The Unofficial Mobile Phone Buying Guide
The Mobile phone industry is now absolutely huge, as is the market.
With Apple and Android going head-to-head to dominate the world the deals you can get on Mobile phones are getting better and better!
Mobile phones are literally bigger than Jesus...Perhaps even bigger than the US...Definitely bigger than Sinclair, and probably France too.
So, now you need to know what phone to buy! Out of the thousands of phones, which is the one for you?
Or more precise, which is least rubbish?
What choice do I have?
- Samsung have a large range of mainly Android Operated Smart phones now, including the Galaxy range. Samsung also sell phones with a Windows operating system.
- Motorola are now up and coming in the world of Smart-Phones, and once again they have the Android Operating system.
- HTC, a reasonably new brand compared to the others, sell a small but popular range of Smart-Phones using, once again, Android!
- LG also sell a few Android Smart Phones.
- If you want to push the boat out and get something more expensive you could go for an iPhone.
- Sony Ericsson are a dwindling star in the Smart-Phone business, but they still do sell in reasonably big numbers.
- Again, dwindling in sales but still massive are Nokia, you could play it safe and get one of these...
- Or you could be exactly the same as everyone else and get a Blackberry...
- There are many, many more Smart Phones available, far too many to mention, but above are the biggest sellers.
Samsung has one of the largest range of Smart-Phones currently available in the UK. Most are Android operated, but some are Windows, and a few are using the Bada Operating system.
So what could you have? Well firstly there is the massive Samsung Galaxy Range, which includes the Galaxy S, Galaxy Pro, Galaxy Mini, Galaxy Fit, Galaxy Europa, Galaxy S II, Galaxy Gio, Galaxy Portal, and the Galaxy Apollo.
All of these are pretty mid-ranged phones, and generally quite popular.
However the most popular from the range are the Galaxy S/S II and the Galaxy Mini.
The Galaxy S II is more expensive, but as a result a little better...In ways anyway. It sports an 8MP camera, Android OS, with 150,000 downloadable apps to satisfy your most likely very geeky nature and to fill the hours of disappointing loneliness and mild depression you will experience from owning an Android phone. But that's fine 'cause it's Android...Right? Unfortunately though (or fortunately, if you like that sort of thing) it's the size of a small continent. Entire countries will be dwarfed by the size of this handset.
The Galaxy Mini, assuming you haven't clicked on yet, is smaller, hence the name Mini. Generally it is regarded as 'okay' within the smart-phone community. However the screen is pretty crap, as is the Camera.
It also feels like it was made entirely out of the Dash of an old Ford Escort. It feels cheap, is what I'm saying.
So if you must have a Samsung, prepare to settle for less, or get your wallet out, then get on your knees.
It's the best option.
When I said Motorola the first thing that popped into your head was the Razr, admit it! A phone so popular yet so rubbish it was more ideally suited to being used as an actual Razor.
But now Motorola has released a few Smart Phones, the most important being the Defy.
The Defy is described as being indestructible, impervious to water and shocks. It does not say however that it is indestructible against fire or nuclear strikes. So take THAT Motorola.
Whilst nuclear strikes aren't a problem for most of us, water is. It can withstand at least 10 minutes of being submerged in water without being damaged or destroyed. Which is good, if you're clumsy. Like me. Not that I've dropped phones in tea twice or anything!
Generally it is a good all round phone. Not amazing, not terrible.
But however amazing the phone is, will you ever be able to shake it's reputation as a company who's most successful product was just the Razr? Probably not.
Okay, I'll admit, I own a HTC; the Wildfire S. It's my first android phone, but I probably won't be entirely biased about it in conjunction to other phones. Possibly.
HTC is a reasonably new brand that have come from China. In the last few years they've really made a big name for themselves within the Smart Phone market.
They sell many, many handsets, including the Wildfire, Desire/ Desire S/ Desire HD, Trophy, Mozart, Smart 7, ChaCha, etc.
The Wildfire S is, for an entry level Smart-Phone, quite good. It's quite quick, but not as fast as it's rivals. The screen is generally quite clear and the camera is of acceptable quality.
Of course what I WANT to say is that it's amazing, and that it dwarfs even the mighty iPhone, that it could be the solution to all of life's problems and could quite literally cure aids. But it's only a phone, so lets just leave that there. Out of all entry level Smart-Phones it's one of the better ones
The Cha Cha is essentially a Blackberry with Android. It looks...Hideous. But as far as I'm aware is more efficient than a Blackberry, whilst not as efficient as other Android phones.
The Desire HD, one of the many of the Desire series (They're very similar to Samsungs, in my own personal opinion), is huge. Seriously huge. It's about the same size as the Galaxy S II and we've already established that that phone in particular dwarfs Europe.
It's very fast speed wise, like the Galaxy S II, the screen is very clear. But whilst also being massive and pretty good, the price tag is similar to that of the channel tunnel.
Still cheaper than an iPhone though.
Let's face it, in the world of Smart-Phones, ever since the Viewty, LG Phones have been a joke.
That's mainly because the LG Viewty was the worst phone since...Well ever.
But now, feast your phone hungry eyes on their new range of Phones!
Their range includes the GT540, the mighty Optimus, and the lowly Viewty Snap (Not to be confused with the wretched abomination that was the regular Viewty)
The LG Optimus is very similar to Samsung's Omnia 7 Windows phone, that is it runs on a Windows Operating System...If you hadn't gathered that already.
Before I carry on, I should note, this phone, like the Omnia and Galaxy, is huge. Massive. Humongous. There are planets that would tremble in it's shiny wake. It's also very expensive. Like, £450 expensive, which could buy you a Windows Laptop. A good one too.
So what do you get for your money?
Well you get a 5.0MP camera and an impressive 16GB of internal storage, but no SD card can be used in conjunction with the device, it's the same with the Omnia except it only has 8GB of storage, which may present a problem if you like your music.
In a strange twist of fate, LG have actually made a phone that not only is good, is better than it's main rival, Samsung. Miracle?
You still have to pay enough to fund NASA for 10 years though...
Now for the Viewty Snap. Honestly, it's rubbish. Okay, maybe it's not that bad, it does have some...Slightly impressive features, but for the same money you could have a better phone with an Android O.S. or a Nokia, or two tins connected by a piece of string...Anything really.
If you haven't heard of, seen the iPhone or had to listen to some jerk talk constantly about how amazing it is, then you've in all likelihood spend the last 4 years under a rock in Iceland.
Yes, the Apple iPhone is one of the best selling, most powerful, and most famous phones of the last 10 years.
But why are they so popular? Maybe Steve Jobs activated all the phones' inbuilt mind control device to make everyone buy more of his products including every model released? No?
Maybe they're just good. Maybe we should listen to the Hipster jerk talk about them?
Well what do you get for your...£500?!?!
You get a 5.0MP Camera, Hardware, iTunes, and...Well the basic phone features. Nothing remotely special.
Oh apart from the fact that the phone you own, you don't own. That's right, you pay £500 to basically use the phone. All you own is the hardware, not the software, and that's the important bit! The rest is pretty useless without it. So at any time, Steve can turn your phone off, just because he doesn't like you or your face.
Okay, now the good stuff. It's got a great screen, is pretty powerful and does every task really well. It's difficult to find fault with the iPhone as a phone or media player. It is pretty big too, but no bigger than the Samsung Omnia or LG Optimus, and in all honesty, you do get more than the two.
Plus the App store is very extensive, containing every application known to man.
BUT, and here's the clincher, once you do own the phone, you disappear up your own anus, and will forever on talk constantly about yourself and your iPhone in perfect harmony.
Ah, remember the good ol' days with the T610 and K750i, when all Sony Ericsson's worked and were better than almost all other phones?
Now pretty much nobody has one. Okay, a fair few people do, but not nearly in the number that it was in 2006/2007. But it's not hard to see why, since now all Sony Ericsson's are rubbish in comparison to it's competitors.
Well the range now, mainly consists of the Xperia including the X8, X10, Arc and Play.
Let's start with the X8. It's a decent enough phone I suppose. But I just don't know what so say about it..Other than, it's a phone. There is nothing remotely special or exciting about the X8, at all. It's got a decent screen, if a bit small, and it looks pretty attractive compared with the horrible but similar X10 Mini. The camera is and average 3.2MP, which is rubbish when compared to the 5-8 offered by other phones. It's an average phone, which leads to you to ask, why bother? Why not get something better for the money, something exciting. Probably because it's quite reliable, like a German car. Boring as hell, modest and average looking, but man is it reliable...Actually, it won't stop working.
X10, okay the Xperia X10 is another from the SE range. It's a bigger version than the X8, and once again, is nothing special. It's camera is very good however, as most SE's tend to be the best for cameras.
There is another X10 version though, the mini.
The X10 mini is very similar to the X8 but has a slide out keyboard! It also has a better camera. Other than that it's just 3 inches of phone. Nothing more, nothing less.
At least it's cheap at only £160.
Now that's destroyed my will to live, let's carry on, shall we?
Nokia have been around since the late 19th Century. They're very, very old. They've been making Mobile phones for a long time now too.
Their range is pretty extensive too, with, over 100 products. Seriously!
But the ones you, I'm sure, will be interested in are the N8, X7, C7, and N97, but sales are slowly dropping because of Android and iPhones taking the spotlight.
Let's start with the N8. Generally it's regarded as a pretty good phone. With the Ovi Store providing all the Apps you'll ever need, a 12MP camera(!!!) and a nice clear interface it's very user friendly and minimalistic!
It also feels quite nice, being made out of Aluminium and all, a rare feature amongst phones today. I don't quite know what else to say about the N8, it's just a good phone. It does the job well, maybe not as fast as some of it's rivals, but still very well nether the less. As Nokia's tend to be, it's costs a fair wedge but other than that complaints are few and far between.
The X7 is the latest phone to appear from Nokia's secret factory, and it, specs wise, is pretty impressive. With an 8MP camera, decent storage space and the latest Symbian software it's off to a good start, and it should be at £350!
Although don't expect it to be pretty. It's actually very...very ugly. In fact it looks like a cross between a 1970's doomsday device and a mirror. After 10 minutes of use you're likely to go blind in one eye and start vomiting profusely.
But other than that, the phone looks set to impress. Being new, there aren't many reviews out there for the X7, but just watch this space...
Now for the Nokia C7. It's effectively the same as the X7, and N8. It has an 8MP camera and a pretty good screen. It has the very same operating system in the X7 and N8 too...So there really isn't much to write home about.
The N97 seems to be Nokia's flagship model, or seemed to be before the N8 showed up. Now the N97 is a bit of old news. It, like the Sony Ericsson X10 Mini has a slide out Keyboard as well as a touchscreen and a 5MP camera.
Right...That's really it. All Nokia's are pretty much the same! But importantly, they all work, and work well. Why they're falling in sales is a mystery and isn't at the same time.
They're the safe bet. Phones which work well, but nothing special.
I wasn't looking forward to writing this one. For many reasons, but mainly because I hate Blackberry's with a passion. But I'm sure this won't affect the review...
Blackberry's used to be focused on the business industry, but now their appeal has shifted to teenage girls and the like.
You have a few options within Blackberry's range. The Torch and the Bold mainly though.
The Blackberry Torch is the company's only touch screen phone, but also has a slide-out Qwerty keyboard. It also weighs the same as an aircraft carrier. It's very heavy for a phone, but in all it looks pretty attractive, although the keyboard is just too far set back, and it interferes with the usability of the phone in some respects. Generally it's an easy phone to use. It's attractive and the screen, whilst not as clear as it's rivals, isn't bad.The camera is pretty good too. In all it's a begrudgingly good Blackberry.
The Bold is the best selling Blackberry to date (probably) and the latest version is, like the torch, not unattractive.
Okay the screen is very small compared with most other phones, but most of the face of the phone is taken up with it's mighty keyboard with the fiddliest keys known to man. Using the keyboard with fat thumbs (like me) is an impossibility.
But it's pretty quick and does the job well enough to be a consideration when buying your next phone.
See that wasn't biased was it?
But the bad points - A lot of people complain about Blackberry's not being very reliable. Now, having never owned one I couldn't say if this was true, but the type of people who buy Blackberry's moan CONSTANTLY about everything anyway. Just sayin'.
So iPhone owners are self-obsessed.
Android users never emerge from playing games and downloading apps.
Blackberry users are never satisfied.
Nokia users are boring (Or according to the adverts usually in the forest.) And so on and so forth.
Most Smart-Phones are exactly the same really. Don't want to pay a lot of money don't expect a lot. If you're prepared to go the extra mile cash wise, well then you can start to expect a lot from your phone.
Just don't plan to see many of your friends any time soon. You'll never emerge from your handset.
Now did that help?
No? Ah well ;)
More by this Author
Jaguar XJ40 ZAZ 966 Charles Rolls, shortly before he was killed. Vauxhall Belmont. Note: Lack of 'Joy' Volvo P1800 Chrysler Turbine The Chrysler Turbine's adapted Jet Engine The HUGE Dodge Power Wagon NSU Ro...
You use it...Probably. I use it. It's everywhere. On every web-page. In every business. Half a billion people have one. On average people spend 700 billion minutes on it a month. Facebook is everywhere. It's slowly...
Currently there is nearly 10,000 miles of track, serving 2,500 stations in the United Kingdom. Based on this, it's pretty likely you have a train station near you right now. The Infrastructure consists...