We mobile tech nerds love our accessories, and manufacturers love to sell them to us. Between wearables, VR headsets, and voice-controlled home automation, accessories for smartphones have never been more varied. We've covered and reviewed quite a few this year on Android Police, and here are our picks for the top five.
Android Police's bi-weekly roundups have covered more than 750 games this year. That's a hell of a lot for a site that's not specifically about gaming, and picking out the top five is no small task. Before you read any further, take note of the following: I had a few criteria that games had to meet before being included in the following selections.
After a fair bit of discussion, we've decided that if there's one manufacturer in 2016 that stepped up its game across the board, it's HTC. And, of course, we think that step up was embodied in the HTC 10.
HTC has gone through something of a rough patch since its release of the One M7 back in 2013. The M8 and M9 were nowhere near as highly-regarded, and the stale design language of the phones left many fans and critics thinking HTC had lost its way. The One M9, in particular, seemed a low point. It had a mediocre display, subpar camera, middling battery life, and didn't even feature a fingerprint scanner.
The budget smartphone segment in America seems to be a shrinking one of late (well, at least of good options), but we've rounded up the best we think the market has to offer consumers right now in the $250-and-under segment. The selected phones are presented in no particular order.
The mid-range smartphone segment is a highly competitive one these days, and one that is seeing its price boundaries ever-expanded in the quest to reach the perfect equilibrium of specifications to dollar. 2016 saw the release of what we think are five truly exceptional mid-range devices in the United States: these phones put their money where their mouth is. Devices in this category must be priced at retail under $500, but over $250 (sub-$250 qualifies for our "budget" category). Our picks for "Top Mid-Range Smartphone" are presented below, in no particular order.
In an internal poll of the Android Police staff, the Google Pixel has won overwhelmingly as our choice for smartphone of the year.
As I pick up my Google Pixel XL, nestled in its artwork Live Case (which, annoyingly, is cracking), I don't find myself missing much. I don't miss the almost artful curves and subtle refinement of the Galaxy Note7, the vast display canvas of LG's V20, or the Moto Z's... whatever. The Pixel XL just seems right, and if you were to ask me to give it up for any other smartphone today, I'd politely decline: this, for now, is as good as it gets.
The end of the year has arrived, and it's time to make our picks for the phones that represented the best of what the [Android] smartphone industry had to offer in 2016. Without further ado, here are the recipients of the Android Police Most-Wanted award in 2016 for "Top Smartphone," in no particular order.
Most people love fast cars. Vin Diesel loves them. Will Ferrell has been known to go 'round the track a time or two. Heck, even Tracy Chapman needed a fast car at one point. Driving fast is a thing that, by nature, we like to do. However, it's usually not the best idea jump behind the wheel and hit fifth gear at full throttle. For that, we have video games. All of the fast, none of the wreck/death/ticket/jail time/other bad things.
If you long to be chased by police for whatever reason, though, Need for Speed: Most Wanted is here to help.
EA has a tried-and-true formula for the Need For Speed (NFS) series: fast cars, good graphics, a cheesy story, and some good old arcade-style racing. Thus it's no surprise that the latest NFS title, Most Wanted (a follow up to the 2008 original) features just that - and as always, it looks like a properly good time:
The game will be coming to all the major platforms - Xbox 360, PS3, Vita, PC, iOS, and Android - so it's unclear how much the press release and trailer pertain to Android. It's likely that the game will push some impressive graphics (though nothing too cutting edge).