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Battle of the brands - which new phone will you choose?

Battle of the brands - which new phone will you choose?

06 Dec 2017
Joseph

Seph

amaysim's tech geek

So you need a new phone. Whether your old one went for a swim in the toilet, got stolen or simply died (RIP), buying a new phone is no walk in the park.

Checking out the latest models and all their fancy features might be fun, but having so many options to choose from can leave you feeling bamboozled.

If you’re having trouble wading through all the techy lingo and online debate about which phone is the best, don’t despair. In this blog we’ll give you the lowdown on some of the most popular phones out there, explaining their pros, cons, and standout features.

iPhone X

The latest iPhone has attracted plenty of attention, but does it live up to the hype? The nerds diehard fans who queued up outside Apple stores when it first came out seem to think so, but not everyone is going to be so easily impressed.

The iPhone X’s standout feature is face-recognition technology. Instead of using your fingerprint or security code to unlock your phone, all you need to do is look at its screen. Pretty cool, right?

pros

  • The iPhone X has tons of high-tech features, including an edge-to-edge screen and a dual-lens camera.
  • It’ll make you look like the coolest kid on the block.

cons

  • There’s no home button. You have to swipe up to get to the home screen, which can take some getting used to.
  • The price. An iPhone X will set you back over $1,500. Yikes.

Samsung Galaxy S8

If you prefer Android devices, the Samsung Galaxy S8 gives the iPhone a run for its money in terms of sleek aesthetics, camera quality and tech-savvy features. Worried about the Galaxy Note 7 exploding battery fiasco? That may have been the PR disaster to end all PR disasters, but the cause of the problem has been discovered and Samsung is gradually recovering its reputation.

Fire hazards aside, the Galaxy S8 is perfect for people who want a show-stopping phone and the Android operating system.

pros

  • The Galaxy S8 is fitted with an amazing edge-to-edge screen (similar to the iPhone X).
  • The phone’s powerful processor can render high-resolution videos with ease.
  • There a ton of customisable features that can easily be adjusted to suit your personal preferences.

cons

  • The Galaxy S8’s high-res screen comes at a cost. Its battery life only lasts around 7-8 hours of casual use, so you’ll need to keep your charger handy.
  • The fingerprint sensor is in kind of an awkward position next to the rear camera. Samsung, why you do this?

Google Pixel 2

Google’s flagship phone is renowned for its high-quality camera. The Pixel 2 is also water-resistant (that doesn’t mean you can go surfing with it, but it won’t stop working at the first sign of water, unlike some smartphones).

With its distinctive matte finish, front-facing stereo speakers and ‘Active Edge’ feature (this lets you squeeze the sides of the phone to trigger certain actions), the Pixel 2 is a great option for fans of high-tech features and quality phone photography.

pros

  • The Pixel 2’s superior camera can help you capture Instagram-worthy photos with ease.
  • The powerful Android 8.0 operating system is simple to use and highly customisable.

cons

  • There’s no headphone jack.
  • The battery life is a little meh compared to other smartphones on the market.

Sony Xperia XZ Premium

This Xperia XZ Premium offers Sony’s professional photography heritage in a pocket-sized device. It might not look quite as pretty as the iPhone X or the Galaxy S8, but there’s still plenty to like about the Xperia XZ Premium. Its camera can capture high-quality photos and videos, and the 4K display is ultra-sharp and bright.

pros

  • You’ll feel like a professional photographer.
  • Shooting at a rate of 960fps, the Xperia’s slow-motion video function is top notch.
  • It’s waterproof.

cons

  • It’s a little bulky and lacks the sleek style of other smartphones.
  • The waterproof feature isn’t quite perfect – it only works if the rubberised flap that covers the sim card slot has been pushed in properly.

There’s no one-size-fits-all phone for everyone, but no matter what you’re looking for in a new phone, we can help you find the perfect match.

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Pixel 5

Google Pixel 5: Everything we know so far

13 Aug 2020

Fresh on the heels of the Pixel 4A being announced, the hype train for the Google Pixel 5 is now well and truly underway.

After months of speculation about whether the Pixel 5 launch would be pushed back, Google put much of this chatter to rest by providing a sneak peak of the Pixel 5 during the recent launch of the Pixel 4A.


Last years flagship device, the Pixel 4, was a phone full of potential. As we've come to expect from the Pixel series, it featured an incredibly powerful camera, however its average battery life, held it back from being a serious contender for phone of the year.

While the Pixel 4 had its flaws, it was still a really good phone overall, and it will interesting to see how this years model, stacks up against other flagship models from 2020 such as the Samsung Galaxy S20 and Apple's highly anticipated iPhone 12.

With all this said, we wouldn't count Google out from delivering something special and with such a positive early response to the Pixel 4A, perhaps 2020 will prove to be the year of the Pixel.

To help bring you up to speed on what Google has in-store with this years flagship Pixel device, here's everything we know so far about the Pixel 5.

at a glance: rumoured Google Pixel 5 features

  • Expected October release
  • 5G connectivity
  • Android 11
  • New camera features; Adjustable Flash, Motion Blur & Audio Zoom
  • 120Hz refresh rate
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G

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    Expect 5G

    It's widely expected the Pixel 5 will include 5Gconnectivity.

    The feature was all but confirmed in early August with the announcement of the Pixel 4A, where Google teased two new 5G devices, the Pixel 5 and a 5G version of the Pixel 4A, both of which are set to be released during the final quarter of 2020.

    Release Date

    Since the phone’s inception back in 2016, Google has remained incredibly consistent with their release schedule for the flagship Pixel series, with all previous launches taking place in October. This trend is set to continue, after a leak surfaced from a Google affiliated website in France, claiming the Pixel 5 will be available for pre-order from October 8.

    Android 11

    This shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise, since a beta version of Android 11 is already available for public download, however it’s expected the Pixel 5 will be the first device to don the latest Android software straight out the box.

    Some of the expected improvements and features of Android 11 include a new media player widget, easier ways to control smart home devices using your phone, a new power button menu and refinements to the messaging system and conversation bubbles.

    Pixel 5 Render
    Image Credit: Google

    Design & Display

    Last year Google teased images of the Pixel 4 in the months leading up to its official launch. This time round, the only confirmed sighting of the Pixel 5 has been the side image (seen above) which Google teased during the launch of the Pixel 4A.

    Outside of this image, there have been a number of different leaks floating about which have helped paint a picture of what this years phone might look like.

    Like the Pixel 4, it's expected the Pixel 5 will feature an OLED panel, with a matte glass finish on the back and full HD/QHD resolution. According to Front Page Tech who gained access to an early Pixel 5 prototype, a forehead bezel on the front side of the device is also expected to remain.

    In terms of refresh rate, last year we got to enjoy a smooth 90Hz experience with the Pixel 4. However with Samsung (and others) already making the jump to 120Hz and Apple reportedly looking to do the same with the iPhone 12, it will be interesting to see if Google sees this as an important feature upgrade and whether they'll look to roll out a 120Hz refresh rate with the Pixel 5.

    A Mighty Fine Camera

    While earlier leaks suggested the Pixel 5 would include a triple-lens camera on the rear of the device, more recent leaks suggest Google will once again opt for a two camera setup on the back.

    The quality of images with the Pixel 4 were outstanding, so it's not as if this should be a concern. For some though, the added flexibility of a third, wide angle lens, would of been the cherry on top, for a camera that many consider one of the top-tier mobile phone cameras.

    With that said, Google doesn't appear to be standing still, instead opting to fine-tune the Pixel's two-camera setup by adding new features.

    Expected new features include an adjustable camera flash, a new motion blur feature and the introduction of audio zoom, which will allow you to zoom in when recording video to help you capture audio more precisely.

    Long story short, it looks like we're in for a treat with this years camera setup.

    Under The Hood

    In the past, Pixel devices have typically featured the best Qualcomm chip available, which this year would be the Snapdragon 865 Plus. With the Pixel 5, this might not be case, with an inside scoop from 9to5Google suggesting the phone may be shipped with a Snapdragon 765G processor.

    The Snapdragon 765 is more of a mid-range chip, unlike the high-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 which powers the latest Samsung phones. This would suggest slightly less processing power than some of its competitors. With that said, the 765 is obviously no slouch and will still pack a solid punch in terms of performance.

    In terms of RAM, while it hasn't been a huge strength of the Pixel series in the past, there should be improvements on this front, with the Pixel 5 set to include 8GB of RAM in comparison to last years 6GB.

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