Tips to Buy a Smartphone

Everyday, you will hold a rectangle thingy that can you can call people that far away from you. You will also do almost everything in that thing regardless of watch at your arm, note in your bag, newspaper etc.

That’s what smartphone have done to us. It replace almost everything in our surrounding.

Except gaming. You still need joystick and keyboard+mouse. Only puny says “Gaming in touchscreen is awesome”. Well, not yet.

But hey, we do need them. Don’t be ashamed.

The most importing thing when figuring what kind of smartphone you want is budget. Pick the best value per performance smartphone with some benefit for your usage.

The ecosystem is also important. You may want Android smartphone. Or an iPhone. Or Windows Phone. Or Blackberry.

Wait, nobody wants a Blackberry phone anymore.

Anyway, this is a tips about how to buy the right smartphone for yourself, focusing on Android but other ecosystem can follow some of it.

1. Brand

If brand does matter to you, pick your most trusted brand. Samsung, LG, Sony, Motorola is the big name while Xiaomi, Huawei, Oppo/Vivo is famous in China.

Let’s not start over with China’s brand. Trust me. It’s a lot. Then, avoid Lenovo at all cost. Their phone is crap. Except Vibe Shot. But the UI is still crap.

2. Nexus
If you ever heard about it, then you totally knows about Android Vanilla (or Android’s pure skin). This device come straight from Google (Android’s owner) and they tend to get the update first than any other device. True story.


(The all new Huawei Nexus 6P, successor of Motorola Nexus 6)


(This is meanwhile, the cheaper LG Nexus 5X, the successor of infamous LG Nexus 5)

3. Skins
There are many Android’s skin that been altered by manufacturer (that way too much from original Android Vanilla in Nexus series). Most significant changes are Samsung (they call it Touchwiz) and LG (LG UX). But to be honest, their skin is ugly as hell.

Thumbs up to Sony, Motorola and OnePlus for not altered it too much. You too HTC, your altered version is quite good.

To manufacturer that alter it to make it looks like an iPhone, damn you.

Especially you, China smartphone. Lenovo, Oppo, Vivo, Huawei, Xiaomi, Meizu, Elephone, Alcatel One Touch (really?). It’s too much. I can’t list it all. It’s China for God sake.

4. Specification

For this, it’s depend on your budget. Every flagship specs will always above 500$ (around RM2100) except OnePlus, Xiaomi and Motorola. Some of Chinese smartphone are also listed flagship and quite cheap but trust me, you will be frustrated with their performance.

Flagship specification may contain octa-core processor (dual-core for Apple), above 3GB of RAM, high display pixel (most of it is Quad HD but some still in Full HD) and premium build quality.

5. Build Quality

This kind of thing, depends on your preferred taste. Some may love premium build like aluminium body or glass at the back. Some people still love plastic build or polycarbonate body. Some may love curved, some love flat. It’s your call.

6. Camera

It’s the same like above reason. It’s depends on your taste. Some like saturated picture. Some like natural look on the picture. For me, I would like my camera to able to take great lowlight picture, good in sharpness and saturated a little bit. You need to check :

  • Megapixel size (above 8MP)
  • Aperture size (below 2.0 is better)
  • Flashlight type (Single or dual LED, Xenon)
  • Features (Laser autofocus, bokeh, OIS etc.)

But hey, megapixel isn’t everything. iPhone’s 8MP is still better than most smartphone out there.

7. Update

The newest one is Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow but most of the smartphone is using Android 5.1 Lollipop. Apple iOS 9.2 is the latest update from Apple. For Windows Phone, Windows 10 Mobile. If your chosen smartphone is below this version and not promised with the update, don’t buy it.

Update is important to ensure your smartphone is up to date and safe with security patch from Google or manufacturer. Some new features may only come in update.

8. Features

If the phone only have basic feature, you’re totally will not even looking at it. Check their distinctive features that separate them from other manufacturer like stylus, dual stereo speaker or fast charging.

My advice, take a big battery size. Nobody loves to charge their phone in the middle of the day.

For people who wants to buy Apple product, this is the only tips for you. If you have a lot of money, buy the latest one. Pick the most expensive one. Don’t buy 16GB of storage. It’s not enough and it look silly.

But trust me, battery management in small iPhone is crap. The Plus series is much better. But the size is maybe not your preferred one.

If you don’t have enough money, you can either buy their older product or not buy it at all and just bought an Android smartphone.

Hopefully this tips is useful for everyone who wish to buy a smartphone for the first time or wants to upgrade. Unfortunately, everything needs money so either you start collecting the cash or just forget this script.

*No money, no talk.*


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