Choosing a phone
I am growing tired of having a Google-powered spy box in my pocket, so I decided to go for Ubuntu Touch. As my budget is rather tight, I've landed on a choice between the Nexus 5 and the OnePlus One, leaning slightly towards the OnePlus - for a pretty similar price, I can have more RAM, more storage and a bigger screen. My question is simple: what are the bugs on each of those devices (if any)? I've read that the camera zoom doesn't work on the OnePlus, so I'm wondering what else is there.
I think it would be really useful to have status pages for each device.
@ozzelot Good choice. The Oneplus works well for me, except for camera zoom as you say. No other major issues for how I use it daily.
@ozzelot If you can wait or want to wait, you can have a look here for the PINEPHONE :
@domubpkm, I'm just as excited as you for the Pinephone but I believe the best time to purchase technology is always now. If you're waiting for something better that's not released yet, you will be waiting eternally.
I only have experience with the 32GB Nexus 5 and the 64GB OnePlus One, and only using them as wifi devices, not on a phone network yet.
Pros of the OpO over the N5:
- Larger screen
- More robust construction
- Faster processors
- Double the storage capacity
- Better battery life
Cons of the OpO:
- Stuck camera zoom
- I have not been able to get Anbox working reliably for any app yet.
- In Android, I get poor network reception on my carrier (AT&T, in the US) outside of major but low-density population centers. In small towns, countryside, and skyscraper areas (e.g., Manhatten), I have little to no data, and around skyscrapers voice also sometimes suffers. I presume I will have the same limitations with Ubuntu Touch if/when I activate my testing SIM, which will also use the AT&T network.
Pros of the N5 over the OpO:
- Smaller and lighter
- Better luck with Anbox
- Better mobile coverage in Android, which I expect to remain true under Ubuntu Touch.
- EDIT: Forgot to add that convergence is said to be working on the N5. I haven't tested it, but there is info here on the forum if you are interested.
Cons of the N5:
- Poor battery life without Anbox
- Ridiculously poor battery life with Anbox enabled
- Smaller screen
- Half the storage
- EDIT: Forgot to add that video playback on the N5 requires an additional app from the OpenStore.
The Ubuntu software keyboard works better for me than Android keyboards I've tried, so the smaller screen size of the N5 isn't the detriment it is in Android (though I still passionately hate software keyboards for stealing screen real estate). There is no doubt though that the OpO is easier to read and use.
The mobile network problems I've had with the OpO have prompted me to migrate from OpO to N5 as my primary Ubuntu Touch device - despite the poor battery life of the N5 - as I will soon be activating my testing SIM to evaluate moving off LineageOS/Microg as my primary DD.
Both N5 and OpO remain popular with developers so enjoy a lively resale market. Anyone buying one of them now could probably recoup most of the cost if they wanted to resell it when the PinePhone is mature. As the PinePhone software development is still far from complete, I wouldn't discourage anyone from picking up a OpO or N5 now with the plan to sell it and upgrade later. The PinePhone will cost about $150. In the US, a used Nexus 5 typically sells for $40-$80 today, and an OpO for $60-$120. I gather prices elsewhere are higher, but future resale likely will be too.
Both of them are also very easy to work on, such that many of the examples I own or have owned have been cobbled together from multiple broken phones bought for parts at very low prices (typically one with a broken screen and one with a bad motherboard), so I've put together N5s for as little as $25 and OpOs for as little as $40.
The only hitch to working on either one of them is that care must be exercised detaching the volume and power ribbon cables from the chassis of the OpO before removing the motherboard. They are easy to tear and are soldered to the motherboard (despite not qualifying as micro-soldering, replacing them does require more soldering skills than I have).
@ozzelot I moved from the N5 to 1+1 and it is solid with the camera zoom being a minimal issue for me. The N5 had a big flaw in a power switch that would decide to stop working from time to time. That becane the major reason I moved on to the 1+1.
@drennanelawar optimal choise!!!
FairPhone 2 it's a very good phone too, now you can find it a good price.
Thank all of you for your answers. My OnePlus is on the way now, and maybe I'll look into the PinePhone when it launches.
@ozzelot Sounds like a good plan:) will be looking at Pinephone myself when available.
I use a Nexus 5 on ubports as my "daily driver", but it has a broken case, no gps, screen marks and other oddities.New old stock N5 s are still available in the UK, on ebay for <£100 so I have bought a spare.
Clearly Fairphone is available but Pinephone looks good to me. If Pinephone were to be as successful as the Raspberry Pi then this community would be transformed in size.