When Google's Android OS first launched, the software was available on a single phone. Today, however, Android is available on dozens of handsets, including today's most cutting-edge device. With more choices available than ever before, it can be more difficult to know which Android phones are worth your time. I can help: here's a roundup of today's best Android phones.
HTC's Thunderbolt was the first 4G phone to run on Verizon's 4G LTE network. But 4G support is not the only impressive feature that the Thunderbolt offers. It also packs in version 2.2 of the Android OS, a 4.3-inch touch screen, an 8-megapixel camera, a 720p camcorder, and a 1-GHz SnapDragon processor.
2. T-Mobile G2x
T-Mobile's G2x is designed to offer "the ultimate entertainment experience." It leverages T-Mobile's high-speed HSPA+ network to deliver gaming and mobile TV service. The T-Mobile G2x also offers an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, always-on social networking, and more.
The Galaxy S II is a super-slim, super-slick Android smartphone. It packs in just about all of the advanced features you could need, including: a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, dual-core processing power, version 2.3 of the Android OS, an 8-megapixel camera, and full HD video recording. And that's not all: it also offers the ability to wirelessly link with your TV, laptop, or printer. It doesn't come cheap, though, as the unlocked Samsung Galaxy S II is one of the pricier smartphones around.
4. Motorola Atrix 4G
The Motorola Atrix 4G is more than just a smartphone; it's also a computer of sorts. Consider its computer-like features: a high-power 1-GHz dual-core CPU and the ability to run the desktop version of the Firefox browser. And the Atrix 4G gets even more desktop-like when used with Motorola's Laptop Dock, an accessory that features an 11.6-inch screen and a full keyboard. While the dock looks like a laptop, it's actually powered by the phone's computing power -- putting a whole new twist on the idea of mobile computing.
The Samsung Droid Charge features version 2.2 of the Android OS, a 1-GHz processor, a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED touch screen, an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera, and a Web browser with support for Adobe Flash. All of this functionality doesn't come cheap, however: Verizon Wireless offers the Droid Charge for $300 on contract.
The Samsung Epic 4G is just one of Samsung's Galaxy S line of Android phones, but it's also the best. It boasts features that most of its other Galaxy S siblings cannot, such as support for high-speed 4G networks, a hardware-based QWERTY keyboard, and an LED flash for its camera. It also boasts a slightly higher price, but the Epic 4G packs in enough features to warrant that premium.
The EVO Shift is the follow-up to Sprint's EVO 4G, which was the carrier's first 4G-capable phone. Unlike the touch-screen-only EVO 4G, the EVO Shift features a slide-out QWERTY keyboard for easier typing. Additional features include version 2.2 of the Android OS, a 5-megapixel camera that captures 720p HD video, and a 3.6-inch touch screen.
10. HTC Inspire 4G
AT&T's HTC Inspire 4G is one of the more affordable 4G phones available today. It's available for less than $100 on contract, but still packs in plenty of high-end features. The Inspire 4G runs version 2.2 of the Android OS, boasts a 4.3-inch touchscreen and an 8-megapixel camera, and supports AT&T's Mobile HotSpot service.