By way of a different take on the beloved Top 5 lists, I decided to go carrier by carrier instead of phone type by phone type. I'm sticking to the four major US carriers since theirs are the phones I regularly review and are available to the widest swath of our audience. Maybe I'll have to do a Top 5 unlocked phones list, too.
As you peruse these lists and come up with counter-arguments and nasty names to call me, bear in mind that we should see a nice big handful of new devices hit all four of these carriers between now and Thanksgiving. So these lists could change drastically over the next few months.
More Top 5s for Sept. 1, 2009
Noah: AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile
Aaron: AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile
1. Palm Pre
Palm's WebOS is perhaps the most innovative mobile phone technology since the original iPhone. Almost nine months after Palm debuted WebOS and Pre at CES, we're still waiting for the App Catalog to really get rolling and show off this device's capabilities. Thankfully, a robust homebrew scene is churning out some cool apps like Twee. Still, Pre's excellent multitasking and messaging features, multitouch display and gesture bar, and robust 3G and WiFi data speeds are backed by the gorgeous fun of flicking your way through WebOS. Now if only Palm could find themselves a decent ad agency and roll out a second WebOS device with a roomier keyboard, they might really be onto something.
2. BlackBerry Tour
The best CDMA BlackBerry ever, in Sprint clothing. Lacks WiFi. Otherwise, it's all that and a bag of chips.
3. Samsung Reclaim
I'm not just being snowjobbed by the whole "eco-friendly, bioplastics" thing here: I really like this phone. More featured than your average featurephone, this slider packs a roomy, comfy QWERTY board, 3.5mm headphone jack, and pretty decent Web and messaging features. Sprint's One Click user interface isn't my favorite, but it gets the job done and gives you access to everything from GPS navigation to Sprint TV to semi-real HTML Web browsing. And oh yeah, it's about as eco-friendly as cell phones get these days.
4. HTC Touch Pro
The venerable Touch Pro shows up as the Windows Mobile device of choice on Sprint. At least for a few more weeks until TP 2 hits the Now Network.
5. LG LX 290
It's small, it's easy to use, it's reliable for voice calling, and it's cheap. So I figured, hey, why not?
Honorable Mention: Samsung Exclaim - Nice 3G Slider with Full QWERTY, LG Rumor 2 - Like Exclaim, but made by LG, LG Lotus - I liked it more before hearing about hardware reliability issues,