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This article was published on December 8, 2011

10 phones you need to check out that AREN’T the iPhone

10 phones you need to check out that AREN’T the iPhone
Harrison Weber
Story by

Harrison Weber

Harrison Weber is TNW's Features Editor in NYC. Part writer, part designer. Stay in touch: Twitter @harrisonweber, Google+ and Email. Harrison Weber is TNW's Features Editor in NYC. Part writer, part designer. Stay in touch: Twitter @harrisonweber, Google+ and Email.

As many reasons as there are to love the iPhone, there’s just as many to hate it. Common gripes include the lack of software customization, lack of hardware choices and the limitations inherent in a walled garden app store.

Some mobile die-hards are fixated on Android’s flexibility, while others are falling in love with Nokia’s beautiful new line of Windows Phones. Plenty more want to take advantage of 4G LTE.

In the end, this isn’t a one device fits all world. So, feast your eyes below on 10 of the latest, greatest phones that aren’t the iPhone!

Nokia Lumia 800 & 700

The Nokia Lumia 800 (pictured left) shares its good looks with the N9, the attractive yet doomed final release to feature MeeGo. The sleek hardware packs an AMOLED screen and a solid build quality. It really brings out the best in the Windows Phone OS, and Nokia’s included navigation apps, like Nokia Drive, have also received tons of praise.

Consider the Lumia 710 (pictured right) to be the younger brother of the 800. The form factor is a little more playful, being slightly thicker with more modest specs. It comes with a standard LCD, that’s well suited for basic users and anyone searching for their first smartphone.

It’s notable that the Lumia 800 is also the first device to make Matthew Panzarino, TNW’s Apple Editor, want to give up his iPhone.

Galaxy S II


The Samsung Galaxy S II has been leading the way all year as far as specs go. It features a rather large, Super AMOLED Plus 4.3-inch display and 1080p video. The S II retails from $199 to $229 with a 2 year contract.

Galaxy Nexus

The Galaxy Nexus carries the Galaxy line further as the first phone to launch with Android’s Ice Cream Sandwich. It’s gargantuan 4.65-inch (1,280 x 720) display packs crisp text and wide viewing angles into a thin package.

It ships on December 9th, and looks like it will cost around $299 with a contract.

Motorola Droid Razr


Motorola just recently resurrected their 2004 Razr brand, as an all-new, top of the line Android phone. At 7.1mm thick, the Droid Razr feels extremely thin and light with a quick 1.2GHz CPU. The overall experience is great, but the Motorola Blur customization may leave you wanting a pure Android experience with its $299 price tag.

T-Mobile G2x


If you’re already a T-Mobile subscriber, The G2x is worth considering. It features a dual-core processor and can record up to 1080p video. It also ships with a stock Android OS, allowing customization ’til your heart’s content. Unfortunately, the OS is only now being updated to Gingerbread, so keep your eye’s peeled to make sure you don’t end up with Android’s aging Froyo. Expect to pay a low $99 with contract.

LG Nitro HD

LG’s Nitro HD is a fast, lightweight phone with a standard design and a slightly lower than average battery life. The 8 megapixel camera, LTE speeds and a comfortable form factor make this phone worth considering. Expect to pay around $249 with contract.

HTC Sensation ZE

HTC’s Sensation ZE is a 4.3-inch Android touchscreen, driven by its speedy 1.5GHz dual-core processor and a rather large battery. The perks of the Sensation ZE include a pair of Beats by Dr. Dre headphones and a remote control to flip through tracks and take calls.

Audiophiles looking for the perfect music phone — look no further. Along with the Beats headphones, the Sensation ZE ships with a Beats-optimized sound profile that HTC hopes will deliver fuller bass, sharper vocals and broader range than you’d expect from the typical smartphone.

BlackBerry Bold 9930

Keyboard die-hards! Stubborn BlackBerry fans! Come together for the recently released BlackBerry Bold 9930. The latest phone by RIM feels fast and responsive, and features a 2.8-inch LCD, great battery life and BlackBerry 7, a subtle update on the BlackBerry OS.

Although BlackBerry parent RIM is the walking dead at this point, the Bold 9930 may be one of the best BlackBerry phones yet. We’ll have to wait and see how it stacks up to competition, while Android and iPhone sales continue to rise. Cost: Around $199.

Verizon Droid Bionic

Fans of Motorola’s popular Droid series will love the Droid Bionic, which features a vibrant, 3.4″ screen and 4G LTE. The Droid offers up an entire family of accessories, like the Lapdock, HD Station and a Webtop Adapter.

The Droid Bionic is a great way to get into Android, and hasn’t really broken any boundaries with its design. New Verizon customers can expect to pay as little as $49 via the AmazonWireless store.

As you can see, the choices keep growing as Android phones are continually released in a competition for the spotlight. Nokia shows promise as a high-end Windows Phone handset, and Blackberry continues to hang on as a third choice for anyone searching beyond the iPhone.

Have you found the perfect phone for you, and did you look beyond the iPhone?