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OK to Buy iPhone 3GS, or Obsolete in 5 Months?

4587 Views 14 Replies Latest reply: Feb 26, 2011 9:04 AM by NortheastGuy RSS
NortheastGuy Calculating status...
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Feb 15, 2011 9:51 AM
Hello!

I'm considering buying an Apple 3GS phone from AT&T, but I'm a little concerned with the fact that a new phone (and OS) are coming out this summer most likely. While the price is cheap, I don't want to lock myself in for 2 years on a phone that will be obsolete for apps etc. after just a few months.

Is purchasing a 3GS a risky move at this point?
Custom Built, Baby!, Other OS, Core 2 Duo 6400, SLI GeForce 7900s, 2GB DDR2 RAM
  • Randy Fast Level 4 Level 4 (1,415 points)
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    Feb 15, 2011 9:53 AM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    You have to decide really. The 3GS is still a solid phone but it will be 2 years old this summer when presumably the new iPhone will come out. Are you going to need all that power or will the 3GS be enough for you?

    What are your needs?
    Dell Vostro 1400, Windows 7, iPhone 4 32GB, iPod 5G 60GB
  • tonefox Level 5 Level 5 (7,680 points)
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    Feb 15, 2011 11:35 AM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    I would very much doubt that Apple will bring out a phone that cannot handle the (literally) billions of apps that we have all downloaded.
    iPhone 4 32GB iOS 4.2.1. Mac Pro. MacBook Pro 13"., Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • smalcom Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)
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    Feb 15, 2011 2:34 PM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    I chose to buy an iPhone 3GS mainly because of the price and the fact that I don't need more than it offers since I am retired. The way I look at it, the 3GS is two years old. When the iPhone 4 is two years old they will eliminate the 3GS and price the 4 at $49, just in time for me to upgrade. It is only with the next release of iOS that Apple will no longer support the 3G. I can live with a $49 phone until the next one comes out.
    hp Pavilion d4990y, Windows 7
  • diesel vdub Level 7 Level 7 (20,665 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 10:44 AM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    NortheastGuy wrote:
    I have noticed that some apps already don't support the 3GS on the AppStore;


    I have seen no such thing, granted I do not peruse the AppStore regularly.
    Are you certain you were reading that correctly?
    3GS, iOS 4
  • OSX-*** Calculating status...
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    Feb 17, 2011 1:21 PM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    I chose the 3GS because of the issues with the iPhone 4. The obvious antennae issues and proximity sensor issues, don't exist on the 3GS. The only thing that I would have liked on the 4 would have been the better camera with flash, but then I remind myself that its not a camera its a phone (I have a camera). Video Chat is still a novelty and who has time to make a video call anyway.

    The 3GS seems to run any app I install and it is much faster than the iPod Touch 2G that I was used to using. I would get the 3GS and get it refurbed from AT&T for like $10. Then when the next thing comes out you'll be ready to upgrade and have dodged the iPhone 4 bullet.
    3GS, ?
  • tonefox Level 5 Level 5 (7,680 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 2:10 PM (in response to OSX-***)
    OSX-*** wrote:
    I chose the 3GS because of the issues with the iPhone 4. The obvious antennae issues and proximity sensor issues, don't exist on the 3GS....

    ....The 3GS seems to run any app I install and it is much faster than the iPod Touch 2G that I was used to using. I would get the 3GS and get it refurbed from AT&T for like $10. Then when the next thing comes out you'll be ready to upgrade and have dodged the iPhone 4 bullet.


    The "obvious antennae issues and proximity sensor issues" didn't exist on most iPhone 4s either. They have certainly never bothered my day 1 iPhone 4. Which is also faster than the 3GS, one reads.

    You really mustn't think the problems posted here are universal.
    iPhone 4 32GB iOS 4.2.1. Mac Pro. MacBook Pro 13"., Mac OS X (10.6.6)
  • diesel vdub Level 7 Level 7 (20,665 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 3:02 PM (in response to OSX-***)
    OSX-*** wrote:
    I would get the 3GS and get it refurbed from AT&T for like $10. Then when the next thing comes out you'll be ready to upgrade and have dodged the iPhone 4 bullet.



    Please explain.

    The only way to get an iPhone at any discounted price is to sign a 2yr contract. Are you saying that it will be 2yrs from today before Apple releases a new iPhone?

    Most people (with some common sense) accept that Apple releases new iPhones every year around June.

    So how exactly would someone buying a new or refurbished iPhone now under contract be ready to upgrade when the next iPhone comes out in about 3 months?

    Sorry, but there also is no iPhone4 bullet. There were some minor issues with the iPhone4 just like with every device. Apple has rectified those through software updates and frankly many of the users never experienced issues.
    3GS, iOS 4
  • OSX-*** Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 7:11 PM (in response to diesel vdub)
    Yes, of course you'd have to sign a contract to get a 3GS for $10 (unless you believe those new scammer auction sites popping up). The OP said he was considering a 3GS for $49, I am just trying to save him some money because some people don't know refurbs may be available.

    The title of the thread asks if the 3GS will be obsolete in 5 months and the answer is NO, and it won't be obsolete in 2 years either when the contract is up. Common sense should tell you the OP is NOT an early adopter so why would you assume he has to get the next iPhone in June and pay through the nose for it. What I mean about being ready for upgrade is you'll have some experience with the platform and there may be offers to take the 3GS as a trade-in. If he's considering a 3GS now, he'll probably be getting an iPhone5 about the same length of time after its release (after all the early adopters sort out the phone's problems).

    And yes there are actual problems with the iPhone4 that cannot be fixed because they are hardware problems. Sure band-aids are available but they aren’t fixes, fixes would require a recall/redesign. Apple changed the location of the proximity sensor, and this creates a problem for people who came from earlier iPhones. My Apple Genius friend had to reluctantly dump his iPhone4 because it kept hanging up on his billionaire boss who he has to fly all over the world (yes, he was a commercial pilot who quit to work at an Apple store and has now returned to work as a private pilot). Now he is breaking major Apple Fatwas and he owns a Windows Phone and is happy with it, go figure.

    These hardware issues are caused by poor design plain and simple and can’t be fixed with a software update. If you ask why wouldn’t there be a huge uproar and recall if there was a real problem (stock response), the answer is because the majority of people that use Apple products are Apple fans and overlook/forgive some of the imperfections because it has a lot of cool features that keep you distracted. To deny the facts that proximity sensor is in a new place and that I can ground out the antennae with the tip of my pinky finger and drop calls, is just lying to yourself. Bullet dodged, why must we have to rehash this in every thread..

    Please don’t come at me like a Scientologist about my opinion formed from actually use and research, I am just trying to help the OP. I just got my 3GS and I am happy and will be for 2 years with extra money in my savings.
    3GS, ?
  • smalcom Level 1 Level 1 (60 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 8:02 PM (in response to NortheastGuy)
    The next release of iOS is supposed to end support for the iPhone 3G. The current release of iOS ended support for the original iPhone. It appears that Apple does give us sufficient support for the phone's software.

    The other side of that coin is the popularity of a $49 iPhone. Until AT&T/Apple provide another one, I believe this one will stay around a while.
    hp Pavilion d4990y, Windows 7
  • diesel vdub Level 7 Level 7 (20,665 points)
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    Feb 17, 2011 8:09 PM (in response to OSX-***)
    I believe you completely missed my point.
    Your statement was:

    OSX-*** wrote:
    I would get the 3GS and get it refurbed from AT&T for like $10. Then when the next thing comes out you'll be ready to upgrade.


    The point I was making is, how exactly does one get a new phone now signing a 2yr contract and then be "ready to upgrade" in 3 months when the next thing (iPhone) is released? I am not making assumptions about the OP needing the latest and greatest, I am asking you to clarify your statement.

    I do understand what you are trying to say, but it's simply not clear to the casual reader. Instead you are implying that it's possible to upgrade after only 3 months under contract and that is simply not true.
    3GS, iOS 4

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