Great screen, Low price, Blazing performance
Although the issues we take with the Nexus 5 are considerable, they're not enough to keep us from recommending this device.
One of the issues we have, which is the lackluster camera, might be resolved with a software fix. And even if it were a minor fix, it's not so bad that you'll never be able to take good photos with it.
What really gets us here is what we're not used to seeing, and that's a device with these kinds of specs at this price point.
Impressively spec'd smartphone at a bargain price
Last year's Nexus 4 had great-sounding specs on paper but the choice of the hardware components wasn't as flawless. The screen had poor contrast and washed-out colors, the camera wasn't up to scratch and the white paint job came well after the black version. Yet, for that price then, no other premium smartphone was even in the same conversation.
Great features at a low price with no contract commitment
The Nexus 5 isn't the best smartphone on the market. In fact, there isn't a "best phone", because folks' needs are different: some want a small phone, others want lots of software features and still others want a phablet or a pen. The Nexus 5 is undoubtedly the best smartphone you can buy for just $349 full retail. It has a great mix of features for the price including a very fast CPU, a sharp full HD IPS display and the promise of always running the latest OS.
Value for money, display, lots of power, Android KitKat brings some exciting new elements
There's a lot packed into the Nexus 5, particularly given the £299 and £339 pricepoints for 16GB and 32GB respectively. For that money, you get a display that rivals devices that cost some £200 more, and a chipset that is, in many cases, more powerful. In addition to that, you have a Nexus device, meaning it's uncluttered by bloat and first in line for Android updates.
Great camera with 1080p video recording at 60 fps
The LG G2 is an outstanding smartphone almost every way you look at it. The screen is beautiful, albeit a bit off in terms of color temperature, while the camera is simply outstanding - definitely among the very best out there. Under the hood, the Snapdragon 800 processor is doing exactly what you'd expect it to do - making sure that everything operates perfectly smoothly with no hiccups or delays.
Amazing colors, viewing angles, great brightness and contrast
The LG G2 is a flagship like any other - a great combination of the latest tech, Android OS and a full bag of proprietary software goodies. What makes the difference in the G2 is that it isn't like some of its predecessors - late, irrelevant, and boring. It's a breath of fresh air for the company and we hope it brings some of the LG's glorious days back. Both LG and the G2 deserve it this time.
Stunning 5.2-inch edge-to-edge display
The LG G2 is an impressive return to smartphone prominence for the South Korean company but one which still falls slightly short. It is a worthy rival to the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One but thanks to plastic build, peculiar button placement and less than gripping camera is unlikely to worry its more illustrious competition too much.
Large and lovely full HD IPS display, great camera
The LG G2 is assuredly the company's best Android phone yet. We were bullish on the also very good Optimus G Pro, but the G2 is all that and more in a more mainstream size. The display is top notch, performance is fast and fluid, the camera is excellent and the rear buttons actually work nicely. We'd love to see a more interesting and attractive casing that didn't turn murky with fingerprints so quickly, but the phone is nonetheless solidly built and curved nicely to fit in the hand.
Visually appealing, feels great as a phone
The G2 is easily a competitor for every other high-end smartphone out there. The "weird" button layout works for us, and it's paired with some smart touch functions that are well thought out. The phone looks and feels great, and just works as a smartphone should.
Fast and snappy performance, software tweaks don't get in the way
The LG G2 sports not only a unique design that stands out amongst its competitors, it also packs snappy hardware. If you want a similarly specced handset with a more premium feel, however, you may be better off looking at handsets from Sony instead.
Large display is ideal for games and videos, Outstanding metallic design
For those who don't feel like the HTC One max is the right choice for them, we have a few alternatives to recommend. One if them is the 5.7-inch Samsung Galaxy Note 3, which is definitely more capable in the hardware department with its Snapdragon 800 SoC and 3GB of RAM. An option that impresses with both performance and design is the Sony Xperia Z Ultra, which is, on top of it all, resistant to dust and water damage.
Larger screen, Longer battery, MicroSD slot
We won't pull any punches. The HTC One Max doesn't come close to hitting the heights of the HTC One.
It's a phone that's designed to serve a very singular purpose - give those that liked the look of the One a phone with a bigger screen, and almost nothing else.
Biometrics are going to be big in phones, but not implemented in this way.
Solid Phablet, excellent battery life
So in the end, the HTC One Max is a solid device that has more than enough to keep you happy, but it may have a hard time luring you into the store in the first place. Unless HTC delivers a prompt upgrade that makes the fingerprint scanner a real game-changer, it will probably have to cut the One Max's price a bit to keep the phablet relevant.
Decent battery life, Great 1080p display, Fantastic audio quality
The One Max isn't much of an upgrade over the One and its features don't warrant the excessive volume or weight. Its screen, speakers and battery life are saving graces, however, and give it some credibility as a media player.
Customizable design, Snappy performance
Kudos to Motorola for bringing this smartphone to all four major wireless carriers in the country, including good old US Cellular as well. That's something to say about the handset's intentions, as it lives up to prestigious honor of being recognized as a flagship. It's the perfect strategy for it, especially if Motorola really wants to be taken seriously by its rivals again.
Motorola's hardware is brilliant, Android remains solid
The average consumer, should they decide to gobble up the Moto X, will certainly be satisfied with all it has to offer, and even if it's not the most powerful beastie out there we've enjoyed using it this last week. It might not suit every man, woman and child, but if the customisation options are for you then that's one big box ticked.
Comfortable design, Moto Maker customization is phenomenal
We really like the Moto X. It's a lean, almost pure Google Android experience, with a few nice extras and amazing Google Now support. We were incredibly annoyed by the bug we encountered with Moto Assist and don't recommend you touch the app, but outside of that, it's still a great phone. Hopefully, Motorola fixes more bugs before its launch in late August and early September.
Amazing form factor, just feels natural to hold
It's great. It's wonderful. An all around wonderful phone. An excellent Android phone. But it isn't the radical change Motorola has hinted at, not yet at least. It's iterative; a waypoint on the path to undiscovered country, but not the promised land itself.
Combination of BoomSound speakers and Beats Audio make for great audio
In the end we found ourselves enjoying the HTC 8XT, and are glad to see Windows Phone 8 finally make its way to all four major carriers. We once again are impressed with HTC's ability to design a phone, but the device is not without compromises such as the decreased display resolution. What it really comes down to is your affinity for the Windows Phone OS; as pretty and smooth as it is the ecosystem just isn't there and market share shows that.
Great build and design, Excellent battery life
At $99, it's hard to do better than the 8XT in terms of hardware and intuitive software (lack of notification system not included).
We would recommend this phone for the person who wants to do a bit of social networking, some e-mail here and there, listening to music and taking pictures. But if your smartphone habits include more intensive activities, this budget smartphone may not be for you.
Comfortable to hold, attractive and distinctive
Let's face it; if you're a Sprint customer, the HTC 8XT is your only choice among Windows 8 smartphones, though the Samsung ATIV S Neo should be coming by summer's end with largely comparable specs (except a bigger display) and a $150 on contract price tag. Even with competition, the HTC 8XT would be a very nice phone for the price: it's a great looking phone that's easy to hold and is well made.
This is one great phone. Speedy and has an awesome camera. The back is tough to get off, but I see that a a plus since it will not fall off if dropped. Only thing is the Visual VoiceMail is not to my liking. The screen is really nice even though it is not 720p. Really light and feels good in your hand.
Colorful and comfortable design, Loud, rounded audio
The HTC 8XT is going to get a lot of attention for the design, just as the Windows Phone 8X did. Unfortunately, once customers get past the pretty exterior they're not going to be as impressed with what's under the hood. Almost everything about the 8XT is so-so: the display, the camera, the performance. The audio quality is above average, we grant you.
Large 720p display that performs as well as it looks
With all Windows Phones running nearly identical software and Microsoft employing strict hardware minimums it can be challenging for manufacturers to differentiate their products. Nokia has already chosen to focus on the camera, and HTC is producing their typical top-notch hardware. Samsung's Android approach has been to include an excess of niche software customizations, but with the less open Windows Phone platform they are not able to do this.
Nice screen for a mid-range smartphone, Good battery life
If you're on Sprint and are specifically looking for a Windows Phone, the Samsung ATIV S Neo is a better option than the HTC 8XT, largely because of its higher-resolution screen and better battery life. And while it requires an extra $50 initial investment, that's a tiny portion of what you'll pay over the required two-year contract.
User-friendlier interface with plenty of settings
In the rugged market, the Torque is more than capable of enduring the hazards of a busy adventurer's life or surviving on a construction site. The tools offered by enduring battery life, push-to-talk, and optimized calling make this a phone fit for someone who puts their device through hell. While the performance isn't up to par of more nimble competitors, it more than makes the grade in its class.
Sturdy, durable design
Despite being a mid-range Android device running an OS that is well over a year old, the Kyocera Torque is an amazingly advanced device. It is well designed, and passed our torture tests with flying colors. The Smart Sonic Receiver technology is nothing short of amazing, and we are still a bit in awe of the lack of a speaker. Call quality, battery life and OS performance are all very good.
Loud, clear speakers, Mostly stock Android OS
Bear Gryllis adventures aside, the Kyocera Torque would be a good fit for anyone who works outdoors in noisy environments and tends to be rough on their phones. This would be an ideal work phone for a construction worker, and it costs nothing after a mail-in rebate and two-year agreement.
Kyocera may not be a name normally associated with quality Android handsets, but the manufacturer has found a nice niche with the Torque that's worthy of a look for Sprint customers.
Nice solid design
Overall, the Kyocera Torque is an amazing mid-range device, especially since most rugged smartphones don't come with nearly as many great features. It is very well designed, brings the Smart Sonic Receiver technology for great call quality to the US, and has good battery life and performance. On the other hand, the fact that Direct Connect cannot be used while LTE is turned on can be a bit of a drawback, but, overall this is a very good durable and feature-packed phone.
Notably good build quality, and is water, dust, vibration and shock proof
If you're looking for a Direct Connect or rugged phone, the Torque is on the short list of choices. If Sprint is your carrier, there's really no other device to consider for PTT. At $99 on-contract or $349 subsidy-free, it's not a bad deal either.
Great outdoor visibility with its great display
For the first time in a long time, it's quite possible that LG's fortunes might turn around for the better thanks to the LG Optimus G, especially when it's packing that dreamy combination of a mighty quad-core processor and 4G LTE connectivity. To sweeten the pot even more, both AT&T and Sprint intend to sell this beauty for $199.99 with a 2-year contract thus, presenting it as an admirable option for those looking to get a premier smartphone.
Beefy hardware makes for a fast phone
Thanks to powerful hardware and (some) 4G service, the Optimus G is most capable smartphone LG has ever produced. Media, games, web browsing and even Google Maps all benefit from that large and ever-so sharp display.
Only a few things stand in the way of a more enthusiastic endorsement of Sprint's Optimus G. First, the phone is huge, not so heavy but a whopping 5-inches tall.
Bold and assertive styling
The raw performance of the LG Optimus G is nothing short of superb - you will never feel short on processing power with the latest quad-core silicon and 2GB of RAM at your service. There's a flagship look and feel to the device as well - a first in the US for quite some time.
Nice software additions
LG's finally cracked the high end market with the Optimus G. While other LG Android smartphones have looked good on paper, the Optimus G actually delivers a captivating experience with enjoyable software additions and superlative performance. The 4.7" IPS display is among the best and the phone is good looking too. One caveat, this is a big phone with none of the curvy tricks others employ to make it look and feel smaller.
Fast as Hell!
With the recent price drop, this phone is a no-brainer. Get it, you'll love it. However, if you're prone to dropping your phone a lot, maybe look at the One X+ or the SGS3 instead since I don't think this will hold up to a ton of drops and falls without cracking one of the two large glass panels.
Great screen, Fast performance
The LG Optimus G isn't a bad smartphone: it's fast, has a lot of storage, a good screen, and a decent (albeit not extraordinary) battery life. However, the two biggest features that are intended to make it stand out of the pack -- the quad core processor and the 13 megapixel camera -- both seriously fail to impress. And without those, there isn't really much to recommend it over other more noteworthy devices.
Employs some of the new LG Optimus UI enhancements
Indeed, there's just so much where an entry-level smartphone can go - especially when last year's mid-rangers tend to occupy the same space nowadays. Looking at the $29.99 on-contract price point of the LG Optimus F3, it might not scare the pants off us with its meager specs sheet, but at least it's treated to some of the enhancements that are found with LG's higher-end offerings.
Huge new features & several useful tweaks
In the end, iOS 5 seems more about fixing a lot of niggling annoyances than offering a completely new phone. And though we'd always love more, that's fine with us. Over-the-air syncing is probably the biggest relief for most iOS device owners, but improvements to iMessage, integrated Twitter features, useful but fairly simple camera upgrades, and the addition of task management and reminders are marked improvements over past versions.
Exquisite noise cancellation & calling quality
Undeniably, the iPhone 5 is the most highly anticipated smartphone of the year rightfully so considering that this sixth-generation sees one major design overhaul! For some time now, the competition has been leaping over the iPhone 4S specs sheet, but with the introduction of the iPhone 5, Apple has seemingly addressed many of the desires and wants of iPhone owners.
Great design & Larger screen
Is the iPhone 5 the best smartphone ever? If you're an iPhone lover and won't ever leave, without question. It's got a larger screen, a superb new design and generally all the moves required to make it into a worthy evolution.
But as ever we can't get over the price of the iPhone 5, with very little reason to prove that spending all that extra cash brings a tangible benefit.
A very solid effort
The Apple iPhone 5 is a very solid effort, a purchase which few are likely to regret. However, it fails to be one of the revolutionary products its maker is known for.
We are not sure if it's due to complacency or the innovation well has simply dried up, but Apple has let competition catch up and even take the lead second year in a row.
Stunning design and build
Apple has once again blown us away with its latest iPhone, producing a phone that stands head and shoulders above the competition when it comes to industrial design. It's slimmer, lighter and better looking than before, and yet it packs in a larger screen and faster processor. The new panorama mode on the camera is also superb and the new Earpods are a nice improvement too.
Beautifully built, top performer
The iPhone 5 really is much more than a tall iPhone 4S with a new plug. The people may demand a revolution every upgrade season. But Apple may just have supplied what the people need, not what they say they want. And that's a powerful evolution on the theme of iPhone which is currently putting the competiton back on the starting blocks.
Beautiful, sophisticated design
The iPhone 5 is a significant improvement over the iPhone 4S in nearly every regard, and in those areas that didn't see an upgrade over its predecessor -- camera, storage capacity -- one could make a strong case that the iPhone 4S was already ahead of the curve. Every area, that is, except for the OS. If anything, it's the operating system here that's beginning to feel a bit dated and beginning to show its age.
Still, the iPhone 5 absolutely shines.
Its Hard To Dislike an iPhone, but
It is really hard to dislike an iPhone but this really seems to missing something. It is missing that undefinable quality that makes me want to stand for hours waiting inline to be the first one to get the awaited iPhone. I am going to keep this iPhone, but am going to be using my Galaxy S3.
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