I currently have an HTC Evo 4G and I'm hopping between Deck's Reloaded (Gingerbread) and Mazwoz Evo (Jellybean), and while it's not a bad phone, it's kinda falling apart. My contract is actually up March 3rd, and on that day, I intend to leave Sprint.
What I'm looking for is a phone that is about (guidlines; not laws, unless bolded)
5" Screen (give or take half an inch; a "Phablet" if you will),
16:10 aspect ratio (I don't like how 16:9 feels in portrait on large phones; ex Note 2)
720p or greater
Dual-core 1.2 GHz+ with a newer architecture (ARM Cortex A9+, Krait, etc.)
Zero Shutter lag camera (5MP or better; more concerned with image quality vs pixels)
affordability - $400-$500 (no contract/unlocked); willing to pay more if phone necessitates
Dev support (ie custom roms - Android) or clean efficient stock operating system (maybe Firefox OS?) that can "tether", or share network acess to a computer
Expandable storage is a plus, but I don't see myself using more than 16GB. I would say I would like a removable battery, but I'm more concerned with phone lock ups (flash whore here), vs expanding the battery. If the phone has a way to hard shut down in case of lock up, then I don't care if the battery is removable or not. I'd also prefer it to have compatability with T-Mobile's network, or a network that offers unlimited, unthrottled data for $60 or less.
I think the international Galaxy Note (GT-N7000) fits the bill well, but I have conerns about compatability. It's NOT 3G compatible with Simple Mobile (T-mobile) as they utilize the 1700MHz band, but I think T-mobile itself utilizes 1900MHz as well, so I'm not 100% if it will work with T-mobile.
Just making sure I have considered all the options. I did look at the LG Optimus G, and more or less liked it, but there wasn't any dev support. I just want some more options before I make a decision.