10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

Published on November 9 2014

iPhone users almost have it easy when choosing a new phone, currently the best options are the big iPhone 6, or the bigger iPhone 6 Plus. Choosing an Android phone can be a bit harder since there are so many options available. With that wide selection comes more competition, though, and there's an argument to be made that some of the phones are even better than the iPhone, no matter which iPhone you're talking about.

What makes an Android phone better than an iPhone is all based on what you value in a phone. Maybe you want a more durable, waterproof phone, or a phone with a different design and more color options. Maybe you really, really want a stylus and a huge display. Or it could be as simple as you prefer to be locked into Google's ecosystem instead of Apple's because hey, no one company's products are right for everyone.

Here's a list of 10 Android phones that can arguably be considered better than the iPhone, assembled by an iPhone 6 Plus user with an unhealthy obsession with finding ways to get their hands on every exciting Android phone out there.

10. OnePlus One

The appeal of the OnePlus One is easily summed up in one line: flagship specs for a mid-range price. The phone offers a 5.5-inch 1080p display and a Snapdragon 801 processor for $299 off-contract. A phone like the Galaxy S5 offers similar specs for almost twice the price without a contract.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

While the price alone makes the OnePlus One compelling, the phone also has a few unique features thanks to Cyanogenmod, the modified version of Android it uses. The One lets users completely change the look and feel of the software by letting them completely change the theme without downloading a special app. Users can even choose to switch between on-screen and capacitive buttons on the OnePlus One, a feature no other phone offers

9. LG G3

The story of the LG G3 is all about the specs, specifically about the display. The G3 was the first Android phone in the U.S. to feature a Quad HD 2560x1440 display, and the only phone with a laser-guided camera.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

The 5.5-inch screen is the same size as that of the iPhone 6 Plus, but the phone itself is actually narrower than Apple's phone thanks to the G3's thinner bezels. While the phone is large, LG's software features like KnockOn and KnockCode, which let you unlock the phone by tapping the screen, make it more manageable. LG also takes advantage of the screen size with Dual Window that opens two apps on screen at the same time, if that's something you want to do.

8. HTC One M8

With its all-aluminum body, the HTC One M8 stands as one of the best-looking smartphones available, no matter which platform you prefer. The 5-inch phone fits between the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, and has a curved back that will make it easier to hold for some users.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

The UltraPixel camera is a bit lacking when compared to other phones on this list, but the phone's design and other specs should make that one weak point less important to some users. The front-facing stereo BoomSound speakers alone might be enough to convince some people to pick this phone, and it's hard to argue against using sound quality as a reason for picking the One M8 over something like the Galaxy S5. For some people, at least.

7. Samsung Galaxy S5

The Galaxy S5 is perhaps the first phone you might think of when you think about an Android phone that competes with the iPhone. The S5 is the phone that has almost everything from a fingerprint reader to a heart-rate monitor, eye-tracking software, and plenty of special software features you may never use.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

While it's easy to deride the Galaxy S5 for sometimes having too many features and a plastic body, some of the features, like the ability to answer a phone call by waving your hand over the phone, can actually be useful to some users. The phone also has a great display, good battery life, and one of the best cameras available on an Android smartphone.

6. Motorola Droid Turbo

The decision on whether or not you'd want a Motorola Droid Turbo comes down to one question: Do you want a phone with a gigantic battery that will last for more than a day? As a follow-up question, do you use, or do you want to use Verizon?

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

Motorola claims the Droid Turbo can last 48 hours on a single charge, though in its testingGizmodo was consistently able to get about 30 hours, which is still pretty good. The phone is very similar to the new Moto X with many of the same software features, a higher resolution display, but fewer of the design options. It's maybe the less exciting Motorola phone, but still a great option.

5. Sony Xperia Z3

Like Apple, Sony wants to offer users a choice when it comes to the size of their smartphones. The Xperia Z3 is the larger version of the phone with a 5.2-inch display that serves as Sony's flagship phone.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

The Z3 carries over many of the excellent features of the Xperia Z2 like its waterproof design, but improves upon it with a good display and terrific battery life. The Xperia Z3 also adds PlayStation 4 Remote Play so games can pair a DualShock 4 to the phone and stream games from their PS4 to its 1080p display. It's the same feature that's found in the PlayStation Vita, but using the Z3 doesn't sacrifice the PS4 controller, even if it is a much bulkier option for streaming games.

4. Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

With a 4.6-inch display the Xperia Z3 Compact is the smallest phone on this list, and is even a bit smaller than the iPhone 6. The phone features the same specs as the Xperia Z3 and all the same features, albeit in a smaller, plastic package. If you're looking for a high-end Android phone that can feasibly fit into a pocket, this might be your only option.

To make the Xperia Z3 Compact even more interesting, Sony made the phone available in four colors. There's the standard black and white as well as a light green and a bright orange. The color is all about personal preference, but more options are always nice.

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To make the Xperia Z3 Compact even more interesting, Sony made the phone available in four colors. There's the standard black and white as well as a light green and a bright orange. The color is all about personal preference, but more options are always nice.

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 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

To make the Xperia Z3 Compact even more interesting, Sony made the phone available in four colors. There's the standard black and white as well as a light green and a bright orange. The color is all about personal preference, but more options are always nice.

3. Google Nexus 6

This entry comes with a caveat that it is based largely on previews and hands-on impressions of the phone as it won't come out until Nov. 13, a few days after this piece was written. While the Nexus 6 hardware stands out for being similar to Motorola's other big phone, the Moto X, and its giant screen, the big focus here is Android 5.0 Lollipop.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

If your definition of "the best" is "latest and greatest," then the fact that the Nexus 6 is the first phone to ship with Lollipop would make it "the best." The OS uses Google's new Material Design design language which brings an attractive unified design to the platform and somehow manages to make apps like Calendar and Inbox enjoyable to use. The update also includes lock-screen notification, guest accounts, improved background face unlock, a new multitasking view, new voice controls, and a lot more.

All of those new features will come to the Nexus 6 first, which will make a compelling case for the phone to many, as long as there isn't some glaring issues with the phone. But, based on Android Authority's initial impressions, there don't seem to be any major issues with the phone yet

2. Samsung Galaxy Note 4

The latest in of Samsung's popular line of phablets is, by some accounts, one of best plus-sized phones on the market at the moment. In its review of the phone The Verge said the Note 4 is "an excellent phone inside and out, the first Note that combines design, power, and performance in one package."

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

The 5.7-inch display is slightly larger than the screen on the iPhone 6 Plus, though the phone itself isn't much bigger, and features more pixels than Apple's phone with a resolution of 2560x1440. Samsung makes use of that great, giant display by letting you use two apps on screen at once and by adding a stylus for sketching and taking handwritten notes.

1. Motorola Moto X

The 2014 version of the Moto X takes everything that was great about the 2013 model and improves upon it. The new iteration features a larger display, a faster processor, and a new metal frame.

 10 Android phones that are better than the iPhone

Like the first Moto X, the new phone is customizable through Moto Maker. Users can change the color and even the material of the back of the Moto X through the web app, and can even choose from a variety of wood and leather backs. Motorola also brought over key software features like Moto Display (the new name for Active Notifications) which automatically shows the time and missed notifications whenever you pick up the phone, or when you wave your hand over the phone.

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