Tech Tip - Mobile Phone Recommendations

By Chris and Zahir (8th January 2021)

Our phone contract is coming up for renewal…

We need to upgrade the phones for our operatives…

One of our operatives has broken his phone and we need a new one…

We are quite used to statements like these from our customers, usually followed by the question…

“What phones do you recommend?”

As well as providing some key specs of handsets our advice used to be to “spend the most amount of money on the handset that you can afford at the time”. Often these recommendations would have been the top of the range handset in a brand’s range at that time to ensure it lasted a good while. Often the latest in the Samsung Galaxy range…

However, as time has moved on, so have the specifications of mobile phone handsets; and with that prices have gone up dramatically! For the price of a top of the range handset by a major manufacturer now in 2020, not many years ago the same money could have almost bought you three top of the range phones.

So with the advances in technology (and pricing!) our views on handset requirements have adapted to suit.

Specifications

  • Must be an Android handset running Android 4.4 or above (you’d be hard pushed to find a new handset running less than Android 9 so you should be ok!)
  • At least 3GB RAM
  • A Quadcore processor
  • A decent camera (Most megapixels is not always the best indicator for a quality camera, but it’s a start)

Accessories

You will want to protect your handsets given the working environments your engineers and their phones will find themselves in. With that in mind we would also recommend a handset which has a good selection of screen protectors and protective cases available for it. Do a quick internet search for availability of these items for handsets you are reviewing. I would also recommend a glass screen protector over a plastic one, these may cost a bit more but it will mean that it will be near impossible to break the screen from my experience.

Makes / Models

Contracts

You may be tied to a contract with a network provider so that will likely restrict your handset choices to the ones they have available. Usually you will find they have a very decent mid-range Samsung device that will more than fit the bill. Something perhaps like the Samsung Galaxy A51.

SIM Only

Of course everyone has personal preference when it comes to choosing a phone, but more often than not it comes down to budget. As of November 2020 we have a small selection of recommendations which will more than adequately meet the needs of your engineers, and suit a range of budgets:

Motorola G8 Power One Plus Nord N100 Samsung Galaxy A51 Google Pixel 4a One Plus Nord
Android version 10 10 9 11 10
Processor type Octo-core Octo-core Octo-core Octo-core Octo-core
RAM 4GB 4GB 4GB 6GB 8GB
Storage capacity 64GB 64GB 128GB 128GB 128GB
Camera 16MP 13MP 48MP 12.2MP 48MP
Battery size 5000mAh 5000mAh 4000mAh 3140mAh 4115mAh
Screen Resolution 1080p 720p 1080p 1080p 1080p
Price £179.99 £179.99 £279.99 £319.00 £379.99

Conclusion

Our original advice still stands, buy the best you can afford at the time of buying. Like all technology, it is out of date almost immediately it is released. That said, there are some very capable handsets which are more than suited to running our application and any other things your engineers will require that will not cost the earth.

Right now if we were in the market for a new engineer handset it would be between the OnePlus Nord N100 or the Motorola Power G8. Both great value for money, great spec and incredible battery life, however the Motorola G8 Power has a higher resolution display and a slightly better processor than the One Plus Nord N100.

(Despite this since we both already have OnePlus handsets we’d buy the Nord N100)

Feel free to contact us and ask us our advice if you manage to get yourself confused with the many handsets on the market!

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