Is there one feature you focus on the most when buying a new device?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from Arizona
Published: August 19, 2012

Our phones have a laundry list of features. Tablets are the same way. It's all of those features that lead us to crave these new devices. Not just want them, but find ways to weasel them into our "need" category (it isn't a bad thing, I do it too). If you head into a carrier store, you'll usually see a card next to any particular device, listing its most influential features. Camera, operating system, processor, whatever else could be used to sell the phone to anyone looking at that card.

We want the best of the best, or at least what we think will get us by while we use the phone from day to day, every day. It needs to be powerful enough to answer our calls, send text messages, play music, check our emails and browse the Web. Plus, whatever else we need it to do at any particular moment.

But, I've had conversations with people who actually point to one particular feature over any others as the leading cause of a future purchase. Which got me thinking if I've done the same thing at any point in the past.

When I went to the Galaxy Nexus, I knew exactly what I was getting myself into. Furthermore, I knew exactly the features of the phone that I wasn't necessarily fond of. The camera, for one. It isn't great. The display? Not perfect. (Taylor has a specific title for me in this regard.) But you know what? I could run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on it, which brought Google Now to my fingertips. So, those other (not great) features get ignored, and I got to use the newest, and best version of Android.

I had a friend of mine on Twitter point out that they were excited about Windows Phone 8 because of the camera, and after we had a bit of a discussion about it, I understand where he is coming from. Windows Phone has great camera functionality, especially with that hardware button and the fact you can wake up the device with it. Need to take a quick photo? That's perfectly possible, just hit the button. I can see how that would be a feature, above all other features of Windows Phone, you'd focus on to make a phone purchase.

Of course, the camera has to be worth it (unlike on the HTC Trophy or Arrive, from Verizon or Sprint respectively). So, let's hope that that's the case with all Windows Phone 8-based devices.

I know there are some folks out there who went and got a Nokia PureView 808 just for the camera, and that also makes sense. It's a ridiculous camera for a smartphone, so if you like taking pictures with your phone, and you do it more than just a little bit, why wouldn't that amazing camera be the reason you buy the phone?

As I mentioned above, there are so many features in our phones, it may be hard to pick just one that you'd hold on to when making your final decision to purchase a new handset. But, then again, for some of you out there, it might not be hard at all.

So that's what I want to know, Dear Reader. I want to know which feature, above all other features, you focused on when making your last phone purchase. Or, thinking ahead, which one feature are you focusing on the most when looking at any of the new devices coming out this year? The processor? The display? The camera? Let me know what it is.