LebGeeks

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#1 4 weeks ago

vlatkozelka
Member

Upgrading Android phone

I know we're going through rough times, where no one is spending their precious USD. But hypothetically speaking, if you own a 2018-2019 flagship Android phone. What would you upgrade to this year or the next? It's something that I've been thinking about a lot the past year, as new phones started rolling out.

I personally became a One Plus fan when I purchased my 3T. It was the perfect phone back then: It had the fastest fingerprint sensor out there in the Android market (security updates sort of nerfed that though), it had a great battery life, really good display, the fastest CPU available back then, etc... for 400$

One plus also kept updating the OS, it was unheard of. My One plus came with Android M, but got updated to N, O, P, Q. That's 5 OS updates on and Android phone!

I also used it for Android development at work. It was too good a device, where a lot of features would work flawlessly on it, then break on Huaweis and Samsungs (terrible OEMs who don't follow Android specs and break everything)

I thought it was pretty clear what the next phone would be. One Plus 7 or 8... but... One plus no longer are "flagship killer at half the price". Why would I pay 800~900$ for a sort of flagship phone?

Luckily, Google had an amazing offer on Pixel 3, 3a and 3XL shortly before releasing the Pixel 4. For 300$, you get the best CPU from the previous gen, Google's great camera and camera software.

A year and a half of owning a Pixel 3, it's really a very well rounded phone. The Android OS matured greatly, and so did the Google ecosystem: Google play, pay, photos, etc... The phone makes it pretty easy to jump from one task to the other, with very subtle but useful features.

The only bad things I could say about Pixel 3 are the bottom speaker buzz at high volumes, and the not so great battery life: it lasts a day, but nothing impressive.

So again, I found a great brand to go with, right? No. Pixel 4 was an absolute failure. The improvement over Pixel 3 is negligible. Screen bezels in 2020, useless radar sensor. It's really not worth at all upgrading from pixel 3, for 700$!

Pixel 5 releases are no longer flagship phones with the best CPU out there, or so I've read.

So what would a Pixel 3 owner upgrade to?

Here's my take on it. I bought One Plus 3T and Pixel 3 because they are flagship phones with either vanilla Android experience, or as close to vanilla as possible: One Plus Oxygen OS is mostly theming, they don't change much with the Android OS.

Here's my thoughts on other brands:

Huawei: Terrible OS, terrible UI, very unstable phone. I work in Android development, just take my word for it. We get the most crashes and instability issues with Huawei.

Xiaomi: an iOS wannabe

Asus, LG: Gimmicky phones: vibrating screens as speakers, bloated OS, rugged phone cases, etc... They feel more like toys than phones

Samsung: Overly expensive fragile all glass phones. Bloated OS.

Sony: Sony Xperia just kept going downhill after the Xperia Z2


As you can see, it doesn't seem clear what a Pixel 3/One plus 3t/6T owner can upgrade to. Nowadays I don't look at any Android phone and be like ... I want that! They don't feel as an upgrade at all. And no I will not go to iPhone. Tried them before, just don't like them.

What are your thoughts?

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#2 4 weeks ago

Salloum
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

It really depends on your budget... but yes, the smartphone market has really peaked. Not much is interesting these days unless you're into foldables and have a large budget. Personally on the Android side of things the only two companies worth considering are OnePlus and Samsung in my opinion.

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#3 4 weeks ago

Johnaudi
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

Or get a used iPhone! (for real though, these things last, is not liked a lot by the android community though)
Any opinions about the new Oppo flagship?

Nice thread though!

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#4 4 weeks ago

bobo619
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

Pixel 4a for the best android experience but with mid range specs

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#5 4 weeks ago

xazbrat
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

It depends on what you are looking for---a flagship phone from a couple years ago should be usable, but the Pixel 3 with a snapdragon 845 should be able to handle any of the apps out today.  The biggest thing you lose out on would a bigger battery (Lots these days 4000mh and up) and a faster refresh screen.   You wouldn't think it makes much difference, but after using it for a while, any other display seems slower.

You have the option of the OP Nord (selling for $500 at phonefinity) with a mid tier processor, a decent sized battery and a 90 hz refresh screen, the pixel 4a or the upcoming 4a 5g, which you would be getting for the bigger screen, or some of the Nokia Android One phones like the Nokia 9. 

I think Samsung phones, at least the flagship ones, have amazing hardware, but Samsung's One UI is a complete disaster--their mid tier stuff here has good value and are solid, but nothing special.  Huawei I wouldn't touch right now; Sony has a naming scheme they can't even figure out or keep straight; Xiaomi, Oppo, and Realme have solid phones, but they do tend to have skins that make Android sort of IOSish. T

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#6 4 weeks ago

Idler
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

have you checked jerry rigs everything ? you might get a better overview on a wide scale

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#7 4 weeks ago

beezer
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

My parents still use the original Pixel and you know what, for social media it's a perfect phone that still has the latest updates.

I'm on a Mate 10, wanted my next phone to be the current Gen Mate but didn't look like it for two reasons. Money and no more Google services. So it's probably Google or Samsung for my next flagship.

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#8 4 weeks ago

Hybrid
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

Xiaomi all the way, amazing OS, stable and great cameras. Been using xiaomis for the last 5 years

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#9 4 weeks ago

Metalloy
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

Huwaei p2o pro user here
I wanted tj point out the the software and UI are really good and stable so I think you were a little unfair to them,
That being said, anything after p30pro don't support Gapps so I understand people staying away from it.
I Don't have any direct experience with OPPO but they seem to be cementing their presence in Lebanon so maybe look there?

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#10 4 weeks ago

bobo619
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

Samsung's One UI is a complete disaster

I couldn't disagree more.

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#11 4 weeks ago

bobo619
Member

Re: Upgrading Android phone

xazbrat wrote:

Samsung's One UI is a complete disaster

I couldn't disagree more.

Last edited by bobo619 (4 weeks ago)

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