As 2009 comes to a close, we thought it a good time to pore over some of the best mobile phones to be released over the past year.
The strong design, slick social networking skills and beautiful implementation of the Android operating system with the ‘Sense’ UI has seen the HTC Hero
Packing a 5-megapixel autofocus camera, 3.2-inch capacitive touchscreen and GPS in a unique, angular form factor, the Hero is possibly the best phone to demonstrate what Google’s new operating system is really capable of.
Winning the hearts and minds of those not swayed by the iPhone, the Hero is easily the next best thing.
Representing Windows Mobile as the Hero has for Android, the ‘wow’ factor of the HTC HD2 is definitely marrying Microsoft’s mobile operating system to that mammoth 4.3-inch touchscreen display.
Bringing the smooth, refined Sense user interface as well as the first phone to offer multi-touch on Windows Mobile 6.5, the HTC HD2 is equally at home being a business device as it is a multimedia powerhouse.
With a 5-megapixel lens and dual-LED flash, GPS and support for apps to Marketplace for Mobile, the HD2 is the perfect poster boy for the next generation of Windows phones.
Apple iPhone 3GS
Getting the design so right first time has given Apple the ability to reiterate rather than revolutionise, and the iPhone 3GS is the second update to the groundbreaking formula.
Expanding on the iconic device with a 3 megapixel camera, video recording, voice controls and up to 32GB of storage, the Apple iPhone 3GS is able to do it all, faster.
Samsung Genio Touch
The Samsung Genio Touch continues the popular range with a cheap and cheerful handset that brings touch screen joy without the price tag.
The 2.8-inch display offers the same TouchWiz user interface spotted on higher end devices, and with customizable covers as well as a 2 megapixel camera, the Genio Touch punches above its weight in terms of both looks and specs and has customers snapping it up in droves.
Sony Ericsson Satio
A 12.1 megapixel wielding device that combines the strongest features of the Cybershot range, the Sony Ericsson Satio compliments them with the latest Walkman functionality, wrapping them together with a slick full touch Symbian powered user interface.
The 3.5″ display is clear, crisp and responsive to the touch, and the built-in 3G connectivity and GPS set it amongst the strongest smartphone contenders.
Strong advertising and an arresting form factor have seen the Satio fly off the shelves in the last few weeks, and showing little sign of slowing down.
Already a million-seller in the United States, the Palm Pre is a well-kitted device with a 3.1-inch touchscreen and 3.1 megapixel camera, a socially savvy handset that pulls contact information to be automatically from networking sites including Facebook.
The combination of cute pebble-shaped design, slide-out QWERTY keyboard
Nokia 5800 XpressMusic
The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic is the epitome of cool by committee. With a plectrum for a stylus, endorsement from today’s fashionable young things and a full touch interface, the 5800 was bound to be a hit.
A music phone at heart, the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic ticks all the specs boxes with 3G connectivity, Wi-Fi support, a 3.2 megapixel camera and a hefty 3.2-inch high resolution touch display.
Your music selection is handled by an 8GB memory card, and a 3.5mm audio jack means that your favourite headphones can be plugged in with little trouble.
Outselling the iPod at one point as the UK’s biggest music player, the 5800 is one hot handset.
A late entry for the new flagship phone from Nokia, as the N900 just makes it to stores in time to be a late Xmas present.
Taking cues from Nokia’s range of internet tablets, the N900 delivers a close-to-desktop browsing experience, as well as offering cutting edge smart phone functionality.
The N900’s gorgeous 3.5″ touchscreen, slide-out QWERTY keyboard and 5 megapixel Carl Zeiss lens all impress, but it is the brand new experience that Nokia’s Linux-based Maemo platform offers that has early adopters in a frenzy.
LG Chocolate BL40
The latest in LG’s exclusive Black Label series, the BL40 boasts a 4″ LED touch screen, a 5-megapixel autofocus camera and an exciting new user interface.
Watch movies without the borders and browse web pages in all their horizontal glory, to the screen’s unique 21:9 widescreen ratio, also giving the Chocolate BL40 an tasty form factor.
The quirky shape and multimedia credentials have definitely given shoppers a sweet tooth in recent months, with the Chocolate selling strongly since its September release.
Blackberry Curve 8520
Courting the casual user and breaking taboos seem to be the primary aims of the Curve 8520, getting rid of the famous trackball and replacing it with optical pad, and also becoming the first to have BlackBerry dedicated media buttons.
The Curve 8520 is still very much a messaging device, sporting the familiar QWERTY keyboard and e-mail functionality that the Blackberry brand has become famous for.
With additions like BlackBerry App World and a headphone jack to appeal to feature phone fans, the Curve 8520 strikes the perfect balance of fashion accessory and connected device. snag an armful of ‘Best Phone’ awards this year, and rightly so. and the debut of their smooth new ‘Web OS’ user interface has been snapped by many shoppers looking for a worthy alternative to Apple’s iPhone.