1. cuetip's Avatar
    I am looking at getting a new phone. My 9700 fell out of a helicopter yesterday as I was leaning out looking for my field site from last year and sadly it did not survive. I grabbed a cheap pre-paid phone for now but I definitely need a smartphone back.

    Looking at all the new Android phones and even the iPhone, at what point do phone processor specs and ram really become irrelevant? Let's face it, you can pack a 1080p screen on a phone, but really after a certain pixel density they human eye can't really see the difference. I can see the race for higher graphical performance on tablets where people might be using them as legitimate gaming devices but phones are just too small to appreciate really high-end games. Even 4.3" screen phones. It looks to me like the Droid phones out there seem to be losing perspective on the whole phone concept. Apple does have some impressive specs, but they don't seem to focus on them as much. Don't get me wrong, I don't really like the iPhone but I think it is a good size for a phone and even the OS7 Blackberry phones look more than capable of running any application I would ever need on a phone.

    It doesn't take a quad-core processor to play simple games or open PDF files. It doesn't take 1gb of ram to play video or music and it certainly doesn't take any of that to run social apps and messaging software. I want a phone that runs applications where I can read the news, play easy games, send emails, watch video clips and if absolutely necessary browse the web. To me, the BBOS7 devices do all that and from what I can tell they do it pretty smoothly without dual core and quad core processors. I say we stop the specs race at this computing power level and focus on giving me a phone that will last 3 days of normal use. Put the R&D dollars into power efficiency rather than faster more useless processors.

    End rant. Now I still have to find that damn site.
    daveycrocket and bluetroll like this.
    04-03-12 08:15 AM
  2. _StephenBB81's Avatar
    The Spec Race becomes a moot point depending on your needs of a device, just like on PC's

    an Intel i3 will be more than enough for the vast majority of PC users, wont stop development of the i7 and beyond..

    When thinking about what you want out of the phone and when specs don't matter make a list of your needs, and wants.

    How do you use your phone?
    if you are primarily an emailer, phoner txter, chances are even a low end Android could meet your needs,
    do you like a keyboard, or a touchscreen?
    How is your data usage? and what does your plan allow?

    Bring those questions out, and you'll find what specs you really need,
    daveycrocket likes this.
    04-03-12 08:23 AM
  3. youknwwho's Avatar
    Wow, your 9700 fell out of a helicopter ? If a phone has to go, that's one heck of a way to do it.
    And I would love to have a 5000Mah battery with the same size as the JM-1 battery
    04-03-12 08:24 AM
  4. robluck82's Avatar
    deRuset is correct, the specs race is a farce, to me. just like with PC's, eventually AMD and Intel stopped pushing for the highest clock speed, and FINALLY started determining how to get multi cores to work together, be efficient, stable, and economical. then, it all comes down to the platform and how it communicates with all the different parts. its all quite interesting, really - fascinating, even - but this crap about "well my sgs2 has a 1.5ghz dual core, yours is only 1.2ghz" is getting old. its no longer about "mine is bigger than yours" but about "mine does everything i need it to do quickly and efficiently." yes, still talking about phones here.

    we don't need a 5000mah battery (although think of it! LOL) as long as all the other parts are lined up correctly. still, i think RIM should think about pushing the envelope, be it in form or internal design, to get us to 3000mah.
    daveycrocket likes this.
    04-03-12 08:41 AM
  5. DenverRalphy's Avatar
    I view the purchase of a smartphone the same way I view purchasing computers. Decide for yourself how much you can reasonably afford, and pack as many features/specs as you can into that price range. The idea being that you want a device that is as future proof as possible.

    Sure it doesn't take 1gb for simple apps. But with 1gb you can have several of those simple apps all running at the same time without degrading performance. Additionally, as higher specs become the norm, bigger and better apps will be developed that can capitalize upon it (ie.. better office suites, CAD software, etc), as well future technologies which haven't been imagined yet are made more possible. 1080p on a smartphone really is nice, especially when coupled with the ability to plug your device into a monitor or projector for presentations etc. Sure your eye may not appreciate the full benefit, but it's nice to be able to view what you recorded when you shoot video in 1080p.

    Depends on your needs really. But quite often your needs change. And if you have a device that does more than what you currently need it for, you'll probably find yourself gravitating to using your device for more tasks than you had previously.

    So really, once you determine how much you reasonably wish to spend, there's no downside to packing in as much as you can.
    04-03-12 08:42 AM
  6. ynomrah's Avatar
    Just because you don't use something, doesn't mean it shouldn't be available.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I717 using Tapatalk
    04-03-12 09:01 AM
  7. PineappleUnderTheSea's Avatar
    When thinking about what you want out of the phone and when specs don't matter make a list of your needs, and wants.

    That's good advice right there.

    What I want in a phone, beyond mail and texting, is a fast internet experience, smooth scrolling, and playing the occasional game without lag or choppiness. I can tell you that my Torch 9800 is at the bottom end of what the phone needs in terms of specs, because I have issues with all my "wants" mentioned above in terms of lag and slowness.

    So there is something to be said about better specs depending what you want to do with the phone. But Android is seemingly going overboard, but that's what happens when manufacturers get a "free" OS, they need to push something to differentiate themselves.

    Having played with my wife's iPhone 4S, those kind of specs seem to be pretty much good enough for what I would want. So, translating that into a Blackberry, I think the new OS7 devices have similar specs, so the experience of say, a Bold 9900, would likely satisfy my wants (well, except maybe for the lack of some apps and front camera, but okay). You see my line of reasoning here?
    04-03-12 09:03 AM
  8. BlackBerry Guy's Avatar
    Equally important as specs is the software that runs on device. The BB7 devices run a lot better due to the better hardware, but it's still prone to little hiccups like the spinning clock that'll literally make your device unusable for a short period of time. With a 1.2 ghz processor, the phone shouldn't be brought to a halt just cause you're downloading an app. Apple gets away with not having the highest spec'ed devices because they've programmed iOS to work efficiently with the hardware (easier to do cause they only release one phone a year). I haven't had enough experience with Android or Windows Phone to comment on them.

    It's a lot like tuning a car. You can throw a bunch of bolt on parts and it'll go faster, but it won't be optimal until you actually get down and dirty and spend time making adjustments to the little things like camber, the ecu etc. Of course, if you start with a lemon, it doesn't matter what you do, it'll always be a lemon...tuning can only improve a car that has a solid foundation to build on.
    04-03-12 09:24 AM
  9. cuetip's Avatar
    My issue is that with all this focus on faster and bigger (and honestly the hardware is WAY ahead of the software at this point) nobody is focusing on developing a hardware package that maintains the status quo in raw performance while increasing power efficiency. In the PC race there is now a focus on battery life and power efficiency rather than faster.

    Your advice that says figure out your needs then pick what you can afford is bogus. I can afford damn near anything. My problem is that what I want (and what many of my colleagues want, better battery life) is not available. My 9700 was too slow for some things and the screen's resolution was lower than I would like but it has to be said that you don't need a 1080p screen to watch videos recorded in 1080p. My laptop screen is only 1600x900 but I watch full HD videos all the time, just automatically scaled down. Any phone is able to do that at this point. My Playbook easily pushes 1080p video to my TV.

    There may be some applications that require dual-core power, but none that require quad-core. The issue is that the bleeding edge of the phone technology race is a small fraction of the smartphone user-base as a whole. People will not be using their phones for CAD work any time soon. The screen is tiny and if you're going to be using a projector you might as well use a proper workstation.

    In the end, not all of us are tied to an easy power source all day or even every day. I'm not asking for performance development to come to a halt, I'm just saying that maybe we can take the focus off packing those extra few transistors onto a chip and instead take a month to increase battery life by 15% using the same size battery and screen.
    04-03-12 09:37 AM
  10. stackberry369's Avatar
    I hope that 9700 was dead before hitting the ground!!!!the pain must've been horrible.
    04-03-12 09:42 AM
  11. JamesDax3's Avatar
    @ cuetip

    Take a close look at Windows Phone 7.5. I see you are on Telus and the Nokia Lumia 800 is a damn fine phone. Go in and give it a look see.
    04-03-12 09:45 AM
  12. _StephenBB81's Avatar
    My issue is that with all this focus on faster and bigger (and honestly the hardware is WAY ahead of the software at this point) nobody is focusing on developing a hardware package that maintains the status quo in raw performance while increasing power efficiency. In the PC race there is now a focus on battery life and power efficiency rather than faster.

    Your advice that says figure out your needs then pick what you can afford is bogus. I can afford damn near anything. My problem is that what I want (and what many of my colleagues want, better battery life) is not available. My 9700 was too slow for some things and the screen's resolution was lower than I would like but it has to be said that you don't need a 1080p screen to watch videos recorded in 1080p. My laptop screen is only 1600x900 but I watch full HD videos all the time, just automatically scaled down. Any phone is able to do that at this point. My Playbook easily pushes 1080p video to my TV.

    There may be some applications that require dual-core power, but none that require quad-core. The issue is that the bleeding edge of the phone technology race is a small fraction of the smartphone user-base as a whole. People will not be using their phones for CAD work any time soon. The screen is tiny and if you're going to be using a projector you might as well use a proper workstation.

    In the end, not all of us are tied to an easy power source all day or even every day. I'm not asking for performance development to come to a halt, I'm just saying that maybe we can take the focus off packing those extra few transistors onto a chip and instead take a month to increase battery life by 15% using the same size battery and screen.
    I fully agree I would give up 2mm of thickness on my 9900 to take a 1700mAh battery, as long as I got to keep the sharp look, and would love for MORE work to be done on Battery saving modes, manually managing my battery life sucks.


    I REALLY Hope that Mike L is still obsessive about Radio's and Battery's in his innovation position at RIM, and that those focuses are not lost moving forward.

    Right now for me, a swappable battery is a NEED, more than a Want, and I think for you, that is something to consider as the newer phones don't match the 9700 for battery life, especially since you start doing more and more with them
    04-03-12 09:57 AM
  13. lewis71980's Avatar
    When all the phones last a week on battery

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9900 using Tapatalk
    04-03-12 10:20 AM
  14. Joltcola1234's Avatar
    Battery life is definitely a major concern of mine, and I agree with many of the points brought up here. I think at this point with all the innovations and cutting edge technologies we are seeing from today's mobile devices, battery life needs to be a higher priority.

    I agree with the OP that at this point efficiency concerns need to be addressed before continuing to make phones "bigger and faster". To answer cuetip's question about when ram and processing speed become irrelevant, I don't think it ever truly becomes irrelevant because at some point that processing power and extra ram will be needed. But at the same time, power and efficiency need to be balanced for a mobile phone to be top tier and I think the efficiency of phones is falling behind the power right now.
    04-03-12 12:56 PM
  15. dwaynewilliams#WN's Avatar
    The specs race is already somewhat a moot point for me. My 8330 does just fine for what I need my smartphone for. I'm not even in the habit of downloading or even looking for apps or playing games on my phone. My 8330 could probably last me for a few more years.
    04-03-12 01:21 PM
  16. _StephenBB81's Avatar
    The specs race is already somewhat a moot point for me. My 8330 does just fine for what I need my smartphone for. I'm not even in the habit of downloading or even looking for apps or playing games on my phone. My 8330 could probably last me for a few more years.
    Thats only because the 8330 is AWESOME,

    I was more productive on the 8330 than I was on the 9300 both given the same tasks
    04-03-12 01:27 PM
  17. FSeverino's Avatar
    to make the answer as relevant as possible...

    The spec race becomes irrelevant as soon as a company like apple exists. They can release anything they want and people will buy it. The cameras on the iPad2 were a JOKE but people ate it up like it was gold. Once a company like this exists people dont really care what else is open, they just want the popular device regardless of specs.

    (this is not bashing apple... this is bashing the average consumer)
    04-03-12 01:58 PM
  18. sleepngbear's Avatar
    I think the spec sheet is already moot. Hardware specs are not what is burying BlackBerry, nor are they what is going to save it.
    04-03-12 04:42 PM
  19. lnichols's Avatar
    I only see a spec race with Android OEM's because it is the only way to differentiate themselves from each other because they all use the same os. IPhones have never had better specs than the best Android phones, but it hasn't hurt sales. I think the big thing when comparing different platforms is the user experience. iOS probably has the most polished user experience on the market right now. Blackberry does not on BBOS. Spinning clocks (reduced now with Bold 99xx), reboot after app installs, etc when compared to the competition just make the platform seem dated and not polished. Playbook OS and BB10 will get rid of these issues. Playbook's hardware is almost a year old and the user experience has gotten better with more features (still have work to do on PIM and mail loadups though). In the end if a device with a dual core processor provides a better user experience than a device with a quad core processor, then is anyone other than a spec /geek going to care?
    04-03-12 05:40 PM
  20. Vindicators's Avatar
    to make the answer as relevant as possible...

    The spec race becomes irrelevant as soon as a company like apple exists. They can release anything they want and people will buy it. The cameras on the iPad2 were a JOKE but people ate it up like it was gold. Once a company like this exists people dont really care what else is open, they just want the popular device regardless of specs.

    (this is not bashing apple... this is bashing the average consumer)
    Because camera in a tablet computer is the most important thing? And things like software and battery life are the last thing people consider when purchase a tablet.

    You know what even funnier? The iPad 2 have the most powerful SoC on tablet market for almost a year.

    So its seems like average customers are pretty well informed huh?
    04-03-12 06:26 PM
  21. dwaynewilliams#WN's Avatar
    Thats only because the 8330 is AWESOME,

    I was more productive on the 8330 than I was on the 9300 both given the same tasks
    The 8330 is awesome. Seems kind of weird that I bought my first one in 08. Here I am almost four years later and I am using it again. I have been through countless phones and this one seems to still be relevant to me. Outside of the browser being somewhat slow, it does everything else I need just fine. The camera I have found is actually decent. I haven't had any issues with it at all. Love the keyboard too.
    04-03-12 07:48 PM
  22. _StephenBB81's Avatar
    The 8330 is awesome. Seems kind of weird that I bought my first one in 08. Here I am almost four years later and I am using it again. I have been through countless phones and this one seems to still be relevant to me. Outside of the browser being somewhat slow, it does everything else I need just fine. The camera I have found is actually decent. I ahvent had any issues with it at all. Loce the keyboard too.


    But don't you know, it is obsolete and clearly has zero value, why it only has a 312Mhz CPU, and 92MB of application storage, how can anyone bare to use it

    I think the Curve 8330 is still one of the best devices ever built, it was the perfect blend of form and function.
    04-03-12 07:52 PM
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