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Last Updated: April 16th, 2010

This post and all its comments were migrated from Artem's personal blog beerpla.net when Android Police launched. If you would like to visit the original post there, please click here.

Alright, I was really excited to get the HTC Hero. REALLY. I had extremely high hopes for the Hero (those are long gone) and Android (which I still do - I even began developing for it) but the Hero has so many ridiculous bugs that I am *this* close to bringing it down to the Pre level (I'm not going to dare though - Pre still leads in the "I Want To Smash This Phone Into A Wall" category).

HTC, first of all, what. the. fuck. The idea of a more attractive UI was great, by all means, but did it really have to come at the expense of lagging down the whole phone? And by that I mean LAGGING. I would much rather have no added pwetty fluff than to literally be amazed when using my Garmin GPS because its UI is so responsive (until I got the Hero, this thought would have never crossed my mind).

Why is it that I have to miss phone calls because the Hero only gives me one or two rings before they go to voicemail? And half the time, right as I pull down the message on the screen that tells me that's what I have to do to answer the call, it doesn't pick up. Instead, I'm staring at a missed call.

Before I go on, I'd like to clarify that I'm still enjoying the Hero, mostly for making me feel a lot more connected on the go. However, the experience could have been a lot more enjoyable had HTC done a better job on the polish of the Hero core.

Some of these issues might be caused by Android, some might be caused by the fact that even though Android 2.0 has been available for a few weeks and 1.6 for a few months, the Hero is still running 1.5 - all thanks to the Sense UI.

But let me organize my thoughts in a nice numbered list. Everyone likes those, right? Be prepared - when a device affects me so much, I've got a lot to say.

Some of these problems, including some of the lag and battery life issues, have been solved by the recent HTC firmware update. See the details of the update here: Sprint And HTC Release The First HTC Hero Firmware Update 1.56: Fixes Major Bugs, Adds Small Tweaks

I realize the title of the article may be a bit provoking and can be misconstrued for something it's not.

To set the record straight, the title was meant to be simply a description of what the article is about - it's not meant to be read as my full opinion on the Hero. Think of this post as a "Hero's Problems" one, with a 2nd "Hero Is Awesome" post coming in the future.

My List Of Problems

1. Lag

Update: the lag situation has been significantly improved in the 1.56 firmware update, although still noticeable, especially in the dialer and browser.

This phone lags. At least the Sprint version of it, running Sense UI. And by lags, I mean most of the time it's worse than the Pre. Yeah, I went there. If you love lag, you will adore the Hero.

I'm not going to argue about rooting it or not using Sense. No. This is what HTC is making thousands of consumers use - and most of them won't ever consider touching the underlying OS. If you have an underpowered processor, HTC, don't you think the best thing you could have done is to try to compensate for it by making things faster instead of bloating it with garbage? Sprint, you didn't help either with your force-fed Nascar and NFL Mobile Live that we can't remove.

The browser lag is just beyond bearable. 16 seconds on average to load my plain Google.com homepage (not even iGoogle - just google.com). That's 10 seconds of staring at a blank screen, 4 more of staring at "getting sign-in details" and 4 more of loading the webpage. This is compared to 4 seconds on the Motorola Droid, side by side.

The keyboard lags. Often. Both typing and flipping.

Flash (the Adobe one) is cool but its performance on the Hero is pretty much unusable most of the time.

The lag is everywhere but this one takes the cake - the lag operating the dialer and the phone in general. Because each button press is unpredictable and can take between 0.5 and 5 seconds, there is no way to tell if the screen just didn't register the click or if it's just lagging behind. Thanks to this, I've dialed wrong numbers, hung up, and performed wrong functions multiple times.

My favorite is that it takes about 2-3 seconds for the last dialed number to show up in the recent numbers list after I finish the call, which means it then pushes all of the recent numbers down by one. So if I click a number I want to dial during that period of time, after the lag settles I will find that I actually just pressed a number above the one I wanted.

This list goes on.

2. Bad Battery Life

Update: I was able to double my battery life by adjusting the email polling settings that were set too aggressively. While I realize it's obvious that polling more frequently will run down the battery faster, I was shocked to find just how much faster. The battery life is now a lot better, though I would still love even more juice.

I thought the 1500mAh battery would give me plenty of juice. How foolish of me.

Between such battery draining bugs as letting your phone go to sleep when first turning it on, simply sending an SMS message, and using the Hero for email a few times a day, I'm left with 0-15% battery life by 10pm (even after applying known fixes).

In the morning, between the time I wake up and the time I get in the car, my battery would sometimes run down to 85%. Sometimes, however, it would still be at 98%, without doing anything differently. Does that make sense to you?

3. Long Bootup Time

There's nothing better than staring at the bootup screen for good 3-4 minutes before the phone becomes usable. If you think the Pre load time is bad, check out the Hero for some added fun.

Fine - it loads a pretty complex Linux based OS, I get it. But damn - it sure takes its time doing so.

Well, at least it doesn't say "Droid" in a robotic voice.

4. Application Chaos

Update: the first 2 issues have been fixed in the 1.56 firmware update.

Some applications' names change to their Java versions (such as com.p1.chompsms). Without me touching or updating them - it just happens over time. Some examples include Unit Converter (FCs upon start), Astro File Manager, Estos, ChompSMS, and Voice Caller ID.

Some applications' icons are randomly changed and mutilated (for example, Remember The Milk and Flixster).

Some applications stop working and start force closing (for example, Flixster, WP To Go, Unit Converter).

Some applications say "shortcut is no longer available" when clicked from the home screen or the All Programs list (for example, Twidroid). This seems to sometimes go away after a restart but surely comes back upon the next program update.

Not sure who to blame for all these but it seems like non-Hero owners don't seem to be experiencing such issues.

And the solution? "Without rooting, the only workaround for the issue is to uninstall the app and reinstall it. Still, after rebooting, you may have the same issues. Again, a reinstall is the only fix," suggests a post on AndroidForums.

Someone on the XDA-Developers forums provides more details - this is, apparently, due to a mismanaged boot cache.

5. Voicemail/SMS Problems

Update: these issues have been fixed in the 1.56 firmware update.

Problem - "after Internal Memory reaches a certain low level of free space (one user heard around around 40MB free from HTC Support), you may stop receiving SMS messages and voicemail. No amount of clearing space will allow messages to resume" - description credit AndroidForums.

Solution? "The best method of prevention currently is to ensure adequate memory is available on the device to prevent the flag from being set" - SprintUsers forum.

On a related note, the following bug has also been reported: "Over time, Internal Memory free space dwindles and no amount of clearing apps frees the space. This will also cause the above issue of SMS & Voicemail messages not being received once a critical amount of free space is reached".

I stopped getting my voicemail notifications a long time ago. Texts are still getting through somehow but they should definitely be afraid of stepping on these landmines any day now.

There are 3 ways to get your voicemail - are you kidding me? You can use the visual voicemail app (mine doesn't work anymore), you can dial your phone number (which is the same as pressing on the envelope or holding the 1 key), or you can dial some 408-970-0000 number (which seems to be for voice SMS but yet handles my voicemail). Did you just hack voice SMS to do visual voicemail, HTC and Sprint? This is a job not so well done.

6. The Keyboard

Let me say this - the keyboard on the Hero kind of sucks. It is very inaccurate, even after calibration, and doesn't guess letters nearly as well as the iPhone does.

To be fair, the Hero shines at the spelling correction. I can type 5 letters wrong in a single word, and the Hero will still suggest the right correction most of the time. My complaint here is that it doesn't detect missed spaces at all, so 2 words run on each other would not be recognized and corrected.

Now, the keyboard flip - it is uncomfortably laggy (see point #1 again). 2-5 seconds per flip is not good enough.

7. Calendar Notifications Are Broken

Sometimes I'm alerted about a calendar event a day early.

Update: the daylight savings time (DST) issues have been fixed in the 1.56 firmware update.

Sometimes an hour early (that's what happened after the daylight savings time shift).

Some users reported that their Hero shifted to daylight savings a week early.

How in the world does this even get through QA, HTC?

No remind me on time option? A 5 minute reminder is as close as I can get. Bleh.

8. GPS Randomly Thinks I'm All Over California

At times, my Google Maps app can no longer lock onto the GPS signal and starts jumping all over the state. Last time it first told me I was in Sacramento (one of the turn directions next to it had a misspelling "Socramento", wtf?), then Santa Rosa, then as I kept driving and pressing My Location, it switched to a random street about a mile away, then dumped me in the ocean.

During this time, the GPS icon kept blinking and didn't stay solid. Also, once it picked up a location, it didn't continue to update it as it should do.

Only a phone restart solves the problem but not for long.

Sometimes, the Sprint GPS can no longer get a lock on my location at all and any route calculations get stuck.

Sometimes, the blinking GPS icon stays on all the time, thus, I'm assuming, draining the crap out of my battery.

9. Usability: No Easy Way To Switch Between Running Apps

Alright, here's where the Pre has everyone beat - the card switching is superior to any app management I've seen. Here I was thinking Android would have a decent way of switching between apps - at least as good as Palm's.

Imagine my surprise when I found out that switching between running apps is completely impractical on Android. You simply can't do it. Ever use Alt-TAB in Windows? Feel like you feel powerless without it? That's how I feel on the Hero.

The closest things I figured out so far are:

  • hold the Home button, which brings up a list of 6 most recently used apps. Not only is this longer than I am comfortable with, but it also fails to actually accomplish what I want - and that is switch between running apps
  • get a task manager app, such as Advanced Task Manager. This works but this is even slower than the previous method and requires even more clicks
  • go back to the home screen/app list and run the program I want again. Chances are, this would summon the sleeping program from the background. Not the best approach either.

Of course, this is not HTC's fault - Android really let me down here (take note from Palm on this one).

10. The 5MP Camera - It Sucks

Update: the camera quality has been reportedly improved in the 1.56 firmware update.

The Hero has a notoriously bad camera, which doesn't even have a flash (a big drawback). It does a pretty bad job at autofocusing. Both the camera, the camcorder, and the albums take uncomfortably long to load (see point #1 again).

11. Plastic Chrome Trim Cracking And Falling Apart

Out of nowhere a pretty large chunk (1/2 to 3/4 inch) of the plastic chrome trim broke off around the USB plug. I do not seem to be the only one.

I do not expect the case to last much longer either. The "teflon" does feel nice to the touch but it's still plastic.

12. The Phone Unlocks In My Pocket

Did you know the double press on the Menu button unlocks the phone? It's a great feature, isn't it (until it unlocks the phone in your pocket)?

And no, it's not possible to disable it.

13. Out Of Space? No More Apps For You

I ran out of the built-in [measly] space recently. Why? Because it's not possible on the Android (even as of 2.0) to install apps to the SD card, unless you root the phone. This is not an HTC issue and more of an Android limitation but it is definitely part of my Hero experience.

14. Dust Under The Glass?

Many users are reporting that dust is getting under the Hero's screen. Thankfully, I'm not one of those users. For now.

15. Can't Remove Words Added To The Dictionary

The keyboard suggest mechanism in the Hero is great - I can't argue about that. In fact, without it, the Hero would be doomed.

However, sometimes a mistyped word gets added to the internal dictionary and there is no way to get it out of there, without clearing the whole thing. Annoying.

16. No Way To Turn Screen Off During Call

The Hero doesn't have a proximity sensor, which results in a few problems:

  • sometimes I press buttons with my face
  • sometimes I want to turn off the screen to at least try to prevent my face from doing the above, except there is no way to do so. The reflex to press the Power button which usually turns the screen off results in an immediate end of the current call. I am embarrassed to say how many times I've done this. Oh, and to end the current call when the screen is on, a single press of the Power button is sufficient but two are needed when the screen is off - took me a while to get this right.

17. No Application Access To Bluetooth

I know this is purely an Android 1.5 issue as Android 2.0 has the new bluetooth API but we still can't utilize it because we're stuck at 1.5. Thus, I can't have bluetooth turned on and off on a schedule (via Timeriffic, for example) and, of course, the biggest issue - no bluetooth tethering.

18. High Latency Wireless Network

From what I can tell, there's a much higher latency (the time between a request is sent and a response is on its way) on the Hero than on the Droid. I'm willing to actually accept that it's probably 90% due to Sprint's 3G network vs Verizon's. I never imagined the difference was this vast, however. When I was playing with the Droid, it seemed like I had a device from the future in my hands.

WiFi performance is not great either - in fact, the Market application downloads often hang in the "starting…" mode until I turn WiFi off.

19. Trackball Almost Useless In Text Editing

I like having the trackball, in theory. However, when editing text, it is almost unusable, unless I want to move only a few characters over. If I want to go to the beginning of the line from the middle, it will take ages, as each swipe only moves one character at a time (there is no built-in acceleration).

I'm not alone in this conclusion.

20. Unneeded Junk Keeps Running

I don't need some of the apps that come stock but they insist on running every time I start the phone. Some insist on running all the time, even if I set up Taskiller or Advanced Task Manager to hunt them down. A few good examples are: Peep, IM, Footprints, Gmail (I use the Mail app for gmail), Messages, and Stocks.

Conclusion

The Hero changed the way I do things on the go. The email, calendar, all kinds of syncs, apps - they've all changed my life and I love the Hero for that. I will not be able to go back to a regular phone. I feel too… connected.

There are lots of bugs. Lots. Perhaps Android 2.0 will fix some of them and the rest will be fixed over time. However, I am not sure HTC will be ever able to fix the lag without revamping the Hero's hardware. Although, I also heard that the HTC Droid Eris, which runs the same hardware, is not nearly as laggy. I will have to check it out to confirm.

I apologize in advance for any omissions, inaccuracies, or grammatical errors but it is 3am now as I'm finishing this article. Also, if you find the language harsh - well, that's just me.

Are you happy with your Hero? Are you experiencing any of these problems? Share with me.

  • Fabio

    Agreed on most of these. I haven't actually experienced the voicemail/sms problems or the dust under the glass but it is definitely laggy.
    Anyone who thinks the stock configuration with a few apps is not laggy is either delusional or runs something other than stock.

  • mark56

    when is the 2.0 upgrade coming? maybe it'll solve the bugs?

  • Steve

    Wow, you summed up the lag on this phone so well. Every issue, even the last called number delay is there.

    Kudos to you, and hopefully sprint/htc gets this resolved.

  • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

    @mark56
    Nobody knows but we are hoping by early next year at the latest. Fingers crossed.

  • dsands

    Ignore numbers one through twenty. I havent experienced any of these issues. This phone does not lag at all compared to a pre. I should know, I own both. Also, on a day of heavy usage, I'm still well above 40-50% battery. My pre would sink to under 20% and sometimes it would die. The trackball is totally useful, just try to edit a text on the pre. The dust, well I guess some have it, but they will resolve that for you. Mine luckily doesnt have dust. As for the proximity sensor, I found that more of a nuisance on the pre. The screen would flicker when I pulled it away, making touch tone menus impossible to work with. I have yet to have any issues due to the screen being on during a call. No voice or sms issues, no GPS or app issues, no calendar issues. Its easy for me to type on. I made just as many typos on the pre, but the back space was right next to the send button on the pre, which caused me to send out a lot of bad texts. The phone boots up infinitely faster than the pre did. The pre could take up to five minutes. The hero is on in a minute and a half tops. I have no quality and breakage issues on my Hero. You can place a bluetooth widget on your desktop and just as easily activate and deactivate it as with a timed app. Like who cares that its not on a timer. I also put my GPS, data, and wifi switches on my desktop. Couldnt do that on my pre. Oh ya, pre's don't have desktops...Neither do iPhones. As far as app space, it would take dozens and dozens and dozens. Just delete the crap u dont use. I highly doubt anyone uses a hundred or more apps regularly. Im sure most just sit there and take up space. Also, this phone never unlocked in my pocket, and it's always in there.

  • dsands

    edit to the above. i dont run the stock widget config, but it blows anyway.

    i run a small weather, a small battery monitor, all four connection type widgets, some app icons, email full, sms full, calendar full, and bookmarks full. NO LAG AT ALL

  • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

    @dsands

    Yup, I guess I just spent 4 hours making all these up. And so did everyone on the forums, including the Android Forums where you came from.

    Where did you learn to write like that btw? You should write a book.

  • BP

    I am conused, when was the Hero ever touted as a "multi-tasking" phone? Also, don't be lazy trying to use the trackball for everything...it IS a touchscreen, so "touch" where you want the cursor...oh wow, it moved!
    Lastly, get off your ass and mod your phone....that is half the fun of these Android phones, you can "root" it, and then apply all kind of mods, mods that make these run FAST!

  • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

    @BP
    Android is a multi-tasking OS. That is its clear advantage over iPhone, for example. Multiple apps running simultaneously, you know? You are right - the Hero was probably never advertised as a multi-tasking phone (was it advertised at all? Compared to the Droid campaign, I saw almost no marketing of the Hero).

    I don't actually use the trackball for anything but doing small text edits - I use the screen for everything (you kind of have to, as the trackball sucks). Don't you think your suggestion reinforces my point about the trackball?

    I know modding is fun, BP. I am all for running all kinds of crazy shit on my phone. The point stands, however, and that is the stock HTC firmware is really buggy. Isn't that why you rooted your phone in the first place? QED

  • http://www.planetandroid.com Ed Burnette

    Wow, has it always been like that? I've heard complaints but none this bad. Did you try a delete-everything factory reset? Some of the issues may be caused by ill-behaved apps. As a last resort you can try a replacement from your phone store (for the cracks if nothing else). The Market will remember apps you have dl'ed or purchased.

  • BP

    I understand your frustration, really I do. But I am the ilk that say, what can I do to help it out. Rather than bitch and complain.
    But to my original point, Android was described as a multi-talking phone...but only in v2.0, before that, it was never advertised via any carried as such. So your point is still moot.
    It really just sounds like you are just one of the "fruit" lovers...so why don't you just go and eat some "fruit"

    Oh, I was and am an earlier adopter, G1, and boy has it some issues. But I knew enough to stay away from any half generation device like the Hero, Cliq, etc.. For they are all basically a G1 with a face lift. We need the device manufactures to give use some real muscle power. Bring on the Sony Ericsson X10

  • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

    @Ed
    I haven't tried a hard reset as I have so many settings customized, apps installed, etc that I don't want to deal with it that just yet (similarly to how I try to avoid reinstalling Windows unless it's the last resort).

    If it happened once, it has high probability of happening again, all outside factors left the same (such as fixes from Sprint or HTC). I'm really looking forward to those.

    @BP
    I had to get off my obsolete Samsung A900 and the Hero looked really good. The Snapdragon CPU in the Sony does promise extreme sexiness and I hope it arrives to Sprint as well (or whatever HTC's got brewing next).

    BTW, I hope you all understand that I am talking about the Sprint version of the Hero here. For all I know, the European version could be indeed all dandy.

  • anakin78z

    Ok, don't have a Hero, have the G1, but a lot of the same issues apply, and are in fact Android and HTC issues.
    As far as not enough space to install Apps, it's both an Android and HTC issue. I can sort of understand why we can't install apps to sd, but I can NOT understand why HTC didn't take that into consideration when choosing the amount of internal storage. Yes, I DO want that many apps installed. And no, it's not just a bunch of crap. Every time I run out of space, I look through my long list of apps and realize that I do indeed want all of them, and it's always a struggle to figure out what I can live without. I constantly uninstall and re-download apps, based on what I'm doing that week. This is just not cool, and I blame you, HTC, and every other Android phone maker thus far, as they've all provided paltry internal storage.

    The lag is very much an Android issue. It sounds like it's worse on your Hero. I've heard people say that the Hero has no lag. Then again, my G1 had no lag when I put 1.6 on it. For a little while, anyway. 1.6 is much better than 1.5, so I expect some of your issues will go away once you get the upgrade to 2.0, but still there are lag issues with Android that are somewhat frustrating, and I really hope Google is working hard to fix that issue. People have noted that some of the same lag we're all experiencing still exists on the Droid, and based on the hardware alone, we know that shouldn't happen. The last thing any of us want is for Android to be the phone that everyone says is laggy. To us techy people and early adapters that may not matter so much, but it will matter to most people.

    -z

  • Liviu

    A nice "adventure" is when i try to select some text from browser..

  • Eris

    I got the Moto droid, then switched to the HTC Eris last week. Overall, nice phone.

    Exscellent points about the Hero - my Eris has similar issues, but doesn't seem as bad.
    I have my own list of Eris issues, which I imagine are the same on the Hero.
    Take a look:
    http://androidforums.com/htc-droid-eris/18377-irritating-eris-features-can-they-changed.html#post113848

  • Chad (dcdttu)

    Agreed. You may be blunt, but you state what you feel and I like that. Those that tell you to get another phone don't understand that you actually like this phone, and that's why you seem to go to this great length to try to get your (and everyone's) issues resolved. I appreciate your effort.

    Why this phone has 1.5 when 1.6 is the VERY FIRST Android update to support CDMA, I'll never know.

    Why it's taking them so long to fix it and why these issues ever made it to production, I'll never know.

  • mikeful

    Which OS version are you using? At least here in Europe there have been Android 1.5 based update form HTC which reduced initial lag significantly.

    I'm not sure if this has to go through Sprint before you can actually get it.

  • Mark

    Those performance problems sounds specific to your phone to me. I have the european HTC Hero (latest firmware) and things are nothing like that bad.

    Chances are you've installed some bad applications that automatically start services on boot up.

    Have you looked into all of that?

  • http://www.pardonmyopinion.com Pardon My Opinion

    Funny. This is the EXACT article that I was thinking of writing 24 hours ago. Former iPhone user (loved it), switched to Sprint (Hero) Oct. 9th.......loved it. Now its Nov. 18th and Im getting impatient. The "newness is wearing off" and I almost want to say "give me my iPhone back, even with ATT's high cost." I'm really hoping for the best because the Hero could be a winner. But right now....."im holding out for a Hero (that doesn't drag along)

  • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

    Go download the update - it fixes some of the issues and some of the lag: Sprint And HTC Release The First HTC Hero Firmware Update 1.56: Fixes Major Bugs, Adds Small Tweaks

  • Yas

    I had been wanting to know how to disable the tuch screen when on an call. So Thanks know i know its not posible. i hate it. :(

  • hiro

    Ditch the stock browser and use the dolphin browser from android market. It solve all of your browser issue in exchange for no flash support besides YouTube.

  • ta2rtist

    i just bought my phone and am surprised to be reading all of this, i love the alternative to the iphone.
    how do i set the email intervals?

  • http://www.allstarmobi.com buy cheap phones

    My boyfriend is a big geek but doesn't yet have a USB drive. He's getting one for Christmas; 1 GB, of course.

  • BobBruff

    FYI: There's an app in the market called 'Proximity Sensor.' Try it out before saying there's no way to disable the screen in a call.

    • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

      Bob, there was no 'Proximity Sensor' app during the time of my writing.

      I saw it mentioned later on but it doesn't change the fact that there still is no proximity sensor on the Hero - just the light sensor. And from what I remember you have to have the light sensor enabled for this app to work (which I don't, as it makes the screen too dim too often). At least there's *some* sort of a solution now.

      • BobBruff

        I'm using the Proximity Sensor without the light sensor enabled. The difference is that the prox sensor locks the phone & you have to manually unlock it after the call. Not a big deal since you've got to manually hang up the call anyway.

  • Kevin

    Thanks for writing this. I had an HTC Hero and took two back - one after a large (1/2" x 1/8") "spray" of dust appeared under the screen's cover after 2 days with the phone (WTF???) and the second one after I just got sick of all the lack and laundry list of annoying little issues (which you so eloquently listed above).

    Yes, I had the phone post-update, but the issues were still more than I felt I should have to deal with when it comes to a phone.

    I'm going through a phase of simplification in my life right now, and will either stick with a BlackBerry or a Palm Pixie (LOVE the keyboards on these devices!).

    Thanks again for putting this together. I hope for Hero owners that Sprint and HTC take note.

    HTC: We don't need to get a phone...that gives us anxiety and buyer's remorse; we need a phone that...ummm...works.

    Thanks.

    • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

      Kevin,
      some of the issues described above have been fixed and I'm sure lots of others will be when the Hero updates to Android 2.1. While some issues still exist, I am definitely not going back to non-Android phones.

      If your main problem (like mine) is lag, I'm sure that upgrading to a more powerful Android device will sort that out. For Sprint, unfortunately, right now there's nothing better, so I have to stick with the Hero. But 2010 will change *everything*.

      • Kevin

        Hi Artem,

        I realize some of the issues above have been fixed; however, like I said....I had my Hero post-update and did indeed apply them to both handsets straight away. The REMAINING issues were - personally - simply too annoying for me to look past for a device that I use on a daily basis. That I have to press the power/end-call button twice to actually hang up is REDICULOUS. HTC got some things nailed perfectly; in other areas, they fell flat on their faces.

        Remaining lag was bad, too; yes, it's a problem with most handsets, in my experience; today, our "phones" are basically little computers which we ask too much of, so this is to be expected; however, with the Hero, I found the lag to be far too frequent and pervasive, affecting nearly all aspects of the phone's daily performance or my interactions with it.

        I would hold out for Android 2.0 or 2.1, but I've been told multiple times by multiple Sprint personnel that it's not expected for either of their handsets until sometime in or after April.

        I understand - and feel - the power of the Google, but I'm not sure what you mean by "2010 will change everything." I don't know how much of the Hero's problems are HTC's and how much they're Google's, but unless Google does some serious clean-up of Android...everything may indeed change, but the questions will be "how much" and "for better or for worse?" Change is not inherently good.

        I'll go get my BlackBerry or Palm Pixi in the interim. If an Android handset comes to Sprint that I feel is more compelling and doesn't have any 3rd party 'crap' (in my opinion) such as HTC's Sense UI loaded onto it, I'll consider taking the hit for an upgrade; I like the idea of Android, I'm just not really feeling it in its current state and not compelled by any of its current-gen handsets.

        Thanks for the reply!

        • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

          Kevin,
          what I meant by 2010 was the new devices that are much faster (such as ones running on the 1Ghz snapdragon CPUs). Of course, the newest versions of Android should help too but not as much as the new hardware. Go to Plam and BB for now but come back to Android soon!

  • Strubbl

    I agree in many points! hope to get the new android soon so that i don't have to root the hero... :(

  • http://sprintherotips.blogspot.com qriusme

    see this for reducing the rotation lag on the Sprint Hero

    http://bit.ly/6BcIba

  • allison p

    You are absolutely right I am typing this from my hero right now and it is lagging in between each word. My phone has met the wall a couple of times because of the things u have listed. it is horrible I am thinking of moving on to the iPhone.

    • http://beerpla.net Artem Russakovskii

      Alison, let's not do anything drastic here. Wait a month or two and Sprint will have the Nexus One and Supersonic which are both 1GHz and will rock very very hard.

      Hero will be updated to 2.1 any day now too, which should help a lot of the issues.

      Just hang in there!

  • Jim

    I agree. The lag on the dialer is almost unbearable, and my hero only rings twice before it goes to voicemail, which causes me to miss 75% of the calls I receive. This is just totally unacceptable as I use this phone for work. The Hero does some things rather well, but is almost completely useless as a phone. I am willing to wait a couple more weeks for the 2.1 update, to see if it fixes these problems, but the Hero is the worst phone i have ever owned, and it has soured me on HTC and Android.

  • Jim

    Thanks, I read and appreciate your article. Here's hoping the update comes out soon and works as well as the ROM. I actually like some aspects of the Hero, just not the phone functionallity.

  • anon

    wow that does sound like cr*p performance. I have a Magic which i think has similar spacs to the hero. My phone is 100 times better than the horror story you outlined here. I reckon there has to be something wrong with your phone dood.

  • http://www.leslies/1.project.com LeslieK. Groner

    ALL OF YOUR BICKERING, accomplished what? NOTHING, right ? Goto the prom or Disneyland, live a little. Quit hiding behind your P.C., laptop or mobile phone. Life is so much more.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It's warned people of things that are wrong with the phone. That's part of what blogging is about - sharing experiences. I'm not sure what the rest of your comment has to do with anything.

    • Muhuhahaha

      Yeah! If you hide behind your "P.C.", how will you ever manage to needlessly heckle bloggers with your ethereal knowledge of their personal lives?

  • Misti curia

    You swore you fucking little cunt my kids visit the site you complete shit stain

  • Gnex

    pineapple

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