Smart Phone Recommendations?

I’d appreciate it if others would post what experince they have had using smart phones in the marine industry.

What units have been working well, and what units have had problems on boats? What units are the most durable?

And it would be nice to have access to the internet while traveling in the US without always having to stop and put the ol’ laptop out.

I’m on a boat with wifi with a satellite link, and am getting tired of always puling the computer out to check email. The work is overseas, but I picked up a local cell phone for over there, and am not concerned about internet access off the boat.

So it would be used for access to email, and surfing the web, and pssible use as a tethered modem to replace an air card.

A search on gCaptain only came up with limited discussion on cell phones.

Many thanks!

Why not skip the smart phone and get a tablet if all you are interested in is internet? They range from 5 to 11 inches and cost the same our less then a good phone.

As for phones I can not recommend anything but HTC . I’m on my 3rd one, thunderbolt right now, 8525 and a fuze previously, and have abused the shit out of them. Never put more then a screen protector on them and even dropping them down stairs they manage to make it to the end of the 2 year contacts.

I like my HTC Shift from sprint. It teathers well and so far is pretty durable.

From my limited experience with cell phones, most companies will NOT let you use it as a modem, without a data plan at least as expensive as a separate modem. I think (as impossible as that sounds) that T Mobile allows this for relatively cheap. All the cell phones have the capability to be used in so many ways, that are locked down by the providers. This way they can make more $$ of you to let you do things. A short list is: Photo exchange via bluetooth to ANY other phone, computer, or access point. (But this is why (for example) Verizon makes you pay the extra charge for PIXFLIX, and downloading charges.) Tethered modem. Most companies want to charge you extra for the privilege to use what the phone can already do by design!` An interesting part of this is, if you are paying for unlimited data on a cell phone to surf the net, they can’t tell HOW you are surfing, whether over the phone, or via a laptop! So if you can unlock your phone to use it as a tethered modem (or untethered), they can’t tell! The phone is viable to be used as an untethered modem too, But most companies (that allow it) force you to buy the $100 modem cable or pay big bucks for a wireless plan. I believe this is called revenue enhancement by the companies, But I call it thievery. Since you work overseas, you have probably seen how much cell phones can do when they are unrestricted. You can pay for parking at a parking meter, via bluetooth, you can pay for postage, and more stuff I have forgotten about. So I don’t feel bad when someone unlocks a phone to release it’s full capability. You can compare different providers. They often have the same phone (but with different model numbers) At one provider the phone only provides cell service, but for more, you can buy extra features. At another provider you can do everything the phone is capable of. Apple comes to mind here. The difference is, one company has more (or less) of the features locked out than others.

Now for the illegal stuff… Not that I have ever done this :wink: has a multitude of phone info to let you (if you are quite adventurous) to go into the phones programming and unlock the restrictions on how the phones are limited by the various providers. But be warned, you can permanently damage the phone, and unless you are creative, and have phone insurance, you will have to pay full price for a replacement.

One difference you will find, Smart Phones chew through the batteries like hell when you are using all the functions. You will be required to always have a charging cable with you.

‘PDAnet’ let’s you tether for free on a locked phone(droid at least)

why not go for a ipad ? or for a more inexpensive version that will allow you to browse the web and email would be the nook color by barns n nobles, gos for 250$

or for international stuff, i use

I have the htcEVO 4G from Sprint. I like it OK. I use it to check e-mail and send messages when I travel. Nice texting and sending pictures. The camera on it takes really good quality photos.

My wife has a T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy Vibrant, but she likes my htc better.

Both phones have poor battery life. There are things you can do to prolong it, but under heavy use the batteries will go quick.

Hey y’all, thanks for posting. The information is appreciated.

I was surprised that Apple is not mentioned at all.

And I should have stated that in addition to using it as a phone, I’d also be checking email, surfing and possibly as a tethered modem.

Apple makes the iPad/iPhone which is a great choice I use my phone like a computer and in many cases you can set them up internationally depending on where you go.

I have the htc EVO 4G and it’s rooted. I love it. I use it as a wifi hub when i use my computer and on its own for Email when I cant use the computer. I also have the Barns & Noble Nook Color for reading and it gets email with a wifi signal too.

HTC Thunderbolt, this is my second android phone and it rocks. Use it like a laptop when getting the pc out is a pain and use it as a pass thru for internet. Not thrilled with Verizon coverage in NY harbor, but from what I gather nobody has coverage worth a shit out here

For what it is worth, I ended up getting a HTC Incredible II last June. Great phone, easy to check email, websites, nice screen, etc.

As an added bonus, I just (finally) read the specs, and it can be unlocked and used as a quadband GSM cell phone when overseas. Got the instructions to unlock it from Verizon with no problem.

Also, if anyone is looking for a stand alone quadband GSM there are a number of good sites on the web. Just got one from Mobile Planet

Got one with slots for two SIM cards for $35 shipped. They have been selling them for about 5 months, and claim that they have not been getting returns on them. So far it has powered up nicely with my old SIM card in it, and I’ll know how well it works in a couple of days…

iPhone 4S. You can use the boats wifi (if you have Internet) to send text massages via iMassage!

Get an iPhone. I’ve tried both, starting with an android device before trading up to the iPhone 4.

iPhone’s have BETTER apps and the phones run at 100% right out of the box. No constant babysitting or tinkering required as did my Android.

attitude + work ethic + willingness to learn = level of

My new iPhone runs circles around my android device in every way possible. You will not be disappointed with an iPhone 4s.

attitude + work ethic + willingness to learn = level of

I used to have a blackberry tour that I tethered while out at sea. Worked really good for that. I have since went to an iPhone and there isn’t really any comparison. The iPhone is much more user friendly. Also after switching I have not needed to tether it to my computer (actually it acts like a hotpot with wireless). The last trip out I left my computer at home

[QUOTE=brjones;58924]The last trip out I left my computer at home[/QUOTE]

Not sure if I’m ready to do that. Just picked up a 1 TB external hard drive for movies. And the keyboard is also needed for any lengthy emails.

The Incredible II has been great for surfing the web on the vessel’s wifi, but I just picked up a Kindle Fire. It will be nice to have the larger screen for surfing. And reading, of course… :slight_smile:

[QUOTE=water;58942]Not sure if I’m ready to do that. Just picked up a 1 TB external hard drive for movies. [/QUOTE]
I hear ya. I am fortunate enough that I have a TV and Direct tv in my room. If not for that I may still take my laptop.

[QUOTE=rshrew;50160]Apple makes the iPad/iPhone which is a great choice I use my phone like a computer and in many cases you can set them up internationally depending on where you go.[/QUOTE]

How would you go about setting up a iphone 4 internationally with sprint …? without paying there fees…?

I would Google your question, see what others are doing.