The smartphone a new way to connect in more ways than one. The first smartphone in the sense of a cell phone that can also be used to browse the internet and perform other functions traditionally done with a desktop computer was released in 1992, although the cell phone itself is almost twenty years older, having been first demonstrated in 1973 and made commercially available a decade afterwards. Not only are the sales of smartphones worldwide increasing each year they went up 28 percent from 2013 to 2014.
This article will describe the top 10 smartphones of 2015, with the prices, star ratings, features, performance, battery life and so on being given in the section for each one. All except the Microsoft Lumia 640 are taken from the list compiled by PC Magazine (http://www.pcmag.com), and it is from there that the prices and other information have been taken.
#1: Microsoft Lumia 640
Nokia-Lumia-Smartphones was owned by Nokia until their partnership with Microsoft in 2012. Nokia had been, up until that point, the world’s largest mobile phone vendor. The Lumia 640 line came out on March 2, 2015, and beginning in the next month, it has been available in two variants, Dual-SIM and LTE and can be upgraded to Windows 10
• 5″ HD IPS LCD display with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection
• Microsoft Windows Phone 8.1 with Lumia Denim
• free year-long subscription to Microsoft Office 365
• front- and back-facing cameras with 0.9 and 8 megapixels respectively
• Capacitive Multipoint-Touch technology
• Sunlight readability enhancements
• Vibrating alerts
Price $129.99. Memory space: 10GB. Maximum battery standby time: 17.5 days. Maximum talk time (3G): 20.9 hours. Has an accelerometer, proximity and ambient light sensors, a magnetometer and SensorCore. Ratings: 4.3 (Microsoft), 4.5 (Tech Radar), 4 (Trusted Reviews). Tech Radar has described the Lumia 640 as “Windows Phone’s answer to the Moto G.”
#2: Apple iPhone 6
The iPhone ranks among the most popular smartphones of all time. The two most recent versions, the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus (which will be discussed in a separate section), were both released on September 19, 2014. Consumer responses were very rapid: Within 24 hours of their becoming available, more than four million phones were pre-ordered, and an additional six million over the next three days, beating Apple’s previous record.
• Improved battery life over the previous model
• A bigger screen that allows more information to be displayed thereon
• Mail displayed in landscape mode
• Power button on the side rather than the top, in order to make it more accessible.
Price: $199. Rating: 4½. Camera resolution, front and rear: 1.2 and 8 MP. Video camera resolution: 1080p. Battery life: four hours and thirty-three minutes. Processor speed: 1.4 GHz.
#3: Google Nexus 6
Google Nexus is one of the youngest smartphone lines in existence, having been established only in 2010. The Nexus 6 was released in November 2014, and like its predecessors, it comes equipped with an unlockable bootloader so that it can be further developed by the end-user. It has been described as a “phablet” a newly-coined term that refers to a device that combines features of both a smartphone and a tablet. The development of the Nexus 6 marks the end of the era of the small-screen Android tablet: Now Google wants the user to be able to “do more with fewer” and thus created something that could be either a smartphone or a tablet in accordance with what the user needed or wanted at the moment.
• Support for the wi-fi calling functionality of T-Mobile
• Android 5 Lollilop OS
• Ergonomic contours
• A stunning AMOLED display
• Turbo charging technology
• Optical image stabilization for the camera
Price $649 ($609 at Amazon). Camera resolution, front and rear: 2 and 13 MP. Battery life: seven hours and thirty-three minutes. Total integrated storage: 32 and 64GB. Screen pixels per inch: 493.
#4: Samsung Galaxy Note 4
This, too, is a phablet device, released in October 2014. There are two variants of the Galaxy Note 4; each with a different core system, and both use the KitKat 4.4.4 operating system. The display on the phone performed better than that of any other mobile device up to that time. Clearing away debris is easy.
• Can be plugged into the Samsung Galaxy VR headset (some versions only)
• Plastic back, textured leather
• Chamfered edges
Price: $299; free at Amazon. Rating: 4½ (excellent). Camera resolution, rear and front: 16 and 3.7 MP. Video camera resolution: 4K, 1080p. Screen pixels per inch: 515. Battery life: seven hours and fifty-six minutes.
#5: Samsung Galaxy S6
Another smartphone from the Samsung Galaxy line, which came out on April 10, 2015 – It has a superior build quality to older models, earning it praise from critics, and it is PC Magazine’s “new top pick for Android phones.”
• Battery and USB ports, headphones and speaker on bottom
• Edge that can serve as an alarm clock or be used to access favorite contacts
There is also the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge, which was released at the same time; it has some additional features of its own, such as the screen being curved along the sides. Both models depart from the earlier ones in the use of the Samsung Pay mobile payments service.
Price: $679.92. Rating: 4½ (excellent). Camera resolution, rear and front: 16 and 5 MP. Video camera resolution: 4K, 1080p. Processor speed: 1.5 GHz. Screen pixels per inch: 577. Battery life: seven hours and forty-eight minutes.
#6: OnePlus One (Unlocked)
OnePlus is one of the newer smartphone brands, having been born in China in 2013. Only a single device — the OnePlus One — has thus far been manufactured, but the company is currently working on others. It has cleaner lines and a tighter build quality than other phones in the same price range and is made, not from the glossy, flexible plastic used for Samsung devices, but from “solid” Nokia polycarbonate. The quad-core that powers the OnePlus One is identical to those found in the Galaxy and other more expensive mobile phones and is constructed out of the fastest silicon now known to exist.
• Designed to respond to gesture and voice commands (the user can activate the latter by saying “Hey Snapdragon” instead of “Okay Google as in the past)
• Can be woken with a double tap
• A massive and impeccable display
Indeed, everything that you’d expect from a high-end smartphone is packed into the OnePlus One. The big display may not be for the faint of heart, but it does feel like a premium device, and the OnePlus One is certainly awesome for on-the-go media.
Price: $299. Rating: 4½ (excellent). Camera resolution, rear and front: 13 and 5 MP. Video resolution: 4K, 1080p. Processor speed: 2.5 GHz. Screen pixels per inch: 401. Battery life: seventeen hours and two minutes (voice calling).
#7: Apple iPhone 6 Plus
We covered the iPhone 6 in a previous section. The iPhone 6 Plus is also available — it was released alongside it in seven countries, plus Hong Kong and Puerto Rico, on September 19, 2014, and together, they both broke the Apple record mentioned above. Like the iPhone 6, this phone is made from beautiful matte metal and has a considerably more premium feel than the Galaxy.
• A faster processor than its predecessor
• Dual pane layout for mail when in landscape mode
• A reachability gesture (you can shift items from the top to the bottom half of the screen)
Price: $299. Rating: 4 (excellent). Camera resolution, rear and front: 8 and 1.2 MP. Video resolution: 1080p Processor speed: 1.4 GHz. Screen pixels per inch: 401. Battery life: four hours and forty-three minutes.
#8: HTC One M9
The multinational Taiwan-based smartphone manufacturer HTC (formerly called High-Tech Computer Corporation) was born in 1997 and launched its smartphone line in 2011, with the HTC One M9 being released on March 1, 2015. Designers have shifted the UltraPixel image sensor to the fore-facing camera and eliminated the depth sensor, which had been used to produce 2D images.
• UltraPixel image sensor now on front camera
• Edges squared off; feels more secure in one’s hand
• Textured power button, thus easily located by feel
Price:</b> $649.92. Rating: 4 (excellent). Camera resolution, rear and front: 20 and 4 MP. Video resolution: 4K, 1080p. Processor speed: 1.5 GHz. Screen pixels per inch: 441. Battery life: five hours and three minutes (for LTE video streaming).
#9: LG G Flex 2
First released in South Korea at the beginning of 2015, the Flex 2 has its power and volume switches just below the camera on the back. It performs remarkably quickly and has a “unique curved display.”
• Self-healing finish that gets rid of scratches
• Power and volume buttons on the back
Price $504 ($99.99 at Amazon, both with free shipping). Rating: 4. Camera resolution, rear and front: 13 and 2.1. Video resolution: 4K, 1080p. Processor speed: 1.5. Screen pixels per inch: 401. Battery life: six hours and thirty-one minutes (for LTE video streaming).
#10: Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge
As mentioned in the above section on the Galaxy S6, with both being released at the same time – it is made of premium materials and performs excellently well.
• Exceptional screen resolution
• Sloped sides
• An information stream that can be lit up by swiping horizontally over the edge
Price: $780. Rating: 4. Camera resolution, rear and front: 16 and 5. Video resolution: 4K, 1080P. Processor speed: 1.5. Screen pixels per inch: 576. Battery life: eight hours (LTE video streaming).