Continuing on to what’s probably the most important category in our round-up of the year, we’ve seen some of the most powerful and impressive smartphones ever made emerging from the usual suspects but also from some unexpected places. Google’s Android OS has seen its lead in the front of the pack extended but strong that’s not to say that the only devices to look out for come from the stable of the little green men.
Operating System: Android
Perhaps the best Android smartphone ever created, the LG G2 manages to cram everything we expect from a top end smartphone into a gorgeous looking device. From the near bezel-less 5.2 inch full HD display through to the blazing fast Snapdragon 800 processor and a phenomenal 13 megapixel camera, everything about the G2 is spectacular. Top end specs aren’t the only thing the G2 has going for it though, the battery life it offers is by far the main draw card of what is a complete package.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
Operating System: Android
The Galaxy S4 Active takes its cues from the best-selling Galaxy S4 flagship smartphone that has done so well in South Africa but makes a few key changes that improve it drastically. Gone is the fragility of the modern smartphone (even though the S4 does come with the ADH warranty that abates most of our fears), with the S4 Active you get a waterproof, dustproof, ruggedized smartphone. It’s the perfect option for those who want to have all of the great specs that the Galaxy S4 offers but want something more durable.
Operating System: iOS 7
The iPhone 5s is a not just the best iPhone ever made, it may be the best smartphone ever made. While a new A7 processor brings a blistering level of speed to the interface, the innovative TouchID fingerprint sensor speeds up your usage of the iPhone by unlocking it in an instant. The redesigned camera that takes some of the most breath-taking photos whether in direct sunlight or in the shadows of the night. This is the phone every Apple fan should buy.
Huawei Ascend P6
Operating System : Android
By far and away the most surprisingly brilliant smartphone we used this year was the Ascebd P6 from Chinese manufacturer Huawei. The phenomenal design and effortlessly good execution at a price point that no other manufacturer can even come close to makes the Ascend P6 our shock inclusion for this year. We also love that it has a 5MP front facing camera to take uber-selfies, because that’s a real word now too.
Nokia Lumia 1020
Nokia has always been obsessed with moving mobile imaging technology forward and the Lumia 1020 is one of those devices that just pushes the bar that extra bit higher. The superb 41MP camera gave us some of the most amazing pictures we’ve ever seen from a smartphone. While the actual smartphone portion of the Lumia 1020 would not have made a top 5 of 2013 list, the imaging technology certainly makes the Lumia 1020 a phenomenal achievement.
And the smartphone of the year goes to…
The LG G2. It literally is the best Android phone we have ever had the privilege of testing. While the Apple faithful will try to say that the iPhone 5s is a better phone it hasn’t done as much to advance our opinion of iPhones in the same way that the G2 has made us consider Android phones in a new light.