Buying a new product is always a difficult task regardless of what the product is. Today, I will be discussing the necessary things you need to know before buying any smartphone.
Smartphone is most personal, useful and most used device in our lives. Unlike our laptop that we can't take anywhere with us, smartphone as a mobile device helps with lot of works like instant messaging, browsing the net on the go, sending email easily, taking and sending picture with just a click and the list continue.
Choosing a mobile device that suit your need isn't an easy task because with multiple operating systems, screen sizes and different brand all screaming for your attention, choosing the right one can be difficult but it doesn't have to, that is why you need to know the following factors before buying any smartphone.
1. Mobile Operating System
Choosing an operating system is the most important decision you make when it comes to buying your smartphone. There are many os platform but only 4 of the list dominate smartphone platforms on the market today, Google’s Android, the Apple’s iOS, Blackberry OS and Microsoft’s Windows Phone.
==> Android OS : This Google’s OS is now the most popular smartphone platform compared to its close competitor iOS and the rest, with many popular manufacturers like Samsung, HTC, LG, Techno producing smartphone with this OS platform.
Android is more open than iOS, is user friendly so flexible and customizable which means smartphone makers can more easily innovate on top of Google’s software. Android have a lot of apps in their playstore, almost more than a million app which have what you need.
==> iOS ( iPhone, iPod & iPad ) ; This Apple's OS is much of complexity but more secured than Android and others. It has improved multitasking and a control Center for quickly changing settings. Apple store have the best selection of high-quality apps and games though Android is narrowing the gap. You can't transfer files via bluetooth etc from a non-iOS powered device to an iOS powered device.
==> Blackberry OS : BlackBerry OS is a proprietary mobile operating system developed by BlackBerry Ltd for its BlackBerry line of smartphone handheld devices. The operating system provides multitasking and is perhaps best known for its native support for corporate email. BlackBerry OS was discontinued after the release of BlackBerry 10.
The new Blackberry 10 support Android apps, allowing you to enjouy Android apps on a Blackberry phone. With a Blackberry smartphone, you can be rest assured that you won't be spending much on data compared to others.
==> Windows Phone OS : Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform debuted a few years later after iOS and Android, though the competition has been so tough and is not as popular as it's Android and iOS competitor, but it has being growing steady. This OS offers many necessary features such as multitasking, quick app resume, and orientation lock, but it's still missing things and like that of iOS, it is not that very customizable as Android.
You can check out the full comparison of mobile operating systems here.
Now the choice is yours to choose which OS platform to go for.
2. SIZE AND DESIGN
Some dudes prefer large phone while some like a portable one that will fit in their pocket, this depends on your choice and what you want to use it for, there are varieties of size with different design out there.
Many smartphones, the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5s for example are 4.5 inch tall or less, and 2.5 inch wide or less, but if you would prefer watching movies, playing games and other in a larger screen , you can go for a tablet or other mobile devices of 5 inches and above. Samsung galaxy note 3 is an example of a larger screen smartphone with 5.7 inch.
You need to know that not every smartphone running in the same Operating system will have the same specs or hardware, note these bellow factors and put them into consideration before buying any smartphone.
* RAM : Believe me, the amount of system memory plays a significant role in how well a smartphone performs. Most of manufacturer offer 2GB - 3GB of RAM to most of their smartphone, and some settle for a lower ram of 1 GB - 1.5 GB. Have it in mind that if you want to load applications from memory faster and switch between them faster, more RAM is better.
* Storage : Since you have to store all your photos, music, videos and apps on your smartphone, going for a much internal memory will be advisable. 16GB of storage is common among many smartphone but now many new smartphone are coming with a 32GB of storage so that you can have enough room to store your data. The 32GB iPhone 5s for example costs $299. But you can also find some cheaper options with that much space, such as the HTC One; it starts at $199 for 32GB.
Also have it in mind that there are smartphone with expandable storage that has a microSD card slot, such as the Samsung Galaxy S4, Techno Android and others.
* Processor : A phone’s processor is the heart of the device, and a fast one will enable you to open apps quickly, play games smoothly. It determines how fast a phone can multitask—that is, how quickly it can run multiple functions or features at the same time. eg “Dual-core” means two processors instead of one.
* Camera : Don't be freak with the megapixels, the quality of both the sensor and the images is more important. iOS offer most of the best camera experience you can get on a smartphone, many other also offer a high quality camera but the truth is that not all smartphone of same OS have the same camera quality.
You have to know that not all smartphones give you all you need to connect your phone to external devices.
For example, some phones don't support internet sharing via hotspot. You will agree with me that it will make alot of sense if you buy a smartphone with a built-in Mobile Hotspot feature, allowing you to create an Internet connection for up to five wiFi-supported devices with just your smartphone, thereby saving you the stress of subscribing to internet on all your gadgets.
More so, some smartphones have features that will allow you to connect your device to large screens eg a SmartTV via hdmi cable or WiFi. You can also consider this when buying your next smartphone.
5. Battery Life
This is a vital part that need to be put into consideration, most especially in Nigeria here where we don't enjoy a stable electricity. so you have to take a good look at the battery capacity before buying any smartphone.
The variety of quality smartphones can be intimidating, but the best phone is the one that really suits your needs.
What's your take on this?