I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

Rebel 3.2
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I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

[ Edited ]

I initially really liked the Robin, despite its annoyances (mediocre camera, unsatisfactory launcher, etc). It was a big jump up from my HTC One M8 in many areas (except dat camera), particularly in RAM and fingerprint sensor. I was happy enough for a few months. 

 

Then things started to happen that caused me dismay. Recording audio at concerts was a garbled mess. Taking photos at night was a joke. The front facing camera showed graininess I hadn't witnessed since my first cameraphone in the early 2000s. But what I found most unforgiveable was the battery. I would leave work with my phone fully charged at 3:30pm. By the time I got off my train at 5pm, after scrolling through Facebook and newsfeeds, maybe play the occasional games that are admittedly battery draining (Toy Blast has been my go-to as of late), the battery on a good day would be down to 60%. In the later days, I could even drop it down below 50%. In the space of an hour and a half. 

 

That was the final straw. I've moved on to the Pixel. Yes, I paid 3-4X as much for it. But it's SO much better. In the two days I've had it, here's where it excels:

 

- Camera. Despite both having 12MB (close enough), the Pixel's pictures are clearly better, especially in low light. 

- Display. AMOLED > IPS. 'Nuff said.

- RAM. The more the better. 3GB beat the HTC One's 2. The Pixel's 4GB beats the Robin's 3. So snappy.

- Fingerprint sensor. The Robin has a decent sensor, and it's very well placed. But it started faltering a little. I have yet to have a bad read on the Pixel's sensor. Maybe because it's bigger. I admit I miss the side placement, though.

- NFC. When paying at the store, I'd have to turn the Robin sideways and press it against the terminal. Even then, I'd occasionally have to shift it side to side to find the sensor. I just used the Pixel at the store for the first time tonight. It was easily 4" from the terminal when it triggered. **bleep** impressive.

- And finally, the battery. I unplugged the Pixel today at 7am today and have not charged since. I've done all the usual activities, including my graphics intensive games. At 9:30pm, I'm sitting at 46%. It took me over 14 hours to get what I could do in less than 2 hours on the Robin. 

 

I offer these points not to brag, but to hopefully give Nextbit direction. I understand that the Robin is a mid-range phone over Google's top tier, so I cannot fairly compare the two apples to apples. I still think that the Robin is a great value for what you get, and I'm definitely keeping it as a backup phone. But there are problems with it. Problems that were simply too unacceptable to abide by, particularly for a phone that I had for less than 9 months. 

 

Just by looking at the devaluation of the Robin in less than a year (from $400 to $170 retail), I don't know if Nextbit is going to make it. I sincerely hope they do. I think Nextbit had, and has, great vision, and the Robin was a hell of a first attempt. But it's just not enough, and I have to move on. Farewell, Rebels. I may stop in to see how things are going once and a while. Good luck.

30 REPLIES
Rebel 3.0
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

I am kind of in the same thought process myself. I won't get anything new for a while though. But it makes me sad that the phone absolutely lags out when playing music through Bluetooth speakers and wanting to check twitter, Facebook or whatever at the same time. It reminds my why I switched to iPhone before the Robin.
Rebel 3.2
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

[ Edited ]

The battery is starting to get to me too and honestly if I had paid $400 for this phone I would be pissed.  But the quick charge helps me out and for $200 its a decent mid range phone.  I'm still in love with it's looks despite the flaws and I'm hoping some software improvements will alleviate a few concerns. Namely the battery, although to be honest I don't how they are going to pull it off. Because the main concern with the battery is not the stand by time. It's the actual usage that's a huge drain. Doze has been doing a decent job when the phone is sitting on the table, but that on screen time is pretty bad.  Short of a larger battery or some serious cpu throttling I don't see how that can improve. Maybe the team will surprise us, I'm going to stick around and see if Nougat and the battery update help.

 

Good Luck to you with the Pixel, It's an expensive phone to be sure but so is an iphone or GS7.  If I do jump ship I'm going to try a ZTE Axon 7 mini or an OP3.  I've also been lusting after that red HTC 10 for a while but can't justify it's high price tag. Even for $500 it seems pricey.

Nextbit Employee Nextbit Employee
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels


Thomas_guide wrote:

The battery is starting to get to me too and honestly if I had paid $400 for this phone I would be pissed.  But the quick charge helps me out and for $200 its a decent mid range phone.  I'm still in love with it's looks despite the flaws and I'm hoping some software improvements will alleviate a few concerns. Namely the battery, although to be honest I don't how they are going to pull it off. Because the main concern with the battery is not the stand by time. It's the actual usage that's a huge drain. Doze has been doing a decent job when the phone is sitting on the table, but that on screen time is pretty bad.  Short of a larger battery or some serious cpu throttling I don't see how that can improve. Maybe the team will surprise us, I'm going to stick around and see if Nougat and the battery update help.

 

Good Luck to you with the Pixel, It's an expensive phone to be sure but so is an iphone or GS7.  If I do jump ship I'm going to try a ZTE Axon 7 mini or an OP3.  I've also been lusting after that red HTC 10 for a while but can't justify it's high price tag. Even for $500 it seems pricey.


https://www.reddit.com/r/Android/comments/5gub1d/i_regret_buying_the_axon_7/

 

 


#NextNow
Rebel 3.2
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

I don't stream music and I don't use android pay, so those 2 things don't really bother me. FYI, I haven't jumped ship yet. For $200 I may try the Axon 7 mini I wouldn't pay more than that. If it doesn't work I'll just give it to my kid as a Netflix viewer/toy. When dealing with the cheapo phones especially from Chinese oems you really have to lower your expectations quite a bit.  I am not under any illusion with ZTE.

 

Any ETA on the battery improvement? Nougat?

Rebel 3.0
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

[ Edited ]

Of course the specs of the robin is not enough if you compare it to a phone released much later than it did let alone it also is a flagship phone. Robin's specs were competent at the time when it was starting to be manufactured. Also despite the fact that both the pixel and robin's camera is 12 mp, both camera modules are totally different. They both have different sensor and aperture sizes and also made by different companies (pixel: sony sensor, robin: samsung sensor) with the pixel's camera having a bigger and wider sensor and aperture, it of course will produce better pictures. Please do not think im scolding you or something, im just stating some facts.

 

I do agree with you though that battery management still needs some work and while the camera hardware is what it is now, I hope nextbit can improve the camera software such as giving it an auto hdr mode, and also improving the way it processes photos taken while also improving shutter and focus time. 

 

TBH starting price of $400 at that particular time when it was release, wasnt that bad of a deal. The only competition it had at that time was pretty much the oneplus 2, moto x, nexus 6p with the latter 2 you will have to pay a little more to get. All phone values degrade especially phones from smaller companies such as nextbit, alcatel etc. Even big name players such as htc and lg phones values degrade although in a slower pace. Only big names such as apple, samsung and quite possibly google have the money and market value for their phones not to degrade. If nextbit wants to stick around, improvements in their software while also clever marketing will be much needed.

Rebel 2.8
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

from $400 to $170 retail

that's really not cool ...Smiley Mad

 

Rebel 3.0
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

[ Edited ]

Honestly it makes me quite sad.  With the Pebble bankruptcy and the low price drop of Nextbit Robin and people are saying for a 200$ phone its decent doesn't give me high hope.  When i bought this phone at 300$ it was well worth it, its not the most ideal phone but for a firms first product its done better than what many others have put out despite being out in the market for a while now. I appreciate your decision and hope everything works out for you.  

Rebel 3.0
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

I agree with you, for a crowdfunded phone, Nextbit has already exceeded expectations by actually able to manufacture a phone for the public. There are just so many failed attempts at producing a smartphone from crowdfunded sites. I almost went for the turing phone and even the saygus v2 and those failed miserably. Lucky I was able to hold myself back from backing those projects

Rebel 3.0
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Re: I'm afraid I'm done, Rebels

[ Edited ]
As much as I can relate, I am not sure what is the purpose of these posts. I mean, honestly, it is the same kind of idea when some reviewer for an "Insert X" site compares the 13" Surface Book to the 15" Macbook Pro and complains how it is just not up to par with the Macbook. The MacBook 15 had 4 processors compared to 2, which the SurfaceBook has.
 
So in those regards, yes, the Google Pixel is indeed better than the Nextbit Robin. I mean when comparing the Pixel to the Robin:
 
- newest Qualcomm 821 vs Robin's 808 processor in which Pixels obviously faster having a processor that is 3 Qualcomm generations advanced (810, 810v2, and 820)
- 3 vs 4 RAM  - more memory = snappier
- AMOLED vs IPS - matter of opinions and experience to user but yeah, better colors on AMOLED
NFC, Fingerprint, battery - half year of better tech development? choice in suppliers? It is Google. Higher budgets vs. Kickstarter campaign. I'm sure they have proprietary tech in development; negotiation for part vendors and such. Sweaty palms or wet fingers? I notice the fingerprint sensor not so well when hands are wet, cold or moist
Sweaty palms or wet fingers? I notice the fingerprint sensor not so well when hands are wet, cold or moist
- Camera - matter of perspective as well. Mobile vs DSLR kind of talk. Robin does have a camera equivalent to a Galaxy Note 4 camera sensor (Q4 2014 tech). The reasons why they did, not sure (cutting costs, engineering purposes, etc). Gets the job done I suppose. 
- Unlocked bootloader - Leaps and bounds better than LG, Samsung, Sony (yes they do, but you give up warranty; LG same thing) others who lock down those who like tinkering with their phone. Seems good as is too. Also provides support for those that do unlock their bootloaders.
- Battery - Too many variables (Os versions, charger used, cable used, apps used for "usual activities" updated for better performance, Qualcomm cellular radio efficiency, scanning,  for 808 vs 821 (energy efficiency, size of chip, thermals, etc. I mean the 808 was released in Q1 2014 vs Q3/4 2016) Errr long time of tech developments can happen in years....

This phone would of probably have had the 810, but since Qualcomm botched the confidence from all the failures, I can see why 808 was selected for its time and 4 GB ram was overkill at the time during pre-production and final release. But seems to be the norm now.
 
I just got a Oneplus 3 after which I sold asap. It runs great, newish tech with lots of oomph and very snappy. But it felt so cold with the metal body slab and unappealing "iPhonesque 6" looks. And best of all, I knew I was supporting a company that does not have the funding of Samsung, Apple or Google, but a company that gave lots of companies a run for their money.  So I went back to Nextbit Smiley Tongue
 
So kudos for the effort, Nextbit. 
 
But best of luck with your new phone. 
 
*Note: I do not work for Nextbit. Just someone who likes phones and tech*.