If you’re unclear on the definition, a Smart Phone is a cell (mobile) phone which expands on the functionality of the average phone. Where a normal cell phone might give users the ability to take calls, send messages and take photos, a smart phone can often browse the net, edit documents, schedule meetings, read books and even connect up to a computer keyboard or monitor. While different people might find some features more desirable than others, there are some clear leaders within the market that anyone buying a Smart Phone should consider.
No list of smart phones would be complete without mentioning Apple’s towering success in the market. Anyone that doesn’t have an iPhone probably knows somebody that does. The iPhone is a striking piece of technology even before you look at its long list of technical specifications. The 3.5 inch touch screen dominates the surface of the phone and provides users with intuitive and responsive control. The iPhone has sold over 20 million units worldwide and has become a favorite phone even among people who have never previously owned a smart phone.
Although the iPhone includes a 2 megapixel camera, up to 16GB of internal memory and full Wi-Fi capability, its real strengths lie in the software. The default software includes a fully featured Apple music player and an incredibly fast and easy to use web browser. However, it’s the App Store that is most impressive, giving you access to hundreds of applications and games created by third parties with a few finger presses. No matter what function you need from the iPhone, there’s a good chance that if Apple didn’t think it up, somebody else did.
The newest smart phone in this list, the Palm Pre has been designed to compete directly with Apple’s giant. Don’t make the mistake of thinking the Pre is just Palm’s attempt to play catch-up, however. Although the Pre may emulate some of the features of the iPhone, it uses an entirely different hardware and software setup. The Pre is a slide phone and features a full QWERTY keyboard. The screen isn’t quite as big as the iPhone but manages the same resolution, so it fits as much detail on the screen, and offers a very crisp viewing experience.
The software on the Pre is similarly unique. Dubbed Web OS, the new software has been receiving critical acclaim from many critics and technology blogs, above and beyond that of the much hyped Google Android service. One of the key features of the software is the ability to multitask which lets you run several different apps at once. You can quite easily switch between different jobs without having to load and reload different apps, much like in Windows or OS X.
Having just been released, the App Catalogue is a little bare right now, but should improve with time.
Only a few short years ago, BlackBerry’s name was synonymous with quality smart phones. Although the company has not had the bad luck of Palm, they’ve seen stiff competition from both from the iPhone and Android. Like the iPhone and Pre, the Storm enjoys a large touch screen. Unlike the other two however, the Storm’s touch screen is also a button which can be pressed in. This, along with the other buttons on the front and side of the phone brings the Storm’s button count up to nine. This is a large amount for a touch screen phone and perfect for people who don’t like to rely solely on touch controls.
The Storm’s operating system isn’t quite as ground breaking as the Pre. It’s based off the already familiar Blackberry OS but it’s been adapted for control with fingers rather than styluses. The phone can be used in various different orientations and has a spacious on screen keyboard that makes typing with your finger about as good as it can currently get on a touch screen phone.
Unfortunately, a lack of third party applications does let the Storm down a little. If the pre-installed programs don’t already offer you the functionality you need, you are stuck with manually download applications online. However, with its applications, feature and design geared towards providing an excellent environment for work, it’s an excellent corporate phone that more than lives up to the Blackberry’s reputation.