How to measure value in mobile phones


I recently moved from AT&T to T-Mobile for a variety of reasons. This was for four lines. We purchased 2 new phones and intended to transfer phones we already had but had to wait to have the AT&T phones unlocked (that turned out to be more a hassle than it should have.)

Any way, during the transition and while waiting for my wife’s Samsung Galaxy S7 (originally about $750) to be unlocked, she used an LG Stylus 3 Plus ($250 or 1/3 price of S7) for a couple of weeks. When the Samsung was finally unlocked she returned to using it and made a comment she was glad to have her phone back. I asked her if she felt if the Samsung was $500 better than the LG, she rattled off a few reasons she preferred the Galaxy. Most of her reasons are due to being more familiar with the Samsung UI – which may explain the reason OEMs do not stick with the standard Android UI, a gentle form of lock-in. Then she listed some things she did like about the LG.

So this experience got me wondering – is the Galaxy $500 better than the LG. The LG has a larger screen, it comes with a stylus (if that matters), same or similar SOC and memory options. both have nice fingerprint scanners, … so what else should matter?

  • camera
  • support
  • reputation/name recognition?
  • form factor

curious what others think. What factors go into your decision and how do you make a value decision. I am not a shutterbug so I do not give the camera as much weight as others. I mostly use camera with Office Lens and the occasional picture.

PS – I moved from Lumia 950 to a Motorola Z2 and somewhat “Redmondized” it. I find I do miss the smart tiles but I do appreciate the improved App situation somewhat. I do wonder if it is worth $250 more than the LG. It feels to me that the Delta between the worst phone on the market and the best is not worth the delta in cost — so what is the sweet spot?

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