The Chronicle’s cell phone survival guide

Matthew Pellerin

The Chronicle


Have you had the same phone for ages now? Have you lost or broke your phone recently? It might be time to think about getting a new phone. The market may seem vast and confusing these days, but The Chronicle has you covered.

Whether you’re an Apple enthusiast, curious about Android phones, or feel like switching it up and getting a Blackberry, here’s a breakdown of the major phones so you can find which one you want the most.

Apple has quickly become popular among people of all ages. The iPhone 6s and 6s plus, come packed with fresh features that range from a sophisticated operating system to the new 3g touch screens.

These screens measure the force you use, which allows you to do different commands depending on how hard you touch the screen. “This opens up a whole new world for software designers,” according to CTV Tech Analyst Carmi Levy.

Apple has recently released the SE, which is one of its smallest phones to date. It has essentially the same camera and processor as the 6S, but with a smaller 4-inch screen.

If buying the latest phone isn’t an option, don’t worry, there are still exceptional Apple phones out there. “Right now the 5s is the sweet spot in terms of the most bang for your buck,” says Levy. “For students or anyone else on a budget it’s probably the most cost-effective Apple product out there.”

If Apple isn’t what you’re looking for, there are lots of great phones under the Android umbrella. “We sell Apple the most, because of their marketing, but it’s usually people who have done their research that go with Blackberry or Android,” says Braydon West of Bell Canada.

Levy says Android is a much more customizable user-configurable type of technology “If you’re like my mom and just want to turn it on and get to work, Android may not be your cup of tea,”

While Samsung may lead the pack in sales, the diamond in the rough among Android phones may be coming from Google. The Google Nexus 6p is its newest phone and offers many great features. While it’s smaller than its predecessor, the Nexus 6, it’s still larger than the industry average and crammed into there are a lot of reasons to own one.

“The Android software on a Nexus device is raw,” says Levy. “It will always be the first to get updates from Google. If you are a real power user you will get a Google device instead of one from Samsung or LG,”

However, if you are a loyal Samsung user, the Galaxy S7 is the company’s newest product and improves upon its older models. The S7 has a better camera, a faster processor and comes packed with the latest Android software. This software, known as Marshmallow or Version 6, is a step up from the previous Samsung phones and offers many great new features to explore and play around with.

Who says you have to pay a ton for a great Android? If you’re on a budget, there are options waiting for you. For example, the Moto E is a small, pint-sized phone that is more than suitable for web-browsing, gaming or whatever else you may use your phone for.

Blackberry has dropped in relevance over the years but it’s back with a bang when it comes to the Priv. “The Priv innovates with a suite of highly secure software additions, as well as a slide-out physical keyboard,” says Levy.

The Priv boasts exceptional privacy and allows you to control your device’s security on many levels. Blackberry’s trademark features are combined with countless apps, as the Priv is the first Blackberry device to use Android software and the Google Play store.

For budgeting Blackberry fans, Levy suggests the Passport. “It’s extra-wide screen is especially useful for road warriors who do a lot of content creation and editing on their handhelds,” he says. “Its large keyboard and wide screen, have proven ideal for business users who do a lot of document consumption and production while on the go.”

What matters is what you’re looking for in your phone. “Make sure the technology fits the way you intend to use it,” says Levy. “It’s not a case of Apple being better than Google, it’s a case of understanding what your needs are.”

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Matthew Pellerin is a second year journalism student at Durham College. He enjoys writing about politics, technology, and news ranging from around the world, the local community, to right on campus. When he's not waxing poetically on his blog, he's usually nose-deep in world news.