Shopping for a new smartphone can take quite some time and may prove to be a challenging endeavour simply because there are so many models to choose from. Besides brand and budget, you also need to consider the operating system as well as the reason for which you need a replacement. Are you looking for an upgrade for your pay-as-you-go smartphone, or are you interested in a new phone on a contract? No matter the reason there's a smartphone out there for all needs.
From small devices that fit well into your pocket to phablets that can quickly fill your need for a phone and a tablet at the same time, there are thousands of options available out there, so keep reading for the best tips on buying the best mobile phone for you.
The main features you need to look for when shopping for a new smartphone include size, brand, speed, camera, and operating system. You also need to consider what kind of applications you intend to use on your new device and whether you want 4G connectivity to access the internet on the go. Some other aspects to think about include the possibility of filming a 4K video with your device, as well as a waterproof build to make sure your gadget doesn't get damaged in the rain or if you drop it in water.
For many people, the software platform for their new phone is the main choice they must make when buying a new handset. The main fight is between iOS and Android because these are two of the most popular operating systems on the market and most phones run on them.
These two platforms are actually more similar than ever because each of them has been borrowing from the other over the years. Most of your favourite apps such as Spotify, Facebook, Netflix, and Google products will run just fine on both operating systems.
If you want to be able to customise your mobile phone experience, Android remains the best choice for that. This operating system allows you to use widgets and revamp all your icons to create a truly personalised interface, something that is harder to do with iPhones. On the other hand, if you own other Apple devices, an iPhone would allow you to sync your phone with your laptop or Apple Watch.
Finally, there are other operating systems to consider besides iOS and Android, with some popular ones being Windows and BlackBerry phones. While there are not many phones that use these operating systems, you may find them useful especially if you want to transfer your Windows experience from your PC or laptop to your phone.
Smartphones have become bigger and bigger over the years, and it is not uncommon these days to find a device that resembles a small tablet. When choosing the right size, think about the way you intend to use your phone. If you only needed for making calls and to check the odd email, you may do well with a pocket size phone that allows for enhanced mobility. However, if you need a smartphone with a screen size that lets you play games or watch videos comfortably, look for a larger display of up to 6 inches. Bear in mind, however, that this kind of phone may not fit well into your pockets.
You'll also have to choose between a pay-as-you-go and contract option when shopping for a new smartphone. If you don't need a lot of data or you don't call and text too much, a pay-as-you-go phone the right choice for you. However, if you browse the internet a lot and need to make a lot of phone calls every month, you may want to go with a contract phone.
Determining the price range is the next step, but keep in mind that some smartphones are subsidised when you purchase them along with the phone carrier contract. In some cases, you will need to pay your monthly device fee or an upfront sum for your handset as part of your contract.
iOS phones are generally more expensive than Android handsets, but this is not always the case, so it's important to shop around for the best offers and prices before committing to a contract.
The storage space you need depends on how many photos, videos, and songs you intend to keep on your device. Most phones come with at least 16 GB of storage space, but you can go for up to 128 GB if you want to shoot a lot of video in 4K or if you have an extensive music collection. Some of the smartphones available on the market allow you to extend the storage space with a microSD card so you can get up to 512 GB of storage on your handset.
The quality of the camera matters a lot if you want to take lots of snaps on your trips or many selfies when you go out with your friends. The megapixel count is important, and you should go for the largest one possible. In addition, you also need to have a look at how the camera performs in low light, and consider features such as brightness, noise reduction, and ISO.
Most smartphones feature both front and rear facing cameras, and some of them may support lens attachments and other kinds of third-party add-ons.
Finally, take a look at the battery life of your phone, especially if you are a heavy user. The average smartphone battery life is anywhere between 8 and 18 hours, and some Android models come with replaceable batteries. If you want to be able to charge your phone quicker, look for a model that provides users with the possibility of fast charging. In the end, your usage habits dictate how long the battery of your phone will last.
Whether this is your first smartphone or you are a veteran user, doing your homework before you buy will help you get just the right one for your needs. Shopping online is a great way to compare different models from different brands, all from the comfort of home.