I’ve had the new phone for several days now. I was even asked once if it was the much more expensive new Samsung, which amuses me greatly. As usual, it feels (and likely is) decidedly faster at many things than the previous phone. Some apps I’d had on the previous phone I decided not to bother with anymore. And some new ones are there, at least for now.
One I think I’ll be keeping is Syncthing which keeps chosen folders (directories) in sync across computer(s) and phone. About the only modern things it seems not to run on are iPhones (iOS stuff) – and I presume Apple has something to handle those.
What I like about Syncthing is not just the sync-ing, which is the program’s job so it had better do that, but that there is no external requirement – though one can relay through the ‘net if one so chooses. I do not have to have an account in some “cloud” storage setup (Hint: There is no cloud. There are only other people’s computers, not under your control.) It’s all my hardware, my network, and my rules. I can set it to only sync when the phone is charging, is on WiFi, and connected only to WiFi network(s) I specify. Is it absolutely 100% secure? Of course not, as nothing truly is. But miscreants won’t be handed anything on a silver platter, at least.
This is not a backup setup. Something deleted one place, will be deleted in the other. It is synchronization. Think of it more as file sharing, but only for the devices you choose. Joe down the the block can go get his own files. That is why the sync-ed folder on the computer has copies of the files I also want on the phone – and why, say, photos from the phone should be copied or moved to an un-shared folder on the computer. Duplication might be disk-inefficient, but it’s less apt to end in anger and disappointment at something being truly lost by some accident.
Between that and the IR port which means the phone is also a truly universal remote control, I’m really liking things. How universal? So far I have it able to control five TV’s (two LCD sets, three CRT sets) and two air conditioners. And I’ve not gone looking at the other stuff in the old TV/video/stereo stack yet!
I have an aging smartphone. It will at times seem to drop from 90% or more charge to under 60% charge in a couple minutes and sometimes just shuts down. I think part of that is not just age, but that I had been keeping it in a pocket while working (in a soft case) and, well, I work and thus sweat (like an ox, yes). So it might not be just the battery – which is allegedly not replaceable. It can be replaced, but it’s not what the maker, Motorola, had in mind.
And, it is now more than a couple years old. If not ancient, certainly elderly for a smartphone. Thus I find myself pondering a new phone. Of course, nothing is ever simple. As I am not Independently Wealthy, simply plunking down a wad of cash for the expensive thing at the top of the reviews (seems to be the Galaxy Note 8 right now – at $750) isn’t an option. There needs to be some judgement and monetary efficiency. That also excludes cheap junk – paying next to nothing to get nothing is also monetarily inefficient.
The iPhones and Windows phones are right out. I’ve no desire for any sort of lock-in or attempt at it. That leaves Android, for now, though there are allegedly Linux phones planned – but planned doesn’t mean ready right now, not even likely in a few months. As an example, Librem 5 is raising funds – even if they succeed, even if they are on schedule, it wouldn’t be until January 2019. And these campaigns, even if they get all the funds and more, have technical setbacks during development and initial production. Add a minimum of 6 months to that schedule, more likely 12: I am hoping to get an item I backed on Kickstarter that was planned to ship this past February before the end of this year. I can get by with the Motorola for a while longer, while I save up for the replacement. The question is: What will be the replacement?
There was going to be a lot more here I went on about what was available. But instead, I’ve recently ordered an Honor 8 as I could get it at a steep discount and the specs are rather good. The only real downside is the lack of a good moisture resistance rating – and I’ve already ordered a truly waterproof case for the situations where that will matter. The other nice-to-have thing I’d like that it lacks is wireless charging, but I’ve gotten by without that so far – and if I really want it, there are add-ons that will take care of that, too. While I do not expect to ever get or wish to get an iPhone, if the next one has wireless charging as rumored might push that into becoming a “must have” standard by the time I need to change things out again.