Google’s new Nexus models are hands down the show-stealers of the season. Sporting the latest Android Marshmallow 6.0, both phones come with improved battery life and a camera that can even give the latest iPhones a run for their money. With fingerprint scanners and ambient display, the phones are extremely user-friendly. They also support USB type-C charging which removes the hassle of figuring out “which way is up” while plugging in the charger. The new phones give more freedom to customise the devices. All in all, the Nexus phones are a cornucopia of delight.
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 (Rs 53,900):
The device isn’t easy to hold in one hand and doesn’t feature expandable storage, but the 16-megapixel (MP) back camera takes excellent outdoor shots and the screen is fabulous — even in direct sunlight. Plus, the octa-core processor ensures blazing performance while the stylus adds a lot of productivity features. The Galaxy Note 5 is also a looker to boot. Of course, the Note 5 heats up after a few hours of gaming and the battery isn’t the most powerful, but if you want a big-screen Android, there aren’t many better.
For full review, visit mybs.in/2S1FRxX
Apple iPhone 6s and 6s Plus (Rs 62,000 onwards and Rs 72,000 onwards):
You might dismiss the company’s tagline as a marketing gimmick (the phones aren’t very different visually from last year’s), but you just can’t ignore them. So what if 3D touch needs getting used to and there’s still no expandable memory, some people will still buy this super expensive phone. And yes, the camera on the 6s is nothing to write home about, though the one on the 6s Plus is better. But there’s one thing one must say about the new iPhones — iOS 9 works like a dream on them.
Moto X Style (Rs 31,999):
If you love the unadulterated Android experience, you’ll love this phone. The screen might not be as bright as Samsung phones and the 21MP back camera might struggle with low-light photos, but the batteries go on and on, while the 5MP front camera, which features a flash, will be a hit with selfie-addicts. The 21MP snapper, however, performs exceedingly well outdoors and the phone doesn’t heat up at all. Plus, it sports features such as vertical scrolling and a tab for the most used tabs, both found only on Android Marshmallow 6 (the phone runs Android).
For full review, visit mybs.in/2S1IgPB
OnePlus 2 (Rs 24,999 for 64GB):
This was one of the most-anticipated handsets this year and it didn’t disappoint, despite the tedious process to buy it. The OxygenOS might not be as friendly as the Cyanogen one on the OnePlus One, and the cameras might not be its headline point, but this device checks all the boxes in terms of performance and gaming. And yes, its battery will last you the better part of a day with heavy usage.
For full review, visit mybs.in/2RxfuqM
Asus ZenFone 2 (Rs 9,999 onwards):
The Taiwanese smartphone maker tasted success last year with its range of ZenFones, with a choice of three screen sizes. This year, the ZenFone 2 range has kept the names simple and just two screen sizes — 5-inch and at 5.5-inch. But there are a wide range of options in terms of processor, storage, RAM, camera as well as finish. We were impressed with gaming on the 4GB variant. The range also features a clean and intuitive interface, long battery life, good looks and a decent camera.
For full review, visit mybs.in/2RxmPk2 and mybs.in/2RufNVM
Yu Yunique (Rs 4,999):
If Rs 5,000 is all you want to spend on a smartphone, look no further. The Yunique and the Redmi 2 sport near identical specifications, but for a lower-rated battery in the former. The phone, made of plastic, runs near stock Android and a has a non-removable battery. The phone’s 8MP primary camera is decent — its display is crisp with balanced colour reproduction. The 2MP front snapper can be used for selfies, which can then be enhanced using the beauty mode. The phone’s battery will last through a day provided you aren’t a heavy user.
For full review, visit mybs.in/2S1CDWX
Xiaomi Redmi 2 (Rs 5,999 onwards):
This Chinese manufacturer disrupted the smartphone market with its offerings. Now, with the “Made in India” Redmi 2 Prime, it is ready to battle in the budget segment again. Whether it be the Prime or the Redmi 2, both phones sport identical displays — crisp and vivid. The interface, built on stock Android, is different but very functional, while the 8MP camera’s outdoor performance is one of the best at that price range.
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