From Play to Z: An increasingly comprehensive, yet decidedly non-authoritative Moto Z Play review

Discussion in 'General Smartphone/Handheld/Wearable Discussion' started by Mi An, Jan 24, 2017.

  1. Hook

    Hook Professional Daydreamer

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    We will get pictures, yes? :vbwink:
     
  2. Mi An

    Mi An Nexus Refugee

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    Well, I do want to see pictures of your freewrite traveler when it comes, so for karma's sake, I probably should eventually.

    One thing that never occurred to me with this is how often I use my flashlight with moto's double chop motion. It's still usable, but last night I tried to slide open the keyboard and then chop, which is ergonomically inadvisable. :vbeek: So I just have to remember to chop with it closed, then slide it open.
     
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  3. raspabalsa

    raspabalsa Brain stuck BogoMipping

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    Mi An, I totally agree with your view regarding a physical keyboard. I love my G6's split screen feature, but only when I'm using my Apple BT keyboard, because the virtual keyboard takes up so much screen area. Even with only one window the virtual keyboard takes so much screen area it quickly becomes annoying and I have to return the phone to landscape.

    How comfortable to use is your keyboard mod? Can you use it efficiently with the phone not set on a table? I've been following the Gemini PDA, mostly because it has a physical keyboard but I read a review here that says it's awkward to use if not on a table.

    As for the big, bright LEDs, I had a similar problem with my Sony MDR-1RBT headset : the red/blue led showing connection state and battery charge is also big and bright. Worse, it's installed on the back of the left earcup, meaning whenever I wore them I'd become a walking beacon for anyone to follow, and since it's installed on the back I'd never see people laughing at me. So I covered it with vynil tape (electrician's tape), leaving just a tiny sliver of an "L" uncovered along the corner. Now the led looks dim and small, but still readable even under sunlight, and it's no more of an embarrassment when wearing the headset.
     
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  4. Mi An

    Mi An Nexus Refugee

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    Very happy to hear someone else with this experience. :newpalm: When the keyboard mod was announced, even sympathetic coverage seemed to assume this was a throwback, there was no reason for it, just nostalgia. But there is a reason.

    I've never used mine while setting on a table, I always hold it. It's a thumbboard for me. This mod has some awkwardness because the weight is not centered with the keyboard, but up with the screen, but when tilted up, that weight is at least brought back a little towards where you can hold it well.

    I'm not sure what the dimensions of the gemini are. This mod could be too long from one edge of the keyboard to the other for someone with smaller hands, and I actually did lobby for livermorium to not feel compelled to make the keyboard the same length as the screen, but to make the slide out portion a little smaller to make reaching the middle keys easier. Someone else suggested a split layout like soft keyboards on tablets that puts half the keys over to one corner a gap then the others in the other corner, so the middle keys are easier to reach, but while I did have to adjust my grip a little, this is still within my own comfort zone.

    I finally put some sugru in/over my LEDs, I used a pin to put a small hole in the caps lock indicator but completely covered the power indicator. Apparently this was already fixed in later models of the keyboard, but my prototype got the super bright leds. Easily fixed. On other things I've often just tape a piece of paper over the light, which is still very visible, but more diffuse and dim.
     
  5. Mi An

    Mi An Nexus Refugee

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    Two quick news items.

    1. https://liliputing.com/2018/10/motorola-partners-with-ifixit-to-offer-smartphone-repair-kits.html
    Normally I love a bargain, and this isn't super cheap, but when you buy $5 batteries of unknown provenance, you never quite know what the outcome will be. I looked up the z play earlier, I think the battery replacement kit with all ifixits little tools they use in their teardown was like $40. I'm tempted to get one now even though I don't quite need it. If I did need it, I think this is definitely the path I'd take in spite of the cost. Props moto. You coulda made your phones easier to repair, but still, this is a cool move.

    2. Not really Z Play related, but the Moto Nexus 6, my previous device just went on another fire sale earlier today... for $20 refurb from newegg. :vbeek: I know it's old and refurb'd, but wow. I woulda jumped on that had I seen it go live. That's a great price for a lot less phone. The Nexus 6 is a pretty good tablet with amazing speakers and a beauty of a screen. All kinds of useful and a great backup in case your dog attacks your main phone out of jealousy for how much time it takes from playing with her :vbwink:

    Err, just checked that slickdeals thread before hitting post, I guess some people are getting 'price error' cancellations on now. Makes sense. I thought it was a typo in the thread when I first saw the amount, but I still would have ordered if it'd been in stock. Not much downside.
     
  6. raspabalsa

    raspabalsa Brain stuck BogoMipping

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    Yeah, I read about this earlier today and thought mostly the same. It is a great move, and one I hope other manufacturers would pick up too. Even though I just replaced my wife's Z Play's battery, I may get a kit, if only to get a guaranteed OEM battery and the proper tools.
     
  7. raspabalsa

    raspabalsa Brain stuck BogoMipping

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    I will definitely have to re-think about this... As of 5 days ago, there's no more Z Play at raspy's house :( My wife called me - from another phone- to tell me her ZP's screen was black, unresponsive, even though the phone was turned on and chimed and rang normally. I checked it, and there were a couple of hairline cracks on the screen. Almost imperceptible unless seen from an angle, but seemingly enough to kill the screen. As best I can figure, either I exerted too much pull on the screen when removing it to access the battery, or I failed to reinstall the screen properly. Maybe it was unevenly set on the frame, although it didn't seem so when I reinstalled it. The thing is, this screen does not have a rigid support. It's just a glass and plastic panel from top to bottom, unlike other screens I've removed that are built on top of an aluminum plate that serves as heat sink, or have some sort of frame. I guess the designers scrapped the rigid support in their quest for ultrathin devices. We decided against buying a new screen, until I can research some more about this. In the meantime, Mrs. R had to endure my old, small, slow LG Optimus L7 for a few days until we could purchase a new one. She fell in love with a Moto G6 (another! sealed! device!), but since it's neither a particularly expensive nor ultrathin device I think it will be easier to fix if/when needed.

    Now the dilemma: I have a Z Play in good working order except for the dead screen, with a new battery, a battery extender Mod, and the JBL speakers Mod. I don't know if it's worthy to buy the new screen or write the phone off completely and sell it as parts. If the former, I'll have to buy the new screen and hope it works fine, but I'm not sure if Mrs. R will want to return to it because the G6 is really beautiful, a dark silver color, almost the same size as the ZP, and so far works as well for her as the ZP. If the latter, I'm sure we'll get just a small fraction of what the phone and accessories are worth. I'll have to think more about this and see if Mrs. R continues to be happy with her G6 or misses her ZP.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2018
  8. Mi An

    Mi An Nexus Refugee

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    Very sorry to hear that :vbfrown:
     
  9. jigwashere

    jigwashere Life is a circus!

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    Bummer.

    Sent from my moto g(6) using Tapatalk
     
  10. Hook

    Hook Professional Daydreamer

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    Condolences, Raspy. Mrs. Hook loves her Pixel 2XL, but she still misses her old ZDP.
     

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