If you are due an upgrade and are now eagerly researching, then you will find this guide to buying smartphones handy, you will be absolutely spoilt for choice. There are hundreds of different options for you to choose from. However, before you venture into the market to buy a phone, you need to know a few things first.
Smartphones come in all shapes and sizes, so unless you have a very clear idea of what you are looking for, it is going to be very difficult for you to select the right device. You will generally be offered a choice of two options: either a carrier-locked phone or an unlocked device. There’s a major difference between the two.
Carrier locked phones can only be used on one particular contract. Carrier locked phones are also priced cheaper than unlocked devices. However, you need to be very careful when buying a carrier-locked device. Most carrier-locked devices come with a two year contract. Are you sure that you want to stick to the same carrier for the next couple of years?
If you are looking to get a phone on a budget, getting a carrier-locked phone might not be the best idea. Unlocked phones are often the preferred option as they provide greater freedom. Ok, here is a list of the latest and greatest smartphones available to buy right now:
The Google Nexus 6 starts from around 400 GBP. You could also get it from O2 for free if you purchase a new contract. The phone comes with a 6” screen and is equipped with the very best features. It is easily Google’s best ever device and is also the biggest.
The phone ships with the vanilla Android 5.0 Lollipop and has a resolution of 2560x1440 pixels. The screen itself is beautiful, with deep blacks and sharp colours. Given the fact that the size of the screen is pretty big, the phone makes for an excellent entertainment device. The QHD screen looks stunning whichever way you look at it. You can use the phone for watching movies, shows and playing games. It comes with 3 GB of RAM and is available with two storage options: 32GB and 64 GB.
If you are an Android fan and want a bigger device, the Google Nexus 6 is the perfect candidate. You will be the first to receive the latest updates from Google. However, the phone is pretty big in the hands. You will have to learn how to use the phone with two hands, so make sure you are fine with that.
The Google Nexus 6 is easily the best phone in the “phablet” category. It is a device made from premium materials, looks very sleek and has a svelte feel. Compared to the other Nexus devices that Google has manufactured in the past, this one stands out. It is easily the best device in the Nexus category, and can hold its own when pitted with some of the heavy hitters of 2015 too.
The Samsung Galaxy series is the best-selling line of smartphones in the world and it now includes the stunning Samsung Galaxy S6 and Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge. Samsung is undoubtedly the world leader in the market, and the Galaxy line leads the way. The company has beaten Apple’s iPhone for the past four years, and there are plenty of reasons why.
Nobody can deny the fact that Samsung has been innovating and introducing new features for the past several years. The Galaxy S6 is the greatest phone that Samsung has ever created, hands down. Moreover, it is available in two different variants; the S6 and the S6 Edge. The S6 Edge is easily the best looking device of the year.
It has a curved screen on one side that allows you to quickly view your contacts, notifications or even make a call. It is a completely unique concept that hasn’t been seen elsewhere. If you are looking for a stylish, long-lasting device, the Galaxy S6 is a great choice.
Samsung has ditched plastic this time around, so you don’t have to worry about the poor quality build either. The full metal Galaxy S6 looks stunningly sharp and is a joy to hold in the hands too. The phone has a 16 MP shooter, 3 GB of RAM and comes in three storage options: 32, 64 and 128 GB.
Unlike the previous devices, Samsung has ditched the Qualcomm Snapdragon processors for the Galaxy S6. Instead, the company has opted to put its faith in its own line of Exynos processors. Performance on Android Lollipop is snappy and animations are smooth. It comes with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection, so you don’t have to worry about scratches either. The Samsung Galaxy S6 retails for around 500 GBP (unlocked). However, it is worth every penny you pay for.
Steve Jobs’ policy of not producing phones bigger than the palm of your hand was finally thrown out as Apple relented to public pressure. The result was the iPhone 6 Plus, the first Apple device to go over the 5-inch mark. Compared to the iPhone 6, the 6 Plus is a huge upgrade.
Apart from the more powerful battery, the iPhone 6 Plus also comes with a bigger, better screen. The 5.5-inch screen has a full HD resolution and comes with 1 GB of RAM. The phone comes with three storage options: 16 GB/ 64 GB and 128 GB. There was a lot of public outcry on Apple’s storage choices. If you buy the 16 GB variant, you will only have around 5-6 GB of free space since the remaining will be taken up by the operating system.
The iPhone 6 Plus has an 8 MP rear camera and a 1.2 MP front camera. As is tradition, the iPhone 6 camera is a joy to use. It produces stunning pictures and video. It is easily one of the best devices in the market if you are looking for a phone that comes with a great camera.
Most people tend to compare the Apple iPhone with other high-end devices. Unfortunately, that’s not true. It’s similar to comparing apples to oranges. The Apple iPhone does not provide a lot of customization. However, the app support on iOS is easily one of the best. Many apps on the iPhone work better and faster as compared to their Android counterparts.
If you are an Apple fan, the iPhone 6 Plus is definitely one of the best phones. For the diehard Apple fan, the iPhone 6 Plus offers something that no other iPhone has yet to offer: a very good battery. The 2950 mAh battery can easily last you two days in one stretch. However, good things come at a price. The iPhone 6 Plus retails for around 540 GBP unlocked and approximately 150 GBP on a contract.
The LG G3 was one of the biggest names in the market when it was released last year. Not only did it put LG in the top 5 smartphones category, but it also proved that the company was making headway when it came to innovation. The sleek back and the unique button designs had people raving. It was one of the most beautiful looking devices of the past year and was also the most powerful.
This year, LG has built on its success by introducing the LG G4. The G4 comes with a 5.5-inch capacitive touch screen and has no buttons on the front or the sides. The screen has a pixel density of 538 ppi, making it one of the best looking screens right now. The phone has a 16 MP camera that takes stunning pictures and records video in full HD. The front camera is an 8 MP shooter, which is perfect for people who like taking front portraits.
The LG G4 is easily one of the best devices in the market right now. The phone is powered by a Quad-core 1.44 GHz processor and an Adreno 418 GPU. For an avid mobile gamer, this is an excellent phone. It is powered by a 3,000 mAh battery that charges very fast. You can get a 60% charge in less than 30 minutes, thanks to LG’s proprietary technology. The LG G4 is definitely a high-end device and commands a hefty price too. You could get an unlocked version for around 470 GBP through Amazon.
The Smartphones Guide of 2016?
These are easily the best devices on the market. However, there are many other devices in the market too. If you don’t want to waste a lot of money on a mobile device, you could also opt for the Moto G. The Moto G is the slightly cheaper variant of the Moto X, which was one of the major surprises of last year.
It is a budget phone that gives you a limited set of features, but it provides excellent value for money. There are many outlets all over the UK from where you can purchase a phone. If you don’t want to venture out, you could just place an order from Amazon. Or, you could purchase a phone through your local carriers, such as Three, Orange, Vodafone or O2.
Other leading smartphones we make custom accessories for: Blackberry | HTC | Sony