Due to the large number of smartphone companies, we get confused when we want to buy a smartphone.
Today, I’m gonna list the things to consider before buying a smartphone and what you need to know before making up your mind.
THINGS TO CONSIDER:
1. WHAT DO YOU WANT TO USE IT FOR?
Do you want to use your phone just to make calls and receive calls? Or do you need your phone to send text messages only? Alternatively, do you want to use your cellphone to take pictures? Browse the internet?
The thing with smartphone technology these days is that there are so many phones in the market and they are all the ‘best’ at one thing or the other. Some phones have the best cameras, the best internet browsers etc. In choosing your mobile phone, focus on what you want to use it for. If you understand exactly what skills and capabilities you’d like to see in your new phone, it’ll help you avoid paying too much for features you don’t want or need.
For a good balance, we like the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Samsung Galaxy S5, HTC One M8, Huawei Ascend Mate 2, Nokia Lumia 1520. For iPhone loyalists, consider the iPhone 6 Plus. For monetary considerations try the Tecno Phantom Z and the Blackberry Z3.
2. WHAT’S THE BATTERY LIFE?
With many smartphones having dual-core, quad-core (hardcore any time soon?) processors and big screens, smartphones have never been more powerful–or more power hungry. Yes, specs and apps matter, but what good are they if you’re looking for a charger by midday?
One way to tell how much battery life your smartphone will provide on a charge is to take a look at the battery capacity. Typical phone batteries start in the neighborhood of 1,700mAh and go all the way up to 3,500mAh. Generally, the closer you get to 3,000 mAh (milliamp hours) — or above the better. In The Laptop Mag battery test, the Huawei Ascend Mate 2 topped the list and lasted for 14 hours and 43 minutes. Other phones that put up a good showing in the test include the Sony Xperia Z3 (12 hours , 9 minutes), Nokia Lumia 1520 (11hours, 28 minutes), Samsung Galaxy S5 (10 hours, 50 minutes), HTC One M8 (10 hours, 50 minutes), and Apple iPhone 6 Plus (10 hours).
3. DOES SIZE MATTER?
All pun intended. Big-screen phones are growing on shoppers. In fact, phablets (phones with displays 5 inches or larger) now account for about 20% of all smartphones sold in the Nigerian market. Bigger phone screens give you a lot more real estate for watching movies, playing games and enjoying photos. The trade-off is that the phone isn’t easy to operate with one hand, tends to be heavier and can be a tight fit for front pockets.
Large (Over 5.1-inches): So-called “phablets” (phone + tablets) have bigger screens, which provide a generous viewing area and easier on-screen typing. But they can be bulky.
Standard Size (4.5 to 5.1 inches): The mainstream size for flagship phones like the Galaxy S5, Nokia Lumia and HTC One.
Compact Size (Below 4.5 inches): Many phones, including the 4-inch iPhone and the 4.3-inch HTC One Mini provide smaller, more pocket-friendly form factors.
4.WHAT OPERATING SYSTEM SHOULD YOU USE?
If you’re buying a smartphone, the operating system can make a big difference in how you use your device. At the moment there are four major operating systems vying for your attention. Here’s a brief overview of what each one has to offer.
- Open source platform that allows third-party developers to create apps and tools
- Designed as a consumer- and social network-centric platform
- Easy to customize to match your needs and tastes
- Over a million apps available via the Google Play store
- Integrates iTunes app and Safari mobile Web browser
- The same technology powers all Apple devices for seamless communication between Apple devices
- Thousands of officially approved apps available via the App Store
- Created for business users for easy access to e-mail and text messaging
- Updated BlackBerry 10 operating system creates a more interactive, user-friendly experience
- Ideal for international use
- Personalized, user-friendly experience that communicates seamlessly with Microsoft computers and other devices
- Easily customizable touch-screen interface
- SkyDrive app allows easy management of documents, photos and videos
A phone’s camera depends on a whole host of variables. Though you might think that more megapixels is better, that’s not always the case. You can get sharper images from a 5-megapixel camera than from an 8-megapixel shooter, so it’s better to concentrate on other specs such as the quality of the lens as well as the camera sensor.
STORAGE & EXPANSION
Given that you’ll store everything from photos and music to videos and apps on your smartphone, opt for as much internal memory and upgradable memory as you can. I recommend you choose a device that has a microSD card slot.