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My Next Verizon Upgrade

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Ahowe125 #1

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 11:38 AM

So... here I sit on Verizon with an upgrade. I read Cyber Warrior's article on how to get around loosing my unlimited data, so a new phone is calling my name. With no Nexus 5 to choose from, which one?
 
So far my potential options are
 
1. Droid Maxx - $199.99
2. Moto X - $199.99
3. HTC One - $159.99 
 
Other less likely
4. LG G2
5. GS4
6. Note 3 (pretty bad ass, but a little too big)
 
First off, I really liked the Droid Maxx. I like the size, the design, the huge battery and even the very simple OS. But there is almost no dev support for it. It seems like everyone from the Moto camp has moved on to other devices. So is having touch-less controls and a huge battery worth not being able to flash until my heart is content?
 
Second was the Moto X. Lets be honest, everyone seems to like it. But when I held it, I just didn't feel like it was a huge upgrade over my Razr. It was similar sized and felt ok. It seems to be getting a little bit of Dev support, but still not a lot. I don't know, it just didn't strike me as something I wanted. 
 
Third was the HTC One. All logical information points to this being the best upgrade. Its the only one of my first 3 that are unlockable. Not to mention my favorite Dev now has it. :-) But I don't know, it just didn't really appeal to me. It felt ok, but just didn't have the wow factor as the Droid Maxx. Maybe it was the shitty Sense OS that was taking away from the phone. I know some Eclipse/GPE will fix that, But how good is the battery life with that small of a battery?
 
The other 3 were nice, but I have never been a Samsung fan and the LG OS is down right retarded. 
 
I guess the point of this was to ask your opinions on each. 

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Cyber Warrior #2

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 12:06 PM

I had a tough time choosing also between all the devices, which I guess is a good thing having options. I liked the Moto X and how it's somewhat pure Android with a few Moto features but even though the screen is big, the device itself is small and having big hands made it feel a little too small for me. I also wasn't very impressed with the build.. the built in front lip is a nice idea but I rather get that protection from a case, if I wanted it. It also felt kind of toyish to me for some reason.

The HTC One.. I think I have some deep down hate towards the device just because Verizon was so late to get it. When it first came out, I thought it was an amazing phone and probably would have bought it on day one.. if Verizon actually had it when it first came out. Compared to other devices, the screen is more narrower and I preferred the wider screens on some of the other choices.. Then there's Sense, what I thought was my favorite skin at one time, has now become my least favorite.. the whole gradient look of things bothers me. The one thing I like about the One is the design and outer shell.. it is a good looking phone but that's not enough. Oh then there's the battery life.

The Droid line up I was surprisingly impressed with, I didn't think I would like the phones but they are nice looking, especially the Maxx.

I ended up getting the GS4 thinking I had great Dev support.. It turns out my baseband is one of the newer versions that is locked down and while I have root, I have no custom recovery or unlocked bootloader so that means no custom ROMs... for now.

One thing that I discovered is something called "Xposed framework".. It's an app that allows you to make a lot of changes to your device that most devs include in their custom ROMs. So I have a stock ROM but I'm able to install all kinds of different mods and theme my phone. So if you're really interested in the Droid devices and are worried about Dev support.. Check out Xposed.. you can find it on xda.. and once Xposed is installed, you can add different modules for mods/themeing. Two that I'm using are Nottach Xposed and the other which is in the Play Store is called Wanam Xposed. As long as the device can be rooted you can install the Xposed framework app, once that's installed you can add modules to the App like Wanam.
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lpt2569 #3

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 3:50 PM

Droid Maxx or Note 3. Third vote goes to the Moto X if you can deal with the small size! All 3 offer quality features that will still be relevant two years from now.
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Ahowe125 #4

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 6:50 PM

@Cyber Warrior, Thanks for the lengthy opinion. Its helped me sway toward the Droid Maxx I do believe. Quite honestly I have found myself not wanting the headache of flashing custom ROM's and always playing with settings. Its fun and a way to stay on top of the latest and greatest, but it always has its bugs. 

 

I found myself always returning to the Stock based ROM on my Razr Maxx just because it worked. It still had its quirks but was much better then the hybrid 4.3/AOSP ROM I was playing around with. 

 

I think at this point I'm almost sure I'm going with the Droid Maxx. I love my Razr Maxx, and its the logical upgrade. The nice part is that the Moto X seems to have some Dev support, and mostly anything they do to that phone works on the Maxx. All I really need is Root and I'd be happy. Which it does seem to have after doing some research. 

 

And in the mean time I'm downloading and installing that Xposed app on my Razr to see how I like it. That alone could make the Droid Maxx worth the upgrade. Just need to go though the website process of transferring the upgrade over and hopefully I don't screw up my unlimited. I might use my Fiance's upgrade in case something goes wrong, lol. She doesn't use any data anyway. 


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Cyber Warrior #5

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 9:05 PM

Sounds good. I was busy earlier and couldn't include links so if you haven't already figured it out.. here's one video I followed to learn about xposed and modules. Each device I guess has its own support for modules.. I'm guessing, but I was able to do a lot with the wanam module which is shown in the video and found in the Play Store. This is still somewhat new to me so I haven't researched too much about how many modules are actually available. With the wanam I so far customized the notification bar, quick toggles, custom carrier label and a few other things.. still learning and playing around with it.

Edit: oh and I've been doing the same with custom ROMs.. I found myself always going back to something stock, like you said.. it just works. That and it's a pain in the ass constantly wiping and upgrading.. I've been doing it for years now, need a break :) Plus Moto is already close looking to stock android.. You're already going to have great battery life, the phone should be plenty quick with the X8 chip.. and with root you can still do plenty to the phone without a custom ROM.
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Ahowe125 #6

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 9:10 PM

Sweet, I'll give it a watch tomorrow.

Now I just have to figure out all the details of the upgrade. I'm afraid to run Into a snag because the line I'm transferring my upgrade to uses an iPhone with a nano SIM and lives over an hour away. So I'm not sure how the initial activation is going to work unless I physically have her phone. By the way, will Verizon send a nano SIM card with the phone? I only have the standard SIM in the Razr.

Sent from my Droid Razr Maxx on Eclipse v2.2 using Tapatalk 4 Pro


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Cyber Warrior #7

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 9:34 PM

Hmm, I'm trying to think because I was able to do the swap without having my mother's flip phone but I did everything in the Verizon store. The upgrade gets transferred to your wife's line, the iPhone gets removed and the Droid gets added. The Droid gets dropped and the iPhone gets put back, the Droid is now free to go wherever. I'm trying to think if the phone needs to actually be activated or just added to the account... let me see if I can find the you tube video explaining it step by step on the Verizon website.

Not saying to do this but you can cut down a sim card to make it fit a nano size tray. I'm almost positive the new phone in the mail comes with a brand new sim card though.

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Cyber Warrior #8

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Posted Oct 22 '13 @ 9:57 PM

Here's the video I watched


Okay so I'm thinking.. you probably don't need the iPhone with you.. When you do the service swap, the iPhone gets removed and the Droid gets added with the new sim card which should be included during shipping. Once the Droid is activated, that new sim card is no longer needed since you'll be swapping it out and using your old phones sim card. If it's a different size, you're either going to have to cut it down or go get a new one from Verizon.

Now if you did have the iPhone with you and it's the same size sim as the new Droid.. you can just swap those during the activation/deactivation process. Then once the Droid is free.. you can use the new sim that came in the mail and activate it on your own line.

It sounds like you're either going to need that iPhone with you (for its sim).. Or you're going to have to go to Verizon after and get a new sim for yourself (unless the one in the mail can be re-used or you cut down your old sim card to fit the new phone)

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Ahowe125 #9

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Posted Oct 23 '13 @ 6:55 PM

With out meeting up with her (fiance's sister), I wont have direct access to her sim card or iphone 5. She lives around an hour or so away. 

 

So I wonder if when the Droid Maxx comes, if it has a new Nano sim (as needed by the Maxx) if I could just activate that Sim under her phone number and then activate the phone to complete the upgrade. This will render her Sim and phone dead. Then after that is all done, reactivate her old Sim card, which will leave the new nano sim unassigned and I can then activate that under my number. I have been looking around the website to try and find a place to activate sim cards, but I'm not sure its that easy. 

 

It seems as though this would work, and is all dependent if they actually send me a Sim card with the Maxx. If not I'll have to go to the Verizon store and get a Nano Sim as my old Razr still uses the older Micro Sim. 


| 32GB Verizon HTC One - S-Off, Unlocked and Rooted on NuSenseOne-Kitkat RC-1.4 |
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Cyber Warrior #10

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Posted Oct 23 '13 @ 8:39 PM

Yes, that should work. I think that's what I was trying to say but you said it better.. this is all very confusing lol :).

You can activate the Sim over the phone through customer service... no need to go to the store. In fact I ended up doing something similar. The Verizon employee rushed to get the swap done for me because of other customers waiting and I ended up leaving the store and noticed I had no data connection. After calling customer service, I found out the employee activated the wrong IMEI # to my Sim.. customer service was able to clear the mixup after I explained what was done with service swapping devices on my account.

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Ahowe125 #11

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Posted Oct 23 '13 @ 8:48 PM

Sounds good. I may end up just taking my sisters upgrade instead to make it easier. She has an old iPhone 4 that does not have a Sim card, so it would be a little more simple. 

 

Now I just have to convince the Fiance of why I need this phone, lol. Looks like after upgrade fee its going to be around $230, and if I'm super impatient I gotta tack on another $12.99. Then after taxes I'm going to end up around $243.80 + $12.99 = $256.79 

 

I figure my Razr Maxx is worth around $165 ($150-$200 on swappa), so $256.79 - $165 = $91.79 to upgrade to the Maxx. This could be a tough one to pitch. 


Updated by Ahowe125, Oct 23 '13 @ 9:03 PM.

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Photopaul65 #12

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Posted Oct 26 '13 @ 4:18 AM

I'm in the same boat, but my upgrade isn't until March, right smack between all the major launches.

My original Rezound never recovered from the ICS update, was so buggy I had to sell it and get a GNex. The Nexus has been just OK, it lags terribly sometimes, especially with Swiftkey, and randomly reboots just enough to be annoying. You can really see the limitations of having only 1 gb of RAM on this device. TRIM support would probably give this device a new lease on life, but anybody that thinks VZW is going to push 4.3 to the GNex is kidding themselves. All is not lost, as I have a friend on Verizon who is moving to iPhone in November, and is going to sell me her GSIII. 4.3 is supposed to drop on that anytime, and i think it will be good enough to get me by until March.

 

We all know there won't be another Nexus on Verizon, that bridge was burned long ago. I've looked really hard at the Moto X and the new Droids, but I just can't bring myself to signing a 2 year deal on nearly 8 month old phones. Even worse is the HTC One which will be nearly a year old in March.

I know the quad GPU in the Motos will help with games, but do you guys think the hardware will remain viable 15-18 months from now? Drives me nuts that I can't play half the games I own on the GNex because of the hardware.

 

Not really a Sammy fan, we'll see how it goes with the GSIII. Hopefully I can get Touchwiz tamed with a combination of Nova Prime and Xposed. If that goes alright, I might have to hold out for another month and see what the GS5 looks like. There were a few rumors that there will be a premium machined aluminium version. Another rumor I saw said Sammy was looking at giving the option to switch between Touchwiz and Stock launchers, but I have to see it to believe it.

 

I really hoped that Sony would cut a deal with Verizon, because that Z1 hits all the buttons for me. Guess I'll just have to keep drooling on that gorgeous waterproof screen everytime I see it (also the reason I'm banned from my local Radio Shack).

 

A lot to get announced/sort through between now and then. I really want to make the right decision here, so I don't get stuck with useless hardware again.


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Lee Bo #13

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Posted Oct 26 '13 @ 5:21 AM

So did anyone do this yet and if so. did it work as shown?


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Cyber Warrior #14

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Posted Oct 26 '13 @ 6:44 AM

@Lee.. I did it about a month ago. I have 3 lines on my account.. Mine, my mother's and a dummy line. I transferred my dummy lines upgrade to my mother's line and then used this service swap method to get the GS4 at the subsidized price of $250..unlimited data still working fine. Verizon may not like it but it's perfectly legit no matter what they try to tell you. I had store reps and customer service reps help me and they were all very friendly and willing to help. It's usually the in-store corporate reps who may give you a problem because they rather sell you a new plan/upgrade/phone.

@ahowe.. Were you able to find xposed modules for the Razr? Last night I was looking at the Wanam module for my Nexus 7 and realized it's only for Samsung/TouchWiz.. I was able to find other modules for my Nexus but after browsing it looked like a lot of modules were only for Samsung, Nexus and the HTC One.

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Ahowe125 #15

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Posted Oct 26 '13 @ 8:31 AM

@Lee Bo, No, I have not tried it yet only because my Fiance talked me out of my upgrade... lol I'm going to hang on to the Razr a little longer and see what next year brings I guess. The only thing I'm a little upset about is that the longer I wait the less this Razr is going to be worth. 

 

@Cyber Warrior, I looked into the xposed stuff, but didn't do anything with it yet. Then I just looked up the Wanam last night and realized it was for Samsung only. I have not looked into any modules for the Razr yet.


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| 16GB Nexus 7 (2013) - Unlocked and Rooted on Stock 4.4.2 |
| Jet Black Pebble Smart Watch (Red Slickwrap) - Official SDK 2.0.2 |

Cyber Warrior #16

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Posted Oct 26 '13 @ 9:09 AM

@ahowe.. Christmas is right around the corner lol ;)
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Ahowe125 #17

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Posted Oct 27 '13 @ 8:49 AM

The idea of spending money I didn't really have did not sit well with the Fiance, so the Droid Maxx was out. But this deal should not get her to upset. lol
 

Well, the trigger has been pulled. I just got done ordering my new HTC One for $99.99!!! I found an online coupon code to get yet another 50 bucks off the discounted $149.99 price. So at $99 plus the $30 activation plus MI Sales tax, its being delivered for $137.79. If I can get 160-200 from my Razr Maxx, I'll come out ahead and take the family out to dinner. :-) 

 

Needless to say I'm pretty excited. Its my first time with an HTC phone, and I plan on using S-Off and unlocking it to install a custom Eclipse ROM. Nitro has put together both a GPE version as well as Sense based debloated version.  It should be a great phone as most reviews I have read love the phone. Only thing I'm slightly worried about is battery life, but I'm always near a charger if needed. 


Updated by Ahowe125, Oct 27 '13 @ 8:52 AM.

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Cyber Warrior #18

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Posted Oct 27 '13 @ 8:56 AM

Nice :) yeah surprisingly I was able to get $300 for my GS3..maybe because it was advertised as unlocked/rooted? Anyway paid $250 +tax/etc for my GS4 so it was a free upgrade for me :)
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Ahowe125 #19

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Posted Oct 30 '13 @ 12:03 PM

Well got the One today. So far I like it quite a bit. It feels good and looks better. I didn't mind sense too much, but I love Nova so I'll end up switching. 

 

I plan on using rumrunner tonight to get S-Off, Rooting, then installing a custom ROM before I spend to much time setting this one up. I'm still undecided on a GPE Port or a debloated Sense version of Eclipse. I guess I may have to flash both and see which I like better. 

 

And Amazon screwed up and sent me the wrong case, so I have to use it naked for a few days until they hopefully send me the correct case. At least the screen protector was the right one. 


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Photopaul65 #20

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Posted Oct 30 '13 @ 1:39 PM

If you're gonna play with multiple rooms, check JRummy's ROM Installer. It's pretty slick. Congrats on the new phone Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk

Updated by Photopaul65, Oct 30 '13 @ 1:39 PM.


dmmarck #21

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Posted Nov 7 '13 @ 4:02 PM

Well got the One today. So far I like it quite a bit. It feels good and looks better. I didn't mind sense too much, but I love Nova so I'll end up switching. 

 

I plan on using rumrunner tonight to get S-Off, Rooting, then installing a custom ROM before I spend to much time setting this one up. I'm still undecided on a GPE Port or a debloated Sense version of Eclipse. I guess I may have to flash both and see which I like better. 

 

And Amazon screwed up and sent me the wrong case, so I have to use it naked for a few days until they hopefully send me the correct case. At least the screen protector was the right one. 

 

Speaking of which, let me know if you want an Otterbox lol.

 

You made the right choice, IMO.


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Ahowe125 #22

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Posted Nov 7 '13 @ 4:12 PM

Thanks man, I Love the phone so far. It's awesome that it's one of the only unlockable phones on Verizon and its definitely better then my old Razr. It's crazy how much faster it performs. Battery life has not been terrible, I'm getting 10-13 hours which is plenty for a days use. I'll miss coming home from an 8 hour shift with 60+ like the Razr did, but its fine.

I love the screen, and the speakers are amazing. Feel and size are good if not just a tiny bit big. I had 4.3 and this being a 4.7, I think I found my max size.

I did end up getting my case and that made it much better to hold and use. It almost felt slippery without it.

I'm not sure what the future holds for next Gen devices, but this one should hold me over for now. Im also glad I got it.


Sent from my Verizon GPE HTC One via Tapatalk


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dmmarck #23

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Posted Nov 7 '13 @ 4:24 PM

Thanks man, I Love the phone so far. It's awesome that it's one of the only unlockable phones on Verizon and its definitely better then my old Razr. It's crazy how much faster it performs. Battery life has not been terrible, I'm getting 10-13 hours which is plenty for a days use. I'll miss coming home from an 8 hour shift with 60+ like the Razr did, but its fine.

I love the screen, and the speakers are amazing. Feel and size are good if not just a tiny bit big. I had 4.3 and this being a 4.7, I think I found my max size.

I did end up getting my case and that made it much better to hold and use. It almost felt slippery without it.

I'm not sure what the future holds for next Gen devices, but this one should hold me over for now. Im also glad I got it.


Sent from my Verizon GPE HTC One via Tapatalk

 

I'm kind of surprised you were able to unlock it.  HTCdev?

 

FWIW, I was experiencing the same battery life with the GPE as well.


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Ahowe125 #24

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Posted Nov 7 '13 @ 4:30 PM

Thanks man, I Love the phone so far. It's awesome that it's one of the only unlockable phones on Verizon and its definitely better then my old Razr. It's crazy how much faster it performs. Battery life has not been terrible, I'm getting 10-13 hours which is plenty for a days use. I'll miss coming home from an 8 hour shift with 60+ like the Razr did, but its fine.

I love the screen, and the speakers are amazing. Feel and size are good if not just a tiny bit big. I had 4.3 and this being a 4.7, I think I found my max size.

I did end up getting my case and that made it much better to hold and use. It almost felt slippery without it.

I'm not sure what the future holds for next Gen devices, but this one should hold me over for now. Im also glad I got it.


Sent from my Verizon GPE HTC One via Tapatalk


I'm kind of surprised you were able to unlock it. HTCdev?

FWIW, I was experiencing the same battery life with the GPE as well.


No HTCdev for the Verizon versions. But a few devs got an exploit program to achieve s-off and root. Then from there the world is open. I should have AOSP 4.4 on the device in the next few weeks as my Eclipse ROM Dev is waiting for that source code.

It's no Nexus 5, but I'm still happy with the device and I get to continue to have unlimited and 4g everywhere. I got a win win with this decision.


Sent from my Verizon GPE HTC One via Tapatalk


| 32GB Verizon HTC One - S-Off, Unlocked and Rooted on NuSenseOne-Kitkat RC-1.4 |
| 16GB Nexus 7 (2013) - Unlocked and Rooted on Stock 4.4.2 |
| Jet Black Pebble Smart Watch (Red Slickwrap) - Official SDK 2.0.2 |

Ahowe125 #25

Ahowe125
  • Nerd of everything Tech
  • Offline
  • 260 posts
  • Location: Grand Rapids MI
  • Device: VZW HTC One

Posted Nov 30 '13 @ 5:44 AM

Well 1 month in and I couldn't be happier with my upgrade. I actually just sold the Droid Maxx yesterday to recoup the cost of the HTC One. That makes it 100% officially my daily and only device. I still have my old Droid X hanging out as a end of the world backup device, but the HTC One is solid. 

 

I'm going to miss the old Maxx, but overall the performance upgrade has been more then worth it. Absolutely no lag and everything works awesome. So far I'm very impressed with the build quality of the HTC being the first time I have ever used their devices. 

 

Thanks again for the opinions and input, it was fun. 


| 32GB Verizon HTC One - S-Off, Unlocked and Rooted on NuSenseOne-Kitkat RC-1.4 |
| 16GB Nexus 7 (2013) - Unlocked and Rooted on Stock 4.4.2 |
| Jet Black Pebble Smart Watch (Red Slickwrap) - Official SDK 2.0.2 |