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Best unlocked android phone under $300?

Best unlocked android phone under $300?

Old Jun 8, 12, 10:11 am
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Best unlocked android phone under $300?

As part of my periodic efforts to have a reasonable inexpensive phone, what's the best unlocked (no contract) Android phone around $300? It should do data on at least 850/1900/2100.

The most likely I've found so far are the Sony Ericsson Xpreria Arc S and the Samsung Infuse 4G, which are currently a bit over $300, but should be less on sale. I could wait some time if it would make a real difference.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 11:09 am
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Google Nexus S, released at $399 just 2 months ago, prices have crept down to $300 + shipping at some online retailers.

ETA:
Oops, my bad. I was thinking of the Galaxy Nexus, which has HD screen resolution, 1.2 GHz processor (vs. 1.0), and runs Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0) vs. Gingerbread (2.3). Other than that, pretty much the same phone. The Galaxy is still $399, so the Nexus S above may still be the best at around $300.

Last edited by deubster; Jun 8, 12 at 11:21 am
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Old Jun 8, 12, 11:49 am
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It depends much on the form factor you want, hard or soft keyboard, and other features.

I recently got a Motorola Pro+, which has a had keyboard and is very much like the blackberry and I like it. But at this point probably better to get an andriod 4.0 phone.

Have a look at the motorola lineup in any case... since being bought by google you can assured of strong android support.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 12:14 pm
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Originally Posted by lewinr View Post
It depends much on the form factor you want, hard or soft keyboard, and other features.
Soft keyboard, nice sized screen, reasonable speed

Main uses would be rather standard - music, video, ebooks, browser, google stuff (maps, calendar, gmail, reader), a small number of apps. Camera not especially important
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Old Jun 8, 12, 12:20 pm
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Originally Posted by deubster View Post
Google Nexus S, released at $399 just 2 months ago, prices have crept down to $300 + shipping at some online retailers.
Not bad, but the Xperia Arc S seems to beat it on most specs other possibly screen quality. http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3...&idPhone2=4134

I'll have to read some more
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Old Jun 8, 12, 1:12 pm
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Just got this phone this past week, http://www.amazon.com/D130-Unlocked-...ef=pd_cp_cps_3, but it now seems unavailable through Amazon. Have not used it for calls yet, but ran the browser through wifi, and it seems more responsive than several other Android phones I have seen. Decent sized screen but still highly portable. If you need a screen more like a DroidX, this isn't the phone for you as the screen is about 2/3 that size.

Might be worth a Google search to see what other vendors might offer it.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 1:23 pm
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Originally Posted by lwildernorva View Post
Just got this phone this past week, http://www.amazon.com/D130-Unlocked-...ef=pd_cp_cps_3, but it now seems unavailable through Amazon. Have not used it for calls yet, but ran the browser through wifi, and it seems more responsive than several other Android phones I have seen. Decent sized screen but still highly portable. If you need a screen more like a DroidX, this isn't the phone for you as the screen is about 2/3 that size.

Might be worth a Google search to see what other vendors might offer it.
Looks like a variant of Samsung/T-mobile Dart. If it is, I did not like it. Battery did not last even a day. Small screem makes it barely usable.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 5:28 pm
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I bought the Blu studio 5.3 which works great and has a 5" screen like a Samsung note. Processor a little bit slow but works fine. Dual sim also so handy for travel oversea.

http://www.amazon.com/Studio-Unlocke.../dp/B006VVYSWI
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Old Jun 8, 12, 5:44 pm
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I am still running an unlocked Samsung Captivate (an SGS1 variant), after two years. Looks like it can be had for $199. For me the perfect size screen, 4", with 850/1900/2100 MHz 3G support. I am running Android 4.0.4/TW4 (custom ROM).

I am getting a SGS2 hand-me-down (used), from a family member who just got an SGS3, as a replacement this week but will keep the Cappy for travel to the U.S.

Last edited by transpac; Jun 8, 12 at 8:07 pm
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Old Jun 8, 12, 5:45 pm
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I totally agree!
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Old Jun 8, 12, 5:49 pm
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Ditto on Samsung Galaxy

Ditto on the Samsung Galaxy. Can be had for cheap, easy to unlock and root, lovely screen and can handle up to 32g micro sd.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 6:03 pm
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This Samsung Captivate? http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3...&idPhone2=4134

Looks appealing, although seems similar to the SE Xperia Arc S, except the SE has a faster processor and a slightly larger screen.

Any issues with the Captivate? How's the speed and battery life?

Last edited by richarddd; Jun 8, 12 at 6:08 pm
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Old Jun 8, 12, 8:06 pm
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Originally Posted by richarddd View Post
This Samsung Captivate? http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3...&idPhone2=4134

Looks appealing, although seems similar to the SE Xperia Arc S, except the SE has a faster processor and a slightly larger screen.

Any issues with the Captivate? How's the speed and battery life?
Yes, the Samsung Captivate is a 850/1900/2100 MHZ 3G variant, made for AT&T, of the original Samsung Galaxy (which is 900/1900/2100 MHz 3G) in a slightly different physical format.

Not sure what you mean by "speed"? The UI is ultra-responsive, perhaps too fast, but I have been running custom ROMs since day 1. The development community for this model remains surprisingly active. It is running Android 4.0.4 and TouchWiz 4, albeit via a custom ROM.

It looks like the two model comparison shows the same PPI, but the Cappy does have a Super AMOLED screen which most find superior?

Battery life is acceptable for my usage patterns - typically charge at night and it last through the next day until bed-time.
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Old Jun 8, 12, 8:14 pm
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I hate to ignore the pricing request, but at $300, would it not make sense to spend $100 more to get a Galaxy Nexus? Can't really beat that with its pentaband support...
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Old Jun 8, 12, 10:26 pm
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Originally Posted by ScottC View Post
I hate to ignore the pricing request, but at $300, would it not make sense to spend $100 more to get a Galaxy Nexus? Can't really beat that with its pentaband support...
For the I9250, from Google add shipping and any applicable sales tax. From Expansys, $409.99, no sales tax (except for Illinois ship to), free shipping. There have been some "Buy-it-Now" sales on eBay for $399 all in (free shipping, no sales tax).

Now that T-Mo is re-farming AT&T's 1900 MHz the penta-band thing, specifically 1700 AWS, becomes less of a requirement?

There are some SGS2's (I9100) on eBay for $420 all in, The SGS2 is arguably a superior phone.

Agree that either would take you two years forward, through Jellybean, comfortably.
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