Phone, Smartphone, Notebook and Gadget Reviews and buyers guide


Best Phones of 2015-2016

They come in a variety of shapes and designs-- with touch screens and without. They run a variety of operating systems, yet they're the best tools among the smartphones we've reviewed to get the job done when it comes to email, web and document management.

iPhone 7 & iPhone 7 Plus The changes for Apple's flagship 4.7" and 5.5" smartphones are mostly inside this year. On the outside we have new antenna lines, a solid state home button and two new colors: black and jet black. Inside there's the class-leading Apple A10 Fusion quad core CPU, more storage, improved front and rear cameras, IP67 water resistance. The iPhone 7 Plus gets two 12MP rear cameras, one with standard wide view and one telephoto. Both run iOS 10. All major carriers Sept. 2016 iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus review
Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge The Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 edge make up for the proverbial sins of the father-- they bring back dear hardware features that Samsung axed when it released the radically redesigned Galaxy S6, s6 edge and s6 edge+. That means the microSD card slot and water resistant features are back--combine those with stunning looks, the fast new Snapdragon 820 CPU, a revised camera that handles low light (and good lighting) well, bigger batteries and striking QHD AMOLED displays and you've got two flagship Android 6.0 Marshmallow smartphones that earn their high price tags. All major carriers March 2016 Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge review
Google Pixel & Pixel XL The two Google branded phones released in the fall of 2016, in 5" and 5.5" sizes. The Pixel line replaces the Nexus line of Android smartphones that come direct from Google with the latest Android build and no carrier or manufacturer bloatware. This time, Google is going with flagship pricing and high end specs. The Pixel XL runs Android 7.1 Nougat with the new Google Assistant (voice activated) on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 CPU with 4 gigs of RAM and 32 or 128 gigs of storage (no microSD card slot). The Pixel XL has a 2560 x 1440 AMOLED display with Gorilla Glass 4 (the smaller Pixel is 1920 x 1080). It has an 8MP front camera and a 12.3MP rear camera with f/2.0 lens and 4K video recording. Verizon & Unlocked Oct. 2016 Google Pixel and Google Pixel XL review
Nexus 6P This may well be Google's best Nexus phone yet, at least if you're a fan of big screen smartphones. As you might expect, the Nexus 6P runs the latest version of Android, with no custom UI overlays or bloatware to bog it down. What you might not expect is the sexy unibody anodized aluminum casing, available in 3 hues. This Huawei-built phone is a classy piece, and it's fast too with the top dog Snapdragon 810 8-core CPU inside, 3 gigs of LPDDR4 RAM and 3 storage options. It has capable cameras, a lovely 5.7" QHD AMOLED display and a beefy battery. It's sold unlocked for use with any carrier (CDMA too) with a reasonable $499 starting price. Unlocked (GSM & CDMA) Dec. 2015 Nexus 6P review
LG V10 Gimmick or great? The LG V10 is a little of both. The big screen LG has a secondary front display--a narrow strip at the top that provides shortcuts, status and can act as a control area for apps like the camera. Speaking of the camera, this phone has two front facing cameras; one ultra-wide angle and the other with a more normal view. On to the normal stuff! The LG V10 runs Android 5.1.1 Lollipop (sorry, not 6.0 Marshmallow that's shipping on a few recent phones) on the high end Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 6-core CPU. It has 4 gigs of RAM and 64 gigs of storage, and there's a microSD card slot. The phone has a 5.7" Quantum IPS+ display and it runs at QHD 2560 x 1440. AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon Dec. 2015 LG V10 5X review
HTC 10 The HTC 10 is a unibody metal phone with a 5.2" QHD Super LCD 5 display in Gorilla Glass with subtly curved edges. It runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with HTC's tasteful Sense UI on the top dog Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 CPU. It has 4 gigs of RAM, 32 gigs of internal storage and a micro SD card slot. The phone has a 5MP front camera, 12MP rear camera, a high quality audio DAC with headphone amplifier, LTE 4G and a USB-C 3.1 port. Most major carriers April 2016 HTC 10 review
Moto Z and Moto Z Force Finally, modular phones done right, at least if you're hankering to slap on nifty accessories. The Moto Z and Z Force aren't the kind of modular that requires you to assemble core parts from building blocks, rather they work with magnetic Moto Mods like the JBL stereo speaker back, a projector and extended batteries. They're the first phones to break from Moto's attractive, but well-worn look and feel. Gone are the complexly curved sides, thick middle body and unibody construction. Instead we have a modern and somewhat angular design that's actually very slim, unlike the old Moto design that got chubby toward the middle. Inside it's all flagship power with the 2.2 GHz Snapdragon 820, 4 gigs of RAM, a fingerprint scanner, NFC and your choice of a good 13MP camera on the Moto Z and an excellent 21MP camera on the Moto Z Force. We look at the Droid Edition of these phones, which means they're on Verizon Wireless. Verizon July 2016 Moto Z and Moto Z Force review



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