Matt HealeyMonday,18 March 2013

The Snap:

Tweet: “@lcooney: No info + topic overkill. Best news for Mon AM? Hmm RT @SAI: So What Is The Best Smartphone Now? by @stevekovach

The Download:

I have a lot of respect for Laura Cooney. She currently works for Cisco trying to transform them into more of a SW focused company from a HW company. She has her work cut out for her. So when she links to an article I usually read it. On this one I think she is right on. The article is a space filling comment of the current crop of smartphones. It comes to the earth shattering conclusion that the iPhone is not the only good smartphone anymore. Offerings from Samsung, Google, HTC and even BB are all legitimate choices. This is only news to someone who has been living under a rock for the last several years. I guess I would have rewritten the article this way:

So What Is The Best Smartphone For First Time Buyers?

Well, that’s a loaded question.

It is easy to say that Apple had a huge head start with the original iPhone, and it took a good five years or so before others caught up and started making phones that were on par with it. But that is not really a fair statement because it ignores the massive sales of the Blackberry to corporate users that had been going on for years while Jobs was focused on MP3 players. It was not until recently when BYOD and CYOD policies in the corporate world started gaining traction that you could make the case the the iPhone truly entered the corporate environment.

Now that the transition has occurred,  we have a bunch of top-tier devices from various manufacturers that will be just as good, and in many cases better than the iPhone for most people. The top choices are the Samsung Galaxy S4, the HTC One, the Google/LG Nexus 4, the BlackBerry Z10 and the HTC Windows Phone 8x.

So the question is no longer, “What is the best smartphone?” but, “What is the best smartphone for you?”

For first time buyers, it is important to consider several features. I would look first at the device size. Remember this is a phone that you will likely carry in a pocket or bag. So size matters. Perhaps more if you are male as it will be in your pocket rather than a purse. If you value the additional screen size and the added bulk is not an issue you will likely end up moving away from the iPhone as Apple only makes the phone in one size. I would then look at apps that are available. Keep in mind that this will only matter if you need the newest apps as soon as they come out. If all you are going to do is check email, Facebook, and twitter then the apps do not really matter as the common apps are on almost every platform. Regardless you should check the apps you commonly use before making a purchase. You would hate to discover after buying a Blackberry that as a loyal yahoo! user the app is no longer supported or available. Finally, I would look at cost and budget.

There are dozens of other little nuances that could guide your decision, but the good news is for first-time buyers, Apple’s iPhone is not the only phone you have to consider. The bad news is Apple’s iPhone is not the only phone you have to consider. Fortunately, given the rise in high quality devices, if you stick to a reputable manufacturer, you can not go too far wrong.

Hat Tips:

@lcooney, @stevekovach, Which is the best smartphone, Image Credit: Flickr

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