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Which smartphone should I buy?

Last change: 2018-12-05 – Copyright © 2018-2018 Hans-Georg Michna


Since I updated this article the last time, the smartphone landscape has completely changed. I used to buy used smartphones on eBay and refurbish them with the latest version of CyanogenMod. I picked smartphones with an excellent performance/price ratio and was thus able to use relatively powerful smartphones for a very low price.

Now the situation is that quite powerful smartphones are available as new for very good prices, so it makes no longer much sense to buy used ones. Therefore I will recommend a few smartphones that seem particularly attractive to me. As before, I don't like Samsung phones, because of their poorly programmed bloatware, and because even their hardware is not always very good.

  1. OnePlus 6T – Available with 6 or 8 GB RAM and 128 or 256 GB internal storage (no Micro-SD-card slot), it comes close in capability to much more expensive flagship phones. It is mostly free of bloatware, and OnePlus has shown that they provide the latest Android versions to their phones for three years. (The 3T, which is now 3 years old, will get Android 9 "Oreo" soon, they said.) Its price swings around €600, depending on memory sizes. It has two SIM card slots.
  2. Nokia 8.1 – This is a rumored, new phone, possibly the top of the Nokia line of phones for a price around €400, that may or may not appear soon. Look out for it in late 2018.
  3. Nokia 6.1 Plus – A mid-range phone for a very good price (around €250).
  4. Nokia 3.1 Plus – A low-priced phone (around €150) with an excellent performance/price ratio. I do not recommend phones with low performance, but if your budget is very tight or your demands are very low, this may be your best choice.

What makes the Nokia phones enticing is their good quality, their lack of bloatware, and their use of Android One, which should make system upgrades easier than on other phones, raising the hope of timely and long support from their manufacturer, HMD Global. (They bought the Nokia name, but their Nokia phones are still good.)

Copyright © 2018-2018 Hans-Georg Michna.


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