Phone Comparisons: Why Side-by-Side Breakdowns Matter
Smartphones have caught up to PCs and cars in the theater of careful research and investment. Customers don't simply pick a phone because "this one's red" or "that one's got a camera"; the technical depth of our pocket computers has reached a new level of complexity, and with it, prices have also steeply increased. It's more important than ever to weigh out the subtle nuances that define one handset from the next even in a day and age where many smartphones may seem effectively identical on the surface. In truth, there are countless variables that significantly impact day-to-day life in ways that a typical phone salesperson couldn't tell you about.
Because of how complicated your research can be, we've taken upon ourselves the mantle of streamlining the comparison process for a fine-grained, blow-by-blow comparison without strings attached. This is especially important if you're torn between two phones of similar design such as the Galaxy S10 and S10+. While they seem identical to the untrained eye, our comparison table will reveal the significant differences that you missed before. For us, the aim is to prevent uninformed decisions by our visitors while improving peace of mind in the long run with your new handset.
Smartphones have become a cornerstone of daily responsibilities. Many of us depend on smartphones for our line of work, scheduling, finances, bills, contact and note-taking. Email access is a touch away with your mobile computing device, and mobile internet has become cheap and fast in many areas around the world. Wherever you are, a smartphone can probably help you organize your priorities and knock out your must-dos in quick and efficient order. As such, you don't want to settle for just any smartphone. By utilizing a comparison table, you can quickly and comfortably determine the device that will fill your requirements most efficiently for the price.
The Tools We Use
We use the most accurate and official sources for our device specifications. This ensures that you walk into your next purchase well-informed and knowing exactly what you're looking for in your smartphone. Our sources include official listings by Samsung, Apple, LG, Google, Sony, Xioami and other manufacturers, allowing us to deliver complete technical breakdowns for each handset that we cover. As needed, we'll go the additional mile and cross-reference our findings for optimal comparison accuracy. You're in good hands with us.
What to Look For
Maybe you're not as savvy with smartphones or computer tech in general and need a little insight into what a CPU is, how much RAM you'll need or what sets AMOLED apart from LCD. You should check out our blog for reviews and technical explanations that dig deep into the geeky nitty-gritty, but we recommend which metrics to look for in our comparison table. Consider these factors when choosing your next smartphone:
1. Operating System
Currently, it's all about Google's Android or Apple's iOS. These are operating systems, and they're considered the very first preferential detail to look for in a device before considering anything else. Android is known for its flexibility, customization and multitasking prowess while iOS is recognized for its seamless, fluid, just-works functionality. Both are stable, secure and get the job done.
2. Processing Capabilities
No more are the days of phones that fit all sizes; we now have budget handsets, mid-tier offerings, high-end pocket computers and premium "flagship" phones. While they all do the same basic things, the extent to which they can fill your needs will be limited by the CPU, RAM and storage metrics. For all three of these, a larger number is usually better — that is, more cores, higher clock frequencies, more RAM and more expansive storage capacity.
Screens generally boil down to either LCD and OLED. LCD is lauded for its cheapness, efficiency and color accuracy while OLED panels produce more saturated imagery with deeper contrast. A higher screen resolution will confer a smoother, more detailed image. Screen size, of course, plays a hand in how much content can be displayed at once, but keep in mind that it significantly influences how large the whole device will be.
Cameras have come a long way with multi-camera layouts for front- and rear-facing shooters. It's hard to define what metrics to look for in a good camera since megapixels (MP) and video resolution don't necessarily translate to better results. In fact, the concepts of pixel size, sensor size, aperture and so on are a little too complicated to explain in so few words. You should check our blog for a rundown on which phones have the best cameras.
5. Battery and Charging
Batteries can come in removable or non-removable types of varying capacity. The higher the milliamp-hour (mAh) rating, the longer the charge life. Some phones support various forms of fast-charging or wireless charging technology, which are important factors to consider if you don't want to use cables to charge your phone or prefer a device that fills up quickly.
6. Chassis, Design and Durability
These metrics are considered less important overall. The material choice and general design of the chassis will remain similar for most devices, but color will vary dramatically depending on the particular device that you're interested in. Most importantly, you should keep your eye out for designations such as IP68 and MIL-STD-810G since these indicate that a phone has multiple forms of resistance or proofing against damaging elements such as water, dust, vibration, shock, x-rays, corrosive conditions, crushing weight and more.