As the smartphone war continues, new phones and new versions of phones hit the market faster than ever. If buying, it’s important to know the variety of phone and the pros and cons. The contenders for champion of smartphones are the iPhone, Blackberry Storm and the Nexus One. There are a few others deserving of an honorable mention but these are the candidates.
The first phone that leaps to mind when you hear smartphone is the iPhone. The newest version is the 3GS. This phone is great for many reasons: the touch screen, Google maps with GPS, its customizability, and the application and itunes store that only Apple has. The sheer volume of applications available may be enough to make you buy one.
There are a few downsides to the iPhone, though. The most obvious is the price. A new phone will cost $300-$400 (with 2-yr contract). If you happen to lose it or break it, chances are that you’ll have to fork over $300-$400 (depending on your insurance and warranty). And if you are misfortunate enough to lose it or break it twice, be prepared to around $600 to replace it. This is excluding taxes and whatever amazing fees, new contracts/contract changes AT&T will throw at you. Also, the other downside: AT&T, the sole legal provider of the iPhone. AT&T, I believe, is unanimously hated by all past and present customers. With lengthy contracts, early renewing/breaking contract fees and plans that aren’t competitive.
One owner summed up his iPhone as “It’s got everything, and you can’t this stuff with any other phone. If something goes wrong, though, you’re probably screwed.”
The second competitor in the ‘who-has-the-better-phone’ war is the Blackberry Storm. Personally, my favorite aspect of the blackberry series is the fact that it’s available as touch screen or with keys. The blackberry is usually considered a better work phone because they can have keys, and frankly it’s built more for work. The Storm is genuinely a smartphone though, with its applications possible and built-in features. The other main plus of a blackberry is blackberry messenger, a free service very like IM/textmessaging, but between blackberries only.
The downsides to this phone, though. Blackberry’s application store isn’t quite as extensive or well known as Apple’s, but that gap may be closing. The Storm is catching up with the iPhone in more aspect than one. The phone itself costs less than the iPhone, but the plans are relatively the same.
One owner summarized their phone with “I am permanently attached to my blackberry. BBM, actually having buttons and easy access to email—can’t give this up.”
One phone aiming to crack the market dominated by Apple and Blackberry is the new Nexus One by Google. This phone features a touch screen, but also has a scroll button unlike its opponents. The main feature that this phone boasts is the fact that it can run multiple applications simultaneously. In my eyes, that puts the Nexus One above its competitors, for the time being.
The downsides of the Nexus One aren’t many, at least for now. It’s brand new and hasn’t had much time on the market to be complained about by consumers. Already, some are saying that it has many features that the iPhone has but they’re simply not up to the same par with their user interface. Also, it’s not much cheaper at $279 with 2-yr contract and a plan that doesn’t differ much from its rival companies.
There are several other smartphones that are popular, but I don’t consider them contenders for the title. If you’re interested though, check out the Symbian, Droid, Palm Pre as well as several phones by HTC, LG and Nokia. Which phone will be best depends on your needs: whether business or personal and what you’ll use it for most. No matter which you choose, it will definitely be fun looking.
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