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Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Journeyman

Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

I am currently an Instinct (bleh!!) user and am looking at the Palm Pre or HTC Hero as an upgrade. I'm reading y'alls posts here on the forum and would like opinions. Pros for the Hero? Cons? Should I wait for the next new offerings (Nexus One???) Something new from Sprint (as hinted at by an Admin!). Thoughts? Suggestions? Thanks!

11 REPLIES 11
Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Should you "upgrade"?

I would not! And here's why ...

The Sprint version of the HTC Hero has a serious flaw that is just now being realized by many of its users. There is severe "ring lag."

Here's what I'm talking about:

When your phone rings, for the first time, it is frequently the 4th or 5th ring from the caller's perspective.

When somebody calls you, they hear, "ring ... ring ... ring ... ring ..." (at their end) before your phone ever rings. Of course, you will be completely unaware of this. What you will notice, however, is how the number of "missed calls" will inexplicably increase when using the HTC Hero.

Check around the internet in the many forums that discuss the HTC Hero. It's a problem. It's a real problem.

If you get the HTC Hero, you can verify what I'm telling you for yourself. Call yourself from your house phone with the Hero in your pocket. Count the number of rings that you hear on your house phone before you are aware that you are getting a phone call. If you're lucky it will be 3 rings. It will probably be 4 rings. Maybe worse. Plus, you have to factor in your response time. You will be just a ring or two away from that call going straight to voicemail.

Sprint blames HTC. HTC blames Sprint. The fact of the matter is that it's the HTC Hero that is the problem.

So why do some HTC Hero users rave about the phone if it has this flaw? Well, for one thing, the phone is relatively new and not everybody has discovered this problem as of yet. Secondly, the problem is not readily obvious unless you are the type of person who gets a lot of incoming voice calls. Nowadays, texting seems to be king. It's a great texting device, for sure.

This is a serious bug and if HTC does not fix it with a firmware fix - the phone is basically a very expensive PAGER. Remember how pagers worked? Somebody would call a number. Your pager would beep and let you know that somebody called. You could see the number of the person who called. Then you'd have to call them back.

That's how the HTC Hero works! Somebody calls you. Ring ... ring ... ring ... ring ... ring (they either hangup at this point or wait a couple more rings for voicemail to kick in.) Moments later, your phone beeps at you and you notice you have voicemail. You check it out and found out somebody just called you. You call them back and say, "Hey, did you just call me?" That's how a pager works!

If you're unaware of this problem, you'll think nothing of the above scenario. You'll just shrug your shoulders and think you maybe just didn't hear your phone ringing because it was too noisy or something. But you will notice that this scenario will play itself out more and more frequently than you ever experienced on any other phone you owned.

If you're an HTC Hero owner and you're reading this thread -and- you have never heard of this problem, you should test it for yourself. Call yourself on your house phone and count the number of rings before you actually HEAR your Hero ring. My guess is that your Hero will NEVER make so much as a peep until after 2 rings. NEVER! You'll be lucky if you get 3 rings in before it responds. Most of you will hear 4 rings. By the way, the response is particularly slow if your phone is in "sleep" mode. Check it out.

Message was edited by: memphis9489

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Would I do it all over again? NO! 1.5 and sluggish, enough said.

There is nothing new coming from Sprint that would even be comparable to the Nexus One. I would Jump at the Nexus One.

You can always get the Hero and if you don't like it then return it.

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

ok i'm not really biased in this at all considering i just bought a Nexus One but I believe EVERY phone i have had for the past couple years does SOME sort of dialer lag that you talk about. Now granted, I think the Hero is a little worse but shouldn't be a deal breaker for someone who really wants to stay with Sprint and wants a smartphone. Hero is and will remain for the short future the best smartphone Sprint has to offer. I have also owned the Pre, I really really did not like the feel as well as the looks of the pre so personally i would lean towards the hero especially with all the apps it has to offer. Now, if you want the best ANDROID phone you will have to go to T-mobile and get the Nexus one. lol.

Wizard

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

It all depends on what you are looking for. I did not have any issue with mine but I wanted TP2

I just returned mine two days ago and exchanged it for Touch Pro 2 and I miss it because I got used to it in the past 3 weeks.

I never used the Instinct but coming from WinMo, I can say yes go for it.

The good news is you will be able to upgrade to Android 2.1 once Sprint makes it available.

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

I just tested the Hero ring issue and there does seem to be some lag at times.  I used my desk phone here at work and my Blackberry Storm for testing.

Call #1: Land line to my Blackberry Storm = 2 rings

Call #2: Land line to my Hero = 2 rings

Call #3: Land line to my Hero = 2 rings

Call #4: Storm calling the Hero = 4 rings

Call #5: Storm calling the Hero = 2 rings

Call #6: Storm calling the Hero = 2 rings

Call #7: Storm calling the Hero = 2 rings

Call #8: Hero calling my Storm = 2 rings

All calls to the Hero were when the Hero was sleeping.

For me this lag issue is a non issue.  I'm not saying the problem doesn't exist, just doesn't seem to be a consistant problem for me.

As far as the Hero being slow I tend to disagree.  It's quite a bit zippier than my Storm.  Could it be faster?  Sure!  But it's fast enough for me.

The Hero can get bogged down with apps running in the background though, so I recommend Advanced Task Killer which will stop selected apps and will bring back the zip.  Just yesterday my wifes Hero was very laggy and unresponsive.  I downloaded and installed Advanced Task Killer.  After stopping four games, the music player, the market and several other apps it was back to being responsive.

Overall I'm very happy with the Hero.  It's not perfect.  Could it use a faster processor? Sure!  Do I think HTC should have designed the phone with more memory? Of course!  With memory being as cheap as it is this should be a non-issue.  I took all of this into account prior to my purchase, read a ton of reviews, browsed the Sprint forum, etc and decided this was the smart phone for me.  My wife loves it, and so do I.

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Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

I upgraded to the Hero from the Instinct and it is by far a superior phone. Yes, it has certain issues -  battery life for one - but it is a great all-around smartphone that pretty much does what it is advertised to do. The Android Marketplace has an ever-growing number of useful apps. No phone is perfect. Even the all-mighty iPhone has its minuses (such as no multitasking). Buy it and try it out. It's really the only way you can judge the phone properly.

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

I'd wait to see what Sprint and a phone vendro has up its sleeve this thursday at CES.

I think they'll have a more advanced phone this month than the Hero.

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Thanks for the opinions. They do help! I have found ringer lag on my Instinct a times, so it's an issue I'm familiar with, but not comfortable with. Next question... Hero vs. Pre? Pros & Cons?

Thanks!

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Those are actually pretty good ring results for a Hero. But, like I said, you'll never do better than two rings. It can only be worse, but never better. I notice that you got a 4-ring result. That is dangerously close to going to voicemail. In each of your tests, did you allow your phone to go into sleep mode? Did you notice that the screen indicates an incoming call but there is nearly a 2-second delay before the ringtone actually begins? You have to factor that into the equation because we are seldom staring at our phone when we get an incoming call. We don't know we have a call until we hear it.

With regards to a Task Killer. I downloaded a Task Killer app because I suspected I had things running in the background using up CPU resources. The particular Task Killer I installed showed all the CPU time being used by anything that was running. In every case, it never indicated that anything was running in the background.

The Hero is a rather disconcerting device in that there is frequently no clear way to cleanly closeout whatever you're doing. Take browsing the internet, for instance. When you are done and want to leave the browser - what do you do? Hit the Home key? That leaves you with the feeling that your browser is still running. I went to the Task Killer, and that was not the case. However, when I fired up the browser again, the last webpage I was on instantly pops up, suggesting that it was still running.

They need to have a clean way of closing out any task you are currently doing. As it is - it's not clear what you do when you're done using an app unless that particular app happens to have a Quit option - which many do not.

I am now consistently getting 2-rings, which is acceptable, but mostly because I went into the guts of my device and changed the "slot cycle index" from 2 to 0. That controls how often your phone interogates the tower. I have not noticed any adverse effects with battery life as a result.

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

I did this, and now I get my ring at the end of the 2nd ring, or even sometimes at 1.5 rings. This is without changing to slot cycle index.

It used to ring on 2.5 rings or later.

http://bit.ly/8aRGKZ

Journeyman

Re: Should I upgrade to the HTC Hero?

Interesting. It appears that changing the slot index to 1 or 0 is only temporary. Each time I update my PRL or update my profile, the slot index reverts back to 2. I'm wondering if changing it to 0 or 1 even does anything. On the side of each category is an edit icon.  The icon next to the slot index consists of only 3 dots, which probably suggests that you can't change it anyway, even after you press OK.

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