The Apple iPhone 5c is, in Apple’s words, unapologetically plastic – it has a fun, vibrant feel to it that is backed up by the steel-reinforced case to give a very solid phone with impressive specifications. Released at the same time as the iPhone 5s and available in 2 memory sizes, 16 and 32GB, the iPhone 5c features a better, faster camera than the previous iPhone 5, the updated iOS7 operating system and ultra-fast WiFi. What are the main differences? The 5c doesn’t have Touch ID fingerprint recognition and the processor is A6 rather than A7 on the 5s – aside from that and a couple of differences in camera spec the phones are similar.
The iSight camera on the 5c is 8 megapixel with a long list of features, the new one being a 15% larger sensor to let in more light. There’s also an HD FaceTime camera with HD video recording and, like the main camera, a backside illumination sensor. Of course the apps available in the iTunes Store add to the phone immensely and many good ones come pre-installed or are free to download from the store, including Newsstand, Games Centre, Voice Memos and Passbook. The emphasis is on bright colours with the 5c – there is no black version, instead you have the choice of green, blue, yellow, pink and white – and there is a range of cases available too.
The Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3 continues the phablet trend with a whopping 6.3 inch touchscreen display, which gives you the screen capacity of a tablet with smartphone functionality. The Mega 6.3 has Android 4.2 on board so you get all the usual Google applications pre-loaded to get you started and Google Play is a click away for new apps, games and content to download.
The large screen makes this a great phone for enjoying your video clips and web browsing is superb with more information displayed and powered along by 4G, 3.5G or Wi-Fi you get a slick browsing experience.
Under the hood there is a dual-core processor to ensure all tasks are handled smoothly and there is a microSD card for expanding the on board memory. The optical package includes an 8 megapixel rear facing camera which captures HD video clips and great quality photos and the front facing camera has a resolution of 1.9-megapixels so you can enjoy good clarity when video calling.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini is the trimmed down version of its namesake with many of the innovative features seen on the original S4 and a smaller screen at 4.3-inch. The touchscreen display is still high quality and fantastic when web browsing although it does not have Smart Scroll as seen on the S4. The Galaxy S4 Mini does include S Translate, Group Play and S Health as well as a powerful dual-core 1.7GHz processor.
The Galaxy S4 Mini is a 4G compatible handset so web browsing is superfast in 4G coverage areas and other connection options include 3.5G, Wi-Fi, GPS, NFC and Infrared which can be used to control a compatible TV. The S4 Mini weighs in at just 107g so it’s quite a bit lighter than its bigger brother and essentials like social network integration, microSD card slot and a full complement of messaging options are all on board. There is an 8-megapixel camera with autofocus, LED flash and geo-tagging as well as Sound & Shot which can add sound to photos and there is a secondary front facing camera for video calls.
The screen has increased in size to 5 inches and includes the same Smart Stay technology that was on the S3 (which keeps the screen illuminated while you are looking at it) but the Galaxy S4 goes one step further with Eye Scroll, that will automatically scroll down a page when it detects your eyes have reached the bottom of the screen.
There is a quad-core processor on board which handles all the new features effortlessly – these include S Health, which will monitor things like calorie intake, exercise and blood pressure for you. The powerful processor handles with ease multitasking apps like S Voice Drive, which will act as a digital assistant when using GPS navigation, completing tasks like dialing contacts or creating messages for you.
The camera has also been stepped up on the latest Galaxy handset with a resolution of 13 megapixels, compared to 8 on the previous model. The camera includes autofocus, LED flash and geotagging standard features as well as dual-camera mode, that lets you capture images from both the rear view camera and front facing camera in the one shot and you can even capture sound with your images so you get even more of that special moment. 3.5G, Wi-Fi, GPS and Bluetooth are on board as well as NFC and Wi-Fi Hotspot and standard essentials such as a multimedia player, expandable memory and social networking are all included too.
The Android 4.2.2 OS and Samsung UI work together fantastically well to give a slick user experience and Google Play is on hand for apps to download so the phone can be tailored to suit you. The Samsung Galaxy S4 is an impressive handset that is packing so much into its compact 7.99mm chassis that it is bound to satisfy even the most demanding user.
The Z10 from BlackBerry is a great smartphone that suits both work and personal use. The BlackBerry 10 operating system and a dual-core processor are featured and the Z10 is ready for 4G on networks supporting this. The camera is simply superb with its 8-megapixel resolution and enhancing features that include image & video stabilisation, autofocus, 5x digital zoom and 1080p HD video recording.
All connectivity options are ready for use including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and NFC. The preloaded apps are just the beginning of this phone’s highlights and these include BlackBerry Calendar, Docs to Go, Facebook, Twitter, BlackBerry Hub, Foursquare, Maps, YouTube, Adobe Reader and Camera Time Shift.