We are part of a generation where we seem to have a natural talent to configure and use new technology. It’s somehow part of how we grew up in an era of technological advancements in almost every aspect of our lives, particularly in our day-to-day interaction and communication with people we know, here or not. Technology since then has become a way of life. A tool, if you will, for everything we need. Simply put, we will discuss 2014’s new releases of brand new phones.
To back up that last line, I’ve chosen the market’s top 4 smartphone models newly released this 2014. For most of us these days, a smartphone is common, and nothing would stop us to aim for an upgrade from an iOS 7 to an iOS 8, or from an Android Jellybean to an Android KitKat. With our favourite models promising better specs and features on their new models, this article would help you further in deciding which phone would suit your tastes the best; whether you’re after great audio for your phone, gaming, sharp image and video capture, great graphic display, or just after a good user interface and design. You pick your style. If you’re curious to know how these 4 smartphones differ from each other, then read on.
SONY Xperia Z3: The Swimmer
The newest of the Z series comes to the market. The Sony Xperia Z3 still keeps its promises. The Xperia Z3, like its predecessors, can literally stay under 2 meters of water and is still functional after an hour. Other than it’s waterproof, it’s dustproof as well, offering interested buyers more practical protection for realistic situations like, in a pool or when you’re phone sits idly at a dusty table.
When it comes to appearance, if you like it sophisticated, here’s a thin smartphone with a design and interface so smooth, it would make you look classy. If you’re concerned about its battery life, it has a feature called “Stamina Mode” that minimizes your large apps in the background and lessens the drainage especially during your gaming. The downside though, is that it charges slower than most smartphones in the market today.
No doubt, the Z3 gives photography enthusiasts a powerful camera with incredible lenses paired with a feature called an “auto mode” and a de-focus that lets us play on the blur features on the images we capture. It records a 4k video (4000 resolution), but mostly, the video doesn’t last for more than 3 minutes. Regardless, for us, it might already be enough to record a video with lesser resolution. The audio is ‘expectedly’ great, as it is from Sony Tech, its audio aspect flaunts its dual facing front speakers. Whereas the impressive GUI (Graphic User Interface) gives users a smooth experience (and added with an upgradable option from Android KitKat to Lollipop)and the display screen provides those who love gaming on their mobile phones, a much clearer and colourful display.
To sum it up, the SONY Xperia Z3 is great for image and video capture, the rest of it is tolerable especially if you’ve been an Xperia fan before. Whether you have a Z or any other of its Z series, you’ll enjoy this smartphone as it still provides almost the same features as its predecessors.
iPhone 6 and 6 Plus: Bigger is Now Better
The newest model, as the company would claim, is their biggest leap yet on the iPhones. And like what they do on their new phones, it’s been added with more features. The catch is: not every feature is necessary. Nonetheless, the iPhone 6 and 6 plus is extremely different from the rest of its predecessors.
People do agree that the new iPhone has become slightly similar to the Samsung Galaxy S5, where I agree too. Still, bigger screen is the future, it seems. The iPhone 6 provides customers with a 4.7 inch screen display with a 1334×750 resolution. The 6 plus, being a LOT bigger, gives us a 5.5 inch and an added resolution to backup those pixels. The iPhone 6 is 6.9mm thinner and the other is 7.1mm. It still has its classical round edges that make it look sophisticated. The bad? The bigger it got, the more it became harder to reach the home button. It may not be a big deal, but some people actually do mind the practical uses of the iPhone. The controversial feature of the iPhone 6 however, that it can bend, is a feature that is personally, unnecessary. Cool, but unnecessary. Tip: don’t sit on your phone.
It’s Apple A8 processors gives it a smooth GUI. The new iOS 8 upgrade is seriously a better quality than the last iOS, whether for your multimedia purposes like gaming and video. Its battery is ‘excellent’, as techradar would suggest. Their review included that the iPhone’s battery life is better than the S5 and charging is a lot faster than most in the competition. If you like quick and simple snaps of memories for your digital gallery, then the iPhone may be recommended to you. It has a 8mp iSight sensor that uses large pixels on the images, a 1.2mp front face FaceTime HD snapper that’s good for lighting, at the very least. To really compare it, the new iPhone 6 and 6 plus, when it comes to the camera features, it didn’t have a bigger change from the iPhone 5s. There are limited features and no panorama effect in the new iPhone, which is sad and because most recent Android phones have those. Other than this, though, everything else is okay.
If you already have a 5S, it’s safe not to upgrade to a 6 or 6 plus, since it only got bigger and improved the features that was already in the iPhone 5s. However if you’re an interested buyer though, skip the 5S because you might like the iPhone 6 more.
LG G3: Simplicity is key.
“Removable battery pack, a micro SD slot and a mature interface, ” are a few of the features in the LG G3. The company claims that, “Simple is the new smart”. After handling an LG G3, you’ll see how their GUI was made “simple” with flat tiles for the apps. The battery life of the phone is one of the biggest in the market, having a 3000mAh battery. But its new display screen limits how the battery would really be maximized. Still, with medium use, it lasts through a day and a few hours, according to the techradar review.
The G3’s camera has a 13mp and a 2.1mp front camera. The feature added for their front camera would be the seemingly “flash” feature. It’s not exactly a flash, but a part of the screen lights up to give that extra brightness for images captured by the front camera. Their back camera though has poor interaction, it doesn’t have much options at togging with the ISO, exposure, etc., which should have helped at improving the photo.
If you’re into music, the audio aspect of the G3 can handle high quality sounds, much like the Xperia Z series. But the speaker was not so much. Video playback is great especially with the widened screen and extra pixels per inch.
It’s Android KitKat by default and it’s the cheapest of the four in price.
Samsung Galaxy S5: Always the Upgraded
The Samsung products for smartphones have always been impressive. Nothing beats their new Super AMOLED display that takes video playback and gaming to the next level: it’s big, clear, sharp and colorful. Everything you expect from a Samsung smartphone is there. It’s always customizable to your taste, powered by Android KitKat (which is also upgradable to Android Lollipop) and with every new Samsung phone, there’s always something new.
It’s sleek in design and gives almost the same look as before, which is okay to Samsung fans and to those interested. The battery lasts more with their upgraded 2800mAh battery pack. To put in context, the phone was tested playing a 90 minute video loop and the phone has been drained just by 16%. Their gallery menu and default apps remained just the same and, like I mentioned before, with its Super AMOLED display, things are sharper and colorful and even in direct daylight, the screen doesn’t wash out.
The camera has been okay, with 16mp. Techradar’s concern was that the default camera app was a bit slow in boot up. But once functional, there are a number of menus for specific shots, the images are great even in low light.
If you like a great smartphone, simple and classic, the Samsung Galaxy S5 is a package. Great processor, camera, media features (audio and video) and battery.
Hopefully you’ve decided. To sum everything; the Xperia Z3 excels in photography experiences, the iPhone 6 and 6 plus has a great processor for a smooth GUI and gaming experience, the LG G3 is excellent for long-lasting activities in your phone for its battery and the Samsung Galaxy S5 is a bit of everything—it’s just the only brand that provides Super AMOLED display.
So guys, take your pick. Choose the phone that most suits your convenience, because owning a smartphone isn’t just a gift, it’s a responsibility too. Upgrades for new phones are just around the corner. But don’t rush it though. My advice? Choose a phone that would last a relatively long time, despite upgrades and newer versions. Always wait for the best ones and never rush to buy.
This article is going to be published in The Facade, my university’s magazine. (2015)
Images from: forbes.com, etc. (G Search)