This weekend's poll is a bit different. When it comes to smartphones, everyone has different priorities. Some of the most commonly and hotly-debated features of a given phone are its battery life, the quality of the display, quality of the camera, and how well the phone will be supported down the road.
So, of those four, which is more important to you? I realize that for some people, none of these four items is the most important feature on a phone, which is why that's not the question we're asking. But because these particular points are often the most-discussed among comments in reviews of smartphones, I'd like to know which of them you'd consider on balance to be more important than the others given your personal opinion.
There is no right answer here, and nor is this a complete list of the qualities of a device. But there's no doubt these four things are cause for more discussion than any other in regard to smartphones.
Battery life is a dealbreaker feature for many, and few modern Android phones offer truly great battery life. You really have to search out a device that focuses on longevity above all else, not to say that those phones aren't out there - they certainly are. But battery life has waxed and waned over the years as opposed to steadily improving. As chipsets become more powerful, they become more thirsty. They also become more efficient, which then allows the operating system to do more without sacrificing battery life, while also not necessarily improving it. Higher resolution displays, higher resolution video and photo capture, and more processor-intensive apps that take advantage of our powerful smartphones are always asking for more, more, more - it seems like a never-ending battle.
Display technology has advanced incredibly rapidly in the last five or so years, with curved Super AMOLED panels from Samsung being at the pinnacle of mobile display quality at the moment. Sony, though, has gone a step beyond that and built a 4K smartphone screen. You can bet Samsung is working on getting there. These high-end screens always come at a cost, though, and are rarely found on any phone coming in under $400 or so.
Camera performance has been a feature battleground since the very first camera phones. In all that time, little about the battle itself has changed - which camera performs best at night, which one has the best flash mode, which one takes the best video, and which one reduces shake and blur most effectively. There are other considerations, too - 4K video resolution support, slow-mo capture, and RAW image output are now becoming standard features on high-end phones. There's also the whole issue of front-facing cameras, which are rapidly iterating into high-resolution, wide-angle shooters just like the ones smacked on the back of your phone 2 or 3 years ago.
Software support has become a huge thing, and nowhere is that discussion more heated than on the Android platform. Manufacturers differ greatly in the speed at which they provide updates, how long they provide them, and in the quality of the software itself. Many a Nexus phone have been sold simply on the promise that Google won't leave those devices behind quickly, and that they'll receive updates (usually!) in a reasonable time after a new OS version launches.
Instead of a particularly topical header image this week, I have provided you with a picture of a pretty leaf taken with the HTC One A9. Look at the leaf, isn't it nice? I thought the AP homepage could use a little brightening up this morning.