Basic Problems with Ally as a phone

This is a discussion on Basic Problems with Ally as a phone within the LG Ally Help forums, part of the LG Ally category; Okay we finally made the leap from a flip phone to the Ally. Boy, are we having problems. We’re just about ready to scrap it ...

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Thread: Basic Problems with Ally as a phone

  1. #1
    Android Lurker DennisD's Avatar
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    Okay we finally made the leap from a flip phone to the Ally.



    Boy, are we having problems.



    We’re just about ready to scrap it and go back to the flip phone.



    Here are our problems – hopefully some of you have some ideas on how we can solve them.



    Any help would be greatly appreciated.







    1. We can only make 1 or 2 calls before the phone locks up, won't end the call and we have to cycle power to reset it. This makes the phone virtually unusable as a phone.



    2. Battery runs down while the phone is barely used. One call in the morning and one in the afternoon and the battery is virtually dead. The rest of the day the phone is setting idle. We tried stopping services and that helps, but they just start back up by themselves when we aren't using the phone and whenever we reboot the phone they’re right back again.



    3. We typically shut the phone down at night and let our calls go to voice mail. Unfortunately we also charge the phone at night, and once you plug the phone in, it turns itself on and will not power down as long as it is plugged in. This is just weird.



    4. Verizon Voicemail does not end a call properly. Occasionally, while driving, we will call voice mail and not realize it. We set the phone down and don’t hear Verizon repeatedly asking for our password. After a few times Verizon gives up and terminates the call. Unfortunately our phone doesn’t recognize that the call has ended and locks up. At this point you can push the button to end the call but nothing happens – the phone thinks that the call is still in progress. The only solution is to reboot the phone.



    5. Can’t see the screen while you are on a call. The screen blanks after a few seconds and you have to do something on the screen to get it to reappear enough so that you can see the screen and either mute, go to speaker, or end the call (if you can end it that is). This is definitely not a phone to be used by one hand.







    In general the phone is fun to use and the keyboard is a big plus, but as a phone it has serious human engineering problems. From the other posts I see on this forum the OS is very unstable, buggy and not user friendly. Unfortunately the only other option I see out there is the iPhone and it only has a virtual keyboard which is why we have the Ally.







    If we can’t get past these problems soon we will have to ditch it for a phone that works as a phone. It would be nice to have all the other features that the Ally provides, but not if we can’t use it as a phone.







    Please help.







    Thanks,



    - Dennis




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  3. #2
    Android Sr Member Intrimazz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennisD View Post
    Okay we finally made the leap from a flip phone to the Ally.



    Boy, are we having problems.



    We’re just about ready to scrap it and go back to the flip phone.



    Here are our problems – hopefully some of you have some ideas on how we can solve them.



    Any help would be greatly appreciated.







    1. We can only make 1 or 2 calls before the phone locks up, won't end the call and we have to cycle power to reset it. This makes the phone virtually unusable as a phone.



    2. Battery runs down while the phone is barely used. One call in the morning and one in the afternoon and the battery is virtually dead. The rest of the day the phone is setting idle. We tried stopping services and that helps, but they just start back up by themselves when we aren't using the phone and whenever we reboot the phone they’re right back again.



    3. We typically shut the phone down at night and let our calls go to voice mail. Unfortunately we also charge the phone at night, and once you plug the phone in, it turns itself on and will not power down as long as it is plugged in. This is just weird.



    4. Verizon Voicemail does not end a call properly. Occasionally, while driving, we will call voice mail and not realize it. We set the phone down and don’t hear Verizon repeatedly asking for our password. After a few times Verizon gives up and terminates the call. Unfortunately our phone doesn’t recognize that the call has ended and locks up. At this point you can push the button to end the call but nothing happens – the phone thinks that the call is still in progress. The only solution is to reboot the phone.



    5. Can’t see the screen while you are on a call. The screen blanks after a few seconds and you have to do something on the screen to get it to reappear enough so that you can see the screen and either mute, go to speaker, or end the call (if you can end it that is). This is definitely not a phone to be used by one hand.







    In general the phone is fun to use and the keyboard is a big plus, but as a phone it has serious human engineering problems. From the other posts I see on this forum the OS is very unstable, buggy and not user friendly. Unfortunately the only other option I see out there is the iPhone and it only has a virtual keyboard which is why we have the Ally.







    If we can’t get past these problems soon we will have to ditch it for a phone that works as a phone. It would be nice to have all the other features that the Ally provides, but not if we can’t use it as a phone.







    Please help.







    Thanks,



    - Dennis


    Firstly, welcome to the wonderful world of Android and Smartphones and to the LG Forums!



    GoTo settings>about phone>system updates

    and be sure you have the latest software on the phone.



    One thing you must realize about all smartphones (esp Androids): The Nature of the OS (operating system) is to be as seamless as possible when task-switching and multi-tasking, so apps will run in the background until you force close them manually either in the Apps management field or via a useful task killer app. Also, with Android and a smartphone, YOU are the CEO. You decide what apps you want to run, hide, move, delete, etc So go to Menu>settings and become intimately familiar with every option your phone features. You WILL be constantly killing apps. This is not a bug. This is the way of life with a smartphone. It is a more of a mini-computer than a fancy digital handset your flip-phone used to be and yes, 2 hands are better than one.



    Secondly, there was a bad batch of LG Allys made a few months after the initial release due to demand that many users purchased and are now in circulation either as pre-certified used, or Used at discounted prices (not NIB from Manufacturer) that has hurt the Ally in ratings and satisfied customers. I always urge prospective users interested in this phone to make sure to get the NIB (new in box sealed) Ally or a used one that was released prior to August 2010 for a better chance of getting a good phone that doesn't lock up at all or have any odd issues that are not included in the initial release. As for #5, yea that is a popular gripe, holding it away from your face and tilting a bit it will show the screen once more.



    As far as I know, all the latest smartphones remain on when charging, but there are options to keep them silent. Loading a black or dark home screen and keeping the brightness to the lowest setting, or using a handkerchief and draping it over the phone can help if the light bothers you. My husband charges his Palm Pre Plus in the living room for this reason. Also, try in settings>applications>development> uncheck Stay awake then when you dock the phone to charge, click the end button.



    EDIT UPDATE Feb 4th: worked for me last night - the screen remained black - just the red LED light was lit as it charged.



    I've had mine since May 2010 and have outstanding call quality - esp the speakerphone both in hearing and being heard. It rarely locks up (once every few months) and that is when I have way too many browser windows and apps open at once. If after killing apps that you are not using, it still locks up, you might have a bad batch one. Go to Verizon and ask for a replacement and hope it is not another one from the same batch. My husband's Palm Pre Plus has a sound issue that is known and has his replaced every month.



    Apps that are essentially required for optimized Android usage: Click the Market icon to find them.



    Advanced Task Killer (Free or paid) : this will FC (force close) all the apps in the background that are battery drains when you are not using them with the push of 2 buttons (the apps icon and the button to force close the apps it lists - you can select which ones to close before you hit the kill button) Some, however, are a bit more persistent like radio.com and I have to FC them in the settings>manage apps>running services>force stop.

    Skyfire browser (free)

    AVG Anti-virus (free or paid)



    Bonus useful apps:

    Home++ Menu or LauncherPro for a more user friendly and customizable home screen experience





    There are more apps I could list and I am sure others can too, but I didn't want you to be inundated right away - we have threads dedicated to apps discussion. These were just to get you started. Posters, please refrain from hijacking & making this an app discussion.



    Motorola Devour (Android 1.6), Droid R2D2, Droid 2 and Droid Pro also have physical keyboards (Android 2.2 with Adobe Flash - aka FroYo), tho I am partial to the LG Ally's kb - imo, it is the kb all QWERTY phones should emulate.





    a side note: LG Ally was LG's first USA smartphone - I am looking forward to seeing the LG Revolution - tho I wish they had kept the physical keyboard

  4. #3
    Android Lurker AllyLover's Avatar
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    Try downloading the Free Advanced App Manager....it kills apps that you select when you want/ set them to. & all ally's don't stay off when plugged in to charge. I'm not sure why it does that but that's for all of them. Same goes for the screen going black while making a call. Just push the unlock button for it to light back up. No biggie. As for the other problems about calls & your phone locking up, I'm not sure why that's happening... it could be just a phone error & you may want to go to the verizon store & ask them about it. Hope this helps

  5. #4
    Android Lurker delzche's Avatar
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    I've had some of the same problems sincethe update. I will start to touch my screen and it will go black, can't receive calls or text. Will be making an appearance at the local Verizon store at 3pm.

  6. #5
    Android Addict Qasar324's Avatar
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    Did you ever do a factory reset? I assume your phone got the FroYo (2.2) update right away. At the bottom of About Phone will be your SW version. It should be ZVD. A factory reset has helped many with problems that have surfaced since the update. Your descriptions are similar to those problems.



    1. Have you checked the box for "Power Button hangs up calls" under Settings > Accessibility? This is a new option since FroYo.



    2. Are you using the Power Widget? This is the easy way to ensure GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi, Sync and Brightness are not running when they are not needed.



    Check Running Services and see if there are somethings making big demands on the phone. Removing resource-hog programs could also free up RAM so you experience less freezes. An example, the stupid Market widget was using 9+MB of RAM on my phone. Removing the widget gave me back those RAM.



    3. This is normal and universal to Android as far as I know. It is probably a managing resources thing. My phone charges under my bed so I don't have to look at the Status light. My phone is still loud enough as an alarm.



    4. There are new green and red backgrounds in the Phone App. How are you hanging up the call? I use the End button and the screen flashes a red background. The End button on the screen, not the Power button (see the option mentioned above). Also, there should be a green phone icon in your Status Notification Bar when you are on a call.



    For switching Apps while on a call, avoid the proximity sensor and use the Home key to get back to your home screens. Also, holding down the home key will show your last 8 Apps used.



    5. The proximity sensor is just to the right of the Verizon logo. If you cover the sensor, the phone thinks you are holding the phone to your ear and turns off the ability to touch the screen with your cheek. Pulling the phone down from your ear or removing obstruction of light reaching the sensor should automatically turn the screen back on. When I first started with this phone, this was a pain but I got used to it. The sensor will also turn off the screen if you are dialing a number and you shadow the sensor, like if you dial in an "OK" hand gesture rather than tucking your other fingers into your palm.



    One note about App Killers- They are not necessary, IMO. For those who know how to use them, they can be useful tools. For others they are a source of other problems, like terminating programs that are necessary for full functions on the phone. Most commonly, people forget to remove Alarms from the App Killer so the alarm is terminated by the App Killer and never goes off. Or, widgets are never updated because they are interrupted. Your phone already has the ability to force close Apps without App Killers. If you need, you can create a shortcut on your home screen. I suggest only FCing Apps that are showing problems. FCing all Apps when your screen goes off leads to more problems. For example, some Apps will start and stop on their own. This is how they are intended to be used. To interrupt them can lead to instability.

  7. #6
    Android Sr Member Intrimazz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qasar View Post
    Did you ever do a factory reset? I assume your phone got the FroYo (2.2) update right away. At the bottom of About Phone will be your SW version. It should be ZVD. A factory reset has helped many with problems that have surfaced since the update. Your descriptions are similar to those problems.



    1. Have you checked the box for "Power Button hangs up calls" under Settings > Accessibility? This is a new option since FroYo.


    I feel dumb for not thinking about this forgot all about that feature tho I saw it right after I did the manual LG update

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