*** UPDATE 9/17/13 *** I ended up buying a Samsung Galaxy SIII phone to replace my HTC MyTouch, instead of getting the HTC One. I decided to switch to Samsung, after having so many problems with the HTC. And what a difference it has made! The SIII is an amazing phone. Its not just that its newer… the thing actually works. I can play voicemail again, buttons all respond, the keyboard is not constantly pausing and mistyping… its like night and day. If all Samsung products are like this, I am going to stick with Samsung! I also got the SIII because, when we replace our Nook tablet, I will get a Samsung tablet – and hopefully, they will work well together.

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The HTC One is called, by some, the best smartphone in the world. And I like good sound. Should I get the HTC One?

How do you decide?

I am about to buy a new phone, and a new tablet, and that complicates the decision. I have been using an HTC MyTouch (Tmobile) phone for a couple years now, and have been unhappy. Its not a good phone. In our household we also have a tablet, the Nook HD+. We got the Nook originally because of the HD screen, and it is a very good clear screen. So my phone and tablet do not match; they are not from the same platform – not by manufacturer, and not even by version of OS. Our tablet is important to us so this post, about my next phone, must include considerations about our tablet.

Going forward, I want devices that are fully compatible. And I want devices that work.

The tablet ran its own version of Android when we first got it, and so we could not use the Google Play store. Apparently that is now ‘fixed’ by Barnes&Noble, but we don’t use the Nook anymore in its native OS – we had bought a sim card with a more recent version of Android, so we boot off the sim card. We have full access to Google Play and a ‘normal’ Android experience. This has some pro’s and con’s, including that these two ways of booting do not share the same memory space, so all the apps like games are separate; if you get far in a game, you cannot boot into the other OS and continue at the same level. Booting off of a sim is not always reliable either. And the Nook in its native mode also has some quirks.

Now, one of the themes of our website, TabletApps.com, is that platforms matter. Why should users struggle? We have struggled, with a lousy phone, and partly since tablets are new and exciting, but what is the point really?

My HTC phone freezes up. I cannot access any voice mail either; I called for support, they worked through it and the ‘solution’ they came up with was to delete all the voice mails to start it over. For awhile that worked but then it went right back to she same problem. A phone with no voice mail is not good. There are other problems too. When I am typing, in landscape, it freezes up and I cannot type anymore until I rotate it 90 degrees, then I can type. The phone boots VERY slowly, sometimes taking several minutes. I have the AVG antivirus on it, I do not download very many apps, and never do any ‘questionable’ websites. i am a relatively light user when it comes to downloads of any kind. Therefore, this phone should run clean and fast – but it does not. So it makes me lose confidence in HTC.

My dilemma is made worse by the fact that I am very much an audio person, I like good sound. The HTC One phone has dual, front-facing speakers which seems like a good idea. I have heard it, and the sound is better than my phone. I personally don’t care if the phone is ‘all metal’ or not. I just want something that works.

Can I have confidence in HTC, after owning an HTC phone that is crappy? Plus HTC has no tablet selection to speak of – when I replace our Nook tablet, if I buy an HTC will I be happy? The lack of choice is concerning. What if the HTC tablet is also crappy? In a perfect world, my phone and tablet would each have great sound, run the same version of Android and run the same apps. That is where the market is heading, for the manufacturers who understand what users want.

A better choice for me is probably all Samsung, or even make the change to Apple. I have never owned an Apple device but they seem very stable, and that is becoming more and more important to me. I have not decided yet, but there are some great deals on the Samsung Galaxy III phone, and its almost as good at the newer model, the IV.

Email me if you have any thoughts on my “HTC Dilemma”. I am curious how people feel about the idea of buying all your devices from one manufacturer, to improve the odds of having quality, consistency, and compatibility.

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