The best Android phones should be on Your Gadget Shopping List

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The many variations in screen size, processor power, software features and design makes finding the best Android phone for you extremely tough. Do you physically and emotionally need a QWERTY keyboard? Are you the sort of oddball who prefers the rough pressing needed to make resistive touch screens work? If so, you won’t find much luck here, as those technologies are sadly phased out of the Android world as buyers get enamored by fancy, glossy capacitive touch screens. Are you struggling to work out which are the best Android Widgets? Or even stuck wondering: “Actually, what IS Android?” To help find the best Android phone for you, we’ve rounded up the best Android handsets out there today, rating the phones on hardware performance, OS upgrade potential and, of course, how shiny and nice they are to have and boast about to work colleagues. So here they are – the best Android phones money can buy today. For many, many different reasons. Converting videos to playback on Samsung, Google, etc

1. Samsung Galaxy Note 2

The Samsung Galaxy Note 2 has now be usurped at the top of Samsung’s screen size totem pole by the Galaxy Note 3, but that’s not to say this is a bad phone. Far from it in fact, and its 30 million sales is testament to the fact that people do want a bigger screen on their smartphone. Now updated to Android Jelly Bean the Note 2 still has a decent reserve of power to see you through those console quality games, plus its still large 5.5-inch display makes it a great multimedia player.

2. Sony’s Xperia Z

Sony’s Xperia Z impressed us early this year and the firm has built on this with the Xperia Z1, which is why the Z has taken a tumble down the rankings. It’s still a decent smartphone mind. You can see the Sony influence throughout the handset as it oozes quality and build from the large screen, which fits close to the edges of the bezel, to the intelligent camera that allows you to snap some really premium photos without needing to fiddle about with the settings. And it’s water and dust resistant too, which makes it excellent for general life business, plus it’s packing a microSD card slot in an impossibly thin chassis, for which we laud the phone even higher. Add to that the Bravia Engine 2, which can upscale standard definition movies and bring your content to life, and you’ve got a real matchwinning phone in your hands.

3. Samsung S4 Mini

For those after some Samsung muscle but in a slightly more pocketable format, the S4 Mini’s a result. It’s had its display size chopped to just 4.3-inches – positively tiny in this age of five-inch slabs – and although the resolution and internal power have also been reduced when compared with the S4 Large, the Mini’s everyday performance isn’t really compromised at all. The 1.7GHz dual-core chipset is perfectly capable of handling both Samsung’s software tools and the ever-increasing demands of Android, while it outdoes other phones in this mid-range price bracket by having 1.5GB of RAM onboard for solid app, gaming and multitasking performance.

4. Google Nexus 4

Google and LG have worked together to bring to market a fantastic offering last year, one that even Apple fans can’t help but coo over when they heard the price. While the Nexus 4 is running on year old technology, it’s new, lower price point simply makes it fantastic value for money. The Nexus 4 is beautifully designed with a stunning display and rocking the latest version of Android. It has more connectivity than a telephone exchange and even excels in the simple matter of making calls. We’re not fans of the lower memory allowance, and it’s not got the best screen on the market, and there will be a few that see stock Android 4.2 as too stripped-down to consider it a valid phone OS choice, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a fantastic handset – it would have competed even without the insanely low price tag.