The Express didn't get much press because it's only available on Sprint and it isn't even one of Sprint's better phones. You may think that because you're upgrading from an old phone that you want a simpler phone, but some improvements are worth having (more powerful processors, gorilla glass, more powerful radios, better batteries, etc.) because the benefits have proven to be worthwhile (fewer lockups, harder to break or scratch glass, more bars and fewer dropped calls, longer standby and talk times).
The XPRT is at the same price point as the Express (Free w/contract), but offers many improvements. See the comparison . The Admiral is $99 w/$50 MIR and offers mil-spec toughness but has a funky display resolution that may not be compatible with some apps and offers about 1/5th the standby time of the XPRT.
some improvements are worth having (more powerful processors, gorilla glass, more powerful radios, better batteries, etc.) because the benefits have proven to be worthwhile (fewer lockups, harder to break or scratch glass, more bars and fewer dropped calls, longer standby and talk times).
Helpful bunch here! Really appreciated.
Geekaphone does have one thing wrong: Express definitely has touchscreen. See the YouTube video in my first post.
I guess my short list is really looking like this:
Samsung Galaxy S II, Epic 4G Touch
Blackberry Bold 9930
Truth be told I'm an old Palm OS fan, and miss them. I've had smartphones since 2000 and I'm still annoyed at having to pay so much more on a plan just to get a modern phone.
The Kyocera 6035 and Samsung SPH i500 were awesome.
I would go android or ios if you're looking to stay current, but if you liked palm, the blackberry os on the blackberry playbook is the spitting image of webos. It is awesome with the blackberry bold 9930 (which is a sweet phone on its own) and blackberry bridge makes the two a great pair.
Your short list looks a little dated. I recently replaced a phone and did a lot of research. Here are my observations:
Samsung Galaxy S II, Epic 4G Touch - Wow - you're considering WiMax phones! Most folks will say one of these two is the best phone available from Sprint today. Times change though. Sprint will have the Note and Galaxy S3 soon (next 3 months) and both will have LTE and better power management. Will you be happy locking in with 5Mbps data speeds and 8 hours of talk time, or would you rather go for 40Mbps and 12 hours of talk time?
Motorola Admiral - A noble 3G-only effort by Motorola to pick up the slack left by Blackberry. While the Admiral is supposed to be an update of the XPRT, it's a glowing example of why newer isn't always better. While the 1.2Ghz CPU is more powerful than the XPRT's 1Ghz CPU, between that minor upgrade and the higher-resolution display (320x480 vs. 480x640) the Admiral gets 1/5th the standby time of the XPRT (380 hours vs. 79 hours). The display resolution on the Admiral isn't a common one and many apps won't work on it. There are workarounds for some apps, but why go down that road?
Blackberry Bold 9930 - Blackberry has fallen behind. They don't use glass displays, let alone Gorilla Glass displays. You're looking at easy-to-scratch plastic. The BB7 OS gets the job done, but there aren't many apps for it. To make matters worse they've got a fantastic NEW OS (BBX/BB10) that will run all the Android apps but you can't buy a phone today that has it and any phone you do buy today won't be upgradeable to it - it requires a dual-core CPU and none of their current phones have one.
HTC Arrive - The Arrive is a solid 3G-only phone. It's a little heavy and a little bulky, but it will get the job done. It's about 1.5 generations behind though. Sprint cancelled the Arrive update (HTC Maaza) and there's a rumored Windows Superphone in development, but you're looking at a phone that's more than a year old. The Windows Phone store doesn't have many apps either. While MS is paying to develop apps for it, they tend to be fringe apps instead of the household names you'd recognize. (ie. No Opera, Dolphin HD, Firefox or most security apps) Check out the for yourself.
Microsoft takes pride that their Windows Phone OS uses few resources and they lock down the hardware specs for their phone to ensure that manufacturers all use the same parts (max 480x800 display, no SD cards, etc.) While this lets them optimize the OS to only work on a short list of hardware to get away with the low specs, who uses a smartphone to ONLY run the OS? Once you start installing apps that consume real-world resources, not the stupid optimization parlor-trick ones, it won't take you long to see the folly of that scheme[YT][/YT].
iPhone 4S - It's a fine 3G-only phone. I'm not a big fan of Apple's locked-down, walled-garden approach, but there are hacks and jailbreaks to ease that pain if you're so inclined. Lots of accessories, lots of apps and no shortage of other iPhone users. Top o' the line phones don't come cheap though ($399) and you might experience some new-shiny-thing envy when the iPhone 5 comes out later this year.
The best network for you will depend on your situation (ie. Do you have WiMax now?, are you scheduled to get LTE before 2015?). All the choices above are either 3G-only or WiMax - you don't have any LTE phones on your list. I'm not a big fan of having, "features" just because they're there, but I also don't see much point in paying for a 40Mbps connection and getting a 200Mbps one either.
Last edited by SERO wireless; 04-06-2012 at 05:10 PM.