Update: Find out our latest picks for Best Android Phone! (Updated in November)

HTC One, Galaxy S4

Find out which handset gets the Android Central recommendation

We're six months down the road from our last "best Android phones" roundup, and the smartphone landscape has altered dramatically. Back in December we crowned the Samsung Galaxy S3 king of all Android phones, on account of its responsiveness, broad availability and excellent performance across the board. A generation later, the Android space is dominated by two new heavyweights -- the Galaxy S4 and HTC One, with other contenders including the Xperia Z and ZL from Sony and LG's Nexus 4.

In mid-2013, buttery-smooth performance, beautiful screens, high-quality cameras, 4G LTE connectivity and Jelly Bean out of the box come as standard at the high-end. Competition is more fierce than ever, and that's resulted in some of the best Android hardware we've ever seen.

But there can be only one winner. Join us after the break to find out which phone takes the prize.

Upda​te: Check out our new list of the best Android phones — updated for August 2013!

The best of the best - HTC One

HTC One

We really have reached the point where the top of the Android smartphone market is blanketed by some highly impressive devices. It's tough to go wrong. There's something for everyone, be it form factor or features or gimmicks and gizmos. But for our money, there's currently no better phone available than the HTC One.

There's a lot to like here. The (mostly) all-aluminum body looks and feels more sophisticated than a plastic phone, and the gentle curve fits the hand nicely. While we've still got our quibbles with the Sense user interface, Sense 5 is the most stylish version yet, and most important is that it doesn't exhibit the lag that we've seen in the Samsung Galaxy S4.

The front-facing stereo speakers change the way you experience music and videos on a smartphone. Games and movies are much more immersive and are a downright pleasure to play and listen to. There are a few times when the speakers may be too loud, but there are many more times when you're amazed you're getting that sort of sound from a smartphone.

HTC's camera also brought forth a bit of a paradigm shift. It's not the best all-around camera -- it suffers from contrast issues, and if you need something with a higher total resolution for enlarging pictures, you'll need to look elsewhere. But the introduction of Zoes -- the 3-second video clips -- and the introduction of automatically composed Video Highlights are something that nobody else is doing, and they make up for a lackluster camera application.

The HTC One also has been released on three of the four major U.S. carriers, as well as seeing wide availability worldwide -- and we're expecting Verizon to get its own variant this year as well.

In the months we've been using the HTC One, it's continuously caught the eyes of those around us and continued to impress us with its performance -- and for that it ranks as our best smartphone for first part of 2013.

More: HTC One review, HTC One, two months on

The runner-up - Samsung Galaxy S4

Galaxy S4

If ever there was a phone to beat, it was this one. Samsung took everything that was good in the Galaxy S3 and made it better in its successor, the Galaxy S4.

Well, maybe not quite everything. The plastic body remains a turn-off for many, and it's certainly not as chic as the aluminum HTC One. It's also lost a bit of the curve of the Galaxy S3. And while Samsung has managed to squeeze a 5-inch display into the same size as the slightly smaller Galaxy S3, the IPS or Super LCD displays on other phones perform better in sunlight and seems to better handle shifts in brightness. The TouchWiz user interface has been refined a bit, but it's still flat in places and doesn't match the sophistication of other UIs.

Samsung's camera, however, remains the best in the business, as far as everyday use is concerned. It's filled with features, and the camera app itself is a joy to use, having been adapted from the high-end Samsung Galaxy Camera. You might not use features like the animated gif creator every day, but they're fun to have, even if they're not all that innovative.

But what landed the Galaxy S4 as our No. 2 is the laggy user interface -- we've experienced delays and stutters on a number of versions of the phone -- as well as the anemic storage situation. Samsung's 16-gigabyte version of the GS4 only has about 9 gigabytes of storage available to the end user. And while Samsung likes to say you can add another 64 gigabytes with a microSD card, that's a different kind of storage. Good luck keeping your larger games and apps on there. The sin isn't so much that Samsung's using all that space for the hundreds of features on the phone -- and it's got some really good preloaded apps and settings. The sin is that in 2013, that sort of deceptive marking and, for many, a lack of larger storage options, is unacceptable.

Would we recommend someone buy the Galaxy S4, which is available on just about every carrier on Earth? Absolutely. It just might not be the first phone we suggest.

More: Samsung Galaxy S4 review

The best oversized phone - LG Optimus G Pro

Optimus G Pro

The other South Korean manufacturer -- LG -- has a bit of a dark horse on its hands with the Optimus G Pro. It's a 5.5-inch phone -- in the same class as the wildly popular Samsung Galaxy Note 2, but without the pen input. It also improves on the Note with a higher-resolution display, updated internals and a slightly narrower body.

LG's user interface still leaves a bit to be desired, but it's also come a long way in a short time. The Optimus G Pro has a more-than-capable camera, and it's the first outside of the Nexus line to sport the Photosphere feature.

Hamstringing the Optimus G Pro, however, is availability. In the United States, it's only available on AT&T, and it's seen limited release worldwide as well, though that's beginning to change. We're also expecting Samsung to at least match the Optimus G Pro's specs and features later this year. But for now, it's a pleasant addition to the oversized phone market.

More: AT&T Optimus G Pro reviewKorean Optimus G Pro mini-review

Honorable mentions

It's not fair to just focus on the top three. Here are a few other contenders that are worth a look if the latest Samsung, HTC and LG handsets don't float your boat.

Xperia ZSony Xperia Z and Xperia ZL

The Xperia Z for Europe and Xperia ZL for North America put Sony back in the game. The Japanese manufacturer might be something of an outcast as far as U.S. carriers support goes, but its latest Android smartphones have a lot to offer. Speedy performance, a clean UI and great camera software are highlights for both the Z and ZL. The Xperia Z also offers water resistant capabilities, though at the cost of ergonomics -- it's a blocky handset that can be uncomfortable to use. And both phones suffer from poor viewing angles, though on-screen images are crisp and clear when viewed head-on. Overall, both the Xperia Z and Xperia ZL are decent phones, but not without their share of niggling issues.

Nexus 4LG Nexus 4

Despite the recent trend towards "Google Editions" of popular phones like the Galaxy S4 and HTC One, there's only one real Nexus, and LG and Google's collaboration remains the best value Android phone you can buy. (As ever, we'd recommend you spend a little extra and pick up the 16GB model.)

In mid-2013, the Nexus 4's main weakness is its lack of (official) LTE support. We don't know whether the dormant T-Mobile LTE capabilities will be reactivated, but we can't help thinking if that was going to happen, it would've happened by now. So with the Nexus 4 you're going to top out at DC-HSDPA (42Mbps) data speeds. For some buyers, that's no big deal; for others, it's a deal-breaker. Aside from that, you're looking at a very speedy phone with stock Android, lightning-fast updates from Google and recently a new white color option, if the standard black model isn't doing it for you. Even now, we'd struggle to think of a better phone for the $300-350 contract-free asking price.

Galaxy S3Samsung Galaxy S3

Now 12 months old, the Galaxy S3 is positively geriatric by smartphone standards. But the GS3 is still being sold by carriers around the world, and some are even just getting around to launching it. Much of the praise we heaped upon the GS3 back in December still applies today -- it's still fast, feature-packed, LTE-capable and eminently available wherever in the world you happen to be. The one part of the S3 that hasn't aged so well is the screen -- compared to the current crop of smartphone displays, it's not great. If we were being unkind, we might even call it below-average. But if you're looking for a good, solid mid-level phone that won't cost you much on-contract, the GS3 fits the bill -- just be aware that you're already a year into its life cycle at this point.


Looking ahead, we're not expecting the Android smartphone ecosystem to be shaken up much until the end of the year. We'll probably see Android 4.3 sometime in the next couple of months, and that'll tide us over until the next major Android revision, most likely towards the end of the year. Until then, the first half of the year has brought some exceptionally great hardware. Be sure to hit the comments and share your picks for the top Android phone of 2013.

 

Reader comments

The best Android phone you can buy, as of June 2013

380 Comments

I chose the One over the S4 and I don't give a sh*t about you and you don't give a sh*t about me. Leave me alone and I'll leave you alone. I don't force you to like mine so don't force me to like yours or else I'll force my foot and my One into your mouth.

- end of rant - (",)

I don't believe anyone commenting on a website can male anyone so anything. If you dinner want to participate them don't read the comments! (Or post)

Being on Verizon sure does make this an easy decision. Even if the One was available on VZW I would have probably still picked up the GS4. I personally prefer Touchwiz over Sense. I think the dev support is going to be much, much stronger for the GS4.The removable battery and microSD card support are also huge bonuses. I dont care about plastic construction, I have had a GNex for the past year and a half and it has never once bothered me, I just cover it up with a TPU case anyway.

Started out with the htc ONE and decided to exchange for the s4 since I the insane number of features it had attracted me, I'm a feature guy. However, after 3 weeks of using the s4 non-stop, I'm going BACK to the ONE. I honestly found most of these features unnecessary and the battery life, apps and features running or not, is absolutely atrocious! Couldn't make it a full day without having to find a charger.

I also miss the blinkfeed from the ONE because all the current events from my favorite subjects are all neatly organized; flipbook is just not the same experience. Also, the ONE's speakers BLOW the s4's out of the water. It's a pain having to lay your s4 down face first to get the best sound out of it. Lastly, the camera features, like ZOE and especially highlights, are ones that I miss and had fun messing with. While the s4 is definitely a fast, feature-filled phone with an awesome display, I definitely recommend the ONE over it any day.

How in the flying hell isn't the HTC DROID Dna at the top of the runners up list? It's light years better than any of the other plastic monster let downs on there... Such a wasted read

Ahw, come on. Everybody knows that the Atari ST is far better than the Amiga.

Oh.. wait. A few decades too late.

Seems to me that when the ONE came out, it was being compared to the S3, and people still like the S3 better. Now the S3 is just a mid-range Android phone, and the ONE is the best phone you can buy?? Not so sure I agree with that statement.

Either way, I owned HTC products starting with the EVO 4G up until the S3 came out. I really liked HTC, and was really pulling for them to come back with something big. My problem with HTC is how slow they are to update their phones. Hopefully they have made that a priority now, but in the past I always seemed to be the last one to get the update, if the update came at all. Samsung seems to be pretty on top of things when it comes to pushing out updates, so I'd be tempted to stick with them until HTC proves themselves in that area.

In the end though, could you really go wrong with either one of those phones?? I don't think so.

Honest question. No flamining. Before I left for a year in Afghanistan, HTC was pretty much on the forefront for updates. On Sprint, the Evo always got updated before the Epic. What happened the year I was gone? Was the Evo 3D horrible at getting updated, and the Epic Touch great at it? Back in 2011 commenters on this site were constantly flaming Samsung for lack of updates. Strange how that has all changed.

All of you realize that from what I've on carrier sites and reviews, the two best phones out there are the HTC One and seven months later, the Nokia Lumia 920. Just throwing that out there.

Also, it doesn't really matter in the first place. If you like your phone, awesome! But you dont have to force your opinion on others. Why do you think the world is in such bad shape? Because people do this type of thing and can't learn when to realize that something isn't worth getting your panties in a bunch about.

Can I just save anyone who reads the most recent comments first some time please?

The majority of the above comments read as follows:

'I bought X phone (probably an S4 or Note), so threrefore it must be the best, how dare you say otherwise, wahhhhh, wahhhhh'.

Newsflash: IF YOU BOUGHT AN S4 OR A NOTE YOU GOT A REALLY GOOD PHONE AND DON'T NEED ANYONE TO VALIDATE YOUR DECISION - JUST ENJOY IT AND CHILL OUT A BIT!!!

I have a screen protector and a case on my GS4, and if I wanted, I could replace the back cover with a metal one, but I wouldn't see it. If Big Red offered the HTC One, I would have checked it out (nice device, but wasn't an option. I haven't experienced any lag, or maybe I don't notice it. I have shut off most of the extras with Touchwiz, but will explore them in the future. I like the sd card (Grandkids movies) and photos, and I can replace the battery with a higher capacity one, if I choose. When the warranty runs out, I will root the phone, and it will still be very fast. This phone will get upgraded when allowed, and will be given to my wife as an upgrade to her SG3. Now my wish - I am wanting a smarphone manufacturer that builds a component smartphone that I can build with the components and software that I choose (just like a gaming rig) depending on how much money I want to spend, and how often I WANT to upgrade. Some company is going to get it, and this upgrade hiarchy crap will be a thing in the past.

I just love my new S4.. HOW DARE U SAY IT's SECOND BEST ? so what if it's identical to an S3... so what if it's the same old boring cheap shinny plastic...so what if it's pentile amoled and i can't see a darn thin in sunlight( u never use your phone daytime do u?!)...so what if it's a little bit laggy (i just love all those features i never use)...so what if it has only less then half storage space(less games and apps will do me good)...so what despite battery size, the actual battery life is average... I BLOODY LOVE IT ! and i wont accept this ...this... S4 is the BEST ! "sammy" takes good care of me.

The S4 seem to stutter a bit ? The one I had a go on seemed to have a small amount of lag and not quite as smooth as nexus 4 or HTC one

If it wasn't for the lag that the s4 has I think it would be the number 1 spot you shouldn't have to turn off all the feature to make the phone run smoothly.,cause that's the reason you buy the phone is for all the added feature I'm sure Samsung is working on an update to fix the overheating and battery drain and lag on the s4.

everyone arguing and comparing the s4 to one. im over here with my nexus 4 waiting on the next version of android! :)

The Nexus 4 is my favourite. Android 4.2 without any lag or bloated skins or carrier ware. Sure the S4 and One have a nicer screen, LTE support and good cameras but the Nexus also offers excellent value with pure android. I would pick the One over the S4 as mentioned but the best oversized android is the Note II not LG Optimus G Pro, sure it has a better screen but the stylus is what makes the Note II a Note and it is the original KFC colonel recipe not a rip off!

All good phones for sure but can't believe that the note 2 isn't on the list. S pen alone not to mention it's other assets should have assured it a place.

I know I'm in a huge minority here, but the first time I touched the Galaxy S3 I was disgusted. The pentile matrix screen was obvious and low class. The size of the phone was obnoxious. The whole thing screamed cheap Korean shit, like a Hyundai car.
The S4 is just a polished turd successor that has nothing innovative.
I'm not trying to troll, but damn. The S3 and now the S4 are big sellers because the Android user base has long needed a herder for the sheep, and Samsung has been propelled to that position. Can anyone even define what their "Galaxy" line of phones are compared to any of their others. I can't think of the last phone from them that didn't have that in their name.
Maybe a Galaxy washer, dryer and refrigerator will be coming soon so they can flesh out more brand recognition instead of common similarities in a product.

I think you may have gone a bit overboard there at the end, but you are by no means in the minority with your opinion of the S3 and S4's design. It just isn't good, and when you look at what other manufacturers like HTC and LG are doing with their flagship devices, the S4's utter design failure is even more obvious and disappointing.

There is a difference between critical acclaim and sales performance. The S4 is outselling the One by a 2 to 1 margin. And the One came out first. Most people go into a carrier store and see both phones, yet they walk out with an S4 more times than a One. People are not that taken by the aluminum design. As it has been said time and time again, most people put a plastic case on their phone anyway. Maybe someone should make an aluminum case for the S4.

So you're more proud of sales performance than critical acclaim? Sounds like you prefer quantity over quality.

Actually go to a store, or listen in at a call center. The reason the GS4 sells more is because people know about it and hear about it. Most people DON'T see both phones. They come in the store, with their mind made up already, wanting the "new Galaxy phone". Yet...plenty of those customers end up leaving with a One when they see them at the same time, when most of them don't know the first thing about HTC. It takes time to convert critical acclaim to sales: Samsung had to go through the same thing with the original Galaxy series. Look at them now!

That's not even mentioning that the phone I see making more converts out of iPhone owners is the One, not the GS4.

Well said. It comes down to Samsung's incredible marketing to get the Galaxy brand into common smartphone vernacular, and the S4 selling as much as it has is a testament to that. What it is NOT a testament to is the S4's superiority over the One. Anyone equating those two things has no idea what they're talking about or they're a rampant fanboy.

I wish I could make the argument for the Xperia Z & ZL. I really like Sony's camera & screen hardware, body styling,and their light UX OS overlay.It's just a shame Sony's Mobile Division seemingly has no idea how to market in the US. Really surprised so few people have advocated for LG's Optimus G Pro which,IMO,is the Android phone to beat so far this year.LG has come a LONG way since T-Mobile's horrible G2x release.

I would definitely choose the HTC One over the GS4 with all its USELESS, gimmicky features that no one will ever use. And that plastic. Yuck. I'll take great build quality over useless features any day.

Remember the days when it used to be us Androiders vs Iphoners....Now its us Androiders against each other, while Applers just sit aside and laugh!

Personally..HTC One all the way for me.. I could have gotten an S3, Note 2 or ,had I waited another week or so, and S4..but screw that!! Once I read the initial reviews of the One, I knew where I was going. I even left a grandfathered Unlimited Verizon data plan, just to get my hands on this sexy beast!

I don't know why USA always have to get the lesser version of the Galaxy flagship the cuz the international version is a monster, super smooth and lag free. For me the GS4 is Much better overall than the HTC One.

What people use the most on a phone today? The camera, and the GS4 camera is superlative.

Aluminum for me is nonsense if you have to sacrifice so many features like HTC does, anyway most people use a plastic or rubber case on the phones.

It's always problematic to declare a "best" phone, especially when the specifications get so close; and the "winning" company's senior executives are stampeding away from the company :-(

Technically, it simply is hard to imagine that the "best" android phone we can buy has neither a replaceable battery, nor an SD card slot. Those two functions are so emblematic of Android development that without them the phone is only a . . . Nexus ;-)

And seeing the exodus of HTC senior executives (including the champion of Sense, Kouji Kodera!) from the company right now can't be a vote of confidence for buyers wondering whether the maker of the "best android phone" will still be in production next year.

Did this story change from what was posted this morning? When I saw the story this morning I thought it mentioned 4 phones and the GS3 was the winner. Or did I accidentally link to the story that was posted in December, or whenever the last round was posted?

Yeah there's no way the GS3 was the winner this time. It was the winner last time they did this feature so that's what you were looking at most likely.

It all comes down to user preference my friends. Both are great phones! As for me i prefer the htc one over the "shame"sung s4 mainly for its build quality and speakers.

It all comes down to preference, they're both great phones. However I do believe HTC users are like old Samsung fans, not so long ago you could see GS3 fans desperately try to prove itself better than the iPhone, and we all rooted for it because we love an underdog. This year you see the same with HTC, you see themselves desperately trying to prove their phone is better, and trashing all samsung users because its too "mainstream" now. It seems as Samsung has become the new Apple here. I do however prefer the GS4, I do not care for the aluminium since I'll be putting a case on it and have no problems with plastic. Loud speakers are not my priority in a cell phone. As for the lag issues, its as simple as putting a launcher on it and all your problems dissapear. I agree TouchWiz is HORRIBLE and I wont ever go back from Nova. Now for all the new features, I do find myself using them constantly except for smart pause which is completely useless. And last and most important, CAMERA, just for this I wouldnt get the One, because it is a huge dealbraker for me when buying a phone. The pictures on this arw absolutely breathtaking. Also 5" :)

I absolutely agree with you and cannot understand why this time around there is so much hate for Samsung ! The galaxy s4 is a much better version of the s3 like a supercharged model. And this time last year everyone was singing the praises of the s3 so how can people in general think the s4 is anything but a great phone.
The HTC one is a really nice phone but if it was on looks alone ? Then surely everyone would own a iPhone as there is still no better looking phone than the iPhone 5.

Exactly, interesting how many people rooted for the GS3 as the best phone, not only praising samsung but also android as the best in the market. It seems android has become so big that we have set Samsung as the big money sucking company we thought Apple once was.

As a Verizon customer this article read as:
Winner! - Stuff you cant buy
Second place - You'll take this and you'll like it
Best big phone - Stuff you cant buy
Runners up - stuff you cant buy stuff you cant buy stuff you cant buy.

So frustrating. My contract needs to end.
The Verizon S4 does get a +1 for AWS LTE goodness. Thats about it.

You know, I read through this yesterday and I kept mulling it over afterwards. (Hey, I have a VERY long commute, ok?)

The HTC One has amazing build quality. Great hardware. Great specs. A well-above-average camera. Great screen. And arguably great software. But as a company, HTC is falling apart at the seams. There is absolutely no way I would recommend that somebody gets a phone made by a manufacturer that can't figure out their own business focus. Will it get updates tomorrow? Will HTC even be around for warranty claims tomorrow? With the seismic activity going on in their top levels, it's impossible for their own execs to answer any of those questions, let alone anybody here.

Excluding the company's issues, the S4 is every bit of a phone that the HTC One is - I would argue better, but that's a matter of opinion and preference. It's HTC's company issues that make me move it WAY down the list here. I seriously would get the LG before picking up the HTC One.

I would have to agree with this. The HTC One is a damn awesome phone. Sense 5 is streamlined and aesthetically beautiful and two features I hought were gimics, blinkfeed and Zoe, are two extremely easy and very useful/entertaining features. I've used both way more than I care to admit. I steal my gf's phone too many times to use those features. Two things would make me switch from my MAXX HD... Bigger battery and availability on Verizon. Cmon DNA+!

Two fantastic phones. Either one would be great to own. And yet, many have to justify their own choice (purchase) by saying the other phone is crap. LOL, those of you doing this obviously have no self esteem. Well, hopefully your mother loves you...

For oversized phones, the new Lenovo K900 which was just released in China seems to be the best in terms of hardware and design.

Otherwise, I fully agree with the HTC One choice. :)

Where is the note 2 ? I firmly believe that it is one of the best smartphones money can buy I know there are newer phones around now but for me it still holds its own pretty well.

These are nice pieces of hardware on this list, but the downside I see to most is carrier availability. I wish HTC and LG could get their act together and get a flagship in mass quantities launched on all major carriers - there is a benefit to supporting that. After owning some one carrier only phones (original HTC Evo on Sprint, Droid Charge and HTC Rezound on Verizon), I'm a little worn out with underdog devices that lack broader appeal. Right or wrong, I think it ends up affecting choices for accessories, as well as support and updates.

Having recently upgraded my 2lines to t mobile I researched long and hard about which phone to get as well as played with both. My decision was made for the One because
Better build quality and feel (love making iPhone users jealous)
Not having to worry about running out of space for apps....
The HTC One has impressed everyone I have shown it too, from the screen to the great sound... With or without headphones.
Except for my S4 loving friends who run to magically wave over their screens and tap each others phone (cool I must admit) everything I get neat with my One.
I'm extremely happy with my phone, it feels polished (sense and now using Nova) no lag, feels and looks awesome, sound and picture are beyond good.... No regrets at all
It makes the S4 feels and look like a child's toy compared to the seriously engineered One.... From the plasticky feel to the bright colors of the Oled screen...
Great phone with lots of features to show off to your friends but when I spend 1 min at the store trying to get it to follow my eyes and scroll automatically I realized I would not be using many of the cool features are they were not convenient in the real world....
Just my 2 cents.....

I wanted the HTC One when announced until my wife got a Note 2 recently. Its funny, as I use to think the Note phablets were ridiculous due to size, and we weren't supposed to be using stylus anymore right. My phone at the time fit the same number of pixels yet in a 1.2" smaller screen. Even though I had heard from people that like it, I insisted she try it out and compare it to other phones before we pulled the trigger. She did and she still wanted it most. After my brief tenure with the Droid Charge I had written Samsung off a while back, but once I borrowed the wife's phone it quickly became evident Samsung has come a long way. I was borrowing her phone to play around with it as it was generally more enjoyable to use than my Rezound. My geeky ppi stats didn't mean squat. The larger screen looked better and made things really easy to manipulate. The software itself seemed a step ahead of mine too.

So after my non tech following wife warmed me up to Samsung again, I was open minded to comparing the GS4 to other options. The current top dog representing HTC on Verizon -- the DNA felt kind of clunky in comparison. I also considered switching to T-mobile and compared the HTC One. The S4 seemed thinner and the bezel looked smaller in comparison. I compared a few phones with and without slim cases on them, and overall the white GS4 felt and looked better. I actually thought the S4 in the white / brushed metal combination looked as good as anything, and found a minimal matte white case that you still see some of those accents on the top/bottom. I'm not convinced all 'aluminum' is better than all 'plastic' in all circumstances. I had an E71 years back which had a slick metal back which looked great new, but ended up being the part that looked worse down the road. My hunch is if I didn't use some kind of case it would end up getting scuffed up a year down the road, regardless of the material. Since I'm typically going to have a case on my phone, I end up liking the larger screen / smaller bezel and thinner phone attributes and that's where the GS4 build wins.

As far as software goes I'm really liking the multi window on the 5" screen, voice control (especially on the camera), the responsiveness of the camera and other features like best photo mode. I opted for Nova pro over Sense on my Rezound, but so far Touchwiz feels great. Again, Samsung seems to have really improved from my last stint with them. In fairness HTC probably has to, but I like that the GS4 stated out with 4.2.2 and was able to release on all major carriers. So far I'm loving the GS4 - glad to see it somewhere on the list. I could care less where they rank it exactly.

ok. this is past the point of ignorance. clearly this list shows lack of knowledge in its unfairness. IT CAN NOT BE IGNORED that real heavy weights are excluded.

Firstly OPPO FIND 5. This is probably the best phone of the year so far
Secondly....Huawei badboy the 6,1 inch 2gig ram Huawei Ascend Mate.

Surely they both outclass the likes of sony z, and oppo find 5 is well over the HTC one.

I think Lava mobile should be added in this category, because it have launched quad core processor mobile with Android 4.2 Jellybean, 4.5 inch screen and 8 MP camera. Overall good mobile in budget with latest features.

I don't really understand why people think it's a bad thing that the S4 design is a continuation of the S3 design family. People absolutely loved the s3 design. Why tinker with what people have come to know and love? Even my arch-nemesis, Apple, is aware that you don't start screwing around with your signature recipe just for the sake of making it look different.

The improvements in this phone over the S3 are not as minimal as the outward appearance might lead you to believe:

- Quad core @ 1.9GHz
- Multisensor array which enables things like AirView and Smart Stay.
- An IR blaster. I cannot wait for someone to write an S4 version of the TV-B-Gone!
- A significantly better and larger SuperAMOLED screen which, while not as clear in direct sunlight, is better indoors than virtually anything I've personally seen.
- A 2600 mAh battery on top of a generally more efficient architecture, resulting in significantly better battery performance than the Galaxies before it.
- Better voice and data radios (at least in the VZW version), which was a big sticking point in the S3 unit.
- The camera sensor is far better than its predecessor in resolution, sensitivity, and speed.
- The camera APP is truly the best smartphone camera app I've ever seen, and leaves the old one in the dust.

These improvements are not small, but they are belied by the familiar packaging and functionality of the new phone.

Those users who are hung up on everyone knowing they got the latest and greatest are going to have to rely on a very subtle "S4" on the regular caseback, or a similarly unobtrusive logo on the the S-View flipcover. So much for your phone being a fashion statement.

On the mostly-metal HTC One:

I LOVE the way this phone looks when it's new. It's a seriously gorgeous piece of work.

My worry is the same as all unprotected brushed-metal finishes: You get to choose between admiring the finish or having that finish last.

Brushed aluminum is particularly vulnerable to cross-grain scratching and impact dents, not to mention pitting when coming into contact with as hard or harder metal objects (such as nickel-clad coins, keys, and the rivets found on most jeans), and it doesn't take much of that to make a satiny finish look like a shelled road from WWII.

And the problem gets worse with a PVD coated surface like the surface of the black HTC One: Unless the coating is something like titanium nitride or other DLC (diamond-like coating), you can expect that in short order, the black coating will begin to wear on the especially-sharp corners from being inserted and removed from the owner's pockets or bags, and will show immediately through to the base aluminum if scratched or pitted.

So, the alternative, in order to preserve the finish, is to place the phone in a case which, as we all know, ruins the aesthetic and feel of the phone (relative to the original design intent), and pretty much always covers the very design feature that drew the owner to the phone in the first place.

It's in this area that I think Samsung has done a better job with the long-term attractiveness of the phone.

The S4's plastic case definitely lacks the heft and feel of a device hewn from a solid chunk of metal, and some people equate that with a lack of quality. But, with the capability to change batteries, which the "One" does not share, comes the capability to do something else... replace the back of the phone with a new one. If at any time your S4's back gets too torn up for your own aesthetic sensibility, then you can simply order another back, and, Voila!, a phone that looks much closer to new than before.

Now, on the need to place the phone in a case: With the ability to replace the phone back, do you really care how diligently you protect the whole phone? Probably not. So, then, the only thing you *must* do to protect the phone is to protect the screen. And if you use one of Samsung's ultra-fitted flip covers (S-View or non-S-View), then you add a mere millimeter to the overall thickness of the phone, which essentially preserves one of the better reasons for buying the S4... it's thinness, all whilst keeping your keys and bottle openers and change from scraping up the screen face.

Now I don't carry an HTC One, but I had good reason not to wait to see if VZW ever renegs on the statement that they are not getting a One in their stables... The cool factor of the One strikes me as one which is fleeting as the phone gets a little love-wear on it, and will matter not a bit in just a few months.

Hands down, the HTC One. I really liked the S2 and S3, and I also loved my original Evo. But the HTC One really impresses me. I had no qualms with picking it over an upgrade to the S4. Very sexy design, clean interface, super fast and responsive, great storage, insanely good display, good camera, arguably better specs, and measurably better reviews/scores (both critics and consumers - on most websites I've yet encountered). I can't help but think the "everyone is giving the S4 the the win; this article is the black sheep" talk is blatant denial. Don't get me wrong, I really like Samsung phones. And I'm 100% Android. But Samsung has cultured a ton of fanboys, and you know how that goes...

Android smartphones is much more popular recently.. Iphone just do not have something New with 5G... Recently android phone just add many new fuctions Like Free TV, And the price is much cheaper. I just found this site with much new cheap and beautiful smartphones.. They are all at the price under 100USD.. If interested, : http://www.dealtom.com/new_arrivals

It would be really nice if you could have a "best _reasonably sized_ Android phone you can buy" feature as well. Not everyone wants a >4" screen.

What I don't get is how oblivious people are on here. 468 ppi which for those of you who don't know is higher than 441. Lcd screens are brighter and have a longer lifespan that has a amoled, in benchmark tests the HTC is faster, comes stock with twice as much memory has a better indoor camera which is where people mostly take photos anyway, has better speakers to listen to videos or music, series body because I don't know if you know this not everyone likes cases, beats audio amplifies sound and isolates the headphone jack to reduce interference and it's 4.7display is perfect for one handed use yet is still considered big. The remote app is more elegant and easier to use, 25of free Dropbox, HTC has special glass that makes it fingerprint resistant and lastly fastboot on the phone has an 8second restart time compared to 22on the s4. Oh Ya and no lag in case you didn't read above

Please don't forget probably best thing happening in smartphone land today! Check out the new Ubuntu Edge über smartphone / mini PC on the indiegogo crowd funding website under ubuntu edge

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DON'T BUY ANY ANDROID! Google is in control and they don't have it together at all! Look at what they did to Google Play (My Apps) EVERYONE HATES IT! It's next to UNUSABLE! Google is killing Android.

I can say Samsung galaxy s4 is best android phone in 2013. One of my friend is using this phone last some months. He is more than happy with this mobile.

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