The Google-developed Android mobile operating system is an alternative to the Apple iPhone, Blackberry and Palm. Even though the Android operating system is relatively new to the market, the popularity of Android phones such as the Evo 4G, Droid Incredible and Motorola Droid suggests that these multitasking feature-rich smartphones are coming in line with what we want our mobile devices to be. Here's a roundup of some of the best Android smartphones on the market today.
For those who must have a physical keyboard, the Motorola Droid is definitely a phone to consider. Despite the fact that the phone has a slide out keyboard, the phone is still relatively thin; actually it is only marginally thicker than the iPhone 3G. The 5 megapixel camera and dual LED flash also allow the phone to take surprisingly good photos – considering that this is actually a phone.
While you have to save apps to the phone's internal memory (512MB ROM and 256MB RAM), a memory card will store up to a maximum of 32GB of photos, music, and other content.
Other Features: 5MP camera, LED flash, GPS, 3.5mm headphone jack
Dimensions: 4.56” x 2.36” x 0.54”
Weight: 5.96 ounces
Starting Price: $149 with a 2 year contract from Verizon
HTC Evo 4G
Sprint has the distinction of bringing the first 4G smart phone to the US in the form of the Evo 4G. The most noticeable feature of the Evo 4G is its generous 4.3-inch display. While the extra wide screen makes it a joy to watch videos on, it does tend to make the phone uncomfortable to grasp and use for all but those with large hands. The phone also takes a battery life penalty for having such a large and vibrant display.Regardless, the phone is one of the most feature-rich smartphone devices on the market with performance to back it up, thanks to the 1Ghz Snapdragon processor that makes the user experience quite snappy. One of the biggest selling points of this phone is the 4G service that it supports. You won’t be able to get the service in every area at this time, but if you do, you'll get speeds that are on average 10x faster than current 3G speeds.
Other Features: HDMI ports, 3.5mm head jack port, Wi-Fi
Dimensions: 4.8” x 2.6” x 0.5”
Weight: 6 ounces
Starting Price: $199 with a contract from Sprint
HTC Droid Incredible
Like the Evo 4G, the Droid Incredible has a 1Ghz processor. While the Incredible has a smaller touch screen, measuring 3.7-inches, it does afford a better battery life than the Evo 4G. The phone’s user experience is enhanced by the HTC Sense interface that runs on Android 2.1.The Droid Incredible is a feature-rich phone that also supports Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and runs on Verizon’s fast 3G network. Like many of the top of the line Android phones we highlight here, the Droid Incredible has fabulous multimedia and multi-tasking capabilities that are sure to please technophiles. One standout feature of this phone is its contoured back plate, which you either love or hate.
Other Features: 8MP camera, 8GB internal memory, 3.5mm headphone jack
Dimensions: 4.63” x 2.3” x 0.47”
Weight: 4.59 ounces.
Starting Price: $199 with a contract from Verizon
Nexus One (discontinued)
This Google Android phone has a fast processor, vibrant display and a dual microphone to improve the audio quality on calls. One of the nice features of the Nexus One is its second microphone that monitors background noise, makes adjustments to speaker volume, and works some other magic to improve the audio quality even when you are operating the phone in a noisy room. The phone has a gorgeous 3.7-inch AMOLED display that handles 16.7 million colors at an 800 x 480-pixel resolution.
Currently, the phone is sold exclusive by Google, who offers the device for either $179 with a two-year T-mobile contract or $529 without a contract. What is remarkable is that both versions come unlocked, so it will work on the GSM carrier of your choice.
Other Features: 5MP camera, 3.5mm headphone jack, trackball
Dimensions: 4.56” x 2.36” x 0.47”
Weight: 4.58 ounces
Display: 3.7" AMOLED
Starting Price: $179 with a contract from T-Mobile
Like the Motorola Droid, the Cliq includes a physical keyboard, but this keyboard is much better. The keys on the keyboard make it possible to dial and text by touch. The Cliq also uses Motorola Blur, which allows you to access all contacts, email accounts and social media accounts in one place as well as customize the five home screens using widgets.
Other Features: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 5MP camera, GPS, Micro USB, geo-tagging
Dimensions: 2.3” x 0.6” x 4.5”
Weight: 5.7 ounces
Starting Price: $149 with a contract from T-Mobile
Feels like the 1990's when PC's took off. Right now Droid is like Win 3.1, lots of software coming out, but the Mac is still so pretty. That is going to change. Don't get me wrong,I love my iPhone,
-- however the Droids are the future. Gartner predicts they will take over the mobile computing market in 2014!