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Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
JessieRN08
Member

We just switched to VZ from a long 12 year history with Sprint.   Sprint has been fine until we moved to our new house, at which time we could no longer get cell service for 2 square miles around our home. This has been going on for 7 months.  After numerous contacts with Sprint, renting and hooking up our own personal cell tower- Air Rave- and STILL not getting service, they finally let us out of our contracts.  It was not an easy fight by any means.  

 

Anyway, we switched to VZ right before Christmas because they have great coverage where we live.   So far, so good! :smileyhappy:


The downside has been the phone.  My husband and I both got the Droid X's.  He loves his, I hate mine.  In fact I'm on my 2nd one now in 3 weeks.  The first constantly hung up on people, merged calls, called random people while it was sitting unattended, all sorts of lovely things.  Then it stopped getting 3G coverage.  Took it into the store and after running diagnostics, they concluded it was defective so handed me over a brand spanking new one. 


The new one seemed ok but it has it's own issues, including still repeatedly hanging up on people, screen rotation not working properly and getting extremely hot to the touch.  


This brings me to the Fascinate.   It looks like a very sleek, impressive smart phone.  

 

Here's what I need out of my phone:

Good, clear reliable phone connection

A touch screen that actually locks while on a call and doesn't call/ hang up

Texting

Reliable email

Facebook

Internet- casual browsing

Apps for myself and my kids

A Good camera (I hate the X camera)

 

I've done my online research on CNet and other sites including this one and just seemed to get bogged down in all the techno rubbish.  Yes I get that it doesn't have Froyo and that's a bad subject.   I also see that it has Bing, not Google and that the GPS is lacking.   I tried using my GPS on the X the other day and wound up 10 miles from where I was supposed to be so really, I'm not impressed with the X's one either.  I rarely use it anyway.  


So, for my basic needs, is the Fascinate a good choice?  If not, what else would you suggest?  


Thank you! 

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
SoFresco
Member

I would definitely recommend it to you. Awesome phone for the average user, and even more advanced user. I have it and it does everything you listed very well!

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
JessieRN08
Member

Thanks!

Do you have problems with the touchscreen not locking when you are on calls?  Even though the X bugs me for so many reasons, that's definitely the top issue.  

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
10sEn
Novice

So far, my Samsung Fascinate has been great, and as you might be able to tell, an update was issued to the phone today which has improved the GPS location (which you haven't stated as something that you need from your phone) and some other issues that some people had been experiencing.

 

It does have everything that you want out of your phone.  Of course, the downloadable apps would work on any Android device, and there are plenty of apps out there for you and your kids.

 

But i'll address some of the concerns that I would have based on your needs, that I've encountered.

 

Camera:

1. There is no camera button on the phone, only a camera icon.  This isn't really a deal breaker for me, but I know that it may be for some.

2. While the photos come out great, people have white eye (as opposed to red eye) in some of the photos taken in dimly lit rooms.  I wonder if it's because the flash is so bright or because it uses a white light while focusing.  I haven't really tested this out, but it isn't a huge deal for me because I don't use the camera that often.

 

Facebook:

I have talked with someone who uses Facebook on the Droid2, and that person hates using Facebook on his phone.  My guess is that they would be fairly similar while using the Facebook app, but when he describes it, it sounds different.  But in both cases, you won't be able to click Like on comments (that is, unless you sign in through your web browser and access the full site).  You also won't be able to access any of your Facebook apps without logging in to the full site through your browser.

 

Battery Life:

The phone's battery life is a little bit of a concern as it only seems to last about a day for me, unless I'm on it constantly, then it drains power a lot faster.  Angry Birds has been the only game that has drained the battery out of this phone very quickly, and the ThinkFree Office suite has also drained power when I've used it for working on documents.

 

Typing:

This hasn't been an issue as I've been able to learn the typing system on this phone, which is fun to use.  But the Fascinate does not have a physical keyboard.  But there is a feature on this phone called Swype which allows you to type faster than you could on a virtual keyboard through the sliding of your finger across the screen to type words.  Typing has not been an issue for me, but typing will be extremely slow on this phone unless you figure out how to use Swype.


Email:

Depending on what you plan to do with emails, you may experience some issues.  This phone is set so that Gmail is the only email app that is really worth using if you plan to attach non-photos.  Even with that, you will need to download a file manager app to accomplish this.  If you email groups that you've created, you will need to download another app for that, as well.  But using Gmail and various free apps, you can customize your email experience so that you can do many different things.

 

If you think you can live with what I've listed above, then you shouldn't have any problems with this phone, aside from getting a bad phone.  But hopefully, I've given you some things to think about and have given you a somewhat realistic preview of what you can expect from the Fascinate.

 

Although I suspect you won't be able to wait this long given that you started your plan in December, but Verizon is getting the iPhone in February (Feb. 10th to be exact).  While people are enamored by the iPhone, I've noticed that I can do almost everything that iPhone users can with the exception of using a front-facing camera for video chats (as the Fascinate does not have front-facing cameras).  However, the Fascinate does have a better display and a faster processor for better handling of graphics and other things, so I think it evens out.  Plus, once the OS upgrade arrives, the Fascinate will be able to handle Flash content on websites whereas the iPhone won't be able to.

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
cmckay
Member

I am sorry to contradict the other posts here, but I promise you will regret it if you purchase a Fascinate. Just read through the forums here about all the problems people are having with the phone. Yes, their are a couple people who have not had issues, but the vast majority of people who use this phone do. Here are the issues I have personally experienced.

 

Frequent dropped calls and poor signal, despite other phones working flawlessly and having full bars in the same area

 

GPS issues, which were fixed for a few people with the latest patch, but most of us still have problems getting a lock.

 

Poor software integration due to Verizon's use of Bing and VZnavigator. Unless you root your phone, there is no other option than to use Bing for searches, and personally I find Bing's results to be crap.

 

No support. Samsung flat out refuses to release an update to 2.2, which adds features that a lot of people have been waiting for, such as Flash. Read the recent reports how T-Mobile employees have stated that Samsung refuses to allow them to rollout 2.2 for the Vibrant, so that it increases the value of their new phone they are pushing. And this is after they promised an update in September, then October, and then December. You need to ask yourself if this is a company you really want to spend your money with.

 

I have been very happy with Verizon, but my experience with the Fascinate not only has me convinced to never purchase another of their products, I am seriously considering dropping Verizon as well.

 

 

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
10sEn
Novice

You have to remember where you are right now.  This is a community resource site for people who are having issues with their phones when trying to do this or that.  If you look at the customer ratings for this phone (and read the customer reviews), despite the few users who complain incessently about the Fascinate not being able to do this or that, the customer rating on this is still very high.  Plus, the majority of the complaints should have been addressed with the latest update which was issued earlier today.

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
Yaeckman
Member

For everything that you described the Fascinate would be an excellent phone for you.  I have had my Fascinate since the first day it came out and with the exception of the GPS issue (which was just fixed with a maintenance update.. YAAAY), this has been the best phone I have ever had.  

 

Thin, lightweight, great screen (The best in the industry), and great touch sensors.  You can't go wrong with the Fascinate.

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
SoFresco
Member

I haven't had any problems with this, it locks up for me on phone calls, unless I move it from my face of course then it lights back up. and don't listen to all the naggers, most of them have too much time on there hands haha. 

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
MiMeQu21
Member

I would agree with some of the other posts about what you read on this site.  This site is for people who are experiencing problems with their phones (go to the Droid X site and you will see something similar).  It also gives people a chance to vent (I have as well).  I consider myself an average user for a cell phone.  In reality, I do not need a smartphone.  I was fine with just a plain old cell phone.  However, I like electronic gadgets, so my first smartphone purchase was the Fascinate.  I prefer to talk on a cell phone and only text when needed.  I don't use Facebook or anything like that.  With that said, like with any phone, there are good and bad points to the phone.

 

For me, I have not had many problems with the phone.  The Froyo issue does not bother me at this time.  I do agree that Samsung or Verizon (whichever one it is) should be doing a better job of communicating with its customers over this issue since it is so contentious.  The Bing issue does not bother me either.  I knew about it before I bought the phone.  I do prefer Google, so all I did was put a Google shortcut on my phone and I access the internet that way.  I don't use the Bing search box. 

 

I have not had dropped call issues or bad reception.  When you make calls, you can hit your power button to put the phone in standby mode if you don't want to risk hitting buttons on the phone while you are talking.  The first time I used the phone and activated the speakerphone, I was fumbling around with the phone and I disconnected the call.  After that, when I use speakerphone or bluetooth, I just hit the standby button and you don't have to worry about hitting buttons.  When you are on the regular phone, the phone will shut off the screen so you don't hit any buttons.  When you pull the phone away from your ear, the screen will come back on.

 

I like how the app screen is.  It is more like an iPhone, where you go to different screens to see your apps instead of one long list that you scroll through.  The Android Market is pretty good.

 

It also has a task manager button that you can use to shut off programs that are running in the background to save battery life.  There is also a program where you can look at what is draining your battery the most so you can either make changes to your phone or shut something off.

 

As for negatives, for me, they are minor.  When you are in a program or an app, alot of times you need to hit the menu button on your phone (the one on the far left) to do anything.  Alot of things are run through this menu button.

 

I would have liked a camera button, but that is minor.  You can hit the camera icon on your screen and activate it that way.

 

Probably the biggest issue I had when I first got the phone was that there was not a missed call/voicemail notification alert for the phone.  So, if you did not have your phone with you, you would need to constantly check it to see if you had a missed call (an icon shows up on the screen).  I liked on my old phone having a ringtone go off at set intervals to let me know I missed a call or had a voicemail or text message.  This is especially helpful at work since I don't carry my phone with me everywhere at work.  However, I downloaded a free app called "Missed Call" and that took care of that.

 

As for battery life, since I don't use my phone constantly, I can go several days without having to charge the phone.  On days when I have used the phone alot, I can still get through the day and then I just charge it overnight.

 

Overall, I am happy with the phone.  I am concerned that Samsung will not issue updates and support for the phone as it develops new ones.  If that happens, I will get a new phone from a differerent maker.  But until that happens, if it does, I am satisfied with the phone. 

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Re: Fascinate- Good or Bad for the average user?
NuDroidUsrr
Sr. Member

I love mine. I was using an Apple iPod Touch to do alot of things, and I have moved everything to my Fascinate, and now do all the things I need to do through that. The device itself is the right size for me, it has a great screen (It has the gorilla glass on it), and it just keeps track of everything for me. I love using Google Maps and Navigation through it, it grabs all my email, etc. Could it do more? Yes. I am patiently waiting for 2.2 to be able to view flash on internet sites. The GPS issues I was having seem to be solved with the DL09 update we just received. Are there issues with Samsung and / or Verizon with releasing their updates? Yes. Are there issues with Verizon people not knowing what's going on? Yes. I, however, do not find that a reason to stop using Verizon, as others have mentioned. I was told that on an AT&T android device, they restrict you from even being able to add an app outside of the Android Marketplace... How bad is that...

 

  My wife is almost ready to upgrade, and she is going for the Continuum, which is a little bit smaller, but is basically the same phone. We have been with Verizon for 15 years or so, and I have been happy for the most part.

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