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Selling my Pro1

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, divstar said:

7. Honestly: what do you use your phone for that needs more performance? I agree that a newer processor would have been better in terms of being future proof. Then again the electronics world is changing so fast, that being really future proof is next to impossible. The 835 works just fine for whatever I use my phone (music, some gaming, videos, programs such as RDP).

That's what I'm still wondering too. I still use the original MotoZ which has worse specs than the Pro1 and I have never had problems with the performance. I understand that for a phone in this price range people would expect newer hardware but in reality I don't feel that it will cause any usability problems for me in the next few years.

Edited by AnnieC
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10 minutes ago, AnnieC said:

That's what I'm still wondering too. I still use the original MotoZ which has worse specs than the Pro1 and I have never had problems with the performance. I understand that for a phone in this price range people would expect newer hardware but in reality I don't feel that it will cause any usability problems for me in the next few years.

I think there is a deeper worry beneath this: The fear of this being the last real slider keyboard phone, perhaps forever, and not unlikely for many many years. And If so, the newer the specs at launch, the less outdated it will be in say 10 years. Many of us are replacing really old phones with the Pro1.

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1 hour ago, EskeRahn said:

I think there is a deeper worry beneath this: The fear of this being the last real slider keyboard phone, perhaps forever, and not unlikely for many many years. And If so, the newer the specs at launch, the less outdated it will be in say 10 years. Many of us are replacing really old phones with the Pro1.

Unfortunately, you are right.
That is why I hope Pro1 will have success which will be enough for us to have Pro2, Pro3, etc later.

...but we cannot foresee the future and the last QWERTY phone before Pro1 was manufactured long long time ago.

I had a gap of nearly one and a half year with Moto G6 after my N900 which was in use for years (with practically two phones) and basically its performance leaded me to switch. (Remember, 256 MB of RAM is almost nothing these days, however, the system itself still runs well on these resources.)
I have used N900 from 2011 to 2018 anyway.

Otherwise, with a relatively worst case scenario (when F(x)tec continues to manufacture Pro1 for relatively long time but don't want to design another phone), the phone may live similarly to N900 and may run a 3rd party operating system perfectly - the hardware is strong enough for several years with optimized software.

So I really hope F(x)tec will survive and even design other phones in the future with similar quality as Pro1.

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Posted (edited)
On 1/1/2020 at 9:14 AM, EskeRahn said:

I think there is a deeper worry beneath this: The fear of this being the last real slider keyboard phone, perhaps forever, and not unlikely for many many years. And If so, the newer the specs at launch, the less outdated it will be in say 10 years. Many of us are replacing really old phones with the Pro1.

That's how I feel. I tend to keep phones for a long time, so I want them to have bleeding-edge hardware when I buy them. A two-year-old chip effectively shortens the device's useful life by two years.

On the other hand, an easily-replaceable battery that doesn't require breaking the phone in order to fix it is a powerful plus that I am balancing against the 2017-era chip in deciding whether to purchase this phone. The 6 GB of RAM is also a plus, but 8 GB would have been more so if it were powered by an 855 or 855+.

The unlockable bootloader is also a plus, of course, even though I probably would stick with stock ROM. Knowing that I have the option to experiment with leaner ROM's also to some extent mitigates my concerns about the 835 chip, since alternative ROM's tend to be leaner and less resource-hungry than stock.

Another downside for me is the lack of B14 and B30 support, which is not something firmware can fix if the radios don't support the bands. B14 in the USA is prioritized for public safety use, but can be used by others on a de-prioritized basis. But it also should have the most extensive coverage of any band once it's fully rolled out, making it a real plus for rural users. B30 is an  important (but not strictly necessary) AT&T band that's useful for extra bandwidth in many places.

B14 is very new, so I understand why so few phones support it. But B30 has been around for a while and is owned by the USA's biggest GSM provider, which makes it kind of puzzling why this and many other unlocked phones don't support it. Surely the lack of B30 is a deal-killer for millions of users in one of the world's biggest markets. It's not strictly necessary in order to use a phone on AT&T, but the lack of it does reduce the phones' usefulness and performance in many places.

As for me, the lack of B14 and B30 aren't deal-killers, but they're certainly concerns. They're scale-tippers, one might say. I might have taken a chance and purchased this device if it supported them, despite my lack of enthusiasm for the 835 chip and the fact that the Pro 1 is a first release of a first product by a brand new company with a very narrow target market.

I've been in tech in some capacity or another since the 1970's. Being an early-adopter for the sheer joy of it got old a long time ago. Now I'm more inclined to wait and let others stomp the bugs, especially when even if the device performs as designed, the design specs are not as good as they could be for my own use case.

All of these factors are why I'm on the fence. But as I said, the keyboard, the unlockable bootloader, RAM that should be adequate for a while, and what is reported to be an easily-replaceable battery, are powerful-enough inducements that I did register for this forum in order to keep up with the progress and early real-world reviews of the device. I'm just not ready to buy one just yet.

Richard

 

Edited by GeekOnTheHill
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23 hours ago, VaZso said:

That is why I hope Pro1 will have success which will be enough for us to have Pro2, Pro3, etc later.

...but we cannot foresee the future and the last QWERTY phone before Pro1 was manufactured long long time ago.

I certainly hope for that too. But even if they pursue other forms for future devices, and do not see enough market to create a completely new keyboard device. I have a vague hope that they in say 2024 will offer us a plug-compatible upgraded main board, with the newest chipset they are allowed to buy. They could both sell this as a an upgraded device AND offer it as an upgrade that a service partner, or we ourselves can do. Yes sure the lack of 5G(/6G?) antennas might be an issue then. Time will tell. But I assume it could save them a lot of development cost not needing to create new antenna hardware, and have all kind of stuff certified, but it could be seen as merely an upgrade of cpu and storage.

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5 hours ago, EskeRahn said:

I certainly hope for that too. But even if they pursue other forms for future devices, and do not see enough market to create a completely new keyboard device. I have a vague hope that they in say 2024 will offer us a plug-compatible upgraded main board, with the newest chipset they are allowed to buy. They could both sell this as a an upgraded device AND offer it as an upgrade that a service partner, or we ourselves can do. Yes sure the lack of 5G(/6G?) antennas might be an issue then. Time will tell. But I assume it could save them a lot of development cost not needing to create new antenna hardware, and have all kind of stuff certified, but it could be seen as merely an upgrade of cpu and storage.

I think if they do something similar, it is not necessary worth them this way.

So instead, after a few years, they can go back to the existing device (Pro1), design a new motherboard, do some modifications / testings but keep the rest and then release it as a new phone called like Pro2.

I mean it is much cheaper to make a Pro2 based on Pro1 than making Pro1 from scratch now.
...but designing a new motherboard may be the most complicated part of it.

So if they survive and willing to make some upgrade, I think it is better for them to manufacture the whole phone while keeping unmodified design as far as possible.

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On 12/22/2019 at 5:07 AM, Zamasu said:

I don't know of any other device I'll use that'll have a keyboard that I use with my thumbs. It's a completely different muscle memory. I don't have the Pro1 yet so I'm speculating, but I don't think the muscle memory will collide with regular keyboards. I didn't have any significant issue with the Desire Z even though that merged and moved some things around because of the small keyboard.

I haven't used (nor even purchased) the Pro 1; but I've used about a bazillion keyboards over the decades and never found that any of them took more than a few hours to get used to. Usually a lot less than that, truth be told.

I guess part of the reason is because I was an on-site computer/network tech for a long time, so I used a lot of devices. You get pretty good at shifting gears. The old-school BB keyboard was my favorite because the smile shape and other tactile cues seemed to aid muscle memory acquisition. But I can't say that I "hated" any physical keyboard on any phone I've ever used. I've hated a few on computers (the "ergonomic" ones most of all), but not on a phone.

Richard

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2 hours ago, VaZso said:

I think if they do something similar, it is not necessary worth them this way.

So instead, after a few years, they can go back to the existing device (Pro1), design a new motherboard, do some modifications / testings but keep the rest and then release it as a new phone called like Pro2.

I mean it is much cheaper to make a Pro2 based on Pro1 than making Pro1 from scratch now.
...but designing a new motherboard may be the most complicated part of it.

So if they survive and willing to make some upgrade, I think it is better for them to manufacture the whole phone while keeping unmodified design as far as possible.

Oh I totally agree that the board is the most complex for them, BUT if they can do it in a way where they do not need to redo all the certifications, and they could reuse the whole 'production chain', they could save a lot of wait and uncertainty, as a much larger portion of this will be within their own control.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, EskeRahn said:

Oh I totally agree that the board is the most complex for them, BUT if they can do it in a way where they do not need to redo all the certifications, and they could reuse the whole 'production chain', they could save a lot of wait and uncertainty, as a much larger portion of this will be within their own control.

If they modify the motherboard, certifications should be done again to remain certified (only a minor modification is enough to loose certification, that is why official certification is the last step of the process).

So replacing the motherboard or manufacture the whole device with new motherboard without certification is the same regarding the existence of certification.

If they can keep the most parts of Pro1 then they can reuse most of the production chain.
The most uncertain part of the device (not speaking about motherboard) is the display.
Unfortunately, these are relatively short-term products, so if they are not want to pay for a custom display (this may be also an option) then they may need to find another display and redesign corresponding parts.

Apart from that, the motherboard need a lot of work and they may need some redesign / tuning at antenna side.
...but the rest may be kept untouched so mechanics and most of the internal parts may be the same.

Edited by VaZso

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28 minutes ago, VaZso said:

If they modify the motherboard, certifications should be done again to remain certified (only a minor modification is enough to loose certification, that is why official certification is the last step of the process).

So replacing the motherboard or manufacture the whole device with new motherboard without certification is the same regarding the existence of certification.

If they can keep the most parts of Pro1 then they can reuse most of the production chain.
The most uncertain part of the device (not speaking about motherboard) is the display.
Unfortunately, these are relatively short-term products, so if they are not want to pay for a custom display (this may be also an option) then they may need to find another display and redesign corresponding parts.

Apart from that, the motherboard need a lot of work and they may need some redesign / tuning at antenna side.
...but the rest may be kept untouched so mechanics and most of the internal parts may be the same.

Ah I see. I naïvely thought the certification stuff was mainly related to the antennas and the circuitry driving those.

And of course you are right, there are no guarantee that the same display will be easily available in a couple of years, other than as service parts. And anyway in a couple of years I guess in screen fingerprint will be a standard they would hate to omit. But that a different display should fit the same shell is pretty unlikely, and if the size is just slightly different, the whole thing has to be redesigned accordingly...

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5 minutes ago, EskeRahn said:

Ah I see. I naïvely thought the certification stuff was mainly related to the antennas and the circuitry driving those.

And of course you are right, there are no guarantee that the same display will be easily available in a couple of years, other than as service parts. And anyway in a couple of years I guess in screen fingerprint will be a standard they would hate to omit. But that a different display should fit the same shell is pretty unlikely, and if the size is just slightly different, the whole thing has to be redesigned accordingly...

OR they can use a slightly smaller screen and give us a small bezel LIKE WE WANTED IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!

/rant off

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27 minutes ago, silversolver said:

OR they can use a slightly smaller screen and give us a small bezel LIKE WE WANTED IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!

/rant off

Remember that you still would need the slanted edge, it is there on e.g. E7 and N97 for a reason... So we would get a lot of bezels like in the old days. Making it practically impossible to sell to any but us dinosaurs....

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Just now, EskeRahn said:

Remember that you still would need the slanted edge, it is there on e.g. E7 and N97 for a reason... So we would get a lot of bezels like in the old days. Making it practically impossible to sell to any but us dinosaurs....

I'm happy to be a dinosaur. According to a certain snotty reviewer, anyone who considers a physical keyboard device is already a dinosaur, so I'll own that and take my bezel, thank you very much. ;)

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13 minutes ago, silversolver said:

I'm happy to be a dinosaur. According to a certain snotty reviewer, anyone who considers a physical keyboard device is already a dinosaur, so I'll own that and take my bezel, thank you very much. 😉

Maybe we should try influence our peers by indicating that fumbling with a touch-keyboard on a slab for a grown up is about as embarrassing as when one our age try to talk street-smart with the kids, or text in pure emojis to feel less old... 😇😇😇

...Or use the aPple sheep argumentation: You are using a slab because you can not afford a phone with a real keyboard!

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1 minute ago, EskeRahn said:

Maybe we should try influence our peers by indicating that fumbling with a touch-keyboard on a slab for a grown up is about as embarrassing as when one our age try to talk street-smart with the kids, or text in pure emojis to feel less old... 😇😇😇

:0 :) :-P :-!

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2 minutes ago, silversolver said:

I'm happy to be a dinosaur. According to a certain snotty reviewer, anyone who considers a physical keyboard device is already a dinosaur, so I'll own that and take my bezel, thank you very much. 😉

I also prefer flat screens and bezels. It's not a deal-killing thing, just a preference.

As for the keyboard...

I think it's important to remember that excellent BT keyboards are available, some of which are designed for typical smartphones and come with cases to hold both the phone and the keyboard, for ~ USD $30.00.

What that means to me is that for a keyboarded phone to be successful, it should be more than a keyboarded phone. Start with the demographic who like phones with physical keyboards, which is overwhelmingly middle-aged and older people. Most youngsters laugh at phones with "buttons." So what else do we dinosaurs miss? Removable batteries, for one. So add that feature. The phone's not waterproof or dustproof, anyway.

Also equip it with the fastest chip and more RAM. Yes, it will raise the price. But most of us in the target demographic can afford it. We also tend to take care of our toys and keep them for a long time, so make the phone bleeding-edge hardware to delay obsolescence.

Keyboards are nice; but a keyboard alone won't make the phone a success -- and I want it to be a success. There are people who won't even consider a phone with less than the latest chip, despite the fact that they don't need one, so use the latest chip. And there are people who won't even think about buying a phone with a non-removable battery; so at the very least, change "non-removable" to "user-replaceable" in the marketing materials.

In other words, cast a big net and bait it with all the features middle-aged and older users miss. If you're going to target us old farts, then go all in.

Richard

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18 minutes ago, GeekOnTheHill said:

I also prefer flat screens and bezels. It's not a deal-killing thing, just a preference.

As for the keyboard...

I think it's important to remember that excellent BT keyboards are available, some of which are designed for typical smartphones and come with cases to hold both the phone and the keyboard, for ~ USD $30.00.

What that means to me is that for a keyboarded phone to be successful, it should be more than a keyboarded phone. Start with the demographic who like phones with physical keyboards, which is overwhelmingly middle-aged and older people. Most youngsters laugh at phones with "buttons." So what else do we dinosaurs miss? Removable batteries, for one. So add that feature. The phone's not waterproof or dustproof, anyway.

Also equip it with the fastest chip and more RAM. Yes, it will raise the price. But most of us in the target demographic can afford it. We also tend to take care of our toys and keep them for a long time, so make the phone bleeding-edge hardware to delay obsolescence.

Keyboards are nice; but a keyboard alone won't make the phone a success -- and I want it to be a success. There are people who won't even consider a phone with less than the latest chip, despite the fact that they don't need one, so use the latest chip. And there are people who won't even think about buying a phone with a non-removable battery; so at the very least, change "non-removable" to "user-replaceable" in the marketing materials.

In other words, cast a big net and bait it with all the features middle-aged and older users miss. If you're going to target us old farts, then go all in.

Richard

I generally agree, but have to take issue on a few points. Primarily, yes, there are people who won't buy anything but the latest chip, but they also tend to be young people who won't buy anything with a keyboard. (For the record, I'm 36, so I expect I'm younger than most here. I was born old.)

On the battery, yes, agreed. On the bezel, yes, agreed.

As for the Pro1's keyboard case competitors, well, this picture is how I see them.spacer.png

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3 hours ago, silversolver said:

 

As for the Pro1's keyboard case competitors, well, this picture is how I see them.spacer.png

I wouldn't give those keyboard cases that much credit.  I bet that car is VERY well air conditioned with that set-up!

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, GeekOnTheHill said:

Most youngsters laugh at phones with "buttons." So what else do we dinosaurs miss?

While I agree with most thing you are missing, I can only say "ok boomer" to that statement.
People around here are not as old as you think.
Have a look here:


And note that the poll is flawed, 40+ is by far the biggest group spanning 20 years of persons in here.
So most here are between 25-30. Me included.

This is a classic case of assuming without data.

Edited by Doktor Oswaldo
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2 hours ago, Doktor Oswaldo said:

While I agree with most thing you are missing, I can only say "ok boomer" to that statement.
People around here are not as old as you think.
Have a look here:


And note that the poll is flawed, 40+ is by far the biggest group spanning 20 years of persons in here.
So most here are between 25-30. Me included.

This is a classic case of assuming without data.

But remember that most of us dinosaurs will not be using a forum like this. At the most read it for info, not posting (or joining a poll) so the poll at best reflects the age distribution of the active forum users, not the distribution of the pre-order costumers or target audience in general.

But sure a good thing that is is not limited to dinosaurs only, as you and others might spread the word better to the non-dinosaurs than we can.

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8 hours ago, silversolver said:

OR they can use a slightly smaller screen and give us a small bezel LIKE WE WANTED IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!

Good idea. 

Note to F(x)tec:  It would be a good idea to take a look at a Motorola Droid 3 as an example of a fantastic bezel.

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I don't mind whether the phone has a screen like the Pro1 or a flat screen with a bezel. When I had the PRIV, I thought the rounded edges were stupid, but then again they rarely got in my way, and there was the nice feature of a battery indicator on one of the edges that could be seen even if something was lying on top of the phone. I guess it's just a software thing to make it more usable, and something F(x)tec might want to improve by exempting the edges from reacting on touch...

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Posted (edited)

After using Pro1 for two weeks I feel like the curved screen is a big mistake. I have big fingers and I find myself accidentally pressing the screen a lot, especially when trying to use a phone with one hand. Null Edge app has problems with swipe, even with "experimental" enabled so if you begin your swipe at "nulled" edge, nothing will be recognized like you didn't even press the screen at all. If Fxtec ever want to produce any other device, I hope they will ditch curved screens. The curved screen is entirely against "function is a key" motto of Fxtec. But this isn't the only design issue of Pro, there's also terrible button placement on right side of the phone, worst camera button I've even seen in a phone and vibration motor is extremely bad. About the vibration, I couldn't understand why I was missing all notifications with my phone in my pocket... until I tested Pro1 against my old barely working Samsung Galaxy J5 2017, the strength of Pro1 vibration is nothing compared to what my old phone offered. I can't see myself using the device for 4-5 years like I wanted to. Pro1 is a great device when you open the keyboard but it's not really good device when using it as a regular smartphone. They spent so much time designing keyboard and repairability and these things are really amazing, everything else however isn't good, except the performance.

I can't understand how testers didn't find these issues before production started. The simplest thing they could do was to create ~10-15 final production samples and give them to friends and family and told them to never open the keyboard, just use the phone like a regular slab and tell what is wrong with the phone. 

Fxtec needs to create a software that will give some workarounds for all these design flaws. I doubt they have money to create some kind of "Pro1.1" that quickly. I really want to use the phone but there are so many frustrating things with it right now.

About the screen. It would be fine if there was a choice like other manufacturers give but there isn't any other landscape keyboard phone to choose from.

Edited by Gon009

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2 hours ago, EskeRahn said:

But remember that most of us dinosaurs will not be using a forum like this. At the most read it for info, not posting (or joining a poll) so the poll at best reflects the age distribution of the active forum users, not the distribution of the pre-order costumers or target audience in general.

But sure a good thing that is is not limited to dinosaurs only, as you and others might spread the word better to the non-dinosaurs than we can.

Sorry I was not clear. Of course this data is rigged too. I was just hinting that the assumption that most people in the target audience are older is useless.
It is true that people younger than me have not lived during the big boom of hwkb phones. But this does not mean they can not see the advantage or did not have one of the later blackberrys etc when they were young.

Just really young people don't have had any contact to kb phones at all. Getting these is gonna be hard, but in the long run it is also important to get new users. Yeah sure you can stay in the premium segment. Yeah you can't reach the Instagram age with a fat phone atm. But at least people working (16 and up) should be considered. Focussing entirely on dinosaurs may only be a short success story (I am talking only about focus, I agree on a lot of ideas you dinosaurs have).

In the end FxTec does need better data than we have to decide a focus.

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15 minutes ago, Doktor Oswaldo said:

Of course this data is rigged too.

Well not rigged, but not representative either 😉

It is great if the Pro1 can wind in a larger audience, than us that used keyboard phones a decade ago.

Maybe we should try changing the "Why are you still using a hardware keyboard?" to "Why do you let do with a surrogate keyboard?"

Or the silly aPple sheep strawman version "You are using a slab because you can not afford a keyboard phone".

On a serious note, it is all about what we use our devices for. Those of us that enter a lot of text (for whatever reason) can benefit from a real keyboard. But for those where entering text is not a central thing, well then a real keyboard is less likely to be worth the extra size and weight. To each their own.

But they sure have a hard task to getting the attention of all those fashion driven where having the same device as the top boy/girl in their (school) class feels so much more important than usability. That is the huge group of insecure people that aPple successfully have milked for a decade....

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