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Article 2: Smartphones
The smartphone revolution started decades ago. Phones were initially capable of using the Internet to send and receive emails, search the Internet and had a bunch of preloaded apps for social networking. However, times have changed. In the last 5-10 years, smartphones have grown to what they are today, thin slabs of technological marvel.
And it's the end of 2014: a year when smartphones became more popular then ever, and at the same time, more affordable.
Coming to the top smartphones, here are the list of the most worthy, value of money pieces of portable tech...
1. iPhone 6 Plus
- OIS in the camera, producing the highest quality of full HD video. There is also time-lapse and 240 fps slo-mo built in.
- The display is a beast: full HD 5.5” Retina display.
- The processor, Apple’s custom made A8 chip paired with the M8 Motion Coprocessor provide huge performance even under heavy load.
- A battery that lasts 2 days.
- Apple Pay (limited to certain countries).
Hands down, it is one of the most successful phones of 2014. It broke all records; being the largest and the most powerful iPhone in the stable. It largely defines the future iPhones with its slim profile, full HD 5.5” display and outstanding performance benchmarks. Games play flawless, apps run smoothly, multitasking is child’s play and the camera is outstanding.
I wouldn’t have expected Apple to enter the phablet category ever. But its all changed now. If you want a serious phablet, the (second) best option to go with is the iPhone 6 Plus. The phone has been quiet controversial due to the protruding camera lens and the ‘bendgate’ issue. But nothing has stopped it from becoming the popular device… Well, and iPhone is an iPhone!
US$ 299.99 to US$ 799.99
2. Galaxy Note 4
- Outstanding multitasking features, including multi-window support and the ultra productive S Pen.
- Amazing 4k video capture using the 16 MP camera
- Smooth performance overall, with great specs: Dual quad core processors paired with 3 GB RAM
The Note 4 is the only 'pure' phablet with the best multitasking features. The custom Android experience has a load of in built features to make your life super productive: everything from note making to multiple apps running side by side.
The largest con of the phone is the build quality. Samsung hasn’t done its best to give the Note 4 a premium feel in the hand. The other con would probably be the largely hated TouchWiz interface, due to which it will receive late Android updates
If you need a phone that will manage all your work, and still have space for more, there is no reason why one shouldn’t pick up this phone.
US$ 299.99 to US$ 749.99
3. Moto G 2nd Gen
- Value for money package
- Almost stock android experience, so first in line to get updates.
- Great phone for everyday usage
If you are looking for a budget phone under Rs. 15,000, the sure shot choice is the Moto G 2nd Gen. The phone runs a quad core processor over the Snapdragon 400 chipset and is a pretty smooth, “usable” phone. Obviously, its not a benchmark performer but does everyday jobs well. A great overall package.
Price: Rs. 12,999
4. HTC One M8
- Build quality, with the aluminium finish
- BoomSound speakers, some of the best in its class
- all-new dual 13MP camera setup which adds depth information into the images to enable a whole new level of smartphone photography
The HTC One M8 is regarded to be the best feeling phone in the hand. The phone grips just great in the hand and the aluminium back gives it a serious premium look. HTC has also done great work in the photography segment producing some great shots. The phone is a best buy for 2014 with the “good at everything” tag.
US$ 99.99 to US$ 899.99
5. OnePlus One
- Great developer options and software experience with CyanogenMod running out of the box.
- Powerful phone at an affordable price.
If you are an android developer and want a phone that you can carry everyday an yet be able to exploit the phone’s ROM freely, the OnePlus is for you. The phone has great build quality and top-notch specs. The phone runs CyanogenMod 11S out of the box (as of now, might change). The best phone for an Android developer, though you need to be lucky to win an invite to buy the phone.
Price: Rs. 21,999
And those were the top 5... but the list isn’t over yet! Honourable mentions include:
- Nexus 6: killer phone with a huge 5.9” screen and the best Android experience
- iPhone 6: the alternative to the 6 Plus if you don’t want a phablet
- Sony Xperia Z3 and Z3 compact: Top spec phones with great build quality, especially water resistant. 21 MP Exmor optics generates DSLR quality pictures.
- Moto X: A very responsive phone overall, with touch-less interaction using sensors and microphone
- LG G3: A screen that will leave you astounded!
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