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A couple days in with the Maxx: My experience
Thoughts on the Maxx after the first few days.
I finally got my Maxx a couple of days ago, and overall I love this phone. To be truthful, I am not sure I have any real negatives that I can name just yet.
For point of reference, my previous daily driver was the Galaxy Nexus, and I tried a GS4 for a little over a week. Some of the features that stand out in my mind:
I never had an issue with the GN, but I have to say the Maxx just feels good in my hand, and well put together. The device is solid, the speakers are loud, and I like the soft touch Kevlar.
It is crisp and vibrant. Text and photos look very sharp to my eye. Perhaps if I had it sitting next to the HTC One I could tell a difference, but I have not once looked at my screen and wished it was better – in fact I have found it a pleasure to use.
Radios (Signal/Hand offs)
A huge step forward for me over the GN and it has been glaring. I actually have a 4G signal at my home, which I never had with my GN. Places where I had no coverage, I have 2 bars of 3G. The WiFi to wireless handoff has been seamless. With the GN I had gotten to the point that I controlled the WiFi manually because I would lose reception while it tried to connect to WiFi. The 4G/3G handoff is greatly improved as well. I have not had radios that worked this well since my BB days. In my usage, the radios are better than the GS4 too, particularly the reception.
I cannot wait until I stop thinking about the battery. Today I was on the phone with my wife, and I had this sudden twinge to get off the phone so my battery could make it through the rest of the day, then I realized I don’t have that issue any more. I feel like a dog that has been beat too much (stealing that line without shame), still conserving battery when there is no need. Plenty of folks have posted battery use screen shots, and so far, I am having great success as well. I killed the phone yesterday with over 5 hours of screen time, and only ate up 50% of my battery, that included a lot of radio use during app download and setup.
I love them, but what I love more is the phone knows when I pick it up or move it in any meaningful way. It responds by showing me the time and my current notifications. Also, you can unlock the screen from there. Because of this ability, I can count on one hand the number of times I have seen my lock screen or touched my power button. It sounds like a small thing, but being able to pick up your phone and swipe down to unlock is awesome. It will be hard to adjust to a phone without this feature in the future. I had Lightflow on my GN; I don’t miss it.
I get my corporate email through Divide, which is a bit of a system/battery hog. The program choked the GN to death, it was painful. I have yet to run a program that is not snappy on my Maxx (including Divide). Transitions are smooth. Folks can argue about specs all they want, this phone performs as well if not better than anything out there.
Voice Activation/Moto Assist/Moto connect
These are as reported, and work well for me. Moto Connect is very cool, and I have seen very little discussion on it. From a chrome extension, you can see and send text messages, see incoming calls and battery life – all styled very close to what is on your phone. I normally have my phone in arms reach, but I have used it a couple of times already.
Camera phones are not a big deal for me. If I want to take a picture that I am going to keep/print, I will have my DSLR and good glass with me. I use my camera phone to share snap shots, and for that this camera is good – better than what I had on the GN. I agree with others that have discussed that the pictures can look a little washed out. I am convinced it it due to the clear pixel. I played with a couple of shots in Snapseed, and you can definitely improve the shots.
Lack of Root
Well, this may become a negative for me. I wish I could put Google Wallet on the phone, but frankly I was not using it that much. If KLP adds features that I want, I will certainly get impatient waiting for Verizon to get the latest version out. Being able to load up an AOSP ROM within days of release was awesome. I will miss that.
Is this phone for everybody? Of course not. I simply share my view with hopes that people that have similar wants and needs from a phone will know what to expect. Hope this helps.