Top 5 Premium Smartphones

There are some incredibly high-tech smartphones available at the moment. In this post we'll look at what you can purchase if budget is no consideration. 

1. Samsung galaxy s6 edge

samsung galaxy s6 edge

Prepay from €779.99 / Billpay from €169.99 (€80 per month - Vodafone)

The flagship of the Samsung Galaxy range, the Edge looks undeniably like the smartphone of the future. This phone sports a wrap-around screen that is both beautiful and boasts a pixel density 8 times greater than Apple’s ‘Retina’ model iPhones, making for a crystal clear viewing experience.

This phone packs the best features available on the market at the moment. With Samsung’s new eight-core Exynos 7420 1.5GHz CPU, this is a lightning fast unit. For the avid snappers amongst us, an f/1.9 lens means that shots can be captured very quickly on the 16-megapixel rear camera.

The curved sides of this phone pack additional functionality not available on the S6. Five contacts can be assigned to the edge of the phone, where swiping across on the coloured bar assigned to the contact brings up communication options and history. The sides can also function as a notification light when the phone is facing down.

While the additional functions associated with the curved screen alone are not anything to shout about, the spec list and aesthetic appeal certainly does justify its steep price tag. With a roster of class-leading specs and a cutting edge design, this phone is the best bang available for your (considerable) buck in 2015.

2. Samsung Galaxy S6

samsung galaxy s6

Prepay from €679.99 / Billpay from €0.00 (€75 per month - Vodafone)

While the S6 lacks the fancy curved screen of it’s flashy sibling, this phone is still a beast. With the same processor, camera and core spec, the performance of the two phones is almost completely identical. However, due to the SIM placement in the Edge, Samsung were able to install a slightly larger battery, this means that the S6 has a little less battery life than the Edge, but the difference is barely noticeable.

If you can live without the curved screen or prefer the more traditional look of the S6 then this is the model to go for. The differences in the two are primarily aesthetic but we think the Edge has the literal edge over the two.

3. LG G4

lg g4 phone with leather back

SIM-free from €644.99 

LG have produced an impressive unit in the G4. With the option of a leather back, this model delivers a uniquely premium look. LG continue to snap at the heels of industry rivals Samsung and Apple with increasingly impressive offerings. The leather backing on this model differentiates it from the competition and adds a touch of class along with a nice organic feel. 

Inside users will find a Hexa-core Snapdragon 808 processor. This is a step below the Snapdragon 810 and a surprising choice for a flagship model. Nevertheless, there’s no sluggishness in this phone and the processor performs very well even when running CPU-intensive apps.

What the G4 lacks in processor it more than makes up for in its camera. With an f/1.8 lens this is one of the fastest phone lenses ever produced. The flash also features a colour spectrum sensor that chooses the right flash setting. Did we mention that this thing is a serious selfie machine? With an 8-megapixel sensor you can be guaranteed a crisp snap of your best pout.

One significant advantage of this model is its removable back, allowing easy access to a changeable battery. Additionally the phone allows you to insert a micro SD card, enabling memory upgrades without having to pay for a more expensive model, with Samsung making a move towards unibody models with the S6, it’s refreshing that LG isn’t pursuing an upselling strategy.  

4. Apple iPhone 6

iphone 6 different colours

Prepay from €669.99 Billpay from €0.00 (€75 per month - Vodafone)

The only non-Android phone to have made our list. Released in 2014, the iPhone 6 continues in Apples tradition of presenting simply brilliant technology rather than competing on specifications.  Unlike other phones on this list, this model only features a 720p screen resolution, in comparison to the full 1080p on most premium models.

The camera on the iPhone 6 is only 8 megapixels, far below most competing models, however, as anyone who has used the phone can attest, this phone still produces beautiful pictures.  Megapixels don’t tell the entire story; Apple instead employs a premium lens and sophisticated image processing to deliver stunning images. As a result of this phones thin profile (a slim 6.99mm) there is a slight bulge for the camera lens that may be an issue for some.

With a powerful 64-bit processor under the hood, this is a lightning-fast phone. The battery is a huge improvement on the 5s too, with a full charge allowing it to stay alive for almost a day and a half with moderate usage. So, while the iPhone might not stack up on spec comparison, it performs extremely well in usage and is arguably one of the best looking smartphones ever produced.

5. HTC One m9

htc one m9

Prepay from €629.99 Billpay from €0.00 (€75 per month - Vodafone)

This brushed aluminium offering from HTC rounds out our list. This is the second phone on our list to feature an expandable memory, a nice feature that negates the need to upgrade to a more expensive model.

A killer feature of the M9 is its BoomSound speakers, delivering the best sound from any smartphone speaker we’ve ever heard. A zippy eight core Snapdragon 810 keeps things moving nice and fast.

The screen on the M9 is one if its strengths, delivering a rich and natural display. 20 megapixels provide plenty of detail in the camera department while a 4-megapixel front facing camera with UltraPixel’s will satisfy the selfie lovers amongst us.

There are various rumours circulating online about the M9’s propensity to overheat. However, under average usage condition this shouldn’t be a problem for most users.

Overall this phone is a great high-end model, it delivers on all fronts and packs features in line with the phones discussed above. The M9 finds its place at the bottom of this list mainly due to its lack of wow factor that is found on many other premium models.

 

1. Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge 2. Samsung Galaxy S6 3. LG G4 4. iPhone 6 5. HTC One M9
Price
(To buy)
€899.99 €679.99 €644.99 €669.99 €629.99
Camera 16 Megapixels 16 Megapixels 16 Megapixels 8 Megapixels
20 Megapixels
Processor Eight-Core Exynos 7420 1.5GHz Eight-Core Exynos 7420 1.5GHz Hexa-core Snapdragon 808 1.8 GHz Apple A8 1.4 GHz Eight-Core Snapdragon 810 1.5GHz
Storage 32/64/128 GB 32/64/128 GB 32GB (expandable) 16/64/128GB 32GB (expandable)
Talk Time Up to 18 hrs (3G) Up to 17 hrs (3G) Up to 20 hrs (3G) Up to 14 hrs (3G) Up to 21 hrs (3G)