Thursday, 3 January 2013

Comparison of Android devices worth a second look in early 2013

It is an interesting time for us Android enthusiasts, especially because of the Consumer Electronics Show 2013 being just around the corner. Here are a few devices that are going to be (or were) released in the first quarter of 2013 which are worth mentioning.

Device Type Manufacturer Size Processor
NextBook 7GP Tablet eFun 7 inches 1.5 GHz Dual-core
XPeria Z Smartphone Sony 5 inches 1.5 GHz Quad-core
Ascend P1 Smartphone Huawei 4.3 inches 1.5 GHz Dual-core
One VX Smartphone HTC 4.5 inches 1.2 GHz Dual-core

eFun NextBook 7GP
NextBook 7GP is expected to be available in the US in early February 2013. It is priced at around $130. Comes with Google Play pre-installed for the apps, and (interestingly) also NOOK store pre-installed, for e-books. It also has parental control (Net Nanny). Yes, this is probably one of those tablets, like Kindle Fire HD that you would want to gift others. The OS does not look purely Android Jelly Bean. eFun has put in a lot of custom features, which might be considered as overhead by many.

Primary Competition : Asus Nexus 7

Sony XPeria Z/ZL
Not much is confirmed about these devices yet (because Sony itself has not announced anything yet). The Sony Yuga and Odin code-names have been heard very often in several Sony forums though. Both seem to come with similar hardware. I will talk about XPeria Z for now. Primarily from rumors, it is said to feature a Quad-core 1.5 GHz processor, which is very exciting. This is a rather large device at 5 inches (can it really be called a smartphone?) Many are expecting to see it showcased during the CES, and are hoping for a release immediately afterwards (maybe late January.) It is also supposed to be a really hardy phone.

Primary Competition : LG Nexus 4, Samsung Galaxy Nexus

Huawei Ascend P1
This is not really a new phone, but it is available in US only now. It comes with Ice Cream Sandwich pre-installed. It is also rather pricy at $450, given that the Nexus 4, with Jelly Bean (and 2 extra cores) is available at around $300. Also, it does not support LTE.

Primary Competition : HTC One VX

This too is not really a just released phone. But it is probably the most affordable of all the above. That is because it comes with rather modest hardware. The screen is just about high density, and the processing power seems to be the least at 1.2 GHz dual-core. This too comes with Ice Cream Sandwich, but you should be able to upgrade it to Jelly Bean soon, if you buy it. Well, thankfully it supports 4G LTE.

Primary Competition : None actually, given its segment and price range.

So, considering all of the above, the most promising device seems to be the Sony XPeria Z, mainly because of its hardware specifications and Sony's track record of making high quality phones. No information about its pricing is available yet, but we should know in about a week.

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