Saturday, 4 March 2017

New Smartphone

I was looking into new and second hand phones recently. My Xperia Z1 served me well since the end of October 2013. Even as recently as days ago I was discovering something new about it. I didn't realise it had an answering machine until earlier in the week. It was the best phone I ever had. But the charge port cap was long gone and a dodgy job on a battery replacement meant the back was only hanging on and there were glue stains on the lens cover so there was a foggy picture with the main camera. I didn't do the replacement. I took it to a repair shop. Also the replacement battery didn't last as long as the original did before it started dying last year. Its waterproof quality was well and truly gone. A new phone was needed.
There's actually a Sony mobile phone connection to this blog. Back before smartphones came out I had a Sony Ericsson cybershot phone with a good camera and flash and it had a little joystick instead of the direction arrows. When I took a photo with it I had the option to share it on the internet by setting up this blog. The earliest blog posts here with photos were taken by the camera on that phone and written using its keypad.
When looking to replace the Z1 I had a look at older flagship devices from the Sony Xperia Z3 to the Z5. The Z5 Premium was just outside my budget even second hand. I could have went with a Z5 but the best price for an unlocked mobile phone was in Cork and I wasn't willing to travel because I had to consider that cost on top of the phone price. I then looked at the best phone I could afford in a local second hand shop. I was prepared to go without full water resistance at this stage. The phone I looked at was the Xperia X. It looked ok on the display. I would have bought it but when I handled it, it had some dents and scratches. That put me off even though the shop offers a 2-year warranty.
The same day I went into my service provider's shop out of curiosity to see what a new phone would cost. I was shown the Xperia XA, X and I think it was the E5. But then I was shown the Samsung Galaxy A3 2017. Only released at the end of January. It drew my attention because, even though it's a mid range device, it's water resistant - one of the reasons I originally bought the Z1 - and within my budget. I went back to the shop and bought it yesterday.
One thing that I don't like is that when the software updated it installed Facebook and I can't uninstall it, only deactivate it. I deleted my Facebook account and uninstalled it from my old phone because it had too much control over my phone. It wasn't in the phone when they set it up with my SIM card and sd card from my old phone in the shop. Apart from that I spent ages fiddling with it yesterday. I have to get used to the hard home key and the back and recent apps keys being off screen and on opposite sides to the Z1. I hit recent apps instead of back a few times and I tapped the screen to bring up those keys a couple of times out of habit. Screenshot is easier on Xperia. Tap the recent apps key and a menu bar at the bottom of the screen gives you screenshot among other things. I had to Google how to screenshot on my new Samsung Galaxy A3. You press and hold the power and home keys at the same time until you hear the click and the thumbnail image is in the notification bar at the top. At least I know how to do it now.
Overall, while it's not a flagship device or an Xperia, it's fairly good quality for the price and it's practical in terms of what I need from a phone. I must check if I can bring comma into the letters part of the keyboard though. Then it'd be fairly close to all my needs. And I have a phone that I can make and take calls in the rain again.

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