5 Smartphone Picks Made Simple


Looking to upgrade your phone? Not yet sure which model to plunk down your hard-earned cash for? Worry not: We’ve made this easy guide to clear up the confusion. Here are your best choices in various categories.

Texting and Photos: T-Mobile myTouch 4G Slide
The latest addition to T-Mobile’s myTouch family has one of the best cameras on the market. It’s also ideal if you want a full slide-out keyboard with keys that are spaced out well and a device that’s still thin.

  • Cost: $149.53 – $529.99 *
  • Pro: A wide range of shooting and editing modes. Take the SweepShot mode, for instance: You move the camera from right to left, and the camera stitches together a panoramic image instantly.
  • Con: No HDMI port for linking the phone to your TV to view entertainment — something that most of the latest phones include.

Streaming Video: Samsung Droid Charge
This smartphone is a strong second LTE phone for Verizon — perfect for people who like to stream high-quality video, use video chat or play Web-based games. You can even use it outside: The phone has a bright screen built exactly for that purpose.

  • Price: $29.99 – $659.99 *
  • Pro: Service from the 4G LTE delivery system is very fast.
  • Con: The battery dies within a few hours when the mobile hot spot is on. (In comparison, some phone batteries last 10 hours or more.)

Slim Size: HTC Sensation 4G
Gorgeous display, beautiful design and powerful internal components. And, of course, it travels light. The smartphone also offers some excellent ways to customize your home screen. For instance, it allows you to store your four favorite apps at the bottom of the screen. Thanks to this feature, you don’t have to sort through multiple menus to reach your email.

  • Cost: $99.99 – $559.99 *
  • Pro: Includes the latest version of the easy-to-use Sense interface, with the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) operating system running underneath. Sense offers some useful new functions and is an elegant way of multitasking.
  • Con: Some documented antenna issues may affect your reception.

Multitasking and Games: T-Mobile G2x (with Google)
The latest in the G series of Android phones and tablets is a no-frills powerhouse for gaming, multitasking and video. Also, users of other phones often complain about how difficult it is to remove the back panel to get at the battery. But with the G2x, your battery-removal woes are over. The battery cover is very easy to remove, and it doesn’t feel flimsy.

  • Cost: $149.53 – $519.99 *
  • Pro: The phone is superfast, thanks to souped-up internal components, including a dual-core Tegra 2 processor.
  • Con: Call quality can be uneven, and it’s difficult to see the screen in sunlight.

3D Images and TV: HTC EVO 3D
This model packs a lot of smartphone power: You can capture 3-D images or video, and then view them on the device or any 3-D TV. It’s a gorgeous phone, and it’s definitely the best one on the Sprint network — a great successor to the original EVO.

  • Price: $49.53 – $579.99 *
  • Pro: The Snapdragon processor supports advanced 3D technology, including HD video.
  • Con: Call quality is uneven.

* Prices vary widely, depending on your mobile service plan, which can come with deep discounts on your hardware but may require you to sign a long-term contract.

Photo Credit: Getty Images