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  • 1 Post By B. Diddy
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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default Which phone would be best for me?

    Hello everyone,

    I am becoming overwhelmed in my search for a smartphone for college. Up until now, I have used a tracfone, which I have happily paid around 27.00/month for. However, I am going back to school after MANY years, and would like something a bit better. I do text and talk quite a bit, and I like to have the ability to search the web. A huge use for me is going to be the ability to record as much lecture as possible and possibly use the Dragon Naturally Speaking software down later on to transfer my recorded lecture onto my computer at home. I don't need too many bells and whistles outside of these things. I have heard that the Samsung Galaxy line is great, and I have narrowed it down to 3 phones. Can anyone give an opinion on which is best or offer another suggestion. I will probably have to go with Straight Talk, because while at school, I will not be working, and I simply can't afford more than 45/month. That is actually even pushing it for me. The phones are the Samsung Galaxy Express, the Samsung Galaxy Ace 2 I8160, and the Samsung Galaxy S2 I9100, S II. I would have to buy these unlocked from Amazon. There is also the Samsung Galaxy Centura that you can buy direct from Straight Talk, but I'm not sure how they are. I can't afford to buy a $400-500 phone either. I am definitely trying to keep it under $200. Thanks for any opinions!
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Nexus 5 + Straight Talk AT&T 4G LTE Micro SIM Card

    the Centura is slow garbage. as are most of the Straight Talk phones. scrape up the extra few bucks and get the Nexus 5 and get a superior experience.
  3. #3  

    Default

    Have you considered the Moto G? $179 for the 8 GB version directly from Google Play, but I'd recommend the 16 GB version for only $20 more. The phones are unlocked when bought from Google. From what I read, it works fine if you plug in a Straight Talk SIM. The Moto G is widely regarded as an amazing value, giving performance expected from a mid to high range phone for a budget price.

    Posted via Android Central App.
    Please excuse any typos or autocorrect derps.
    srkmagnus likes this.
  4. Thread Author  Thread Author    #4  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gekko View Post
    Nexus 5 + Straight Talk AT&T 4G LTE Micro SIM Card

    the Centura is slow garbage. as are most of the Straight Talk phones. scrape up the extra few bucks and get the Nexus 5 and get a superior experience.
    But, what if you buy one of the phones unlocked from somewhere else? Not one directly from Straight Talk... Are any of the other Samsung Galaxies I mentioned decent? I will look into the Nexus 5 and Moto G as well. I was also considering the iPhone 4 or Samsung Galaxy Express from ATT Go Phone.
  5. #5  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by reneegavin View Post
    But, what if you buy one of the phones unlocked from somewhere else? Not one directly from Straight Talk... Are any of the other Samsung Galaxies I mentioned decent? I will look into the Nexus 5 and Moto G as well. I was also considering the iPhone 4 or Samsung Galaxy Express from ATT Go Phone.
    i don't know about the other Galaxy phones but my guess is that a cheap Galaxy phone will be slow and buggy and bloated just like the Centura no matter where you buy it from. IMO suck it up and look through your couch cushions, sell some blood, give up a few lattes and lunches out, and scrape up the money and buy a Nexus 5 direct from Google and get true 4G LTE capability. where there's a will there's a way. don't be penny wise and pound foolish. otherwise you will regret it. spend the money up front a buy a good quality phone and focus on the big savings on the monthly carrier bill by choosing Straight Talk. it's the ongoing repeat bills where the focus should be. buying a cheap phone will drastically undermine your experience, frustrate and anger you, and cause you to have to buy a new phone that much sooner. the Nexus 5 will be updated and supported longer than any other current phone at even twice the price and it is bloat free so it should last you a very, very long time if you take care of it. buying a cheap phone is a "false economy".

    and you can get a great inexpensive TPU case from here for $7.99 -

    https://tpu-cases.com/

    good luck.
  6. #6  
    srkmagnus's Avatar

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    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    I'm with B. Diddy - Moto G is probably the best bang for your buck phone that I would recommend. Here are some resources to read up on the device:

    Review - Moto G review | Android Central
    Moto G, two Months On - Moto G, two months on | Android Central

    Let us know if you have further questions.
    B. Diddy likes this.
  7. Thread Author  Thread Author    #7  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gekko View Post
    i don't know about the other Galaxy phones but my guess is that a cheap Galaxy phone will be slow and buggy and bloated just like the Centura no matter where you buy it from. IMO suck it up and look through your couch cushions, sell some blood, give up a few lattes and lunches out, and scrape up the money and buy a Nexus 5 direct from Google and get true 4G LTE capability. where there's a will there's a way. don't be penny wise and pound foolish. otherwise you will regret it. spend the money up front a buy a good quality phone and focus on the big savings on the monthly carrier bill by choosing Straight Talk. it's the ongoing repeat bills where the focus should be. buying a cheap phone will drastically undermine your experience, frustrate and anger you, and cause you to have to buy a new phone that much sooner. the Nexus 5 will be updated and supported longer than any other current phone at even twice the price and it is bloat free so it should last you a very, very long time if you take care of it. buying a cheap phone is a "false economy".

    and you can get a great inexpensive TPU case from here for $7.99 -

    https://tpu-cases.com/

    good luck.
    The monthly bill is what I am most concerned about. I can use both the Nexus 5 and the Moto G with Straight Talk. How exactly does that work? Do you buy the phone unlocked from say, Amazon, then buy the Straight Talk Kit they have in Walmart?
  8. #8  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by reneegavin View Post
    The monthly bill is what I am most concerned about. I can use both the Nexus 5 and the Moto G with Straight Talk. How exactly does that work? Do you buy the phone unlocked from say, Amazon, then buy the Straight Talk Kit they have in Walmart?
    yes buy the UNLOCKED GSM AT&T/T-MOBILE COMPATIBLE phone directly from Google Play or Amazon etc. and then when you get it power it on and set it up via WIFI at your house to your liking. then walk it into Walmart (Bring your SIM Card Tool - don't lose it) and ask for a Straight Talk AT&T 4G LTE Micro SIM Card + $45 Unlimited Monthly Package. Walmart tech will install/set it all up for you and transfer your number. then go home and register on the Straight Talk site and sign up for auto bill pay and you will eventually see an offer for $2.50/month discount for using auto pay. you could also do a lot of this yourself via the Straight Talk site but i would just let the Walmart tech do it.

    https://play.google.com/store/device...s_5_black_16gb
  9. #9  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by reneegavin View Post
    The monthly bill is what I am most concerned about. I can use both the Nexus 5 and the Moto G with Straight Talk. How exactly does that work? Do you buy the phone unlocked from say, Amazon, then buy the Straight Talk Kit they have in Walmart?
    Buy the phone first then the service. Basically once you have the phone you plop in the sim card and activate the phone over the network, on line or at a providers store. The moto G and nexus 5 can be bought directly from motorola and google. It's best to eliminate the middle man and buy direct. Otherwise you may run into problems further down the line should you have issues with the phone.
    The "infraction"
  10. Thread Author  Thread Author    #10  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Do you know if these phones are definitely compatible with Straight Talk? The NExus 5 is a bit too pricey for me right now. High college bills! Will the Moto G 16 GB allow me to record several hours of lecture? Also, is buying the Moto G from Google Play direct?
    Last edited by reneegavin; 05-22-2014 at 08:01 PM.
  11. #11  
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    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by itic View Post
    Buy the phone first then the service.
    Absolutely backwards. The very best phone in the world, on a carrier that has no service where you need service is an expensive rock. The cheapest piece of garbage phone getting great service is at least a phone.

    Which carrier gives the best coverage at your school, where you live, etc.?

    With Straight Talk you can use any of the big 4 (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile or Verizon), but the best bang for the buck will be if AT&T or T-Mobile has coverage where you need it. If the phone is locked to AT&T, a Straight Talk AT&T SIM will work, if it's locked to T-Mobile, a Straight Talk T-Mobile SIM will work in it. (Even if the phone is unlocked, choose the SIM for the carrier you want.)

    As far as a phone, the S2 is good, but look on http://swappa.com/ for an S3 (locked is okay, as long as it's locked to the carrier you're going to be using - and you'll save a few bucks) in good condition. You may pay less than for a new S2. And Swappa is a site you can trust - they vet their sellers. (It's like Craig's List with someone keeping the sellers [and buyers] honest.)

    As far as compatibility, ANY phone that will work on AT&T will work with a Straight Talk AT&T SIM and ANY phone that will work on T-Mobile will work with a Straight Talk T-Mobile SIM. But don't go just by model number. There are S2s and S3s that won't work on either AT&T or T-Mobile. There are European versions and there are versions for Verizon and Sprint (totally different technology than AT&T or T-Mobile). So you want a phone that will work on the carrier you will get the best coverage from, preferably GSM (AT&T or T-Mobile). If it has to be Verizon, you'll have to check at Tracfone: BYOP to see if the particular phone (not model number) will be accepted. (It says Tracfone, but they use that site for both Tracfone and Straight Talk.)
    Last edited by Rukbat; 05-24-2014 at 12:36 AM.
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  12. Thread Author  Thread Author    #12  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    After talking to many different customer service people at both Motorola and Straight Talk, I went ahead and bought a Moto Go direct from Motorola. It should work with Straight Talk. Once I get the phone, I am going to take it to Walmart and let them do the rest. If for some reason, it doesn't work, I have 14 days to return it to Motorola. Thanks everyone!
    Last edited by reneegavin; 05-24-2014 at 12:04 PM.
  13. #13  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Awesome! You mean a Moto G, right?

    Posted via Android Central App.
    Please excuse any typos or autocorrect derps.
  14. #14  
    machzk's Avatar

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    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by reneegavin View Post
    After talking to many different customer service people at both Motorola and Straight Talk, I went ahead and bought a Moto Go direct from Motorola. It should work with Straight Talk. Once I get the phone, I am going to take it to Walmart and let them do the rest. If for some reason, it doesn't work, I have 14 days to return it to Motorola. Thanks everyone!
    At that price,that is the best bang. Glad you didn't get one of those crappy low end Galaxy phones. U will be happy with the G, providing it works with your carrier. Fast, close to stock UI,quick updates etc.

    Sent from my Moto X...
  15. Thread Author  Thread Author    #15  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by B. Diddy View Post
    Awesome! You mean a Moto G, right?

    Posted via Android Central App.
    Please excuse any typos or autocorrect derps.
    yep
  16. #16  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    If T-Mobile is available at your school you might want to consider them. I believe unlimited everything with them is $40 a month and with that you also get WiFi tethering which can come in handy if you want to find a quite corner to work and need internet on your laptop. Not shore if that is something that you might want to consider.

    Posted via Android Central App
  17. Thread Author  Thread Author    #17  

    Default Re: Which phone would be best for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by An-Droid-M View Post
    If T-Mobile is available at your school you might want to consider them. I believe unlimited everything with them is $40 a month and with that you also get WiFi tethering which can come in handy if you want to find a quite corner to work and need internet on your laptop. Not shore if that is something that you might want to consider.

    I really wanted to get Metro PCS , which runs off of T-Mobile, but unfortunately T-Mobile service is HORRIBLE where I live!

    Posted via Android Central App

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