Tuesday, 26 November 2013

The Tech & Musing Christmas Guide: Phones

In the build up to Christmas, I thought it would be interesting to see where tech stands at this time of year (and maybe even offer some advice along the way). If you're looking for phones, tablets, laptops, contracts or even smartwatches, this is the place to be. If your questions aren't answered below, please get in touch.

On the cheaper side: Nexus 5

At £300 up front on Google Play, and generous contract offerings, the Nexus 5 really packs a knockout punch for its price.

LG did a brilliant job on the Nexus 4, and they've managed to go one better with the recently launched older brother. A large, glossy 5" screen shows off Android 4.4 (KitKat) in beautiful HD quality, and the 2.3GHz quad-core processor alongside 2GB RAM allows the Nexus 5 to challenge the very top in the smartphone market, let alone the cheaper ones. The camera is not the best but it's difficult to fault, and the ever-evolving feature of wireless charging is a great addition. 

Have a look at the pricing options for the Nexus 5, where for £32 per month you'll find the phone alongside unlimited data and texts, plus 1000 mins of calls. Or, you could buy the phone outright and purchase a cheaper sim-only deal - but trust me when I say, it's difficult to find a better alternative to the Nexus 5.

Mid range: Moto X

Motorola have exploded back onto the smartphone scene in 2013, and the fresh boost from Google has clearly helped this rejuvenation. 

The best of the Motorola 2013 offering, comes in the form the Moto X which boasts a 4.7" HD display that is backed-up by 2GB RAM and plenty of processing power. Making the most of Android KitKat's (v4.4) 'always listening' feature, Motorola have created an impressive, hugely customisable device that should be considered by all buyers - I haven't even mentioned the 10MP camera! Literally 'designed by you', buyers are able to design their version of the phone before purchase, and wider knowledge of this could produce a winning selling point. Whether or not the brand is fashionable enough to dent the market remains to be seen.

Coming down to price, the Moto X will appear on generous contracts, ensuring that the user isn't disappointed with the phone, or their deal. Unfortunately, this isn't available in the UK as yet, but it is reportedly on the way soon - UK users should have a look at 'Unlucky to miss out' at the bottom for other ideas.

Top range: HTC One

Widely regarded as 'Phone of the Year', stretching to 'Gadget of the Year' in some quarters, the widely acclaimed HTC One has topped my list of 'must buy' tech this year. The brilliance (and beauty) of the phone cannot be underestimated. A glorious HD screen, great audio, a superb camera and impressive battery life make the HTC One a serious contender for 'best smartphone of all time', let alone 2013. 

Perhaps 'Top Range' is slightly misleading as the HTC One certainly won't break the bank. When taken on contract, users can be looking at just over £30 per month for unlimited texts, unlimited internet and plenty of calls. Interested in the HTC One? You should be.

Unlucky to miss out and worth keeping in mind this Christmas:

  • Sony Xperia Z1
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
  • iPhone 5
  • Nokia Lumia 720
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 3
That's the guide to the best phones out at the moment. If you've got any suggestions for alternatives, or want an opinion on other phones - get in touch.

Keep an eye out for the next in the Tech & Musing Christmas Guide series - Tablets...

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