Best Android smartphones (September 2013 edition)

Best Android smartphones (September 2013 edition)

Summary: Time once again to take a tour of a handful of the best Android smartphones currently available on the market (September 2013). There are a few new handsets, including one for all you pure Android fans. There's also a brand new phablet to keep an eye on!

TOPICS: Android, Smartphones

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  • (Image: Samsung)

    One to watch – Samsung Galaxy Mega

    Here's another handset to keep an eye on over the coming weeks – Samsung Galaxy Mega.

    Do you think that other smartphones are small and puny? Do you have large hands? Large pockets? Carry around with you a large bag?

    Answered "yes' to one or more of these questions? The Galaxy Mega may be for you!

    It's clear that Samsung is carpet-bombing the marker with handsets in a variety of sizes, and this 6.3-inch phablet (cross between a phone and a tablet) is at the high end for what's possible – and plausible – for a smartphone in terms of screen size.

    The mega is certainly not for everyone, but if you want a smartphone that you can use as a tablet, then this might be worth a look.

    • Jelly Bean (Android 4.2.2)
    • 1.7GHz dual-core processor
    • 6.3-inch 1.280 x 720 display
    • 8MP rear camera
    • 1.9MP front camera
    • 16GB internal storage
    • 3.200 mAh user-replaceable battery
    • MicroSD card slot
    • NFC
  • (Image: Motorola)

    Motorola Razr i

    Perhaps not the best — or best made — handset around, but the Razr i is nonetheless a decent, solid smartphone that won't break the bank.

    The DuPont Kevlar fibre and Corning Gorilla Glass construction gives it a good feel in the hand, and it comes with an SD-card slot for storage expansion, something that the Nexus 4 doesn't have.

    • Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0), but Jelly Bean inbound
    • 2GHz Intel Atom Z2460
    • 4.3-inch Super AMOLED 540x960 display
    • 8MP rear camera
    • VGA front camera
    • 8GB internal storage
  • (Image: Motorola)

    One to watch - Motorola Moto X

    Here's a handset to watch out for over the coming weeks – Motorola's new Moto X.

    I used to be pretty partial to Motorola handsets back before the iPhone. They were well built, and while they relied heavily on gimmicks, delivered decent performance and long-term reliability.

    The Moto X is interesting, not because it is manufactured by Motorola – now owned by Google – but because it takes a new approach to computation power. Rather than one chip with multiple cores doing the work, the Moto X has a total of eight cores spread over four different chips, each doing a different thing.

    • Jelly Bean (Android 4.2.2)
    • Motorola X8 computing system, consisting of a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro dual-core clocked at 1.7GHz, a quad-core Adreno 320 GPU, and two low-power processors, one that is used for natural language and the other for contextual computing
    • 4.7-inch AMOLED HD 720p display
    • 10MP rear camera
    • 2MP front camera
    • 16/32GB internal storage
    • NFC
    • Wireless charging

Topics: Android, Smartphones

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  • Shouldn't this be the August Edition

    Given all the new phones yet to be released since Sept is hardly more than a day old.
    • ??? Pedantry ???

      Perhaps the August Edition was published on 1st August?

      And maybe it doesn't really matter?
    • This report only covers...

      ...the 793 Android phones that have been released so far this month.
  • My thoughts...

    For the most part, I agree. However, as a tech enthusiast, let me add my two cents worth.

    First off, expect to catch some crap over the Galaxy S4 better in almost every way than the HTC One comment. For the most part, I agree, but there is room for debate. It mostly comes down to preference, things like the screen. HTC One has a truer to life colored screen that is naturally brighter and has a higher resolution. The GS4 argues that its higher saturation and much better contrast ratios reduce the need for brightness, and that although there is a higher PPI count on the HTC Once, the GS4 is actually the smaller phone with a matching full HD screen. So, give and take, depending on your preference. I personally prefer the amazing look of the AMOLED screens, regardless of the saturation value, but there is no denying that the HTC One is slightly more visible in direct sunlight.

    One other note...your last phone was completely unnecessary. Either the Google Play edition of the HTC One (amazingly left out when you included the Play edition of the GS4) or the brand-new LG G2 would have been MUCH better phones to include in that last slot. Yes, it has dual SIM, but so does the HTC Desire 600, which offers a fairly decent experience overall (Boom Sound and 8MP Camera, anyone?)
    Kevin McClain

      Galaxy S4 is probably the new big thing and is by far one of the best android phones on the market. But you don't always have to pay for the american brand name. I just bought a Generic Star N9500 - 5.0 inch (1280*720) HD IPS screen Android 4.2 1.2GHz Quad Core, and It blew me away at a 80% cheaper price. But I am one of those people that does not believe in signing a contract to get a phone cheap. I would rather pay for it out of pocket then spend $45 a month on an unlimited plan and have no obligations to anyone. I encourage you guys to do your research and try this phone out. It might just blow you away as it did me!
  • Galaxy SIII

    The Samsung Galaxy SIII has become a fairly affordable device for post-paid phone customers. I got the Cricket version not too long ago. Still a great device. As one of the best phones you can get on Virgin, Boost, Cricket and a few other post paid carriers I think it deserves a mention.
  • A little misleading...

    The article is a little misleading when it claims phones other than the MotoX compute everything on a single CPU while the Motorola does so across 4 chips.

    It's true that the Motorola spreads certain tasks to 2 additional low power processors, but ALL the phones listed use a separate graphics processor, and most the exact same Adreno 320 that the Motorola uses. They are not, as the article states, a single multicore cpu doing all the work.

    So most phones use a quad core cpu + a quag core gpu, while the MotoX uses a dual core cpu + a quad core GPU + two low power processors.
  • Old News

    Most of these have been out for months, so pretty old news. HTC One has already been available at Verizon for a while now. Get tired of these guys sending out 'refreshed' articles just to fill up our mailboxes.
  • sad and dissappointing piece of electronic.

    Have had the Samsung Galaxy S4 16gb from t-mobile for 9 days brand new and already these problems below:

    Phone shuts down by itself when not in use, even though it's
    fully charged and it won't turn on. I have
    to remove cover, remove battery and place it back
    then turn on the phone.

    Touchwiz doesn't respond (touch screen). Have remove
    battery and place it back then turn on the phone.

    Having phone on standby, the battery drains quickly. And the battery drainage is higher WITH the wifi on.
    And don't get me started on how delicate this item is. It's the thickness of two saltine cookies and no gorilla glass. You drop it once and it's a wrap. Gotta get a new one. Oh decision, decisions. Really don't wanna get the iPhone cause it's like a car. Everyone has a BMW cause others have it. I prefer a Ferrari.
    • Check for spam wair

      Did you buy your Samsung from Europe? If you did not buy it from the store and it is an unlocked phone it most likely did. These phones had spamware already installed from the manufacture and can easily be deleted. They can easily be removed, simply call the provider you bought the phone from and they will most likely walk you through the process to remove the spamware or you can simply do your research online. There should be reviews and videos on You Tube to help you remove them. If this does not fix your issue and you did not buy the phone from the store. Hurry, because most providers only give you 14 days to return for a new phone/ refund. Like all electronics brand new models will have their issues and need some tweaking. That is one risk of buying brand new technologies!
    • HTC

      should have gotten the HTC One. the Samsung is excellent, but the HTC is a bit more refined.
      Chris Rosa
  • why only big name phones?

    Lenovo and Zoppo have 2 of the best phones on the market atm yet aren't listed. Did you do any actual research or did you just look at the back page of a shop brochure to see what's for sale near you?
    Andrew Hargrave
    • Lenovo?

      The reviews by users of the Lenovo are much different from the reviewers reviews of the Lenovo mobile, a lot of people are regretting buying that, have a look around!
      • Yes, Lenovo?

        The first page has nothing but praise. I admit I haven't used the k900 but still, the specs are super impressive.

        @louis - Xiaomi make some nicely specced phones too!
        Andrew Hargrave
        • Lenovo

          Read on, as the pages go along, the reviews of problems increase, many people rant and rave about an item when they receive it, many of the ranters are complainers further along, have a look.
      • Yes, Lenovo?

        The first page has nothing but praise. I admit I haven't used the k900 but still, the specs are super impressive.

        @louis - Xiaomi make some nicely specced phones too!
        Andrew Hargrave
  • These slide shows...

    These slide shows are tedious and self-defeating because I almost always abort after the 2nd slide. Clicking next, the whole page reloads, auto-scrolls up and down until it settles, and then you click next again. There has got to be a better way for you guys to display information than these terrible slide shows.
  • Nokia Lumia 920

    is the best Phone I ever had
  • HTC

    doesn't matter what you get, its obselete as soon as you buy it.
    Chris Rosa