The weekly Expert Spotlight segment

The PhoneDog
Mascot from  Charleston, SC
| Published: November 27, 2012

Late November mean new smartphones launching, and boy has there been a lot of them this year.  New Windows Phone devices have spiced things up with the introduction of a line of new Lumia smartphones as well as the 8X.  Android hasn't slowed down either, adding the DROID DNA, One X+, Google Nexus 4 and many more.  But after all was said and done, the Apple iPhone 5 took first this week with the experts by one point.  Will things change in the coming weeks?  Stay tuned to find out.

Anthony Domanico - Reporter for  Follow on twitter @ajdomanico



No real changes to my rankings this week. The iPhone still tops the charts, followed by the Galaxy S III and Note II, both Android powered phones from Samsung. The iPhone 4S remains the top budget pick at $99, though the Lumia 920 running Windows Phone 8 is a strong alternative if you can handle the limited app choices on Windows Phone.









Taylor Martin- Senior Editor for  Follow him on twitter @PhoneDog_Taylor.



This week, Samsung's popular phablet, the Galaxy Note II, remains at the top of my list. With a 5.5-inch HD Super AMOLED display, S Pen and bevy of second to none multitasking features, the Galaxy Note II is currently the phone to beat.

Coming in at second, however, is HTC's DROID DNA. At 5.0-inches, it's easy to group it with the Galaxy Note II or LG Intuition as a phablet. But make no mistake, this phone is 100 percent phone and zero percent tablet. That said, it's full 1080p display is fantastic, as is the 2GB of RAM and 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro chipset. What's holding this device back, though, is the meager 2,020mAh battery and 16GB built-in storage with no option to expand.

Next is the Google Nexus 4 by LG. It may not be the baddest smartphone on the planet, and like the DROID DNA, suffers from a small, irreplaceable battery and non-expandable storage. However, for the price, you can't find a better phone, not to mention without a contract. This device goes for $299 for the 8GB model or $349 for 16GB, and it's all but guaranteed to always be among the first to get official updates from Google or garner the attention of third-party developers … if that's your bag.

In fourth this week is the HTC Windows Phone 8X. I want to try Windows Phone again and give the enhancements in Windows Phone 8 a go. And, although the Lumia 920 was supposed to be the phone of my dreams with a PureView camera, the 8X would be my Windows Phone of choice. However, it, too, suffers from non-expandable memory and a relatively small battery.

Last is the Apple iPhone 5. It's a great phone and the build quality is fantastic. But the device and software are getting stale. The 4-inch display is much too small – especially after using the Galaxy Note II – and the software reeks of 2007. It will get the job done, but it's in dire need of an update to bring it up to speed with the competition.



Evan Selleck - Contributing Editor for   Follow him on twitter @PhoneDog_Evan.


The iPhone 5 from Apple is a pinnacle of design, with its physical aesthetics breaking the mold for what a smartphone should feel like in the hand. With its larger, 4-inch Retina display, but a ridiculously thin and light frame, the iPhone 5 feels great in every day usage. With its tether to iTunes and the App Store, the iPhone 5 is still the best option for anyone who is looking for the best combination of hardware and software. The Lumia 920 from Nokia is the best Windows Phone 8 device on the market, especially for the price. With 32GB of onboard storage, a large, beautiful display, and an amazing camera, the Lumia 920 is the best choice for anyone looking to enjoy Microsoft's latest version of their mobile OS. The Galaxy Note II is thin and light, while still offering up a huge 5.5-inch display. Coupled with the company's S Pen, the Note II perfectly combines the usage of a smartphone with that of a tablet, offering up the best of both worlds. The Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX HD offers up a new, HD display, along with that huge battery. This is the device for anyone who wants to use their phone all day, without having to worry about their battery dying mid-way through. The One X by HTC is the perfect phone for anyone who wants a thin device, a huge display, and LTE-connectivity on AT&T's network.