Friday 21 December 2012

Confused while buying a new phone... I will help

Confused while buying a new phone... I will help

Many of my friends and colleagues often ask me this question : Which mobile should I buy?  Should I buy a Nokia or a Samsung? Should I go for Android or Symbian or Windows phone?
I get a lot of questions from educated, tech savvy people as well as not so intelligent people.  Each one has a ambition to buy the best but given the array of smart phones available in the market, they are CONFUSED.   Confused while buying a new phone... I will help

Anybody would be confused when the mobiles available in the market are close to 200 + brands and from Rs.500.00 (approx. $10) to 50000.00(approx.$1000).   This is just boombastic.  Its like going to a Mall to buy a packet of Gulcose biscuits and after visiting the Mall, you end up buying products at least 10 times the packet of Gulcose biscuits you went to buy.  It is marketing strategy by the Mall that gives you a visual treat of array of products available with tags like Best Buy, Today's Offer Price, Happy Weekday Sale, Buy One Get One Free, Our Special Price et al. the list goes on and on.Just open today news paper and you will see what I mean)
Lets get back to buying mobiles, shall we?  Now a average person who comes to me has a budget of Rs.10000.00 to 15000.00($250 to 300) for buying a mobile.  And within that budget he or she wants the best phone available.  I have to explain to them that each phone, each os, each brand has distinct difference from each other. 
I have seen people buying N8 or Nexus or Galaxy III and never using a single app or taking backup or doing anything else than making calls, sending SMS and/or taking Photographs.  The last one is important as every other person I meet is a self proclaimed Photography enthusiast with tons of photos, thanks to camera mobiles. 
When I ask such a person why he bought this phone, he has no answer.  So I will try to de-mistify the labryinth of mobiles. Lets Begin.
First important thing is to analyse your usage. 
Do you use your phone only to make/recieve calls and send/recieve SMS.  If you are such kind of person go for sub 1000 branded phone like Nokia 1280, Samsung Guru E1200, 1081 or go for Spice/Karbonn/Micromax.  Dont go in for cheap Chinese Phones available in the market, they wont last more than a year.
If you are photography enthusiast in addition to above, go for a phone starting from Rs.5000.00 ($100).  Start with a minimum requirement of 5 Mega Pixel camera with Flash.  The best mobiles available in this range are Nokia 6700 Classic/6700 Slide, 500, Sony Ericsson Yari/Elm.  For Pure Photographers there is pure camera phone Nokia PureView 808. It has a staggering 41 MP camera.   However it costs around Rs.27700.00 ($ 500) . 

Next if you are a avid social networking type person but not interested in apps other than FacebookConfused while buying a new phone... I will help and Twitter Confused while buying a new phone... I will help, a similar range phone will do.  You intend to use your mobile for gaming purposes then go for dual core or quad core processor phones based on Android operating system.  These phones  cost anywere between 15000.00 to 25000.00 ($300 to $450),   

Understanding Operating Systems for mobile. 
OS for mobiles was not an issue before 2007.  All mobiles came with their own proprietary software and had there own advantages and disadvantages.  However in the current year there are around  5 major operating systems.
1. iOS current version 6.0.2.Confused while buying a new phone... I will help
2. Android current version 4.2.1 Jellybean Confused while buying a new phone... I will help
3. Symbian current version 3 Belle. Confused while buying a new phone... I will help
4. Blackberry OS version while buying a new phone... I will help

Confused while buying a new phone... I will help
Other than above there are WebOS, Maemo, MeeGo and Bada.  Apples's iPhones run on iOS, Android runs on almost all mobile brands except Nokia, iPhone and Blackberry.  Nokia uses Symbian and Windows 7/7.5/7.8/8 Platform whereas Blackberry uses it Proprietary OS.  Samsung has some phones like Wave running on its Bada OS, 

iPhones are not so popular in India due to their price factor and Apple's strategy of locking phones to particular Service provider like Airtel, a practice very much popular in USA, though this may change in 2013.  Android by far is the most popular, most outreaching OS.  This is because of its open source system which allows developers, both companies and people like you and me to develop apps, games etc and publish them.  It has around 7,00,000 apps on its site Google Play available for download.  Some are free, others are paid.  Free ones generally carry a advertising campaign which is often disturbing and irritating.  Symbian is Nokia's flagship OS.  It has however stopped developing Symbian further since February 2011, but others are still developing games and apps for it throught its deal with Accenture which is to remain in effect till 2016.  RIM's Blackberry is fast losing ground and may not survive another couple of years unless they design something unique and drastic.  Samsung uses Bada, but it is limited to a few phones.   Latest to join the bandwagon is Microsoft with its Windows 7/7.5/7.8 and 8 mobile OS popularly known as Windows Phone or WP in short.  It is quite distinct from the earlier Microsofts Windows Mobile of which Microsoft has stopped development since 2010.

WP's unique DNA is its Live Tiles.  Other than this feature most of the secondary resources are same as Android.  WP being relatively new has a lot less Apps on its market though with each passing day round about 50 to 60 are added. 

Blackberry is preferred by business people for the rugged messenging architecture it has.  It is very unlikely for your business rival to hack your messenging service in case of Blackberry.  Other than that Blackberry is a lameduck on all counts.

From users point of view.
1. If you are a  into all kinds of mobile tinkering like flashing, rooting, modding etc. you go for a cheaper version phone of any company as there is a risk of bricking your Mobile.
2. If you are into developing of games, Android suits you the best because it lets you publish your games and Apps for as low as Rs.1500.00($25) one time fees. 
3. If you are a hyperactive kind of guy go for a rugged phone because you are going to bang it left, right and centre many a times.  For ruggedness I prefer Nokia.
4.  If you are into music and listen to songs all day long, I'd recommend Sony Xperia or HTC Sensation.
5.  If you are all of above go for Samsung Nexus or Galaxy. 

Points to remeber before buying a mobile are your budget and your usage.  You can compare mobile prices at compareindia
The Markets to download apps and games for different OS are here :
1. iPhone Confused while buying a new phone... I will helpConfused while buying a new phone... I will helpConfused while buying a new phone... I will helpConfused while buying a new phone... I will help
2. Android - Google Play
3. Nokia - Ovi
4. Windows Market Place

You can also get cracked software for above phones but it is not wise to download these kind of apps or games.  They may damage your phone.

Remember buy your smart phone according to your requirement, dont go for glamour or show of the phone.  Go by the needs you have.  Dont waste money on buying irrelevant phone, which you will end up having but not using.

 Confused while buying a new phone... I will help

Vijay Prabhu
You can read about the article on buying a new phone here or my latest article on the new phones available in the market here.

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