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Smartphone Buying Guide 2014

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Last response: in Cell Phone General Discussion
December 5, 2013 1:42:03 PM

It's the first thing you reach for in the morning — and usually the last thing you touch before you nod off. In between those two moments, your smartphone is an indispensable companion, helping you stay on top of email and social updates, take and share

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December 5, 2013 8:42:45 PM

Tab l et Sp r i n t -- is a site worth visiting with plenty of new No-Contract tablets & smartphones that work with all plans through AT&T, T-Mobile and Straight Talk wireless networks -- one new Smartphone is the THL W100S ($164) - considered one of the best budget 3G/4G priced Quad core Android phones this year.

The Pipo M7 Pro - 3G HSPA+ tablet ($279) is also available - with a built-in SIM card slot along with high-end specs that compare to the new Nexus 7 - plus a larger 8.9-inch screen, makes it one of the best values on a tablet this holiday.

Also available is the new SmartQ Z-Watch ($155) to launch this week, which compares to the Samsung Galaxy Smart Watch, but nearly half the price

TabletSprint offer several other new models to launch this month and also includes $25 in Bonus Apps with all Tablets they carry.
January 5, 2015 7:36:09 PM

Speaking of apps and installing them -- it's not just RAM that's important, but what some manufacturers call ROM (IMHO a misnomer because it's not really Read-Only). Even with "ROM" expansion via an SD card, I've found that my devices still give me the "Storage running low" (not an exact quote) warning.

Should I get a phone with at least 2GB, preferably more, of internal storage?
Related resources
January 5, 2015 7:38:40 PM

“The minimum on most handsets is 16GB,...”

*Most* handsets? Most premium handsets, maybe. Mid-range and budget smartphones typically come with 8GB at most
February 13, 2015 5:34:40 PM

I always buy my phones outright, instead of on contract. Simple requirements - unlocked GSM, SD card, great camera, GPS, removeable battery. I'm still using my Nokia N8 with infinite storage, 12 Mpix camera, etc., with H2O wireless service. I have an unlocked iPhone 5 that I use as an iPod, but, as a phone, it's not very good. The best thing about using a Symbian phone is that they're rarely hacked, they use less processing power to do similar tasks to iOS and Android, and the GPS works when I'm offline [duh, airplane mode]. Also, with any unlocked GSM phone, I can use any SIM, anywhere in the world for cheap cell service.

Those are my requirements. YMMV. Might get a Nokia Windows phone next, or put a SIM card in my iPhone.
July 8, 2015 4:45:28 AM

Smartphones are like mini computers along with added features of calls and camera. Everything that you do on the computer, the camera or the basic phone you can do with your smartphone.
Following are the some tasks that you can do on your smartphone:
1. Capture and see images
2. Watch movies, songs and videos
3. Connect with friends on social networking sites, whatsapp etc
4. Video calling using certain apps
5. Free calling using apps
6. Browse internet
7. Shopping on sites and apps
8. emails
9 .read books using kindle ebooks
10. work on docs, sheets and other ms office applications and lot more
11.share data using bluetooth or some apps for sharing
12. play games and use apps for religious, health, learning, entertainment purposes
October 10, 2015 8:11:05 AM

Thank you for such a good review. It answered all of my questions and confirmed my choice of a Samsung S6 being the phone for my needs.
June 6, 2017 10:07:35 AM

Don't buy a phone from HonorBuy. The Hong Kong based company is not to be trusted.

Last year, when I bought my Xiaomi MI 5, they were selling the phone with a 'fake' ROM. Their web site marketing did not reveal that they had swapped out the manufacturer's original firmware. The substitute ROM is multilingual, making the phone marketable in a variety of European countries. But, since the phone's native ROM supports English, the substitution is of no advantage to an English speaker; and it imposes serious drawbacks HonorBuy's advertising did not disclose.

The HonorBuy substitute ROM cannot be updated with the manufacturer's revisions. This means it does not get the benefit of security fixes and feature upgrades released by the manufacturer or provided in new versions of the Android operating system. I discovered other defects which may or may not be attributable to the non-original ROM but could not be corrected because the phone's non-original ROM does not permit a factory reset.

Although HonorBuy's web site marketing promised a one year warranty and excellent customer support, neither promise was honored. The company claimed that the manufacturer's ROM could be reinstated but their email instructions were clueless. They refused to take back the phone either for reinstatement of the original ROM or refund. They justified their refusal on the grounds that I had owned the phone for more than 7 days, in disregard of the one year warranty. HonorBuy is Hong Kong based, so beyond the reach of the usual consumer protections.

Two morals: (1) HonorBuy is neither trustworthy nor capable of competent customer service); and (2) think twice before buying any phone of Chinese manufacturer unless it is on official release in your home country or you are certain that it comes with the original ROM installed.
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