Thursday, September 4, 2014

September Smartphone 2014

September Smartphone 2014

thanks to this blogger for transparent eyes

   Every beginning of an academic year, and most people do a back to school shopping spree, nerds do their own hunting. This year we’ve got a lot of smartphones that just load more numbers and more digits into their processors but what we really need to limit ourselves with here is functionality.

  Although I say that and here is a specifications comparison of the four flagship native KitKat phones, namely the LG G3, the Sony Z2, the Samsung S5, and the HTC M8.

  Before the comparison tables, I was actually reluctant to include the HTC, because their model numbers are simply confusing, and they always try to remake every model they have. They are going to make a Windows Phone model out of this too.

  What’s special is that all these phones were released in 2014, which made me drop the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 out of the list although it should be worth comparing.

   This year around I shall consider the budget phone of the year, which, surprisingly isn’t an android. Let’s introduce it first: The Nokia Lumia 525. As any living human being, I always advise that the RAM of a smartphone have to be => 1GB and no less. Nokia loves to trick you into not getting one of these, and their apparently well-sold Lumia 520 is very similar with the exception of RAM.

   Budget phones are not just about the initial price; it’s also about the lifespan. Generally dual core 1 GHz phones should have a good life span if the OS allows it. iPhones degenerate quickly, and so do Android phones if used extensively, or connected to shady networks. Nokia’s version of any software is usually the safest to go, however it’s best to have a full experience on any phone, so steer clear from the Nokia X and Nokia XL as they do not have proper Google Play stores, while the Windows phone does. Microsoft also has some cool cloud and other services, and if you are an Xbox fan it’s a bit of a plus.

click to enlarge
*=two different models exist with 16GB,2GB RAM and 32GB, 3GB RAM respectively

   Now that Sony decided that increasing phone resolution is not worth the battery life drop, I am really considering waiting for the PS4-game enabled Xperia device. Hooray for smuggling video games into study areas!

  As for the table, this time I’ve went on to do something new and almost completely try to omit the extremely similar features and repetitive ones. Since these flagship smartphones are directly competing with each other, the main focus will be on the differences rather than similarities.

  The CPU, GPU, Chipset, etc., are exactly the same for all. The native OS is as well as Bluetooth, so I only included some of them because they are more important. Mainly, all these Quad-core processors are of equal caliber, and there shouldn’t be a great difference in there, but the LG sure has stepped up its game by including two models, and one of them (the 32GB internal storage one) has a whopping 3GB RAM. 

   Most people consider this a “Shame on you, Samsung” because the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 had 3GB of RAM, and the S5 looks like a downgraded version released in the wrong order of time. But compared to every other manufacturer it doesn’t lose much ground.

  Apparently HTC M8 is planning to rob iPhone of its user base, with no need to change the SIM card or try to fit it into a small adapter in order to use an Android device right now. Speaking of the odd measures of HTC, they have a phone with a dual 4MP? What does that mean? It means it is essentially 4MP, but with better brightness and faster focus on images and videos. If you already have a digital camera, then trying something new is not bad, but it sure is a little bit of a risk to get a flagship phone with the inferior camera. However, for selfie enthusiasts, this phone is better than your iPhone for taking a front-camera selfie with back camera iPhone quality. Have you ever seen a phone with 5MP on the front? HTC really targets the iPhone users this time.

   A sad point to note is that Samsung is using the new charger, which is why I colored the USB field black to contrast. Version 3.0 of the micro-USB is actually something like a micro-USB version 2.0 with a smaller version stuck to it. The micro-USB v2.0 is just the normal one we use on most android and even old Nokia and Samsungs. Of course the Samsung Galaxy S5 is backward compatible, but that just means one more sophisticated cable in your house. You’d want to need it for faster transfer speeds on your laptop, as my 1TB hard drive really goes smoothly with that cable as well, so it’s not a lie, but personally, I believe it’s not worth it unless you live alone. Most people who live in a family probably store their old mobile phones for headsets and chargers, or even other family members are likely to buy from the same manufacturer. Generic Nokia phones had a standard, newer iPhones now have a standard, most Android devices have always maintained their unspoken rule about standards, so why now, Samsung? You were the early adapters of micro-USB v2.0, why are you selling it out now?

  Both Sony and Samsung were competing really hard with the camera specifically. The Xperia has the higher MegaPixels at 20.7 which is magnificent, and the resolution is probably better (more square-ish) than Samsung’s. It is amazing though, that you can record a video on a phone with a resolution higher than the screen itself. Playback is a waste on the cell phones now!

  Things I forgot were that the Galaxy S5 and the Xperia Z2 are both waterproof.

  LG is quite spectacular with the screen this time, completely winning in the pixel density war as well as the resolution. Having a lower brightness on one of the earlier adapters of the Corning Gorilla Glass series is a plus point. Most people assume that brighter is better just because it is a word that mathematically refers to a positive change in a variable, but actually a screen with lower brightness is a lot less stressful on the eye, and also heats up less. Of all my experience, a Samsung phone with an AMOLED display would heat from the front extremely, to the point where the “dust” on your hand would electrostatically become released from your fingertip. An LG device normally heats up whenever the 3G or the screen are on and white light is displayed, but only the upper part where the upper speaker and wifi are positioned. Glad that Samsung is using Gorilla Glass 3 this time around.

  I almost went through everything, and I did not really intend that, but for now I will delay all the other points regarding general phone issues to a later date. Which phone appeals to you most, and are you actually planning to buy a flagship this September? It is the beginning of the academic year, so I’d love quick responses in the comments below. Play More Zelda!

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