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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Smartphone Buying Guide

Now more than ever, we see ourselves relying heavily on cell phones. Whether for urgent, emergency situations or casual, carefree conversations, many people depend on these handy devices to relay messages and facilitate communications. With today’s advanced technology of smartphones, people are able to use their phones for many more purposes, from browsing the Web to listening or watching their favorite songs or videos.

With the vast amount of smartphones out on the market, finding the perfect device for your specific needs can be a tricky task. Nevertheless, no matter what kind of phone you need to suit your needs, now is a great time to invest in one of these innovative gadgets. From the iPhone to the Android, here are a few things to keep in mind when searching for a smartphone.

Overall quality of calls

The first, and most important, feature to consider when purchasing a new phone is call quality. When testing this out, make sure to use the device to make calls in various locations. Test it out in both noisy areas and quiet environments, paying specific attention to background static and any other noise interferences. Be sure to ask the person on the receiving end if they notice any disruptions in the background.

Device Design

From slider-styles featuring the complete QWERTY keyboard to simple touchscreen displays, there are numerous designs to choose from when picking out your new phone. Aside from the initial design, there are many other factors to test out in order to determine if the device is right for you. Ensure that the phone is comfortable and easy to use and hold. Place it against your ear, and try grasping it with a single hand.  Another thing to consider is the overall portability and structure of the smartphone. Does the device easily fit in your purse or pocket? Can it withstand rough and tough treatment? As always, it is beneficial to think about buying a sturdy case, or even a screen protector, to provide extra protection for the phone.

Operating System

For those of you who are advanced users that intend to use your phone for more than just placing calls or sending texts, it is essential that you find the appropriate operating system platform.  Some of the most common operating systems available include Google’s Android, iOS, BlackBerry OS, and Windows Phone. Depending on your specific needs, it would be to your benefit to research each individual platform, since each has its own pro’s and con’s. Furthermore, it is important to be familiar with the various platforms to ensure that your new phone will have all the capabilities necessary to ensure smooth operations.

Screen Display and Resolution

Depending on your viewing requirements, you may want to opt for a phone with a larger display. Whether you want to surf the Web, view your favorite flicks, or make revisions to important documents, you will definitely want to make sure that you have a big enough display to do so comfortably. Typically, a screen with a diagonal display measuring in at less than 3 inches will leave you feeling slighted on viewing space. Likewise, a smartphone that features a higher screen resolution will offer a much crisper, cleaner display.


For all you photo fanatics, it will be especially important to research the camera specs of a phone before purchase. A good way to get an idea of the overall photo quality is by snapping a few shots throughout the store. When it comes to megapixel settings, 8 is the typical count for cameras on mid- to high-level smartphones.  However, just because a phone camera has a higher megapixel count, this doesn’t always mean that the camera is of higher quality. Furthermore, it is also important to make sure that the phone camera features a flash, or else any pictures you take at night or indoors will come out blurry. Regardless, be sure to test the phone camera out yourself before buying to ensure that the photo quality is suitable for you.

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