I bought my first Android phone in December after a few years with BlackBerry. I had a great experience with BlackBerry, but I read the tea leaves and realized that Android was the future for anyone who, like me, refused to join the Zombie-like masses of Stockholm Syndrome afflicted iPhone users.
My New Every Two from Verizon came up in December and I had the option of choosing the Motorola Droid, and the HTC Droid Eris, as those were the Android options on Verizon at that point.
I did not like the Moto Droid, at all. Aside from the weird commercials that made me feel like the impending Robot Rebellion was far closer than I was prepared to believe it was, I just did not like the phone.
I had grown very comfortable with the physical keyboard that my BlackBerry Curve offered, but I did not like the slide out keyboard on the Moto Droid at all.
After spending some time in the Verizon store, I decided on the Eris. It just felt better in my hand. I bought the phone and loved it. There were a few issues, such as battery life, and slow performance at times, but they were not issues that were killing the phone for me.
At the time, the Eris was running Android operating System version 1.5. I was promised at the time of purchase that the Eris would be updated to version 2.0 (which the Droid was sold running) or 2.1 (which I am currently running through an awesome online leak). Six months later, the Eris using community is still clamoring for the update they were promised months ago.
In the six months I have had the phone, I have grown into quite the Techie. I learned how to download and successfully install leaked updates, how to get the most out of my phones limited computing power, and how to work around many of the issues that plagued the phone.
The biggest issue I dealt with was dead silence when trying to make or receive calls on about 3 out of 5 calls. Eventually, I had enough.
I called Verizon and politely complained about the silent phone issue. Verizon sent me a new phone last week which did so far has not suffered from the issues the old one did. But was I satisfied, nope.
Verizon recently released the HTC Droid Incredible, which according to everything I have read, including user reviews and hundreds of posts I have read on Android Forums (I know, this is all very dorky and I don’t care) the only issue this phone suffers from, like all smart phones that do everything a computer, a camera, a video camera an mp3 player, and everything else, is poor battery life. The battery life can be fixed with a few changes to the phone and the purchase of a stronger battery for $50.
So, I had my sights set on this phone, and I was going to make it happen. The thing that I found the most attractive about this phone is the whopping 8MP camera. I use my phone as a camera and video camera to record everything Avi does. I want higher quality from a camera phone. This phone has it. Along with a 1Ghz processor, 8GB of onboard memory along with expandable memory up to 32GB, meaning the phone will die before I can fill it with pictures, videos and music.
Now, the problem was, how to go about getting this phone without paying the $500+ retail price. I read online some people who had talked Verizon into allowing them to upgrade now, at upgrade price due to the problems they were experiencing with their phones. So I made the call Saturday. I prepared myself with a list of 10 distinct problems with the phone. The first line of defense guy listened to what I had to say, and sent me to the second level to talk through what I was dealing with and talk about replacement options. The next level woman was very helpful. She offered a few things I could do to fix the problems with the phone. I explained to her that I had already tried everything that is out there, made all the little tweaks possible, and still my phone was not performing as advertised.
She sent me to her boss to talk about options. After waiting five minutes to talk to the guy, within 30 seconds of talking to him, I thought there was no way that I would be getting a new phone. The guy was definitely playing hardball. He had a comeback for everything I said. According to him, the issues were with HTC, not Verizon. It was at this point that I pulled out my big guns. I explained to him that although HTC is responsible for the Hardware, Verizon bought the phone, slapped their name on the front of it, and sold it to me. I pay Verizon, not HTC every month for a phone that is not doing what it was said to do. Every time I pull my phone to show it off, people see “Verizon” splashed across the front, not HTC. So when the phone doesn’t work, it’s Verizon that looks bad.
This seemed to work. He offered the phone to me at the 1 year upgrade price, which was still too high. He played hardball and told me he was already going out of his way and I should be happy. He got snappy with me and started talking about my budget and how an additional $70 is not a big deal. I stayed calm, and said it was not acceptable. Ten seconds of silence later, he changed my upgrade date and I got what I wanted. I was shocked. I outsold the salesman. Drew should be proud of me. I was calm, professional, and passionate. The guy sounded pissed with himself that he allowed me to talk him into it. And I don’t care.
So my new phone will be here in a few days. I have used the phone in the store, and it is FAST. It is everything I hoped my Eris would be, and wasn’t. This phone is Awesome.
I had to sell my Eris so I can cover the cost of the upgrade price, thus making the new phone FREE. I listed it on Craigslist last night, and already have 3 serious buyers who I had to explain would have to wait for a few days to get the phone if they wanted it.
Very long story short, I am getting a new phone, and I still love Android and Verizon.