all about HTC and Samsung, which makes your choice much easier.

    If you want a mid-range phone, look at the HTC Rhyme (similar to Desire) or a budget one, look at the HTC Explorer (like the Wildfire S but much newer).

    It’s really much simpler than you make out.

  • Nigel

    im afraid that 7 months old or what the SGS2 is for me still the undisputed king – its happened a lot  in the past that a phone has surpassed even those realeased after it – the original Desire is one such device that seemed to have it all. The HTC HD2 was another – I am convinced that the SGS2 is another seminal android handset with the official ICS upgrade pointing at a long life yet. 8mp camera, Super Amoled plus and the oft forgotten but amazing gorilla glass (im heavy handed but hate using a case so my phones are often abused – yet 5 months in my SGS2 screen has no screen protector and yet is as clean and scratch free as the day i bought it). It also has possibly the best selection of accessories etc of any Android phone – something that grieves me to say apple have sewn up by having just 1 device at a time. 

  • Nigel

    im afraid that 7 months old or what the SGS2 is for me still the undisputed king – its happened a lot  in the past that a phone has surpassed even those realeased after it – the original Desire is one such device that seemed to have it all. The HTC HD2 was another – I am convinced that the SGS2 is another seminal android handset with the official ICS upgrade pointing at a long life yet. 8mp camera, Super Amoled plus and the oft forgotten but amazing gorilla glass (im heavy handed but hate using a case so my phones are often abused – yet 5 months in my SGS2 screen has no screen protector and yet is as clean and scratch free as the day i bought it). It also has possibly the best selection of accessories etc of any Android phone – something that grieves me to say apple have sewn up by having just 1 device at a time. 

    • My SG2 owning mate has scratched hell out of his screen. Keys in pocket. Nana!

      • Nigel

        my phone sits in my pocket with my keys all the time

    • My SG2 owning mate has scratched hell out of his screen. Keys in pocket. Nana!