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The 5 Best Android Smartphones [August, 2011]

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It’s that time of the month again and we have thrown together five Android phones, currently on the market, that we think are the best that money can buy. Now, before you go out and buy one of these, keep a couple of things in mind. One, obviously, you may not agree with this list. Think of this as guidance. Before you buy a phone, you always want to get out there and handle it first. How it feels in your hand is important. It’s one of the reasons I passed on the iPhone 4.

And two, the Android landscape is about to change dramatically come September and October. We have some heavy hitters that are rumored to be coming out including the Samsung Galaxy S II, the Motorola Droid Bionic and the Google Nexus Prime.

However, there are still some high quality Android devices on the market that might just be worth taking a look at. Here are what we think are the five best for the month of August.

HTC EVO 3D

HTC EVO 3D

A stalwart of these lists, the HTC EVO 3D for Sprint just went from good to great in just a matter of days as HTC recently released the bootloader unlock tool for the device. That means that the device can now be altered to your hearts content, if of course, you’re keen on voiding your warranty.

Still, an unlocked bootloader paired together with 4G speeds and powerful specifications made the EVO 3D a force to be reckoned with.

Specifications: 4.3-inch S-LCD display with qHD resolution (540 x 960), 1.2GHz dual-core Snapdragon processor, dual 5MP rear cameras with 720p video capture for both 2D and 3D, 1.3MP front facing camera, 4GB of on board storage, Bluetooth 3.0, HDMI, DLNA, 1730 mAh battery, 1GB of RAM

Operating System: Android 2.3 Gingerbread

Carrier: Sprint

4G: Yes, WiMax

Release Date: June 24th, 2011

HTC Sensation 4G

HTC Sensation 4G

Another phone that has been on our list for the past couple of months, the HTC Sensation 4G is not only one of if not the best phone on T-Mobile, it’s also one of the best smartphones on the market. It has everything you would look for in a smartphone. Powerful processor for apps and multitasking, great software, a fantastic form factor, and soon, it too will have an unlocked bootloader.

And let’s not forget that it runs on T-Mobile’s HSPA+ 4G network either.

Specifications: 4.3-inch S-LCD display with qHD resolution (540 x 960), 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm MSM 8260 processor, 8MP rear camera with dual-LED flash and 1080p video capture, VGA front facing camera, 1GB of on board storage, Bluetooth 3.0, HDMI via microUSB, DLNA, 1520 mAh battery, 768MB of RAM

Operating System: Android 2.3 Gingerbread

Carrier: T-Mobile

4G: Yes, HSPA+

Release Date: June 15th, 2011

HTC ThunderBolt

HTC ThunderBolt

The HTC ThunderBolt is about to be overshadowed by the Motorola Droid Bionic so this will probably be the last month that you see it appear on this list. Until then though, the ThunderBolt is, in our eyes, the best 4G LTE phone on the market now that HTC and Verizon have solved a bunch of the device’s notorious issues. Now all it needs is an upgrade to Gingerbread.

Specifications: 4.3-inch TFT display (480 x 800), 1GHz Snapdragon processor, 8MP rear facing camera with 720p HD video recording and dual LED flash, 1.3MP front facing camera, 768MB of RAM, 8GB of on board storage, Bluetooth 2.1 w/ EDR, DLNA, 1400 mAh battery

Operating System: Android 2.2 Froyo

Carrier: Verizon

4G: Yes, LTE

Release Date: March 17th, 2011

Motorola Photon 4G

Motorola Photon 4G

Sprint’s Motorola Photon 4G unfortunately had the pleasure of launching after the HTC EVO 3D so it’s had a tough time winning over the hearts and minds of regular old consumers. Critics though, love this phone, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a 4G Motorola phone with a bunch of great features including a dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, Android Gingerbread and a large battery.

It also its a world phone which means you can use it in GSM networks around the world. Oh, and let’s not forget that its bootloader just got unlocked recently making it an even more attractive option.

Specifications: 4.3-inch display with qHD resolution (540 x 960), 1GHz dual-core Tegra 2 processor, 8MP rear camera with dual-LED flash, VGA front-facing camera 16GB of on board storage, Bluetooth, HDMI, DLNA, 1700 mAh battery, 1GB of RAM

Operating System: Android 2.3 Gingerbread

Carrier: Sprint

4G: Yes, WiMax

Release Date: July 31st, 2011

Motorola Droid 3

Droid 3

 Last but certainly not least is the Motorola Droid 3, Motorola and Verizon’s latest Droid device. Of course, it will, like the HTC ThunderBolt, soon be overshadowed by the Motorola Droid Bionic but if you don’t need 4G LTE it’s a phone to look at.

With fantastic software, a processor that zips, Android Gingerbread, a high-res screen, and one of the best physical keyboards to date, the Droid 3 is a force to be reckoned with. And like most of the current crop of Android phones, it can be found for cheap.

Specifications: 4-inch display with qHD resolution (540 x 960), 1GHz dual-core processor, 8MP rear camera with dual-LED flash, VGA front-facing camera, 16GB of on board storage, Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR, HDMI, DLNA, 1540 mAh battery, 512MB of RAM

Operating System: Android 2.3 Gingerbread

Carrier: Verizon

4G: No

Release Date: July 7th, 2011

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