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Google Pixel 2 and 2 XL announced (theverge.com)
346 points by plessthanpt05 16 days ago | hide | past | web | 597 comments | favorite



I witnessed my girlfriend's Nexus 6p support experience with Google and it was not pretty. I would never buy a Google phone after that. The phone, just barely out of warranty, goes into a bootloop and becomes a paperweight. Google helpfully shrugs the problem off on Huawei, and Huawei will of course not support the product since it's out of warranty. There is no repair option.

I tried Android early on, had similarly unacceptable support experiences, and whenever I'm tempted to dip my toes back in the water I'm reminded of how bad things are with cases like this. In the case of the Nexus 6p it's Google's flagship product and it's a worthless paperweight 13 months after purchase.


It seems to make a big difference whether or not you buy it from Google. I've seen lots of complaints from Nexus 6P owners who didn't being shoved off to Huawei and their terrible support. But I bought mine from Google, who twice offered me RMAs after the warranty period was over with no resistance. Most recently they replaced it with a new Pixel XL, instead (due to stock issues, I assume).

That being said, Google needs to improve their out-of-warranty repair/replacement options. I couldn't do anything for my Chromebook Pixel once the warranty ran out, and I wouldn't count on them to randomly add a de facto additional year to the warranty like they did with the 6P, which was probably done because of its terrible, widespread battery issues.


> It seems to make a big difference whether or not you buy it from Google.

I bought my 6p from Google. I paid for the extended warranty. It went into a boot loop after 13 months and they still wanted me to pay the $75 fee for a refurb phone. Remember: I paid $89 in advance for a 2 year extended warranty. This is for a well known issue in their hardware, that iirc they are being taken to court for.

I had purchased a new Android phone every year for many years at that point. I do Android development for a popular open source library/product.

They're banned now. No more Android phones in my house for a long time. Happy on the iPhone and know if I walk into an Apple store I'll actually receive support.


I had no warranty and they gave me a replacement 6P for free despite being OUT of warranty.

I heard others were given Pixel XLs. I guess mileage really can vary.


It sounds like they're pretty random with their support. In a way that's almost worse, if their support was fully broken then you could make your choice to buy or not based on that, but when it's 50/50 then you have to take a gamble.


Yep, dropped my phone (totally my fault), got a Pixel XL for $89. Pretty OK, would buy the extended warranty again.


My understanding is that even with the two year $99 Applecare+ for your phone, you have to pay them an additional $79 if your iPhone needs replacement.


Only if you physically damage it, not if it gets stuck in a bootloop (or any other manufacturing- or software-related defect).


seems like the 100's of dollars people pay is not enough to keep the phone running for even 2 years.

they need additional 75 or more to assure the phone would function and that too with salty terms and conditions.


Had a bad experience with google support as well. My 6p was bought from google store, had boot loop issue just about 2 weeks out of warranty, google support did not want to take responsibility, and huawei was kind enough to RMA the device for free. Google only started to offer RMAs when the issue was being spread by media. And they recently denied me again of the phone dieing with battery below 40%, said because the phone was repaired by huawei before. Sounds absurd to me, I basically purchased the phone from google store without any support.

And those were multiple tries with different support associates. I will stay away from google hardware products until there are substantial improvements.


I bought directly and was passed around by Google and Huawei support for months (and multiple calls; hours of my time wasted - why can't anyone just do support by email anymore?) before ultimately giving up on getting the constant battery issues addressed. Initial contact was precisely 3 weeks outside of the warranty period for the now well-documented phone shuts off when battery reaches [15|30|50]%.

I feel like I purchased a year's worth of problem-free phone experience for nearly $CAD900. To me, that's not great value.


Well, when you can. Pixel stuff wasn’t available in France for some reason, and Pixel 2 seemingly isn’t going to be either. That’s another area Samsung and Apple have nailed that Google is yet to crack on the hardware (and sometimes services) side: presence.

P.S: my Nexus 5 support story was stellar. With the Pixel promising but unavailable as a replacement I went for an iPhone 6S (not a 7 because I just invested in quality, jack’d audio hardware)


I bought from Google and they replaced mine on warranty after I (truthfully) described it as having been "run over by a car." I expected them to say no, but was very thankful that they helped me.

They did tell me that this was a one-time deal though.


My experience (multiple times) with Google's hardware support has really been nice. Every time they have helped me immediately, sometimes replacing the devices without asking questions or proofs etc.


It's also worth noting that Nexus line was more of a budget phone, whereas Pixel is a premium flagship. The extra cost is exactly for things such as better costumers support.

I don't understand people comparing a 350$ Nexus 5 phone to a 700$ Pixel phone, and saying that they're both by Google, and anything that applies to the first also must apply to the second. It's also like people blindly hating on support for paid products by bringing anecdotal evidence from support on free products. That's just not how things work.

The Nexus line was barely a Google product, it was just meant to be a vanilla open device for developers, with some Google oversight. That's very different from a premium device built and supported from start to finish by Google.


> It's also worth noting that Nexus line was more of a budget phone

She paid over $600 for it, I wouldn't exactly call it a bargain bin device.


600$, compared to 800$ for a comparable Pixel phone. That 200$ difference is the premium you pay for good support. The Pixel doesn't really have anything else that the 6P didn't have.


At the time it was released it was the single most expensive consumer product Google made.


So Google treats customers like that? Pay for a more expensive product, get better support?


Er, yes. Welcome to Earth. There's no industry in the world where the person paying more $$$ doesn't routinely get better service.


> The Nexus line was barely a Google product"

Certainly so. They didn't really stand behind it, like they should have.

> it was just meant to be a vanilla open device for developers, with some Google oversight."

That counters the reality that these things were sold on the mass market to normal people without developer accounts and the accompanying "You'll shoot your eye out, dev" EULA.

It was advertised on TV, for !@!#$@ sake.

> That's very different from a premium device built and supported from start to finish by Google*

There aren't many devices out there, aside from the iPhone, that are supported from start and finish by one company.


Nexus 6p was definitely not a budget phone


Google clearly did not intend 6P to be either budget or 'developer' phone. They were very serious about the phone and spent a lot of money on advertising it to consumers in a number of countries.


Been android all my life. Bought almost every phone on the Google store. After the Nexus 6p experience -- I made an oath to my self to never buy another Google phone again.

From the onset it was broke. We are talking just a week after I bought, I started noticing a pattern of complaints about the audio clarity. I call support, what do I get? A refurb. Whatever, phone was just released -- probably gonna be a new phone. Two weeks later, another phone, same problem. I got used to it eventually, and worked around it. Headset, speaker phone, or whatsapp (for whatever reason) would fix the problem.

At first it was never Huawei again, whatever. But that changed. I called Google store again, one last time to complain. This time, they offered me a "buyers remorse refund". But then they retracted their offer as soon as the lady saw that I had it for a few weeks longer than 2 year. They told me the option wasn't available. But I kept asking them, why didn't you offer me this the second or third time I called? They never answered that one directly.

I am still so angry about this... I threw 600$ + 100$ for warranty at a company and for 2+ years I had a crappy phone that doesnt work when I call people. Done, never again.


I was put through the Huawei/Google ping pong. I don't know what the alternative is.

I bought a lot of Samsung notes, but they are outright negligent with monthly security updates. Samsung also famously introduced the Galaxy Note 2 a little over 8 months after I spent $900 on the Note 1 (which became a paperweight quickly due to faulty sim trays).

Almost all android manufacturers are negligent in creating good phones, and if they do, ruining them by not offering the required monthly updates that Google and Apple offer directly.

Android was a poor experience pre-gingerbread. Now, the changed UI's doesn't look much better than native android - product differentiation aside.

Google was onto something very good with LG and the Nexus 5 partnership. I'm encouraged to see LG building their phone again, and hope the HTC acquisition will improve the phone quality moving forward.

If google is serious, I hope they leave the XL with LG while they build the Pixel 3 with their new HTC subsidiary to get some experience under their belt before expanding.

I'm using an LG G6 for the past few months. The phone has been excellent. The phone updates are a few months behind and I'm reminded why I'll be probably heading back to a monthly security Android phone - at moment I believe it's the Pixels or a Blackberry.


I went for no-name Android phones for years now and can't complain.

First I had a Huawei Ascend Mate 7 (6") for 2 years, then a Huawei MediaPad X2 (7") for 3 years. Somehow they stopped to build big phones, so I switched to a Xiaomi Mi Max 2 (6.4") and I couldn't be happier.

I paid a fraction of the price of one of those Nexus/iPhone/Samsung flagship Smartphones and they all had what I needed, big display and big battery.


What about updates?

I've purchased my Nexus 5x just a couple of months ago. Since it's a two-year-old model, you can also get it for a fraction of a flagship model (~$200), and, well, since I've purchased it brand new, I still have a year of security updates + a warranty that lasts exactly that. And on top of that, pure vanilla Android experience + whatever Google comes up with in the meanwhile (for example, I have Google Fi, Pixel camera app, Android Oreo, fingerprint reader at the same spot as this $1000 phone).

Next year I might buy the Pixel (original, not 2). My point is, if that I continue with what I've started this year, I'll upgrade to the next two-year-old Google phone, receive the latest and greatest features (that non-Google-made flagship models still don't have at the time) and I'll receive upgrades constantly.


I saw 2 problems with updates.

Either you don't get them and your apps stop working one by one after some time.

Or you get them and performance goes downhill until your apps stop working one by one after some time

The only solution I found was to get a new device every 3-4 years.


but u cudnt have got it from google store. if it runs into boot loop wat wud u do?


Worst case scenario: it's just 200 bucks.

I never plan on buying a phone that I would be devastated with the amount lost (like, 1000 bucks) if something ever happens to it for whatever reason.


If not Google store where else is it best to buy from, where did u buy from? So tat they respond with warranty n stuff without 100s of emails n calls.


Second that, one plus for the last couple of years, good balance of price vs quality and no worse update policy than more expensive phones.


The update policy was a problem >5 years ago, but now I'm surprised how much updates I get on these "China-phones".

3 years ago it was a big task to get the devices to speak English and install Google apps.

Now they got onboarding even for German and all things are installed on the first start.


Ah, mobile phones.. :-)

I think my first phone was the Motorola Micro Tac, which was revolutionary for price and size. It selled like hotcakes in Norway on release in .. 93? Then the Nokia 8110, which I loved - it had WAP! :)

Then (in Australia) I had the great misfortune of buying into Hutchinson's first 3g phone - the Motorola A920. Switched after a while to the Motorola Razr - awesome - upgraded to the SLVR L7 - and then I think the Nokia N85.

My first proper smartphone was an iPhone 3, jailbroke it, then switched to the Nexus One when it came out. That was one of my all time favourites; still have it, still works (sans sim). I've been on Samsungs pretty much since that, however, starting with their S2 - then Nexus 4 briefly (got run over by a car after 2 months, fell out of pocket and got completely squashed - I was gutted) - replaced it with the S4, then the S6 Edge and now the S8+.

Have no regrets for staying with Samsung in the past 6 odd years. Love the OLED screens.

On the occasions when I've been having issues I've received immediate service; latest was my old S6 Edge needing a new motherboard which was done same day at a Samsung Experience center (Melbourne Central). This was at 16 months.

I'll continue buying their products until such a time that they make me regret it. I've been lucky with my phones; no major issues other than Three phone due to the initial horrible state of the network and the rushed release of the phone.


I've been on Android since the DevPhone1, had to import it to Aus using a reshipper.

I got a Samsung Galaxy S when it first came out while on a trip to the UK. I've always thought Samsung made good hardware generally, but their insistance on fucking with the Android experience is what stops me really liking it. I don't want their S Notes or their S Calendar, etc. Putting a custom ROM on it tended to be a better experience than stock.

The current bullshit with Bixby is also not encouraging - I want a stock Android experience.


The latest update for Bixby lets you disable the button. I find that encouraging because it shows that Samsung is listening to complaints.


Up to the S4, and to some extent the S5 (#), I'll agree with you. Since the S6 I've actually found that I prefer the Touchwiz experience to the stock Android one. They've been ahead when it comes to certain features that I've come to like.

In the S8, there's hardly anything that's annoyingly Samsung. Minor exception for Bixby, but at least they let us disable the short presses now (for the button). Ideally they'd let us use whatever A.I. provider of choice; I'd prefer to map it to Google Now/Plus.

(#Just realised I forgot to add the S5 in between the S4 and S6 Edge in my chronology!)


it doesn't matter if we buy from google store, i was told the google hardware will send me a replacement 2 months back and i am still mailing for follow ups as i haven't got any response. on top of this every time i discus i get contradicting and time wasting response. i don't think anyone who needs to look at value for money factor would buy a mobile beyond 100$ or if possible 50$ and funny things is they have 80% of the features and definitely more than what we need.


> I witnessed my girlfriend's Nexus 6p support experience with Google and it was not pretty. I would never buy a Google phone after that. The phone, just barely out of warranty, goes into a bootloop and becomes a paperweight. Google helpfully shrugs the problem off on Huawei, and Huawei will of course not support the product since it's out of warranty. There is no repair option.

Something similar happened to my wife with her Nexus5X. Google shipped an update that bricked a ton of 5X phones, and Google stopped responding to her Customer Service emails.

We've been Nexus (specifically pure Nexus) users since the first Google phone. I own a G1, still in my closet. I own all of them (well, at least one of each generation). I own a Pixel XL as well. I'm done with Google, for this, and other reasons.


Another Nexus 5X user here and also dissatisfied. A while back, my phone stopped being able to answer calls. It rings, but no UI dialog appears on screen to let me answer. This is a known issue that I've seen on support forums, but nothing suggested there has fixed it. I've spoken with Fi support on multiple occasions and they've exhausted all options and now want me to wipe my phone hoping that will fix the problem.

I'm amazed at how poor the Android experience has been after years on iPhone. I'm still more amazed that Android is as popular as it is despite all this.


My Pixel actually suffered from that phone issue as well until I wiped it. Good (and disappointing) to learn now that it's not an isolated issue.

Doesn't help that my Pixel was supposed to replace an ever-bootlooping Nexus 5X.


The 6p was the end of Google phones for me. It was the first phone I hade to give up due to not working and no help from Google.


On the contrary, because I bought the Nexus 6P from the Google Store, they replaced it with a Pixel XL for free. The Google experience is terrible through a third party, but their Google 'direct' experience is pretty darn fantastic.


I can't fathom why the place where the device was purchased would matter if it's a Google phone. Apple manages to support iPhones whether you purchase them from an Apple store or in a back alley for bitcoins.


> I can't fathom why the place where the device was purchased would matter if it's a Google phone

Because Google isn't the manufacturer of Google-branded Nexus devices and, if you bought it elsewhere, isn't the retailer, either.

> Apple manages to support iPhones whether you purchase them from an Apple store or in a back alley for bitcoins.

Apple is always the manufacturer of iPhones.


I know this is semantics, but it's fair. Apple doesn't manufacture anything, they design products and contract out the manufacturing to Foxconn. Basically the same as Google contracting out manufacturing to Huwei, only I think with the Nexus products it was more of a design collaboration than with the Pixel line.


Apple is the manufacturer that is honoring the manufacturer's warranty (and/or additional warranty options). Google is not the manufacturer of the Nexus 5X/6P, that's Huawei. So if you didn't buy from them, they send you to the manufacturer, like most retailers would after the initial return window, even if you did buy it from them.

I agree that it's bad for Google's image to operate that way, stick their name on a phone and then shrug their shoulders and tell you to talk to the real manufacturer. But that distinction is why Apple supports most iPhones no questions asked, and Google wants to know that you bought it from them. They're a glorified retailer licensing out their brand to Huawei.


I get it, but it's essentially Google wanting to have their cake (marketing to customers: "It's a Google phone! Pure Google all the way, baby!") and eat it, too (product support: "Uhhh, yeah, we uh, we don't make this thing, it's all Huawei, we're just a humble retailer."). I agree that it's absolutely bad for Google's image to operate this way, as you can see from the comments in this thread. People aren't mad at the OEMs Google paid to manufacture their devices, they're mad at Google.


> the OEMs Google paid to manufacture their devices

I'm not 100% sure, but I don't think that's how it was. LG's Nexus devices were manufactured by LG for LG, etc. The "Google" part of a Nexus phone is the software and some collaboration in the design.


If the phone is Google branded, it’s Google’s problem.

If it was advertised as a Huawei 6p that would be different.


I've seen it branded as Nexus 6P and Huawei Nexus 6P; never Google 6P or Google Nexus 6P. Same thing with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

The Pixel, instead, is branded as the Google Pixel.


My 6P has the Huawei logo on the back. It doesn't say Google anywhere.


It's really hit or miss. I've had to escalate to get my son's Pixel replaced twice now.

The replacement they sent has the wide-spread microphone issue out of the box, and I just haven't had the gumption to deal with yet another support experience.

I've had great luck so far with my Pixel XL and love it - one of the best phones I've ever owned. But the Pixel I bought along with it has been by far the most unreliable piece of hardware I've bought in a decade. It's really soured my opinion of Google, even though so far they have (grudgingly) replaced the item.

I'm dreading replacing it for the third time, as I know they will refer to their 2 replacements limit in their warranty contract. Zero of those replacements were anything but known hardware issues on the handset itself thousands of others have reported on-line.


A slightly goofy thing about the Google Store is you can't add the warranty after the initial warranty within the warranty period.

With Apple, it's no big deal to extend the warranty during the first year of the warranty.


I had the same great experience when my Nexus 5X had a boot loop. I have Google Fi and bought the phone through them. My phone died and next day I had a new phone. Great online experience too.


I've heard this story a number of times, but it doesn't match at all with my experience. Did she buy it from google?

I bought mine direct from google and the service was fantastic when I had an issue with my phone. I called them up, explained my problem, and 5 mins later they were sending me a replacement in the mail with a pre-stamped shipping package to send the old one back. I'm not sure what else I could ask for.


> Did she buy it from google?

Why should that matter? My wife's iPhone was purchased from TMO. It had an issue so she took it into an Apple store and she came out with a new phone 10 minutes later.


> she took it into an Apple store

What the parent is saying is that's precisely the difference. Your wife brought her phone to the manufacturer.

The Nexus phones were not manufactured by Google. If I don't buy it from the Google store, my buying didn't establish a commercial relationship with them. The Pixel phones, though, are manufactured by Google.

Disclaimer: Even though I'm a Google employee I have no idea how these things work. I'm just clarifying what the parent said, which sounds likely to me.


How is a Google phone, manufactured by Huawei ...

any different from an Apple phone, manufactured by FoxConn?

Apple wasn't the manufacturer at all.


If you buy an iPhone, do you get a FoxConn logo on the back? Because my Nexus 5X has an LG logo on the back, not a Google one.

So yes, it's pretty different from an Apple phone. Unless you refer to yours as the FoxConn iPhone 6 or something, which would be a unique perspective on your part.


Because it was a "Nexus" - Manufactured by someone else, in 'collaboration' with Google. The first Pixel was also manufactured by HTC (and may be FoxConn eventually, who knows), but it carries the tag of manufactured by Google, so that should be supported regardless of where you buy it from. That's the first Google phone.


As I understand, Nexus phones too are not manufactured by Google. Pixel XL is manufactured by LG, Pixel by HTC.


It might matter for people thinking about buying another google phone.


See comment below - Nexus 6p is a Huawei phone. Google was just a reseller, like t-mobile in the grandparent.


> Nexus 6p is a Huawei phone

That's definitely not how it was marketed.


Google's marketing page https://www.google.com/nexus/6p/ shows pictures of the phone, with two words on it:

Huawei Nexus

The Nexus marketing always seemed pretty clear to me: buy a phone made by the chosen hardware partner, and get the pure Google Android experience.


> Did she buy it from google?

It's a Google product. So yes, she bought it from Google. Which store sold this Google product shouldn't be a factor in whether Google is willing to support it to the best of their ability, should it?


I thought the 6p was like other Nexus phones and Google was at most a reseller, so if you bought it from a different store, you'd go back to the manufacturer (Huawei).

https://support.google.com/store/answer/6301411?hl=en

Nexus 6p is a Huawei product that you may or may not purchase via Google. iPhone is always an Apple product.


Google designed the phone, but they weren't the manufacturer or the retailer


I'm seeing a trend in this thread that a fair amount of Android users are needing to call up some sort of technical support for OS or hardware issues. Aside from the quality of support being debated, is this really a common thing in the Android world (even for savvy HN users)? I personally haven't seen that case in my Apple group of friends.


That's not a trend. It is the subject of the thread.

Here's my story.

Bought Nexus 5. Smashed screen in go-kart accident. Called Google to ask about repair; they offered to replace it for free. I still have that phone as a backup.

Bought Nexus 6p. Then bought another for wife. Both worked fine; we gave them to family members after two years.

Now have Pixel, Pixel XL for wife, and Pixel for daughter. They've all worked fine. Daughter got small scratch on screen, bought screen protector after that, no incidents since.

Standard disclosure: I work at Google. These experiences were all with normal retail devices, purchased with own money at full price, using personal Gmail accounts, with no special treatment as a Google employee.


My Nexus 5, purchased directly from google, stopped charging; I think something wore on the connector. I went through 7 or 8 cables and, if you held them just right, the phone would charge. Briefly. Support was a nightmare to deal with, including them insisting that I install the latest point update of the OS which would somehow magically cure hardware damage. On a phone that I couldn't charge. And that they wouldn't help with at all until I installed the stupid OS update.

Apple just doesn't treat customers like that. IME obviously.


I've had 5 android phones and never called anyone for any issues, although I have only bought Samsung and HTC.

Why Google ever did a licensing deal with Huawei is beyond me. They are controlled by the same Chinese government that won't allow Google to operate in their borders.


Bought an HTC Hero. Used it two years with no issues, besides lack of storage. With apps getting larger and storage issues cleared up with newer hardware, I needed an upgrade.

Bought a Galaxy Nexus. Used it for two years without issues. Would've continued with it for longer, but I was leaving Sprint.

Bought a Nexus 5. Used it for two years, with minor issues concerning wifi signal strength and wireless charging. The phone still works, and I keep it as a spare, but the wifi issues were especially annoying.

I've had an HTC One A9 for a year so far. No issues, aside from it being larger than I'd really like. I don't plan to replace it until I have a very good reason. Also have an iPhone 6 from work. It's nice, but harder to tinker with, which I think has always been Apple devices' shortcoming.


Check out these terrible support periods: https://support.google.com/nexus/answer/4457705?hl=en#pixel_...

An iPhone gets OS updates for years and years, Google's flagship Pixel phone has two years of updates. Never would I spend that money on a phone that has so terrible support.


It's 3 years now for the Pixel 2[0][1]. This has been discussed before on HN, and it tends to fall on the reliance on Qualcomm as the chip maker, who is responsible for driver ports on any kernel upgrades. It's the reason Google kicked off project Treble[2].

[0] https://store.google.com/product/pixel_2_specs

[1] http://www.androidpolice.com/2017/10/04/google-says-pixel-2-...

[2] https://android-developers.googleblog.com/2017/05/here-comes...


Treble’s great, but overall it’s still not iOS competitive. For example, the iPhone 4S and 5 got 4 years and 10 months of OS support, and the 5S that launched 4 years ago got iOS 11 and presumably will get all the updates this year.


The "minimum 3 years support" for the Pixel 2 and the 4 years 10 months actual support for the iPhone 4S / 5 are not comparable numbers, exactly because one is the minimum they're promising (so it will apply from the date that the phone is discontinued) and the other is the maximum achieved (so it was measured from the model release date).

Anyone who bought an iPhone 4S at the end of its run only got 2 years of support. The iPhone 5 did much better though - 3 years 10 months.

For the the iPhone 5S to reach a minimum of 3 years support, it'll have to continue to get updates for another 17 months.


Google cut support relatively early for plenty of phones, including my Nexus 5. There were endless stupid excuses about chipsets, but the fact remains: nothing past 6.0.1. They barely supported it for two years.


IIRC Google cut support for the Nexus 4 whilst maintaining support for their tablet that used exactly the same chipset. One of Google’s Android engineers even did their own cut+paste builds for the Nexus 4 from the new Android release at the time.

Dropping support at that particular point in time was purely a marketing / management decision that wasn't driven by any technical considerations whatsoever.

When you do this kind of thing as a company over and over again, people notice.


Never heard these claims. Source?


Here’s a blog post by the programmer in question: http://dmitry.gr/index.php?r=06.+Thoughts&proj=02.%20Android...

I think that covers most of the main points.

Of course, it may be that it all came down to support contracts internally between Google and the Nexus device suppliers (the Nexus 7 blobs come via Asus, the Nexus 4 was an LG device that used the same Qualcomm chipset IIRC.) but that’s the kind of detail that end users really don’t care about: both were Google devices that Google sold & from the point of view of the end user Google dropped support for one device for no obvious reason as far as the end user can see.


Sure. The point here is that the promised "3 year minimum OS updates" for the Pixel 2 is a significant improvement on that.


My point is that

1 - Google has a history of living up to the absolute bare minimum promised. Apple does not. Per history, one can assume that when Google says they'll support for 3 years they mean 3 years and one day, and Apple means about 5.

2 - Google has a history of whining as if they are absolutely powerless, broke, and incapable of affecting what Qualcomm or others do. At least when it suits Google.


Which Apple device got 5 years support (from the last sale date, which is when a "minimum support" period applies from)?


As a user, I do not care at all whose fault it is that my phone gets no updates after three years.


Stories like this are the reason I will never switch from Apple products. I have personally have had nothing but outstanding customer service from Apple and have heard countless examples of products being fixed or replaced for free even when out of warranty without any hassles.

Switching to an Android phone to save $100-200 over the lifetime of a product that I use 1000 times per day, and risk bad customer service is just bad value.


It might be only in USA. Costs so high in India that I can but new android devices each year. Repair costs are high as well again could buy new devices instead of repairing it.


Same in South Africa. I can literally by a new Xiaomi for the cost of getting an iPhone(or Samsung) screen replacement.

I've been very happy with my iPhones so far, though. Only ever had issues when the batteries started to swell up.


> Stories like this are the reason I will never switch from Apple products.

Strong words. If Apple's support started getting worse, you'd switch.

What you're saying is that you like to stick with a company that has so far had an outstanding support track record.

Which is pretty self-evident.


I had a similar experience and decided not to buy high-end Android phones: the modular (or fragmented) nature of Android's ecosystem doesn't lend itself for quality end-to-end experience. This is not meant to be a knock on Android. I exclusively used Android for the last 4 years, and I like Google's software, the choices on hardware, etc.

However, when it comes to end-to-end experience, Apple's vertically integrated approach is simply better. This is one of the key reasons I switched back to iPhone recently: I just want my phone to work and to be taken care of when it doesn't work.


Disclaimer: I work at Google but have nothing to do with any hardware team.

I bought a Nexus 6P from the Google store and had some issues. Out of warranty they replaced it with a new Nexus 6P. When that failed as well, they replaced the phone with a brand new Pixel XL. Each of these replacements was sent via overnight shipping at no cost to me.

I wouldn't call this a great experience because I wish the original phone never had the issue, but I can't ask for more from support.


All I can say is google support is wildly inconsistent.


Did you identify yourself as a Google employee? Just asking because re: consistency, I could believe a blue badge might pull some weight in that situation. Speaking from experience, badging at an Apple Store will often change a conversation, sometimes dramatically, despite that ability not really being intended at all. Neither here nor there, just a data point.


I do not work for Google and had the same experience re: getting a pixel xl replacement for my Nexus 6p.


I heard it from so many people, that I want my Nexus 6P to go bad all by itself, unfortunately, that doesn't happen :).


No, I did not mention where I worked or even the industry.

I guess experiences vary. Both times I broke my google phone they replaced it. We had some issue with setting up Project Fi, but again they ended up replacing it for free. I find that chatting works best with google support.


I had the same experience. My pixel battery was burning through it's battery at an extraordinary way, I contact support through the phone and got a replacement within the week.

A few months later I heard a rattle in my phone, turns out they sent me one that was part of a line that had an issue with a microphone component. Contact support and yet again it was replaced within a week.


> turns out they sent me one that was part of a line that had an issue with a microphone component. Contact support and yet again it was replaced within a week.

This is my issue. They have continually sent replacement refurbs that exhibited well known and common problems. This has to be done knowingly.

It's really made me think about an iphone for the first time ever. I refuse to use any non-nexus (or pixel now) Android since I care about software updates and shovelware, so it's either a Pixel or an iPhone at this point. Google shoveling me repeatedly known bad hardware just sits very wrong with me.


they have infinite data may be they have classified users and have a preferred set of customers who they love so much and take so much care of, do u buy lot of google products or have u subscribed to any google services. looks biased as still majority are having trouble based on the forums.


And the Pixel XL is the best phone I've ever used. Let's face it, everyone has good/bad experiences with lots of devices.

The iPhone 3G is the worst purchase I ever made, a month after buying it iOS 4 turned it into a barely functoinal brick with no ability to roll back the OS.

I've also had an HTC Amaze which was great, a Note 3 which was great, a Nexus 5 which was OK, etc...

No company always gets it right, even Apple. That being said, the Pixel XL was great, so I'll guess that this new one will be good too. Nexus 6p was a dud, Huawei doesn't make them anymore, Google re-branded and moved on...


I had a Nexus 5X die within the warranty period, and had a similar experience. LG's support was utterly awful, it took them 3 weeks to replace the phone.

They originally told me I could get a replacement 5X, then they told me I could get a T-Mobile G5 and what they eventually sent me was an AT&T specific G5 that required digging into config menus before it would connect to T-mobile LTE.


Big company support have lots of moving parts. My girlfriend's Nexus 5x also died this week. Local LG branch (Budapest) replaced the motherboard within a day. She basically got a new phone for free.


Yeah. I had similar issues with samsung and nexus devices.

Despite the removal of the headphone jack, I switched to an iPhone 7+. Had an issue with touch id, and they just replaced the entire screen for free while I hung out at the mall.

Between the privacy moves Apple has made, along with their awesome support, I can't see myself switching back.


Same experience here: a year ago my iPhone 5s had discoloration issues on the screen's edges. I booked a genius appointment, they replaced the screen for free, and after two hours I could pick the phone.

I also once had a problem with a new MacBook Pro (probably bad memory). Went to the Apple Store, I could either get a (new) replacement or my money back, no questions asked.

I used Android for a while when Motorola was a Google company and a brief period after they were purchased by Lenovo. My Moto X 2013 had spontaneous reboots, repair took one or two weeks and afterwards they wouldn't tell me the problem was. After a year or so, the Moto X started cracking spontaneously. I also purchased a Moto 360, which spontaneously cracked as well (known problem). Repair took one week, but the package disappeared in delivery. It took them two months (!) to send me a new Moto 360. Then there was the horror of the incredibly buggy Android 5.0 release on the Moto X 2014, which had a memory leak that killed background apps all the time.


I had an issue with a MacBook that was totally my fault. (I slammed my fist down on it frustration, tearing the SATA cable) Not only that, but I rolled in there and had an initial attitude at the lack of attention, only to discover I went to the wrong location from where I set my appointment. They took care of me, and replaced the cable for free.


This sounds terrible. FWIW, I have Project Fi and have had several excellent experiences with their support, including replacing a Nexus 5X that my wife dropped and then ran over with the car.


Project Fi's support has been nothing short of spectacular... I've had two slow activations (coming from StraightTalk) and they've spent 10-20 minutes on the phone with me until the problem was resolved.


As an aside, even if I get good customer service, these days I'm frankly tired of not having physical stores. Being able to walk into an Apple Store is a really tempting offer, compared to shipping a phone for repair and communicating through emails.


I'll take advance replacement and phone/chat/email support over waiting in line in a store any day.


I think you're identifying why the Pixel program is better than the Nexus program. Google's completely responsible for the design and support now.


I've had two Android "support" experiences, so here's my anecdata:

1) My wife's Samsung phone developed an issue. We contacted Samsung and they RMA'd it and she had a brand new phone by the end of the week. Not Applecare, but it was fine.

2) Had an Android tablet with a minor battery recall. The manufacturer just sent me a second tablet and told me to keep both.

I hear about these kinds of horror stories but if you go in knowing that you aren't going to get Applecare, you don't look for it and you deal with it like literally any other consumer purchase you might make in your life, from refrigerators to cars and it's suddenly not a big deal.


I had the opposite experience. My Nexus 5X randomly stopped working (which it shouldn't have obviously, but a different discussion). Google were great to deal with. Got put through to a human very quickly and he just asked me to email a few photos of the phone just to make sure it wasn't smashed to pieces.

After I sent them, within a few days a brand new Nexus was delivered along with a return package for my broken one. They didn't even demand I send back the faulty one first. He said the idea was that you won't be without a phone in the interim (irrelevant in my case however as the phone was bricked).


When I broke my Nexus 4 or whatever it was called in 2012 or so, they wanted me to ship them my phone first to repair and give them a credit card authorization in case they had to send a new one, and then after they fixed it, I would get it back, maybe after 10 business days. This was all purchased from google’s own website.

After that I went with iPhone, simply because I know I can get it replaced or fixed within 2 days, but I have walked out of the store with a brand new one in 20 min before.


I specifically stayed away from the Nexus 6P because it was Huawei. Never buy anything Huawei- seriously, never. The Pixel is much more of a Google phone than the Nexus line was.

I had the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and then the Galaxy S5, both great phones. Definitely preferred the vanilla Android experience though, and the Pixel XL has been great for the past year. It is the best phone I've ever held, vastly better display than any iPhone. The Pixel 2 with no headphone jack is not going to work for me, but I expect to use the Pixel XL for 3-4 years anyway.


My experience with Nexus 6p support was very different. I bought my 6P at launch in 2015, it ran perfectly for a year and a half and then I noticed that it shut down at around 15% battery a couple of times. One phone call to Google, despite the fact that I was out of warranty, and then 2 days later a brand new Pixel XL (last year's model) showed up in an overnight FedEx. Could not be more pleased.


An opposite anecdote:

I bought my Nexus 5X used on Swappa. It finally bootlooped about a month ago. Called Project Fi support, they transferred the phone to my ownership in their system, and then issued an RMA and sent me a refurbed 5X. I was fairly surprised, as the phone was both out of warranty and bought used.


Why would you expect them to support the phone indefinitely outside of warranty or a support contract?

My Nexus 5X had a boot loop issue, I filed a support ticket, paid the deductible, and 2 days later I had a replacement phone in hand. Couldn't have been easier...


Had a similar experience but better opinion of Google's sorry. My wife's 6P entered a bootloop 5 or 7 days after the 1-year warranty expired. Google and Huawei said "sorry—your warranty expired." But I don't fault them. An expired warranty is, after all, expired. I ended up reselling the phone on eBay for $120. At least it's recycled: people use them for parts.

On the other hand, I actually loved Google's support. Reaching them on the phone was easy. No wait. At some point I had to step away to take care of my baby, so they said they would call me back in 30min, and the same rep called me EXACTLY on the dot when they said they would call. They didn't follow a script to the letter, with numerous unnecessary steps, but jumped ahead when I told them what I had tried to diagnose the problem. Overall, very efficient, quality support. Of course I was bummed the bootloop couldn't be fixed (I experienced it before it was a widespread issue) but I was honestly stunned how good their support experience was.

I ended up replacing the 6P by a Nexus 5X. I know I'll get good support IF I ever need it.


My wife's 6P entered a bootloop 5 or 7 days after the 1-year warranty expired. Google and Huawei said "sorry—your warranty expired." But I don't fault them. An expired warranty is, after all, expired.

How is this acceptable? The boot loop is most likely caused by a software bug that was not introduced by your wife (unless she was installing custom ROMs). Moreover, it is probably easy for Huawei/Google to repair the phone by reflashing the firmware.

Rather than going the extra mile for a customer who dropped $500+ on a device, they literally stick to the warranty period mandated by the law and leave you out in the woods.

That is terrible customer service.


100% terrible customer service. The bootloop was caused by flaws in the Snapdragon chip. The OSS fix is to basically disable half of the cores and run the phone in a crippled state.

https://www.xda-developers.com/nexus-6p-bootloop-fix/


I thought the Nexus 5 was the best phone I ever owned (I've owned many Android phones, across the spectrum, as well as several iPhones). It was a really great phone, for a while. After about 10 months the battery starting dying at 15% without warning, then eventually 20%, 30%, and finally 50% mid-run when I decided to put it out of it's misery. You could write it off as a one-time known flaw with the battery used by Huawei in this model, but this type of story is consistently my experience with Android products.

The applications are generally less polished, the hardware is better on paper yet fails to hold up in real life, and the battery life is abysmal within a year or less. It use to be the case that some of the sacrifices were worth it because flagship Android phones were considerably cheaper than their Apple counterparts, but that is no longer true either.

I'll be going back to Apple for the first time since the iPhone 4, now that they've finally killed the hideous 1980's CRT style bezel.


More anecdata: I've had excellent support with my Pixel, had a replacement phone shipped in two days when I had a hardware problem.


Interesting.

My support experience with the 6p was pretty good : when the battery became unusable they replaced the phone without asking too many questions (they just made sure I had followed all the basic steps to make sure that the problem was indeed hardware, even though I am a mobile engineer able to diagnose the device myself. I don't rely blame them for having to follow a script though).

Anecdotally my support experience with Apple has been atrocious : -they refused to repair my mbp 2011 whereas it suffered from their well known design flaw in the GPU soldering and have a repair program for this model.

-they made me pay reparation fees for a mbp for which all the cooling system started malfunctioning while it was still in the warranty period.


I had a reverse experience with Google support. Me and my wife bought our Nexus 5x phones at the same time, me from amazon and she from Google. When mine bootlooped (under warranty), I was forced to contact LG and they did take the phone in but returned it back without fixing claiming "water damage". I read online that they were doing that for many customers to shrug off their responsibility.

When my wife's phone bootlooped (8 months out of warranty), Google shipped her a replacement phone for free! I swore myself away from buying any LG products after that.


That's interesting, because I had a friend who had the 6p, and when he ran into problems they replaced his phone with a brand new Pixel. Which is worth way more then a 6p new.


My girlfriend had the exact same experience with her Nexus 5x.

Fwiw there's a small open-source patch for affected devices that disables big cores (disables dual core I think) and fixes the bootloop but cripples the phone's performance.

Now, it looks like those issues are caused by the Snapdragon 808/810. The Pixel 2 uses the 835. I don't think it's been around long enough to know of any long-term issues, but I'm hoping it sucks less.


Opposite experience here: My 5x started boot-looping for no reason a few weeks ago, also out of warranty. I got a new on in the mail 3 days later, zero hassle.


Huh, my brother has a 6p and recently got it replaced by a refurbished one after it had issues booting. My 5x has worked like a champ for two years.


FYI people may have negative customer support experiences because they insist on the phone with the operator. If someone is not solving your problem, hang up and call again. Eventually you will reach someone who will help. Once I learned this it saved me countless hours, thousands of dollars possibly and a lot of unnecessary frustration.


Expecting someone to need to call again until they find an amenable representative is the antithesis of good customer service. You may have found a method that is effective for you; that's great. One should not need to go to such lengths.


Alternatively you can just ask to speak to a supervisor as soon as the CS rep answers. It's not rude and they won't get blamed for screwing up if you don't say anything to them. Most of the time your problem will be solved or at least the supervisor won't waste your time with fairy tales.


The 6P had it's issues (I experienced some too).

Pixel was much better, except the XL 128gb had memory speed issues.

Google has gone back to LG to build the Pixel 2 XL, (similar to the Nexus 5) which was great. For that reason I'm probably going to get it - my dad still has and loves his LG made nexus 5.


I love my Nexus 5 and would probably love a Pixel 2 but it has no headphone jack. :(

I do an insane amount of long-haul flying and really rely on the 3.5mm jack for my noise cancelling headphones. I could get bluetooth headphones but they wouldn't work with in-flight entertainment when it's available.

I hope this whole no-headphone jack trend doesn't continue, I know the 3.5mm TNC isn't the best jack but if you don't want it because of bad waterproofing reasons or size/whatever can we just get a different analog jack with an adapter? Having the DAC built into the phone is required to keep things nice.


I know of a few options depending on the desired setup:

- There are USB-C to 3.5mm jacks. Probably the simplest. There are also Y cables that put out a USB-C charging port and 3.5mm. - I own a Sony SBH54. Converts bluetooth into 3.5mm. Awesome to pair to my phone and laptop, hoping improved specs of Bluetooth 5 shoe up in a new device soon. I have been on Bluetooth audio with their SBH50 and MW600 - the audio quality has improved greatly. I wonder if there's a wireless external DAC.

I heard of an intriguing option yesterday - USB C Digital headphones where the signal remains purely digital.

LG has put dacs into the v20 and a variant of the g6, I kind of wish I had gotten a model with one.

I sense the no headphone jack is here to stay if the reason for it is true (allowing thinner phones).


Take a look at the chinese manufacturers if you want good android phones.


My 6p worked fine. What turned me off google phones is that that i only bought it a year ago and it won't even get security updates beyond a year from now. Might as well be a brick then.


you are not alone, i am sure 1000's are impacted because of this.

https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!msg/nexus/G_0s70PzK...

Check this! You can still buy devices from Google or LG or HTC if you have way too much money to waste of same device repeatedly every year.


I bought an extended warranty from Asurion for my Nexus 6P.

Last month, it started shutting down early. I contacted them and they're sending me a $800 check...


I had boot loop problems twice in less than 3 year span with two different Nexus phones one after the other! Nexus 4 and Nexus 5X. I gave up on Android after that. It sucks because I was a big Android fan. Not going back now even after the whole headphone jack fiasco with iPhone 7+


>Not going back now even after the whole headphone jack fiasco with iPhone 7+

The Pixel 2 doesn't have a headphone jack either: https://www.engadget.com/2017/10/04/google-unveils-the-pixel...


Had a Moto X 2013. Bought it because it was supported by Verizon (the only connectivity, some places I went/go), and with the Google purchase of Moto, was supposed to get timely updates on an ongoing basis. Well, not so much...

Switched to a Nexus 5x. After 1.3 years of rather gentle use, it bootlooped. I would attempt to get Google to deal with it, but it bootlooped days after I took pictures of flood damage (not mine, fortunately), and I hadn't gotten those pictures off the phone. Then, I got busy. Still hope one of the rescue approaches will let me get the pictures off, before I try to maybe get a replacement. Fuck the warranty, 1.3 years of use -- cut short by a known product defect -- is simply not acceptable.

I bought a cheap Moto G5 Plus to tide me over; figured I could dink around with it after I switched to maybe a Pixel 2.

At this point, and at those prices, I can't bring myself to give Google a premium price for that product.

Maybe if I find a cheap Pixel 1, I'll give Android one more go. Otherwise, it's Apple.

Even if Apple is pricey, I'll expect decent support and to amortize that cost over more than a year, two at the outside.

P.S. The Moto G5+ was widely heralded as "the" budget Android choice. And while the camera is definitely not top tier, it takes mostly ok pictures, and the phone otherwise functions decently. Even its IPS screen is no slouch.

It was already a bit behind, on Android 7.0 and not 7.1 . This caused me some concern, but I wasn't going to plop down e.g. full price for a Pixel 1 with the Pixel 2 just weeks away.

But now we have the Bluetooth... I forget the catchy name. The Bluemageddon. And I'm back to plugging in the speaker to listen to podcasts (fortunately, old enough to have a jack). The older FM adapter in the car, that has a jack; its replacement is Bluetooth only. (And I'm sorry, but my older car is in fine shape and I don't really need to replace it, nor to I wan to rip apart its rather nice integrated and apparently rather well-tunend stereo system.)

Anyway, at least the G5+ has an audio out jack. Because I don't know when the hell Lenovo is going to get around to shipping the Bluetooth fix to it.

So, basically, Google, if you happen to be reading this: Fuck all this.

I've also started to encounter interesting posts from developers who say that this kind of outlay for an Android device on which they can adequately test, is getting outside the realm of the reasonable. Not my bailiwick.

But if you're a small-time developer, and your iPhone bites it, seems you may actually get some support from Apple.


Same, it was a huge mistake...


I am an Android user but it seems to me that it gets more and more invasive. Everytime I go somewhere it wants me to take photos and just now it advertised some Play Store movie. Search asks for location access on almost every search. To get rid of the search bar I need to install third party software.

When I buy a premium phone I want the phone to work for me and not the other way around. The notification bar should only be used for stuff that I want to be notified about - not ads or cheap tries to get me working for free.

In the future I sometimes imagine two classes of devices: one controls the lives of their owners and one helps their owners to control their lives. What does Android want?


I hate the invasive features that seems to only increase with every Android update. So now I am getting an iPhone for the first time in years.

> And this year’s Pixel will take advantage of the phone’s always-on microphones to listen for music (not just the phrase “OK Google”) and display what you’re listening to on the screen, even if it’s something on the radio.

Like.. wtf? No! I don't want that. Sure it "only listens for music". I don't want Google to save my passwords in apps. I don't want anything of that. Get out of my life google.

In the process of removing Google out of my life as much as possible. This is my progress:

Completed:

- Using DDG for search

- Using bing maps or OSM for maps

- Only using Firefox / Vivaldi for browsing.

TODO:

- Move email provider completely, now I am only partly using my gmail.

- Move to iPhone (will soon be done)

- Youtube (unfortunately I think this is hard to avoid)

Don't really use any other Google service than that. I urge people to do the same.


"I urge people to do the same."

I am just fine with my Google service thank you. If I don't like something I disable it. Most of it I can and I appreciate the convenience of some of the stuff.

The iphone without any of the doodads feels like a dumb phone. This is a great way though to discourage constant phone use though.


On my phone at least, Google spams me for data input whenever I use maps and it seems at least to do that even if I simply have location on without actually using any app.

Ï cannot disable this, it also sends me ads from built in apps (not really Google here) that I cannot disable.

I am done with all of that. For years I have been an android enthusiast, thinking it was so much better than iPhone. How times change.


> Ï cannot disable this

Yes you can. Settings > Notifications > Your contributions.

And even if that didn't work, Android lets you turn off individual categories of notifications for Maps and other apps at a system-wide level.


Don't know how you feel about ad blockers, but I installed an off-market app called BlockThis (Google it) to get rid of ads on my browser, and it had the added benefit of disabling ads within apps. Many Android apps are very obstructive with their ads (not androids fault) so now I just always have BlockThis enabled.


I installed CopperheadOS on my Nexus 5X, it has been a blessing. I use OsmAnd~ maps and navigation, Startpage for search and Firefox (and Firefox Klar) as my browser.

I chose Mailbox.org as my mail/calendar/contacts provider. DAVdroid syncs my calendar with the default Copperhead OS calendar app (Etar) and the Contacts app. I use the K-9 mail app.

For YouTube I use NewPipe. It suits me a lot better than the YouTube app. I can even download video/audio for offline use.

All the apps I mentioned above are free and open source and available via the F-Droid app “store” that comes pre-installed with Copperhead.

For the first time I feel that I own my phone (not the other way around).


I don't want to have to change the OS on my phone to get an acceptable experience. I rather do something else with my time.

But I use fastmail for mail and calendar. It works great for me. I still have like 10 years worth of data in Google Mail. So it will take some time before I can completely release that.


You can import all your Gmail contents to Fastmail. I did this, it was very straightforward.


You can install lineageOS intead of android on your phone, because I think apple could be similar in some ways to google


The difference is that in the Google ecosystem you are the product while using a device from Apple you are the customer from the start.

Of course they have cloud stuff, that doesn't bother me. It's the evasive cloud stuff that you have minimal control over that bothers me.


I really liked many of the Google services and lived comfortably and happy with them, Android as well. I think I went all in on Google. And it was fine until now.

But now I am pretty fed up with Android and Google. The increased invasiveness and how I can't disable features that I don't want anymore or the incredible persistence of asking to activate something I declined multiple times until they make it required, really put me off.

Another thing is that many of the shiny features don't benefit me at all. Previously Google offered services anyone could use. Search, GMail, Android. But now more and more services are locked to countries, languages and devices which only a subset of Google users can benefit from but everyone is expected to deal with these features.

Some features simply don't work reliably at all (e.g. Google Trips and most of Google Now related to GMail, Hangouts before it got killed) and some features are pretty much useless to me as they are bound to either the USA or a language I don't casually speak (e.g. as a Swiss-German speaker the whole Google Assistant stuff is just not fun at all as I have to either speak High-German or English. Both of which is not as natural as my native language. Many Google Now cards seem to show way less info compared to the USA or show way worse data.)

One benefit might be the "ecosystem" of everything working together perfectly but to me they still have a long way to go to achieve this. I think I see a direction in their messy portfolio of services, apps and devices but currently it's a terrible mess. Devices being abandoned as soon as they launch. Services migration to way less capable ones. That's not a seamless ecosystem, that's just a burden to me.

So to me it feels like Google expects me to let them invade my private space more and more, give them more and more of my life even though they offer very little actually intuitively useful things. For me it has long been that what they offer is worth it but now that balance has tipped towards offering very little for a lot of me.


> one controls the lives of their owners and one helps their owners to control their lives. What does Android want?

I think you answered your own question in the first paragraph.

Don’t give google any data, other than maybe your searches.

Instead of working for google, let google work for you. Only searches and in a different tab container.


Agree, these behaviors are only acceptable if the phone would be paid for by Google. It's very silly that we pay $1,000 for a phone that actually helps Google make even more money when we use it.


> When I buy a premium phone I want the phone to work for me and not the other way around.

You are in the wrong ecosystem then. On Android, you are a sharecropper on Google's farm.


And Google makes it so hard to disable the new Google Feed for Android, but so distractingly easy to accidentally press. Their settings experience is still a mess.


I have an iPhone as my primary phone, and a secondary Pixel XL. The Pixel XL uses a separate Gmail account, used nowhere else. I've added no "Places" to Google maps. I love how it tells me how many minutes my drive to work is (which I'm okay with that on my iPhone, since I explicitly set that info in Google Maps on that account)


Android wants to make money for Google. It sounds like what you want is a pocket-sized computer that can make telephone calls. Shouldn't be so difficult, right? But maybe it would be twice the price if you want to pay with money and not your data.


> Android wants to make money for Google.

Pretty sure they just want to sell more ads since 88% of their revenue comes from ads.[0]

[0] https://www.valuewalk.com/2017/05/tech-giants-google-apple-f...


Or same price and it would be 1-2 mm thicker with resolution only slightly bigger than regular destkop monitor? Who knows...


There's a reason that Samsung still leads the pack in sales, and it's not solely due to marketing: they keep the stuff people want. People want a headphone jack, they held onto the headphone jack. People want SD card slots, they keep SD card slots.

I held off on getting a GS8 about two months ago when Amazon had a great deal on them going because I was in the process of moving, and I wanted to wait to see what else was coming out. Even though the S8 is lagging behind on updates, it still seems to be the best option. The HTC 11, Pixel 2, and Essential phone have all disappointed.

Waiting on the reviews for how the Sony Xperia XZ1 compact fares, because I wouldn't mind a smaller phone.


I have an S8 (plus) and I'd love to upgrade to the Pixel 2. I am so tired of Samsung trying to replace every piece of functionality with their own. I had to go find Google's "Android messaging" app in the Play store - just their standard SMS app - to replace the Samsung stock one because it kept opening URLs in "Samsung Internet", their version of the browser. The Samsung keyboard is awful, and I can't seem to find a decent replacement. And don't get me started on f'ing Bixby.


This is the only thing stopping me from buying a Samsung phone.

They've almost a completely different company from the original Samsung Galaxy days. If they could partner their build quality with a stock experience and optional downloads of their apps then I'd be completely sold.


Have you tried and disliked the Google keyboard? That's what I used when I was on a GS6, and it was pretty good.


I did - I really like it, except that every once in a while, for reasons I can't pinpoint but I assume are random, it will only let me type by hitting letters individually (no swiping). I re-enabled it today, so hopefully if that was a bug in the app it's been fixed, but we'll see.


It's not fixed, unfortunately. It still happens to me every now and then. But, when that happens, just keep swiping. It'll kick back in. It even registers all the letters you swipe, but it's so off-putting that I usually mess up the word and delete the gibberish I typed.


Ugh, glad it's not just me though. Incredible that at a place like Google something as crucial as a keyboard can suffer from such a severe bug, unpatched for who knows how long.


Til I'm not alone!


I won't defend ditching the headphone jack, especially after Google ridiculed Apple for doing so. But as a very happy owner of the Pixel phone, I'd say the free, unlimited storage of photos and videos in original quality is a million times better than having a SD card slot.

Just today I transferred about 25GB of video and photos, and I probably wouldn't have bothered to record these videos if I had to transfer using SD card or cable. One might argue that's a sign that these videos aren't worth storing, but I'd say it shows the value of unlimited storage. In fact, if I had to choose between two near identical phones, with the only thing separating them being the unlimited Google Photos storage, then I'd gladly add an additional $250 to obtain that.

I think many of us experienced what it's like to make the jump from HD to FHD, or especially FHD to UHD on a similar sized screen. Once you make the jump, then you begin to wonder how you ever lived without it. For me, and I think for most Pixel owners, unlimited storage of high quality photos and 4k videos gives the exact same feeling. Having stock Android, best camera, slick design and great build quality just makes it that much sweeter, and I honestly do believe that marketing, brand loyalty and availability is the only reason the Pixel phone wasn't more successful than [insert any phone here] (I'd estimate 19 out of 20 who have asked about my phone never heard of Google Pixel, and had no idea Google even made any hardware products).


Your unlimited original-quality photos will be cut off after 2020:

http://www.androidpolice.com/2017/10/04/pixel-2s-free-origin...


I'm aware, if it lasted forever then I'd gladly pay an additional $1000+.

But as you also know, after 2020 then they'll still offer unlimited high-quality photo/video storage, and I think those who don't abuse the offering by storing RAW files and such won't mind the minor quality difference, and those who do will likely want to upgrade their phone.


imho they are telling that a pixel buys you three years of unlimited storage, if you will buy a new one after three years a new unlimited storage period will follow, maybe for another three years.


> Just today I transferred about 25GB of video and photos, and I probably wouldn't have bothered to record these videos if I had to transfer using SD card or cable.

Now try to take pictures on holiday without cheap & available 4g or wifi. I prefer a few 256 GB microSD-cards. It takes just 10 seconds to swap it out and put in a fresh new one. You can transfer the contents into a Macbook at speedy 90 MB/s.


> Now try to take pictures on holiday > I prefer a few 256 GB microSD-cards

My immediate reaction to this is, "holy crap!"

Using a 12MP camera, each image you take would roughly be 2-3MB. Assuming the higher end of 3MB (and only 230GB available per card), that's ~79,000 photos per card.

Since "a few" typically means three or more, let's assume three, that's ~240,000 photos. If it's a typical holiday/vacation, that's likely 2-3 weeks -- let's assume it's three, which comes out to be 21 days. Achieving ~11,000 photos per day during a holiday is quite a feat...


I'm pretty sure they are taking a few 4k 60fps videos as part of that holiday, and those eat space like it's nothing.


More rough napkin math...

A second of 4k60 video is ~7MB, but we'll overestimate to 8MB (though I'm using really rough metrics here). At 690GB (230 x 3), that's ~86,000 seconds. Or, more familiarly, about 24 hours of 4k60 video (holy cannoli, Batman!). I guess that's about an hour's worth of video recording every day over a three-week period. Understandable, and more doable, though still really excessive.


And when you turn it into a more realistic scenario (~1 hour video/day - something I'd almost never do with my iPhone but often do with my Pixel), it's hard to imagine not having access to WiFi throughout the week. Even the hotels/apartments with really poor connection seem to have no trouble uploading the photos/videos throughout the night.


Actually, I'm lucky to work remotely, allowing me to travel around in Asia on a pretty much weekly basis. I'm currently in Thailand where they offer free, unlimited data (accessible pretty much anywhere) for only $9 for a month. I was also recently in Vietnam where the WiFi at all the hotels were crazy fast. A great thing about my national SIM card is also that in most western countries, I'm free to use it as much as I want with no extra charge. So far I haven't had any connection problems anywhere during my travels in Northern Europe, Asia and USA.

I've yet to encounter a situation where I ran out of storage (and I take thousands of pictures and a few videos whenever I visit some sightseeing place). Sometimes I even go 2-3 full battery charges (using powerbanks) where all the battery is spent on photos+chatting+uploading, and as long as I click 'free up device storage' under the Photos app then I'll never get maxed out.

Another great benefit of this is that I can easily use great phone covers like LifeProof without having to deal with removing and adding the cover (this is truly a pain in the ass when using the LifeProof cover - not sure if there are any other great and slick phone covers that makes it easier and convenient to take it off/on while also providing great protection for the phone). In any case, I can't imagine ending up in a situation with no wifi, no data, and the need to take more than 2k photos before obtaining access to decent internet, and I'd like to think that I have traveled a lot, especially in underdeveloped countries and cities.


> It takes just 10 seconds to swap it out and put in a fresh new one.

Just don't be too fast if you have an S7 or S8, lest you lose the SIM in the integrated tray :-)


That's all well and good in countries where you don't pay $10/GB for mobile data...


Not sure what countries you're referring to, but I haven't had any issues throughout my travels, and when I visited Vietnam then I didn't even bother to buy data (I believe it only costed about $10 for unlimited data for 15 days) because the WiFi at the hotels was sufficient for me.

I also feel some of you really underestimate just how many photos/videos you can store with 15-20GB. Speaking of which, with my iPhone I was always struggling with storage because I wanted to keep some pics/videos on my phone, and I was often too lazy to transfer to my laptop, which would just cause storage issues there.. with the Pixel I've never had any trouble staying above 15GB out of the 32 (24 including system) GB available. In most cases you would likely run out of battery multiple times before you managed to capture 15-20GB worth of photos/videos throughout the day.

I also never worry that any of my photos/videos will get lost/corrupted thanks to Google Photos; this has always been a major issue for me when I relied on external hard-drives (I've probably lost hundreds of thousands of pictures throughout the last 15 years because a harddrive broke, or the pictures got corrupted for no apparent reason). It was also always a pain to deal with duplicates, to deal with identical image names (if I recall correctly then iPhone would have name clashes whenever you reached 9999 photos), etc. And relocating a specific picture/video meant that I had to look through thousands of photos in countless poorly named/organized folders (and always bring the hard-drive(s) with me).. With Google Photos I can just search the name of the place, or only search for videos, and locate what I'm looking for within a few seconds.


I like Samsung's hardware, but I still can't stand their TouchWiz UI.

I don't understand why manufacturers simply don't offer a stock Android variant.


They did, they were called "Google Play Editions".[0]

No one bought them, because they were released at a time when people still paid subsidized phone prices and upgraded their phones every two years for $200. So when they were asked to pay $600 upfront, the vast majority had sticker shock.

[0]https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/07/review-the-samsung-g...


> I don't understand why manufacturers simply don't offer a stock Android variant.

When the hardware is commoditized, manufacturers need to distinguish themselves by offering a unique software experience.

That's what they are all trying to do. Unfortunately, most of them aren't any good at it, and the UIs they come up with are usually worse than stock Android. But if they offered stock Android, they would have to compete on hardware alone, and they are just slapping commodity parts together like everyone else except Apple.


TouchWiz is better than stock android now. It has lots of additional useful features, especially in the areas of split screen and power saving.


As someone with an S7 , while many improvements are nice, they are cobbled by being buggy as hell.

If I just turn on power saving then turn it back off , I have to hard reset my phone because the resolution gets all messed up.


My android experience has been tarnished more by Google bugs than Samsung ones. Android 5 was a very buggy release, so much infrastructural change with little user benefit. IMHO Samsung should have skipped it entirely. I guess they bowed down to user and media pressure to always ship the latest android (although the media criticised them anyway for poor battery life, caused by Android 5).


I had a Moto G at the time with almost stock and Android 5 worked perfectly for me.


There were many many bugs, but this one had a significant effect on battery life: https://issuetracker.google.com/issues/37038331

For end users, it was a big regression from android 4, even if you personally found it "perfect".


Can you mention a few of those additional features?


Off the top of my head: Knox secure folder, better split screen options (app pairs), app suspension, power saving modes, file manager, better camera app, many more configuration options.


agreed 100%. it was not good before, but now? i prefer it.


I want a removable battery, not an exploding one. (Still on my Note 3, with its battery swapped out after the stock one started giving me bad battery life, a friend is still on his Note 4.) And I make use of the IR Blaster just enough that I'd be annoyed not to have it anymore. Samsung doesn't keep stuff people want, they just follow trends like everyone else. I am looking forward to seeing how the "flexible phones/tablets" end up though since I've wanted that concept for a while, even if I have to give up some features for it...


I have been looking for a replacement for my iphone 6s for a while. I find LG V30 is appealing in terms of both aesthetic and specs.


>Waiting on the reviews for how the Sony Xperia XZ1 compact fares, because I wouldn't mind a smaller phone.

Wow, this looks nice. I have wanted a small android phone like this for YEARS, before finally buying an iPhone SE a couple of months ago.


> People want SD card slots, they keep SD card slots.

Wasn't really a fan of moving it to the SIM tray. Too easy to lose your SIM card that way. Then again, they did make it tougher to remove the SD card, since you need the tool/paperclip handy (as opposed to the easy-access removable battery cover)


Honest question: for those of you who own a mobile device without a headphone jack, do you find it to be an encuberment?

Personally I still find it a bit hostile to not have the jack available, since often times I find myself charging the phone and using the headphones (when watching videos for example), so having an adapter dongle for such a frequent task seems counterintuitive to me. I believe that if a device is correctly designed, then it should serve most of its usecases without the aid of an extra adapter. These should be reserved for edge cases.

Moreover, I use headphones for a good part on my day and I am not sold on the idea of having a wireless device next to my brain for such an extended amount of time. Sure, we are already exposed to a good number of electromagnetic radiations, but this one I might want to pass. Not to mention the need to charge yet another device.


> for those of you who own a mobile device without a headphone jack, do you find it to be an encuberment?

Never notice it. I have 2 adapters, 1 in my car and 1 in my bag. I can't remember the last time I needed the one from my bag. The 1 in the car stays permanently attached to the car headphone jack.

Any portable headphones I use are bluetooth and were bluetooth before the iPhone removed the jack.

At home, I stream over BT/wifi to speakers/devices.

Sitting at my computer I stream music from my computer. If I were to stream to wired headphones from my phone all the time I would just buy another $7 adapter and leave it attached to the headphones.


My friend with an iPhone was unable to play his music through the speakers in my car because he forgot his adapter. We had to use a cup to amplify the speakers. Even if he had remembered his dongle, if he'd needed to charge his phone it'd need to be a splitter dongle. We'd had no problems playing music in the car for the past decade.


Get a bluetooth adapter for the car. Save yourself from ever having to plug it in (or even pull it out of your pocket) unless you need to charge it. I did this pre-donglegate and plugging my phone in has only been an inconvenience ever since.


When the solution to losing an adaptor is to buy another set of different adapters, something is wrong.


Yes, it's a huge inconvenience. I got the iPhone 7 knowing it didn't have a headphone jack. What I didn't realize was how awful the adapter would be (I have two, both have problems). I barely use headphones anymore, because the adapter just doesn't work reliably. Audio sometimes won't play, so I have to unplug / re-plug many times. And when I put it in my pocket, the thin wire seems to lose continuity when it bends. The sound crackles or cuts out with any pressure on the adapter. It was a terrible solution to... I don't even know what problem it solved.


I have a good number of bluetooth headphones so I never have to bother with wires if I don't want to, and yet I would still rather use wired headphones if I could.

I always tend to get weird Bluetooth problems. I'll turn on a pair of headphones and they will connect to both my laptop and my phone, with the signal from both being choppy. Or I'll turn on my headphones and connect them to my phone, but it will say something like "Connected (no sound)" and it won't play music through the headphones even though they're connected, until I either re-pair or keep pressing the button until it hopefully connects.

None of these are things I'd have to worry about with a headphone jack.


>for those of you who own a mobile device without a headphone jack, do you find it to be an encuberment?

Yes. Every single day. I bought an iPhone 7 when my 6 got stolen from me. Huge mistake. Have tried several bluetooth headsets, have never been satisfied with their quality (spotty connectivity just from ears to the pocket). I haven't tried the AirPods yet, but I'm not willing to drop $159 on yet another bluetooth product (and they look ridiculous).

The lightning dongle just introduces a new mechanical point of failure, and it's never there when you need it.

I won't be purchasing a product without a headphone jack again.


If you're OK with a headset as opposed to earbuds, I swear by SB220's (https://www.amazon.com/SB220-Bluetooth-Headphone-Streaming-H...). They're cheap and generic, but I like them for exactly that reason; use them as long as they last, sweat into them when I exercise, and keep a few extra pairs around for when one fails (usually they last about 6 months with regular, sweaty exercise).


you guys should try switching to a camera for your photography instead of a cellphone, then we can remove the camera from the phone too

the idea that because bluetooth headphones exist means the jack shouldnt exist is not fair -- there are plenty of reasons the jack is plenty useful to plenty enough people

the only excuse I can see to remove the jack is that when you sell a billion devices and the little jack costs a buck a device you just made yourself a billion dollars for nothing. oh and now you can sell dongles that cost $1 a pop to make for $10 a pop and you make yourself 10 billion


Exactly. I routinely switch my headset from my laptop to my phone and vice versa. Doing this with a jack is trivial. Doing this with a BlueTooth headset is very annoying and requires additional steps on both devices.


Bose BT headphones have two inputs. I usually have my phone and laptop connected. It has some priority sorting order which seems to work well.


Yes, Bose QC BT headphones are good. So now you need $300 headphones to solve a problem that didn't exist in the first place.

And 2 inputs are good but it's clearly a pain once you want to connect more devices, say a laptop, phone, ipad, TV...


Anecdotally, my experience with Bluetooth headphones is that they’re easier. I don’t have to do anything more complicated than you do — if I turn on my Bluetooth headphones in range of my computer, they connect. If I turn them on in range of my iPhone or iPad, they connect.

If any of them start playing sound, it comes out the headphones. No cable twiddling required.


And if they're currently connected to your phone and you want to connect to your computer?


> No cable twiddling required.

But charging is.


That's a bad analogy or whatever it is. If you remove the camera from the phone you cannot take photos. If you remove the 3.5mm jack you can still listen to audio and even still plug in wired headphones with an adapter.


you said it yourself -- i can still listen to audio "with an adapter". so this is like saying you can still take photos "with a camera".

the point being that to some, the wired output was useful and significant without the requirement of having additional adapters.

actually wasn't the idea of a "smart" phone that it could replace so many separate things we used to also have to carry around...?


> when you sell a billion devices and the little jack costs a buck a device you just made yourself a billion dollars for nothing

You're looking at it the wrong way. It's not the money you save; it's the money you make by selling adapters.

Also, there might be legitimate engineering reasons for getting rid of the 3.5mm jack. It is rather large by modern standards, maybe there are also water-proofing concerns. It's a trade-off I wouldn't make, but I'm neither Apple nor Google.


If space utilization is the issue then use a 2.5mm jack. Like Palm (before HP) did over 10 years ago. Waterproofing a jack is not any harder than doing it for USB.

Eliminating the jack entirely just means I'll be looking elsewhere for my next phone and I've bought a lot of Google phones.

Bluetooth dropouts and interference are a regular occurrence. And dongles are not necessary unless the phone makers is just trying to make more money by removing existing functionality from the base device.


Not even dongles, you drive X% increase in Bluetooth headphone sales of your Beats line and $150 AirPods.


I think there's value in having a camera there, even if it's shitty. It means you are always carrying around a device capable of image/video recording, which is tremendously useful.


Not having a headphone jack sucks. I use the iPhone 7 so I don't have an audio jack.

Instead of trying to remember to bring the lightning headphones or the lightning to audio adapter around, I've simply given up on using headphones. Which is terrible since I used to use my free Apple headphones a ton (on previous iPhones).

As much as people online rave about airpods, I don't need another $$ device in my life to charge and possibly misplace.


> Which is terrible since I used to use my free Apple headphones a ton (on previous iPhones).

Um, what? You can still use your free Apple headphones. You still have to remember to bring your headphones, no matter which ones they are.


(personal antidote) I had 3 pairs of headphones I primarily used pre-removal of the headphone jack. 2 bluetooth (working out and @work) and the third was a nice pair for at home listening. I have no problems with a dongle always connected to my nice pair, and have actually found myself using bluetooth more often regardless of Aux port availability.


It annoys my wife. She can't use the earbuds that came with her phone to listen to anything on her iPad, b/c it only came with a dongle going the other direction (for connecting standard headphones to the iPhone). When we're in the car she can't charge & use the aux cable at the same time. Both of these could possibly be solved with 3rd party dongles, but it's silly to have to pay $20-30 extra for that.


I prefer solving the charge+car audio issue with a Bluetooth receiver which can be found for $25 on Amazon, my wife loves being able to play music in the car without snaking an AUX cable from the dash to the center console.


Not a bad idea.


I know that the headphones which came in the box work through the lightning port on my iPad. I think firmware support was added to all devices in iOS 10, maybe check if she's updated.


Good call, i'll look into that.


On a iPhone 7+. nope, AirPods are so amazing and convenient I cannot go back to a wired set.


Miss it every day. The whole concept is beyond absurd.


I know they're a hassle to charge, but I bought bluetooth earphones for my morning run. Started using them on my morning commute in the subway.

Now I don't use wired headphones at all and the experience is just way, way better.

I still have my audiophile headphones (AudioTechnica M50x) but I only use them when I'm making music or seriously listening to music.

I've offlodaed all casual listening to the Bluetooth earphones. Couldn't be happier


I have an iPhone 7 with Airpods and it is the best combo. It is seriously awesome and I don't miss a headphone jack at all. It has literally never been an issue, even before I got my airpods.

I use my iphone + airpods every single day. I have never had bluetooth headphones before so that might slant my judgement a little bit.

Having said that I don't listen to music in my car and don't have a car charger either. I think most people who have issues with the lack of a jack are people who need to charge + play music in their car.

This is coming from someone who also scoffed at how "courageous" apple was for removing the jack. I thought it was stupid, but I "bought in" and got the iphone 7 and couldn't be happier.


Same here, the genius of AirPods is the charger case, it literally feels like I never actually charge them, I can’t recall a single time when both headphones and charge case were both flat.


As an iPhone 7+ user, the dongle life sucks. Seriously considering “upgrading” to an SE, especially if they do a refresh, just for the jack.


It would be nice if Apple kept the audio jack on the plus iPhone models. There should be space for it. But that would ruin Apple’s narrative.


it’s annoying! i’m constantly misplacing or forgetting adapters and not able to listen to music as a result. it’s not just headphones; it’s anytime you want to plug an aux cable in.

recently spent a week camping w/ friends unable to listen to any of my music because i had misplaced the stupid adapter...


Yea, it definitely continues to be an annoyance. I have some great bluetooth headphones, but if I forget them I can’t exactly pick up a cheap pair. The adapter works well but it’s easy to lose, especially if you want to use it in a car and also have to remember the lightning splitter so you can charge your phone at the same time.

That said, totally worth the improvements in water resistance. I use it in the shower all the time.

Mostly I just use headphones much less.


I have the iPhone 7. I've been using Bluetooth headphones since about 2014 (started with the JayBirds, but use the AirPods now). I use my headphones pretty much all day.

Not once have I noticed the absence of the headphone jack, nor have I felt the need for it.


It's super annoying when you're at a friends place and want to play some music through their speaker system, in a hotel room traveling, or just when i'm using both my laptop and iphone with the same pair of headphones having to swap adapters. Bluetooth speakers NEVER pair reliably. It's utterly horrible and I will never forgive Apple for it.


"Hostile" is a good way to put it. I am infrequently, but still regularly, annoyed by the missing jack. It's especially problematic when I need to debug an audio app or play guitar through an Apogee JAM. (There is no existing dongle that gives you both aux and data, so I have to use the speaker.) Makes me feel like I have a toy phone.


My phone has an headphone jack but I don't use it more than twice a year.

I use bluetooth buds on my phones. tbh I am not entirely sold on having a wireless device so close to my brain either. It is way more convenient than having a cable though.

At the office, I just use full size headphones (the kind you can't run with) plugged into my laptop.


When they make bluetooth earbuds that have same quality sound as Etymotic ER4's, I'll switch then... the likelihood of that happening is virtually nil.


Yep, I'm with you. I use Shure SE846 earbuds, and even though the dongle supposedly uses a DAC chip identical to the DAC in the iPhone 6, the audio is noticeably flatter and less enjoyable. Since the chip is the same, I figure it must be either the amplifier (haven't read whether that's the same) or the bit of super thin cable between the chip and the headphone port. It was a downgrade from the iPhone 6.


If you're looking for the best quality, aren't you better off using a USB DAC than using even the wired headphone jack with the phone's DAC that was chosen more for its size and power usage than quality?


I'm using an iPhone 7, it will be my last iPhone after 4 models. The lack of headphone jack sucks, the adapter breaks, none of the cheap adapters work - and the audio on good devices sucks.

The only real option is to carry a DAC around which is ridiculous.


iPhone 7+. It is annoying as I cannot plug my phone’s headphones to my laptop.

Was “forced” to switch to Bluetooth.


Yes. It sucks.


I owned iPhone 8+ for a week and didn't notice any differences than iPhone 6 with jack for the sound quality.

Only one bad thing, you can't be charging while listening to music.


I am considering switching from an iPhone 6 to an 8 Plus. Do you regret going for a bigger iPhone or not? I tried the 8 Plus in a store and it was much faster! But also much heavier, that's why I haven't made the jump yet.


Oh sorry, miss typed. I owned iPhone 6+ before but I used to own a smaller screen phone, iPhone 5s and Galaxy S also.

To me, I have no regret for a bigger screen since I'm not a frequent one-hand user. But, if I holding food in another hand, it's a problem. I can't touch another side of screen edge easily. (However, I'm a left-handed, and all designs put the button on right.)

iPhone 8+ screen is much better than iPhone 6+! It's worth to upgrade :) Better camera also.


I can't even use the smaller phones now, and will never go back.


ive got a 7+ and it’s amazing. if youre at all tempted, go for it.


> Only one bad thing, you can't be charging while listening to music.

There are cheap dongles available which allow you to do this.


I do have a head phone jack on everything (laptop, phone, desktop) - but I also have a SoundBlaster E3 usb soundcard/Bluetooth soundcard/mic:

https://us.creative.com/p/sound-blaster/sound-blaster-e3

Really happy with it. Never tried it with Apple hw, but guessing it would work. Great as a "wireless headphone enabler" while watching films late, at a screen a little further away than ~1m. Or even for gaming along with a wireless controller etc.

It's not the best day in the world (and Bluetooth doesn't have completely lossless audio in any profile afaik). But it's better than any portable equipment I'm aware of - including the early Sony mp3 players that were steel boxes/melee weapons with proper line out...


Nope. My iPhone 7 came with a pair of Lightning headphones which I leave in my backpack and an 3.5mm adapter which I leave plugged into my headphones at home. Basically if you don't use more than 2 pairs of headphones on a regular basis it's a non-issue. Worse case you might need to buy an additional ~ $10 adapter for a second set of third party headphones or for a spare.

Incidentally Apple's PR on dropping the headphone jack was terrible. They tried to play it up as almost a benefit when in reality it's a boring lateral move that is of little consequence for most people.


Initially I thought that dropping the jack was a "meh" idea, myself using only bluetooth headphones for more than 2 years now.

But then every single time I commute or go to a park I see a bunch of people with their cable headphones and how inconvenient it is: the cables are just messy, they cling to stuff.

Wireless headphones make more sense in terms of how easy it is to use them. Although, agreed - the PR on dropping the headphone jack was pretty bad.


Not a problem at all.

In the car the phone is plugged in with a wire anyway, that wire covers power and audio. Or I could use BT.

I’ve switched to BT headphones at work and they’re much more convenient than wired headphones. Before I bought hen I just had a single permenantly on the cord anyway.

When I travel I have my BT phones and the rest already have dongles in them. No need to remember anything.

Something else needed? $10 at many stores and I can get another dongle but I haven’t run into that.

It’s been a non-issue.


I don't, but then I rarely plugged in headphones before it was removed. The headphones that were included with my iPhone 7 are still in their packaging.

Most of the headphones I own are bluetooth. At home, I stream over BT or wifi and charge my BT headphones while my phone charges. While driving I also use BT, which is nice since I rarely have to pull my phone out and my jams are already playing as I get into the car.


It's not a problem at all.

I have a lot of nice-ish headphones and in ear monitors, and I thought it be more of an inconvenience, but it's not. The adapter works fine.

And now that wireless audio sounds good, I find that I use AirPods or Powerbeats almost exclusively while walking around. Turns out the only time I ever plug my nice headphones into the phone is when I'm sitting for long stretches.


All of my audio is bluetooth (car, AirPods, Bose noise cancelling headphones, LG Tone headset). I don't have them on as much as I used to, as I've become a bit more aware of the risk of damaging my hearing as I get older.


I have iPhone 7 for about a year, and it was never issue for me. I dont even carry that dongle. (I usually charge my phone at work where I dont need to use it)


Nope, but I already knew going in that I never charge and listen to headphones at the same time, and I only use the included headphones on my phone.


Every phone I've ever had has had a headphone jack and I haven't used it since Android Gingerbread.

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