Author Topic: Cell-phone woes  (Read 4106 times)

Offline euge

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Cell-phone woes
« on: August 24, 2012, 02:30:33 PM »
I'm wondering if anyone has noticed the same thing as me? Cell phones programmed/designed to fail around the end of a two-year contract? A pre-planned obsolescence?

For example in 2006 I bought a Motorola Razor and signed a 2-year contract. Two years to the day the phone died... I replaced the battery thinking this was probably the problem. Phone was dead.

So forced to get a new phone (and sign a new contract with ATT) I fiddled with a Blackberry Bold (garbage) and graduated to an iPhone 3g S. Sold that after about 10 months and bought an android phone (Galaxy SGH-I97) from ATT while re-setting my contract for further two more years. In the mean-time I bought the "master" model from China: the Galaxy S GT-I9000 because you could tether, video call etc... as a toy to compare ti the ATT phone.

The GT-I9000 had a specific issue where due to the "infrastructure" I could only get 3g in my neighborhood- after two years this has been resolved, however this particular phone remained unused and battery removed until about three weeks ago.

Interestingly, the SGH-I97 is basically an identical phone without a few bells and whistles. I've used it heavily for data use and it has been reliable until about three weeks ago where it wouldn't respond via touchscreen and began to behave erratically at times.

And guess what? My contract was up on the 14th of this month. Two weeks shy of the ending of the two-year contract my phone starts to fail. HMMM is there a pattern here? So I pulled out the GT-I9000 which is basically a brand new unused 2 year old phone and slipped the sim in and began to use it. Works great- better than the other model and I get my proper 3g signal everywhere. But, in the last week it has begun to exhibit the same symptoms as the prior phone.

Ideas? Thoughts? I burns me up that these expensive phones would have a designed expiration date for their hardware.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline narvin

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2012, 02:35:31 PM »
I think I had at least 3 RAZRs of the course of a few years... some failures we my fault, some weren't.  Stuff isn't always made all that well these days.

I'm still on an original Droid Incredible that's 2.5 years old right now.  No problems except for issues when updating the system software, which I fixed with a little googling.
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Offline Pinski

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2012, 02:44:39 PM »
I've been running my iPhone 3GS for almost 3 years now with no problems. 
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Offline thebigbaker

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2012, 04:00:30 PM »
I've had my iPhone 3GS for just over 3 years and no problems here either.  Looking forward to the iPhone 5!
Jeremy Baker

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Offline tygo

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2012, 06:16:28 PM »
I usually end up needing a new phone every 2.5 years or so.  In fact, I'm due right now.  Probably going with the Droid Razr.
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Offline punatic

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2012, 08:08:18 PM »
I had my iPhone 3G for 3 1/2 years.  Last May I bought a 4S just to get the upgrades.  My son is using the 3G.  It's nearly 4 years in service now and still works great.
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Offline nateo

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2012, 08:29:32 PM »
I've got one of those dumb phones. You know, the flip kind. It's at least 4 years old now and still going strong.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2012, 04:33:43 AM »
I have to admit that I'm a technology junkie myself. I start researching my next phone about 3 or 4 months before I'm due for an upgrade.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2012, 06:42:19 AM »
We went from flip phones to iphones two weeks ago, but had to turn them back in because there was so little reception at our house we couldn't even make a call.  We'll try with another carrier soon.
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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2012, 08:35:15 AM »
I've got one of those dumb phones. You know, the flip kind. It's at least 4 years old now and still going strong.

Same here.  Mine is probably 5-6 years old and works fine.  And I have no contract...it's a pay as you go phone.
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Offline euge

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2012, 10:44:51 AM »
I'm thinking of switching to Cricket which is $55 for unlimited everything and no contract. I wiped (factory reset) the SGH-I97 and am seeing if it'll work better.

Basically, mobile phones are semi-disposable. There is an after-market, and an after-after-market for them; but seems to me they are planned to be owned for less than 20 months when they'll be set-aside, traded in or sold for the next best model.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline punatic

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2012, 11:09:53 AM »
I use my iPhone for a ton of stuff.   
Work-wise being able to access the internet, google earth and GPS in the field is indispensable.  Being able to bring up a spec sheet and drawing for a piece of equipment I'm repairing in the field has saved my bacon more times than I can count.  I use the calculator all of the time.  I make voice memos all of the time.  Now, instead of writing down operations readings on paper data charts, I take pictures of the controls and the enter them into a spreadsheet when I get back to the office. (not all of the systems I operate have SCADA).

Plus I really like the music library/talking book/streaming audio parts.

The phone funtion is only a small part of my "phone."

full disclosure: I don't text.
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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2012, 07:56:06 PM »
Mine made it 2 and a half years, I had to buy a ebay phone so I didn't have to extend a contract. I should have it Monday, sucks when you can't even dial a phone number with your phone.
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Offline weazletoe

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2012, 09:01:49 PM »
I've never had a phone go down on me. I always do get a new every two years, and I'm just cool like that.  8)
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Offline punatic

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Re: Cell-phone woes
« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2012, 12:23:22 AM »
I've never had a phone go down on me. I always do get a new every two years, and I'm just cool like that.  8)

I've never had a cell phone go down on me either (is there an app for that?), but the vibration mode is pretty hot!   8)

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