1. Zac_AUS's Avatar

    I've recently decided that I will need a smartphone for college (currently have my physical keyboard Nokia e63 and iPod Touch 5th Gen).

    I was thinking about getting a Blackberry or an android phone however using a friend's low-end android smartphone for a short time I was impressed so I'm going with android.

    I do have a couple of concerns:

    - How have people found the change from the physical keyboard to a software one? Any keyboards to recommend (I like the predicted text on Apple and apparently it is better on android)?
    - Finding a low-mid range smartphone. I have done some research and I think a Nexus 5 would be suitable to me however I don't want my text messages going into hangouts. I was also thinking about Motorola phone. I would like a stock experience as I will be using most of Google's apps (except for hangouts and Google+) and at least 32GB of storage.
    - How do people cope with battery life on their phones? I would only using it for podcasts (heavily), music (heavily), texting (heavily), calls, the occasional google search and taking the odd photo.
    - Apps. What are the equivalent/best apps for podcasts and music? I've heard slacker is a good option.
    - How secure is android, as I won't be rooting the phone and using google play?
    - I guess it would be depending on the phone itself but what about updates? Is it worth constantly updating the phone? This is because I have had my nokia e63 for 3 years now and I would like the phone to last a couple of years

    Thank you for your help and sorry about the rambling
    12-15-2014 07:36 PM
  2. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Welcome to Android Central! There are so many good options out there that it can almost be a little intimidating. It sounds like the Moto X might be a good choice for you, since Motorola tends to keep its interface relatively close to vanilla Android, and the features they add are generally felt to be very useful (like Active Display). I'd suggest the Moto G, which is an excellent value for a budget phone, but it doesn't come with 32 GB of internal storage--usually only 8 GB, although the 1st gen Moto G did have a 16 GB version. Internal Storage is very important in Android devices--it's where apps are installed, so if you have a device with only 4 GB of Internal Storage, you'll run out of space quickly (especially since around 3 GB of that space is taken up by the OS). External microSD cards are primarily useful for storing media like music and photos, not for installing apps.

    I have a Nexus 5, and it's an excellent phone, with performance that rivals high-end flagship phones. The main weak spot is the battery, which is mediocre. Messaging via Hangouts is no big deal--it's easy to tell when you're sending something via SMS vs Google Hangouts. But there are plenty of 3rd party SMS apps that you can install as well.

    I never used a Blackberry, and the last phone I had with a physical keyboard was a Windows Mobile 6.1 Samsung phone with a slider keyboard (that I never used), so I'm not the best person to tell you about the keyboard issue. But I have no problems typing on the screen. There are many keyboard apps to choose from, and many of them allow you to type via swiping, which can be pretty fast. Fleksy is another good keyboard that currently holds some kind of speed-typing record--it works via tapping, rather than swiping.

    Most good Android phones like the Moto X have good battery life that should get you through the whole day of your described usage with plenty to spare. Don't expect a single charge to get you through multiple days, unless you have something like a Droid Maxx or Turbo--just plan on charging it every night, and you'll never have a problem.

    I think Google Play Music is a great music app. If you want a streaming service, Google Play Music's All Access is excellent, and reasonably priced. If you have a big music library on your computer, it's easy to upload the entire thing to your cloud Google Music Library, which holds up to 20,000 tracks for free.

    Android remains quite secure, as long as you follow common sense guidelines, like (1) avoiding shady websites for things like porn and gambling, (2) installing apps from reputable sources like Google and Amazon, rather than random filesharing sites, (3) never believing a popup that tells you that your device is infected with something, and "click here to clean it!" There are many antivirus apps available (some of which are also shady in themselves), but Google actually gives you the option to allow them to scan all of your apps periodically for malware, which obviates the need for a 3rd party antivirus.

    System updates are interesting beasts. People clamor for them and gnash their teeth when they don't get them yesterday, but once they get them, they gnash their teeth about how it wasn't all they expected. And of course, updates can bring about various glitches. In general, Google usually throws some pretty neat things in with each update, so I find it worthwhile to update when given the opportunity. Google also is able to send more under-the-hood types of updates via something called Google Play Services, which is an app that is responsible for many features associated with the various Google apps--this is something that updates on its own.
    HappyFunBall24 likes this.
    12-16-2014 02:00 AM
  3. James_Watson's Avatar
    So many questions? I try to write some words below for your reference.

    I think Samsung Galaxy Note 3 or 4 is a good android phone. As for apps, you may install amazon appstore or use google play to discover and get any apps you like.

    As for system update, it is some like Windows Update for your Windows 7 or Windows XP. It's so easy.
    12-16-2014 02:34 AM

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