Goodbye N1... A good read

Jerry-O

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This is a long read, but is has good information for anyone thinking about getting a N1 and some info about the 3G issues and a fix for it.

OVERVIEW
After 2 weeks with my N1 I have made the decision to return it and go back to my BlackBerry curve. I loved the N1 and it was everything the BB was not, but is also not a BB. As an IT professional the most important thing a mobile device can do for me is make calls and receive e-mails reliably and my N1 did not.

BUSINESS USER PERSPECTIVE
If I was a college kid or did not have a job where it was critical that I be accessible 24/7 the N1 would be a great phone. It made and received calls most of the time, but sometimes I would dial and after 30 seconds of silence it would say call ended and I would have to dial again. It always went through the second time. I would also have people tell me they called me and the phone would not ring and I would not get a missed call log warning. I also had problems receiving e-mail overnight. It would run flawlessly during the day but when I went to bed I would wake up the next morning to no e-mails in my inbox. Once I started using the phone again for the day the overnight e-mails would come through and everything would be OK. I tried it on wifi, 3G, and forced EDGE and had the same problem each way. (I think both the calling and e-mail problems had to do with the antenna issue described later in this post.) The other think that seemed like a minor problem but ended up being a big deal was the lack of a status LED on the edge of the phone. In a meeting everyone keeps their blackberrys on the conference table ringer off, vibrate off (since a vibrating phone can get loud in a quiet conference room), and we relied on the LED to tell us when we had an e-mail. The blinking trackball when a message came in was great, but in the case you cannot see it so it is not that useful. And the much talked about lack of exchange calendar support is a bummer but should not be your deciding factor since Google sync with a Google calendar did just fine for all of my scheduling needs.

PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE
I did not want another account. I avoided making a Google and Gmail account like the plague because I was use to my native BB calendar and address book. Once I gave in and set up my Google accounts everything worked like a dream. It had a good media player, fun and plentiful applications, a great screen. It was the perfect personal phone, but I could live without the trackball.

THE BIG PROBLEM
Reception was my big problem. I had the 3G / EDGE switching problem and found that it was not a software issue. (FIX BELOW) When my phone was sitting on the table I got a decent, but not good, 3G signal, when I picked up the phone it went to 0 bars. If I was lucky it would switch to EDGE immediately, but about 50% of the time it would sit with 0 bars and 0 signals. I suspect it would do this in my pocket as well. I suspect this reception issue is why I would not receive e-mails and phone calls when I was suppose to because it often had 0 signal. I live in a strong 3G area and my wife?s phone never has any 3G problems.

This is a widely documented problem with a youtube video here if you have not seen it:

Nexus One 3G Woes, Part 315 | TmoNews - Unofficial T-Mobile Blog - News, Videos, Articles and more

For those of you who get good 3G reception but still have the problem with the signal switching between 3G and EDGE here is the solution. It did not work for me due to my poor 3G signal I received in general but if you have a strong signal this will work for you:

1. Home Screen -> Settings -> Wireless & Netowrk Settings > Mobile networks > Network operators -> Select Automatically

2. Home Screen -> Phone -> Dial *#*#4636#*#* -> Phone Information -> Switch from 'WCDMA preferred' to 'WCDMA only'

SUMMARY
The Nexus One is a great phone for personal use. It is as close to perfection as is out there. I really wanted to find a way to keep it, but from a business perspective it just did not have the reliability I needed.
If they ever move the antenna to a different location and I can get a good strong signal I will be back to the N1 in a minute.

Hopefully this was a good read for you and will help in your decision to purchase a N1.

On a side note the return process was very easy and they did not give me a hard time about it at all.
 

big_time2

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Good review... I agree with you when it comes to work email. I do not even use it for work anymore. Now I just carry a BlackBerry for work and Nexus One as a personal phone. Nexus One is a great phone but I will be getting a different phone as soon as a new BlackBerry for Tmo comes out.
 

Jeremy

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I have zero reception issues on AT&T with the Nexus. And I'm not fond of Blackberry email either, and yes, I've owned a few - go figure. To each his/her own.

If you can't buy into the Google way of things then Android is not for you. It's pretty simple actually.

Good luck.
 

ads

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Was your BB curve also on T-mo?
That vid really seems to clarify either an RF issue, or emf affecting the antenna (think of magnetism from the device that all electronics produce and that case designs should manage or largely eliminate). Not good either way.
I'm wondering if leaving it in Edge wouldn't have been less troublesome, but the part about phone calls not working, that would seal it for me too.
ADS
 

Jerry-O

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Yes... my BB is TMO also, as well as my wifes phone. I just swapped out the sim and I was good to go. No siglan problems on my BB either. When I was experimenting with the signal I did not have any call problems on edge but $500 is a lot for an EDGE phone.
 

Jeremy

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Yes... my BB is TMO also, as well as my wifes phone. I just swapped out the sim and I was good to go. No siglan problems on my BB either. When I was experimenting with the signal I did not have any call problems on edge but $500 is a lot for an EDGE phone.

You could have tried the new radio to see if that solved your issue. Though I'm not sure you'd want to install it on your own before it was officially released.
 

anon(6936)

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Exchange emails work flawlessly for me. The need to migrate to Google was a bit of a pain since I already skirt the fence by synching OSX and Exchange.if Blackberrys ever start rendering HTML email and sites correctly, I may consider using one again. Add Google Nav and they are a contenders once more. I really despise touch screens but the N1 is my go to device right now. Good luck.
 

JDWallace

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Thanks for the great review/point of view. This is not just a run of the mill type review. I had a BB since 2002 and recently moved to an Android phone, so I feel and see your side. It will help with making a decision on getting one when it comes to Big Red.
 

TreyDaPrince

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I hate to carrier bash but there's a reason why T Mobile has the statistically known worst coverage in america. I don't care where you are or how much you claim you usually get good service in your area, its still T mobile. The N1 may have higher specs but there's a reason why Android websites and bloggers still view the Droid as the dominant device. Yes sales have something to do with it, but again, that ties in with the carrier. More people are on Verizon because of the service...less people are on T mobile because of its service. I'm sorry your Android experience was ruined because of a pathetic carrier but...I guess it is what it is.
 

ads

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Yeah, but this is simple

With the same carrier on his BB, he had no problems. As for T-mo, I moved off them for company discount over 3 years ago, but their coverage here was very good, and customer service was excellent compared to many others. Their 3G rollout is slow, but if his BB worked w/o incident, his ultimate experience is that his newer, more technologically advanced device sent him backwards in capability. That's not the carrier's fault.
ADS


I hate to carrier bash but there's a reason why T Mobile has the statistically known worst coverage in america. I don't care where you are or how much you claim you usually get good service in your area, its still T mobile. The N1 may have higher specs but there's a reason why Android websites and bloggers still view the Droid as the dominant device. Yes sales have something to do with it, but again, that ties in with the carrier. More people are on Verizon because of the service...less people are on T mobile because of its service. I'm sorry your Android experience was ruined because of a pathetic carrier but...I guess it is what it is.
 

Race Harley

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Good read. Doesn't sway my decision to purchase the N1 as if I'm going to use a phone for work, work will supply that phone. The N1 seems to be an excellent choice for a personal phone over the BBs. Looking foward to getting mine as soon as it's released for use on the Verizon network.
 

TreyDaPrince

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With the same carrier on his BB, he had no problems. As for T-mo, I moved off them for company discount over 3 years ago, but their coverage here was very good, and customer service was excellent compared to many others. Their 3G rollout is slow, but if his BB worked w/o incident, his ultimate experience is that his newer, more technologically advanced device sent him backwards in capability. That's not the carrier's fault.
ADS

I my friend (and I say this in the most positive, non argumentative way) think its the opposite. I think BB just overachieved and created a phone with great radios to allow it to have decent coverage while others do what they usually do on other carriers without going over the top to at least get a satisfactory signal. Sidekicks, N1's, and all the BS phones on TMO fail because of their coverage. Don't believe me, google it. =)
 

Joene

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Coverage is always the provider's fault. Blaming coverage on a manufacturer is like blaming Philips for the fact that their microwaves don't work when there is an outage...
 
G

GenericMessage

Coverage is always the provider's fault. Blaming coverage on a manufacturer is like blaming Philips for the fact that their microwaves don't work when there is an outage...

I think he meant signal reception.


Some phones are just better at picking up a signal than others.
 

ads

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Fair enough, I only know my own tmo experience

In central KY 3 years ago, not a market that's high on the carrier importance meter; the service worked well with a few phones, the highest end being a treo 600; nothing 3G capable.
But the other thing would be, if ANY manufacturer wants to compete with the killer market-share of RIM, they should consider stepping up to the bar set by the BB, if that's the best radio there is.

Just watching that VID, it seems not good that holding the phone at the bottom kills 3G signal AND it takes so long to get to EDGE, and most troubling, the OP saying both mails and calls weren't flowing at all.
Do you/anyone know: What is a middle to strong signal, even EDGE, in db?
If this guy's on the fringe of any type of Tmo signal, then I follow you about a superior radio being the only reason the BB did well. I won't have that problem on AT&T or Tmo here.

ADS

I my friend (and I say this in the most positive, non argumentative way) think its the opposite. I think BB just overachieved and created a phone with great radios to allow it to have decent coverage while others do what they usually do on other carriers without going over the top to at least get a satisfactory signal. Sidekicks, N1's, and all the BS phones on TMO fail because of their coverage. Don't believe me, google it. =)
 

z0phi3l

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I my friend (and I say this in the most positive, non argumentative way) think its the opposite. I think BB just overachieved and created a phone with great radios to allow it to have decent coverage while others do what they usually do on other carriers without going over the top to at least get a satisfactory signal. Sidekicks, N1's, and all the BS phones on TMO fail because of their coverage. Don't believe me, google it. =)

Look we get it YOU hate T-mobile, there are many of us, even many using the N1 with no issues whatsoever
 

bbui4

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Great review. Definitely helped me since I'm a current BB 9630 user. I'm still hoping some of those problems will be fixed when N1 is released for verizon.

For work, (emails, messaging, etc) nothing beats a BB imo. Typing on a BB is like typing on a keyboard. You don't have to look at the keys.

If you are staying with T-Mobile, i would recommend trying the BB 9700.
 
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GadgetMomma

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A good read!

I am also getting rid of my N1. As I missed the boat by just about six days, I can no longer return my N1 for a refund, so I'm going to have to try to sell it. I did not have any trouble with my phone - in fact, it's a great phone, still in perfect condition. But I agree with you about the usability, etc of the BB. That is what I'll be using (again) for the time being.

Sounds crazy, but I have some personal reasons for getting rid of the N1. Like I said, it's an exceptional phone.
 
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