Sunday, March 10, 2013

What are the best unlocked android phone for any budget?


I made a jump to using Android phones on pre-paid wireless plan last year. I was not happy with the result. I can choose any android phone I want, I saved a ton of money on my monthly bill and I am no longer have to rely on carries to deliver my software update. Switching to the pre-paid can be challenging at first. It can cost you to spend 3-6x times your monthly carrier bill during the middle of a contact and cost of buying an unlocked phone.

If you switching to unlocked Android phones there have no cause to return back to locked phones and also postpaid plans. I can choose the device and what network it operates on. I also can switch form device to device, carrier to carrier and decide what software it runs.

If you have made to switch unlocked phone here I can give you some advice:

What is an unlocked phone?

Unlocked devices are phones that recognize SIM cards from any carrier. A locked phone will only recognize a SIM card from a particular carrier. The “lock” is software setting that keeps the cell phone “loyal” to one carrier.

Why should I buy an unlocked phone?

Unlocked phones are not altered by a carrier. No need to worry about crap apps or gimped hardware.
Unlocked phones receive Android updates faster, directly from the manufacturer.
Unlocked phones cost less in the long run.
Unlocked phones have a higher resale value.
Unlocked phones give consumers more control of plans and pricing. No contracts, no commitments, no hidden fees.

Why should I not buy an unlocked phone?

Large families might be better off with a post-paid plan that has shared data. Rates vary from carrier to carrier, but a family plan with shared minutes and data might be cheaper than a bunch of individual pre-paid plans.
No in-store support for most plans (T-Mobile Monthly 4G is the exception). If you enjoy walking into your local carrier store to get support with your phone, then you might pass on an unlocked device. Most carriers will not provide support for a device they did not sell, so you will have to turn to the manufacturer for help and warranty claims.
No 4G LTE access yet. In the future we will see pre-paid service plans with 4G LTE, but right now you are limited to 4G HSPA+.

Check out some Best unlocked mobile reviews and price:

Best unlocked phone for $200-299: LG Nexus 4



Original Release Date: November 2012

The Good: Pure Android experience, updates straight from Google, NFC, wireless charging, beautiful display, fast Snapdragon S4 Pro processor.

The not-so-good: No expandable storage, no removable battery, camera is not as good as SGS3 or HTC One X, glass back can crack.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+

Last Google Price: $299 for 8 GB, $349 for 16 GB, prices are unchanged from December

Final Words: This is the best unlocked Android phone for the price. It doesn’t have expandable storage and a removable battery like the Galaxy S III, but this device is selling for almost half the price.

Best unlocked phone for $400-499: HTC One X


Original Release Date: April 2012

The Good: Amazing camera experience, beautiful design, Beats audio, large vibrant display, quad-core Tegra 3 processor, best version of Sense UI yet, hacker friendly, NFC, Android 4.1.

The not-so-good: No microSD card, battery is non-removable.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon Price: $480, down $10 from December

Final Words: The HTC One X offers a premium Android experience  with a price that beats some the top competitors. Design stands out above the rest. HTC enables you to unlock the bootloader, and there is a growing development community that supports the device. The Tegra 3 chip gives you access to tons of exclusive games from Tegra Zone. Expect prices to be dropping soon with the newer HTC One expected to launch by Q2 2013.

Best unlocked phone for $700-799: Sony Xperia Z


Original Release Date: February 2013

The Good: Full 1080p HD on a large 5” display, 13 megapixel camera with Sony Exmor RS sensor and HDR video capture, fast quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, NFC, water-resistant, frame is made from glass fiber polyamide.

The Not-so-good: High price, some say the viewing angles on the display are not the best.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon price: $789, new to the list this month

Final Words: This is Sony’s best smartphone, but the price is hard to justify when you compare it with other devices.

Best unlocked phone for $500-599: Samsung Galaxy S III


Original Release Date: May 2012

The Good: Large HD display, fast Exynos 4 Quad processor, 1 GB RAM, Android 4.1, great camera experience, NFC, hacker friendly, removable battery, microSD slot.

The Not-so-good: After extended use, I prefer the camera experience on the HTC One X.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon price: $500, prices are down $80 from December

Final Words: The Galaxy S III is one of the best unlocked phones that money can buy, in terms of hardware. However, we expect Samsung to unveil the Galaxy S IV on March 14th.

Best unlocked phone for $600-699: Samsung Galaxy Note II

Original Release Date: September 2012


The Good: Large 5.5-inch HD display, S Pen stylus, fast 1.6 GHz Exynos 4 Quad processor, 2 GB RAM, Android 4.1, great camera experience, NFC, massive 3100 mAh battery, microSD slot.

The Not-so-good: Size might be too big for some.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon price: $654, prices are same as December

Final Words: The Galaxy Note II is the best super-sized phone you can buy. It features the largest display, fastest processor, and it ships with the latest version of Android.

Best unlocked phone for $100-199: Sony Xperia U


Original Release Date: May 2012

The Good: 3.5 inch Reality Display powered by the Mobile BRAVIA Engine, 5 megapixel camera, Android 4.0, dual-core 1 GHz processor.

The not-so-good: No expandable storage, no NFC.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon Price: $193, down $10 from December

Final Words: The Xperia U has been flirting with the $199 barrier, and the price finally dropped. It’s a great buy at only $200, but we would suggest saving up some money and getting the Nexus 4.

Best unlocked phone for $300-399: Sony Xperia SL


Original Release Date: September 2012

The Good: 4.3 inch Reality Display with Mobile BRAVIA Engine, 12 megapixel camera with Exmor R sensor, fast dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, NFC, 32 GB of internal storage, Android 4.1.

The not-so-good: No expandable storage.

Networks supported: AT&T 4G HSPA+, T-Mobile 4G HSPA+ (in select cities)

Last Amazon Price: $389, new to the list this month

Final Words: The Sony Xperia SL is a great device, but it is kind of stuck in the middle. I would suggest getting the Nexus 4 or spending the extra cash and get the One X or Galaxy S III.

Choose your best unlocked phone. We are updating regularly this list. Searching out for the best unlocked Android phone. If you have any opinion let us know.   


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