How to choose a Smartphone?


How to choose a Smartphone?

The choice of mobile phones is largely influenced by the constant technological advancements that occur in the electronics industry in general. The following article offers the current specifications of the individual categories, which it is advisable to focus on when choosing a new phone.

The overall issue is very extensive and the wide market offers you countless options for which smartphone to choose. Customers thus often find themselves in difficult situations when choosing. It is not for nothing that the quote is popular in the world: "A large number of options makes it difficult to choose". In this article, we will discuss how to choose the right type and performance of the processor, operating system, RAM size, display, camera or even the battery. We will try to summarize all the necessary information for you, which together will bring you a comprehensive overview and make your purchase decision much easier.

At the outset, it should be noted that the key information for your choice is the identification of what you will actually use the mobile phone for. You have to think about whether you expect maximum performance from your smartphone, for example when playing games or working, or whether you want to use the phone more as a means of communication. If you are clear, we can dive into the analysis of the individual specifications.

How to choose a smartphone in brief:

Decide for what purpose you want to use the smartphone.

Think about which operating system you will focus on.

Determine the price range in which you want to move (see the chapter on price ).

Evaluate your previous experience and choose from the various platforms available.

Look for user reviews of the selected mobile phone and confirm the correctness of your choice.


Operating system

Operating systems divide experts and lay smartphone users into two camps. Proponents of individual systems often blindly promote their preferences and are not willing to admit the advantages of others. The truth is that each of the currently used operating systems offers its own advantages and disadvantages. A detailed description of each of the systems would require a huge scope, which would probably not be of any benefit to the average user. The following analysis will at least briefly mention the advantages and disadvantages of each of the systems in order to facilitate your choice.


Huawei and Honor

A special feature that we will not focus on separately is the newly created Huawei mobile services system. The company is under the sanctions of the US government and therefore cannot be provided with the services of US companies, i.e. not even Google. The manufacturer was forced to develop its own operating system, which is not bad in itself, but does not natively allow access to Google services and applications. Applications such as Google Docs, YouTube, but also Facebook and Instagram are within reach.  Some of the applications can be installed manually after downloading the installer file, however this is not a feasible option for most users .

However, this restriction only applies to the latest models, in 2019 and 2020 most products on the Czech market still supported Google Play.


Google Android

It is currently the most used operating system for mobile phones. This operating system is freeware, which means that the manufacturer does not charge any fees to use it. On the one hand, this makes Android the strongest player in the mobile phone market, on the other hand, it also brings a lot of troubles.

As operating systems develop, their installation in new mobile phone models does not have to go hand in hand. In layman's terms, Google, as a manufacturer, does not have the competence to force individual mobile phone brands to install the latest version of Android in their models, which ultimately leads to the fact that there are mobile phones on the market with several years old operating system. Another problem associated with the freedom of phone manufacturers is the compatibility of individual models with a given type of Android , it often happens that phones are not aligned with the operating system, which slows them down considerably.

READ ALSO: Huawei Nova 10 and Nova 10 Pro - Two new great Smartphones at a good Price

App availability

Android as an operating system, of course, also brings countless advantages, the main one of which is generally considered to be the availability of applications. Android, as the most widespread system, logically offers the greatest compatibility with mobile applications, you can download them directly from the official Google Play, but the possibility of downloading from various alternative sources is also a big advantage. An indisputable plus is also the possibility of directly connecting the phone to the computer and problem-free editing and viewing of saved data. Android also offers countless options for various adjustments and modifications, so you can tune your device exactly to your liking.

Thanks to its openness, it also allows the developers of individual manufacturers to create superstructures on top of the original system. This is how systems such as MIUI from Xiaomi are created. These often offer improved or completely new functions that the original system does not include. However, so-called "pure" Android will always be slightly faster (uses less power).

Overall, these characteristics make Android a more open, accessible and practical operating system than its competitors. So, if you prefer freedom, want to install and use apps a lot, and don't mind occasional possible system compatibility issues, Android is the perfect choice for you.

 + Advantages of Android
– Disadvantages of Android
App availabilityThe system may not be well matched with the hardware
Easy connection to PCOlder versions of the system often appear even in new models
Possibility to tune the system according to your wishesThe openness of the system brings the risk of infecting the phone with viruses

Apple iOS

It is used for mobile devices manufactured by Apple. Its main characteristic and difference compared to Android is closedness. iOS does not allow the installation of applications from sources other than its own, and generally offers less application support due to its lower prevalence. While connectivity between Apple devices is handled better than other systems, transferring files from an iPhone to a Windows device can be quite difficult.

On the one hand, this fact leads to the fact that the consumer does not get such a choice of applications, on the other hand, it makes piracy almost impossible, which means that applications developed for this operating system are richly subsidized and often offer incomparably higher quality than applications of other operating systems . In general, the biggest advantage of Apple iOS is the complete alignment of the operating system with the phone as such. As already mentioned, iOS is developed directly for Apple devices, which guarantees top performance and long battery life.

However, devices with this operating system are usually offered at relatively higher prices and do not allow for an increase in internal memory, which, together with the previously mentioned closedness, are probably the biggest obstacles for ordinary users. If price doesn't play a key role for you and you want to pay extra for the perfect interplay of hardware and software, an iOS phone will bring you exactly what you're looking for. The performance of Apple phones is truly perfect, and although this system also has its pitfalls, the higher price brings great quality in this case.

 + Advantages of Apple iOS
– Disadvantages of Apple iOS
Excellent compatibility of the system with the hardwareHigh price
Quality application and high performanceAvailable only on Apple models
Excellent video and photo qualitySmaller selection of applications and complex connection to PC

Display

The issue of choosing a display is very complex due to the wide range of options. The choice of the right display is not only based on its size. Displays currently offer different technologies and resolutions, which you should not neglect when choosing the ideal one. So we will gradually break down the individual specifications that need to be kept in mind.

Display diagonal in inches

For many buyers, the diagonal of the display is an absolutely fundamental factor in choosing a new phone. After all, the size of the diagonal is crucially reflected in the overall size and weight of the mobile phone. The diagonal of the display is the diagonal distance between the two extreme points (corners) given in inches.

A larger phone display logically offers more options for various actions (whether it is watching movies, playing games comfortably or working). On the other hand, mobile phones with huge diagonals are relatively impractical to handle and, thanks to their dimensions, tend to be significantly heavier (Source: Recenzetesty.cz ). Therefore, the correct size of the diagonal is mainly determined by the purposes for which you want to use the mobile phone. 

Display resolution

The resolution is given in pixels and expresses the maximum number of pixels that can be displayed on the display. The ratio between the number of pixels and the diagonal of the display thus indicates the fineness of the image of your display. The lowest resolution currently used in smartphones is 320 x 480 pixels. Displays with a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels, which meet HD Ready standards, offer a relatively high-quality display.

Displays with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and more, which are referred to as Full HD displays, are a very high standard and a guarantee of the highest display quality. There are also displays referred to as QHD with an even higher resolution, however, due to the dimensions of the display, these values ​​bring almost no real benefit. At the end of the mention of resolution, it is still necessary to state that a higher resolution usually brings a higher battery consumption, so you need to clarify your preferences again.

The subtlety of the display

The fineness of the display best characterizes the display quality from the point of view of the visibility of individual pixels. This is the ratio of the number of pixels (resolution) to the display area and is given in units of PPI (Points Per Inch, i.e. the number of points per inch). A higher number means a finer display, i.e. harder to see individual points. 350 PPI and above can be considered a good value, at the time of writing (October 2020) the highest value available on the market was around 650 PPI.

Display technology

Devices with various display technologies are available on the market, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Below we will briefly focus on choosing the appropriate display technology.

TN / TFT - the oldest currently available display technology. Their imaging capability is rather poor these days.
IPS – the most common design of mobile device displays. It is an offshoot of LCD displays that offers solid display quality, longer life and lower investment costs. Phones in the lower to middle class have them in particular. There are also a number of slightly improved variations such as LTPS, PLS.
OLED – exists in multiple designs such as AMOLED, P-OLED, SAMOLED and Super-AMOLED. Unlike IPS and TN displays, the entire display does not light up, but only the parts that are supposed to light up, so the black color will be truly black. This ensures better contrast ratio and battery saving. Unfortunately, these displays are the currency of more expensive smartphones.

Flexible displays

In 2018, the first mobile phone with a flexible display saw the light of day. This technology makes it possible to place a screen twice as large on the mobile phone, while it is possible to fold the smartphone in half and thus maintain compact dimensions. An alternative approach uses the regular screen size and makes the phone significantly smaller by bending it. In 2022, the cheapest phones with this specific function attacked the threshold of 25 thousand, the most expensive devices exceeded the price of a used Skoda Octavia.

RAM

The RAM memory together with the processor ensures the running of applications on your mobile device, but it also takes care of the simple operation of the operating system. It is very important to distinguish operational memory from user memory, which is mentioned later in the text.
RAM sizeUse
2 GB and aboveI use the device mainly for communication and surfing the Internet.
4 GB and aboveI play light games and use multiple apps.
6 GB and aboveHigher usage demands, I have ten or more applications running in the background.
8 GB and aboveI use a smartphone professionally, run dozens of applications, play demanding games.

The user memory creates space in the phone for storing files, and the operating memory expresses the capacity with which the phone is able to operate with these files. Simply put, RAM is a high-speed memory in which the device stores currently needed applications. He thus has significantly faster access to them than if he had to use the storage space of his mobile phone. In the case of choosing the right RAM capacity, the rule is that the larger the operating memory, the more applications the phone will have quickly accessible. The specific need for operating memory varies depending on how you use your mobile phone.

The size of the operating memory

If you compare two phones with the same RAM capacity, each may end up giving you completely different performance. Therefore, don't just go by the capacity, but take into account other factors as well. RAM greater than 3 GB is the standard today, we strongly advise against buying a device that is less than 2 GB. .

Phones with a capacity lower than 2 GB of RAM would not bring you smooth operation, but rather smooth suffering, and even this capacity is no terno. Today's mid-range smartphones have an operating memory between 4 and 6 GB of RAM, which is a capacity that should be enough for most users without any problems.

Processor

The phone's processor is an absolutely fundamental component of its performance. It affects its normal operation, ensures the trouble-free operation of applications, and its frequency determines the speed of the phone's reactions. The frequency of the processor is given in gigahertz (GHz), translating into billions of operations per second. In general, the higher the frequency and the greater the number of cores, the more powerful the processor.

In very layman's terms, it can be said that if the phone is processing something, it will divide the processing between the individual cores and thereby speed up its execution. Unlike computers, this applies to the vast majority of applications. However, a higher number of processor cores does not necessarily mean the lightning performance of your mobile device, you need to take into account the manufacturer of the processor and its exact type. At the time of writing (October 2020), the fastest processor in the world was the Qualcomm 865+ with a processor frequency of over 3 GHz, however the most powerful was the Apple A12Z with a frequency of around 2.4 GHz. To compare the performance of processors, you can use the website Versus.com , for example .

When choosing a processor, it depends a lot on the other specifications of the phone, because different phones need different processor capacity for their basic operation. It is therefore very difficult to formulate the ideal ratio of the correct performance and the number of cores, it is always necessary to directly verify the given model and find out how the processor in it is able to react to different situations. In general, the AnTuTu website can be used for a simple performance comparison .

Camera

Previously, a high-quality camera was the privilege of only the most expensive phones and was considered a kind of superior equipment. Nowadays, on the other hand, a good camera is considered an essential part of smartphones. Camera resolution is expressed in megapixels. The quality of the photos is mainly ensured by precise optics and a powerful sensor, which does not necessarily have a high number of megapixels.

A valid comparison of the ability to take pictures is offered by the DXOMARK website and reviews comparing photos from different devices. So you should not only be interested in the number of megapixels, but also in the size of the lens, the quality of the sensor, and you should also pay attention to the quality of the flash. More expensive devices also have optical stabilization and a movable aperture. These functions are very important for photography and filming.

An example of the difference in megapixels

Lens

Most devices have multiple cameras, as a rule at least 2, most often 4. Each of these cameras represents a different function due to the different focal length. There is usually a basic camera with high resolution, a telephoto lens with a long focal length for taking distant objects or macro photos, a wide-angle lens for taking photos of architecture, nature and sports, and a special 4th sensor that provides depth of field (it senses the distance differences between the background and the subject) object and thus allows the background to be blurred).

Sensors

Unfortunately, their size is often not indicated by the manufacturer, but it is important to at least state that larger sensor dimensions mean higher quality of the photos taken. Really good sensors start at around 1/2.00″, in October 2020 the largest sensor in a smartphone was 1/1.33″, which is still more than 4x smaller chip than in an ASP-C camera. So definitely don't expect better quality photos from a photomobile than from a camera.

lightning

Current smartphones offer their users a flash in the form of an LED diode, which does not offer as strong a light as a camera flash, but thanks to its characteristics, it can also be used for lighting as a flashlight. It is also possible to purchase external flashes that can be connected to the mobile phone.

In general, it can be said that average mobile cameras, with which it is possible to take photos in basic quality, are currently around 12 Mpx, below this limit there are mostly cameras of very low quality. If you are looking for really high-quality photos, you should therefore choose a camera with a quality of 24 Mpx and higher. The exception to the rule are iPhone phones, which, thanks to high-quality optics and a chip, achieve exceptional photo quality even with 12 MPx. Don't forget the front camera, which allows you to take selfies, which are very popular today, or make video calls.

User memory

Less than 4 GB
Around 8GB
Greater than 32 GB
It can only be found on the cheapest smartphones, complications may arise when installing just a few applications.It is the minimum threshold for using the phone for multimedia entertainment purposes. This storage can be considered the lower limit you should insist on.It offers a decent base for storing photos taken, music and applications.

User memory, as already described above, actually expresses the storage capacity of your mobile phone. Installed applications, downloaded files, taken photos or music, as well as the operating system, are stored in this memory. Memory capacity is expressed in gigabytes (GB) and more GB means greater storage capacity (Source: Spo┼żebitelov.cz ).

Cell phones with a storage capacity below 4 GB are quite a rarity on today's market, and we generally recommend sticking to at least 8 GB when choosing the lower limit. It should be remembered that phone manufacturers often add their applications to it from the start, so even before the first start of the phone, in the case of a small storage, you may have a substantial part of it occupied. If you intend to use the phone as a multimedia device, choose a storage size of at least 16 GB, but preferably 32 GB or more. The best mobile phones also offer an almost inexhaustible capacity of 256 GB for the average user.

At this point, it should be mentioned that some phones (for example, Apple products) do not offer the option of expanding the internal memory with a memory card. Therefore, if the phone you have chosen does not offer a large storage capacity, and moreover it is not possible to expand it with one of the memory cards, carefully consider whether the investment in it is really worth it.

Push-button telephones
The situation is a little different in the case of push-button phones with no or low-performance cameras. There is no need to give almost any weight to the size of the user's memory here, and 4 GB of memory is more than enough.

Battery

Battery capacity is defined by the number of milliamp hours (mAh). More mAh generally means longer battery life, but two devices with the same battery capacity and other different equipment can have completely different battery life. It mainly depends on the energy that your phone consumes. This is influenced, for example, by the size and type of display or the efficiency of individual software and hardware components (primarily the processor).

Choice of battery capacity

It is basically impossible to determine the correct battery capacity, most models today offer a capacity of around 4,000 mAh, but you can also find batteries with a capacity of over 6,000 mAh in phones with high consumption. Batteries with a capacity below 2,500 mAh should now only be offered in models with minimal consumption, and you should carefully consider their choice. The exception is push-button telephones, which have an order of magnitude lower consumption thanks to their low performance and small display. A 1,500 mAh push-button phone will have significantly more battery life than a 4,000 mAh smartphone.

The problem with some smartphones is that the battery does not last very long in operation. Which can be a problem if you're away from a place with an electrical outlet for an extended period of time. For these cases, it is useful to have a power bank or solar charger with you, thanks to which you can charge your phone even without an electricity connection. Most devices, however, have a battery saving mode, and by limiting the performance, you are able to reach five times the battery life at once.

Fast charging

The QuickCharge function can also make life much easier. Some smartphones can thus be recharged within an hour. The charging speed is defined in watts (W), a higher number means a faster charging speed. The normal value of fast charging is 15 W, exceptionally it reaches up to 65 W (as of October 2020). For the year 2021, the first phones supporting chargers with a power of over 100 W are planned to be launched. In practice, this will mean the possibility of recharging the battery in less than 15 minutes.

Construction

Quite often, in connection with smartphones, there is a mistaken assumption that the plastic construction is of poor quality and is only associated with phones of the lowest price category. However, this statement is far from generally valid and true. It is true that plastic is a significantly cheaper material than the others used, but it offers a comfortable hold on the phone and resistance to scratches and falls.

Similarly, the metal is also resistant to falls, but the resistance to scratches and visible fingerprints is somewhat neglected. The last frequently used material is glass, which is the prerogative of more expensive models. It looks elegant, but its practicality is quite low. It is easily damaged when dropped and fingerprints stick to it, which is also undesirable. Metal and glass phones also slide more in the hand.

In principle, it is impossible to state which of the materials is associated with a higher or lower price category, because each user is comfortable with a different material, and manufacturers act accordingly, and even on phones in a higher price category, they apply a plastic construction for greater practicality.

Interesting solution

From an aesthetic point of view, the version with a transparent back is a new and rather interesting design option. With such phones, internal components that are otherwise hidden can be seen from the back.
Construction type
Advantages
Disadvantages
Plastic constructionDurability, good holdNot very elegant appearance
Glass constructionElegant design, wireless charging optionVisible fingerprints, risk of damage if dropped
Metal constructionSolid material, elegant designLower comfort when holding the phone

Durable construction

They are basically divided into durable phones and waterproof phones. The main difference is that while durable phones are defined at first sight by a more massive construction that survives even a fall or impact, the waterproof ones are indistinguishable from regular smartphones. The durability of constructions is expressed by the IP standard, which measures the ability to resist the penetration of dust and water into the phone under precisely given conditions (Source: Engineering Testing Institute ).

On the other hand, protection against falling and other parameters are governed by military standards MIL-STD-810. Even phones that meet these standards are not only associated with the highest price class, as the lay public sometimes mistakenly believes. Often decently functioning durable phones are already available in the middle price range. For example, if you are worried about operating your phone in harsh working conditions, a durable construction may be the ideal solution for you. Water resistance, in turn, ensures the possibility of safe use in the rain, or even underwater photography. If you are more interested in waterproof construction, we recommend reviews of waterproof phones on Vybero.cz.

User reviews

A big advantage when choosing a new smartphone is the possibility to check its qualities based on available user reviews, which focus on its strengths and weaknesses. As it was already said in the previous chapters, it is not a problem to find, for example, pictures taken from the camera of the selected phone on the Internet and very easily get an idea of ​​the real qualities of this device.

Unfortunately, as with most multimedia devices, it is true for mobile phones that nice parameters do not always mean top performance, for example due to poor compatibility of individual components. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you take into account the experiences of customers who have already purchased a smartphone and can give you very good feedback before making a choice.

Other

This chapter discusses some minor but still very important concepts that can significantly affect your choice of new mobile phone.

Signal

When choosing a phone, you should definitely consider its ability to connect to mobile networks. You currently have a choice of 4 types of mobile networks.

3G : 3G connection was still available in October 2020, but it is expected to be switched off in 2021. Therefore, we do not recommend buying a device that only allows connection to the 3G network.
4G : This network will offer you the possibility of a fast data connection. 4G networks are sometimes mistakenly confused with the term LTE. At the time of writing (October 2020), 4G and LTE network availability was standard.
5G : In 2020, the gradual launch of the 5G network in the Czech Republic began. At the end of the year, this network was available to a limited extent, especially in large cities. Compared to the 4G network, it offers a multiple increase in transmission speed.
LTE: It doesn't reach 4G speeds, so it's really just a sort of intermediate sometimes also referred to as 3.5G. So don't be fooled by the marketing ploys that put the two technologies on the same level. However, sometimes LTE can also be a 4G network.
Sim
Interesting fact: Did you know that the SIM card, unlike the SD card, is not a storage device, but a microcomputer with its own processor?

The classic SIM card size that you are probably used to from older phone models is no longer used in new smartphones. Currently, phones are manufactured that support micro-SIM or nano-SIM. Both formats are miniatures of the original classic SIM cards. If these concepts are unfamiliar to you, don't worry. Most Czech mobile operators offer either free cutting of the SIM card to the required format, or its complete exchange for a new one in the correct size.

In connection with the issue of SIM cards, it is also worth mentioning that many of today's models have a dual SIM function, which allows multiple SIM cards to be connected to one phone at the same time. You can use this option, for example, if you have one card for data transfer purposes and another for classic voice services, or if you need to use the services of several operators at the same time for work reasons.

eSIM

The possibility of using the so-called eSIM card is gradually being introduced. If your device supports this standard, you can use the SIM card even without the need to physically insert it into the device. The eSIM card is only a virtual matter and is gradually starting to gain traction in the Czech Republic as well. The advantage of this design is the possibility of placement even in very small devices, such as smart watches.

Sensors

Phone sensors are sensors that enable additional functions of the phone. They are often neglected when choosing new smartphones, but their role can be crucial.

Gravity sensor : This sensor is an absolute staple in all smartphones and ensures their ability to rotate the screen according to movement and process external movements.
Gyroscope : Provides a more accurate measurement of movement than the gravity sensor and is essential for controlling the phone with motion gestures (shake) and playing games.
Proximity sensor : Enables automatic display locking when approaching an object. It is mainly used for the purpose of locking the screen when brought close to the ear, so as not to end the call with the ear.
Time of Flight sensor : Measures the distance from obstacles using an IR signal. The equipment they have provides the ability to better estimate the depth of field when taking pictures.
Light sensor : Allows you to automatically reduce and increase the brightness of the display according to the surrounding environment. If you are in a dark environment, the brightness of the display is automatically reduced and vice versa.
Fingerprint sensor : These sensors are the domain of smartphones in higher price classes and are mainly used for their security. It is usually located either on the front of the smartphone and its home button "Home Button" or on the back cover, and after setting it is possible to lock the phone instead of the security code just by reading the fingerprint.
Other sensors : Other sensors are also widely used and offer new possibilities and services. These sensors include, for example, a hygrometer, barometer (atmospheric pressure sensor), pedometer, digital compass (magnetic sensor).
GPS
GPS navigation and others are part of most mobile devices. Almost all mobile phones have the ability to operate navigation, as long as the phone is connected to the Internet. However, this method of navigation is not nearly as accurate and reliable as a real GPS. Therefore, when choosing, you should look for a phone that has a built-in GPS module, so you will not need a connection in data mode for possible navigation.

Thanks to the size of the displays, high-quality speakers and convenient operation, the navigation contained in mobile phones today can be considered a full-fledged replacement for the separate ones, and therefore, if you want GPS, definitely insist on it being part of your mobile phone, because this will save you a substantial investment for another device. But why do manufacturers allow connection to several navigation systems at the same time? The reason for this is the ability to more precisely determine the location based on the acquisition of data from multiple sources.

In 2020, there were already 4 navigation systems available, each falling under a different nation or establishment. Below you can find a list of them.

GPS - It is the longest available publicly available navigation option for ordinary users. The advantage is its availability on almost all devices, the disadvantage is lower accuracy and speed of location determination. The system is managed by the US military, so it is not guaranteed.
GLONASS – The Russian navigation system is also available worldwide, compared to other systems it provides the lowest accuracy.
Galileo – It is the European navigation system that is the only one that is completely under civilian administration. The administrative seat of the command is in the Czech Republic. It offers the highest accuracy of any existing navigation system (as of October 2020).
Other systems - Some large and economically strong countries build their own navigation systems, but they are usually only local. These are, for example, BeiDou (China), NavIC (India) and QZSS (Japan)
Navigation systemAccuracy in the civil sector
GPSabout 3.6 meters
GLONASSapprox. 4.5 – 7.4 meters
Galileoapprox. 1 meter

WiFi

Today almost every smartphone on the market offers you a connection to a Wi-Fi network. Differences can be found between individual Wi-Fi versions. Currently, Wi-Fi 5 (or 802.11ac) with a maximum transmission speed of 165 MBps is common. In 2020, the new Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), which offers up to 10x higher transmission speed, is gradually being introduced. If you need to transfer large volumes of data, it is better to choose the 802.11ax standard.

Bluetooth

Just like the Wi-Fi technology mentioned above, Bluetooth is also a part of every smartphone. Through this technology, you can transfer data between devices for free, or connect your phone to external devices. The latest and fastest Bluetooth technology is v5.0, but older versions (such as 4.2) will do just fine for general purposes.

NFC

It is a technology that works on a similar basis to the aforementioned Bluetooth. It is also a wireless data transfer system from one device to another. However, NFC is significantly more gentle on battery drain and has a high data transfer rate. NFC also enables the use of a mobile phone or smart watch as a substitute for a payment card. It is also possible to quickly connect some devices, such as wireless headphones, to a smartphone by simply touching them using NFC. Therefore, if you are going to buy a smartphone in a higher price category, NFC technology should be available to you.

Infrared port

It is also used to transfer data between two devices, but recently it has been on the decline due to the convenience of the aforementioned technologies, which offer greater comfort. The infrared transmission that the Infraport uses is significantly slower, requires both devices to point at each other, and only works over a very short distance. The advantage is the possibility of using it as a replacement for the remote control of some appliances, especially televisions.

Mobile brands

In recent years, the mobile phone segment has become quite turbulent, while decades of established manufacturers have come to an end, a number of new ones are entering the market with interesting gadgets and technologies. After many years, for example, the traditional LG ceased production, due to sanctions reflecting possible security risks, Huawei ceased to be interesting in Europe, and Nokia left the premium phone market. We will analyze the most interesting brands in more detail below.

Samsung

The South Korean brand Samsung is the largest supplier of smartphones in the world. Although it traditionally fights for its place with Apple and Xiaomi, most of the time it is a few percent higher in sales. It owes its leadership both to a number of innovations and to its own production of processors and camera sensors. 

Samsung specializes rather in the middle class, and products for the most demanding, at low price levels, do not offer a very good price-performance ratio. You can choose between the Galaxy M, A, XCover and S series. Each has its own specifics, which we cover in more detail in the article What are Samsung mobile phones .

Samsung phones work with the Android operating system, but a rather massive but well-tuned OneUI superstructure is added on top of it. Like Apple, developers are betting on wider collaboration within the same ecosystem. You can therefore fully use, for example, a Samsung smart watch only with a mobile phone of the same company.

Apple

The traditional American manufacturer was the first to bring to the world and mass spread the smartphone as we know it today. The Android operating system did not exist then, so phones are handled by the iOS system. Apple releases a new iPhone, as it calls its mobile phones, every year. It specializes only in expensive, but also perfectly tuned and quality-made devices.

You can expect a perfectly working system without jams, wide compatibility within the ecosystem of different Apple devices, beautiful photos and video. But what you won't see are bigger innovations. The manufacturer is in no hurry to replace components, rather competition comes with new technologies. 

Compatibility with other systems is also tragic. It is therefore not recommended to buy an iPhone for users working with Windows or Linux. We compared the company's phones on a separate page .

Xiaomi

The company based in Beijing (China) introduced its first smartphone, the Mi1, only in 2011. It is by far the youngest of the big three, which together hold most of the market (Samsung, Apple, Xiaomi). The brand earned its place with an extreme pace of innovation, a very favorable price and excellent marketing.

The Chinese brand thus became a "lovebrand" to some extent. The manufacturer focuses on all price levels, from the cheapest to premium devices for tens of thousands of crowns. The Poco brand also belongs to the same manufacturer. We covered the brand in more detail in the article What are Xiaomi phones ?

Price

As was said in the beginning, the price is a very important factor that will directly influence your decision. If you only have limited price options, don't expect an all-around high-performance device. In the following summary, we will compare phones and their parameters according to individual price categories.

Frequently asked questions about mobile phones

How and what to choose a mobile phone?

It is absolutely essential for a considered choice to determine right from the start what you expect from the phone. If you're looking for a construction phone, you're probably better off with one of the rugged phones. On the other hand, more expensive touch models are suitable for gamers, lovers of photography, filming or social networks. On the other hand, push-button telephones with simple controls and a button with an SOS function may suit seniors better. You can find the best mobile phones in our comparison .

In which category to search for a mobile phone?

Choosing the right model is a purely individual matter. For ordinary users, the most suitable category will probably be the one with a price of up to CZK 10,000. Users working in demanding conditions will be most interested in drop-resistant phones. Phones for seniors are proud of their simpler controls adapted to older generations. The stars of social networks, as well as photography and video lovers, will be interested in photomobiles. Mobile phones with a price of up to CZK 15,000 are intended for avid gamers. Demanding users can find themselves among iPhones, mobile phones over CZK 15,000 or flexible phones. Less demanding users will be satisfied with a device priced below CZK 5,000.

What materials are smartphones made of?

In the lower price ranges, you will most often come across a plastic version, or in combination with a metal frame. The higher you search above 5,000 CZK, the more likely you will come across a device with a glass back embedded in a metal frame. Both solutions have their advantages. Plastic is more resistant to falling, phones are lighter and hold better. The glass back feels more luxurious, not very drop resistant, but allows for wireless charging.

What is the difference between LTE and 5G connections?

In general, an LTE connection is a designation for a 3.5G or 4G connection. This enables a maximum real transfer speed of around 12.5 megabytes per second (MB/s). In contrast, the new 5G standard enables a speed 10 times higher. In practice, this means that what you would download on 4G LTE for 40 minutes will take less than a minute on the 5G network. The 5G network was gradually launched in the Czech Republic in 2020.

What was the best mobile of 2021?

At the end of 2021, Apple released its iPhone 13 Pro Max , which turned out to be the best phone of 2021 in many ways. For the first time, the manufacturer really won with its battery life, but also with performance. Series 13 also brought Cinematic mode with a blurred background when shooting video and overall excellent cameras. If we were to focus on a narrow category, such as photography only, or performance only, we would find better alternatives. But Apple products won out with their overall versatility.

What are the TOP phones of 2022?

In 2022, the cards are already being shuffled a bit more. Samsung offers the Galaxy S22 Ultra model with a stylus in the body, the brightest display in the world and an ultrazoom camera, while the Honor Magic4 Ultimate won the DXOMark tests and is the best camera phone. In terms of price and versatile equipment in the premium class, we can easily call the Google Pixel 6 Pro the best.

But at the beginning of 2022, the release of the highest model of the 12th series of Xiaomi, which could come with a 200 megapixel sensor, similar to LiDAR from the iPhone and the most powerful processor, was still awaited.

Tested dTest smartphones?

At dTest, they provide long-term smartphone testing. At the same time, they focus on the quality of the display, performance, speakers and cameras. However, there are more detailed tests that we draw on in our comparisons.

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