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What Was the Best Smartphone of 2010?

By Evan Blass December 31, 2010, 3:07 pm

This is what we wait all year for, friends: the chance to pick the single best phone in all of 2010. Sure, we could break it up by category, by platform, by carrier, by something , but we'd rather pit the Droids against the iPhones against the BlackBerries in a winner-take-all cage match that will crown the one true champion. We thought about including a poll here, but we don't want to limit your choices even one bit; if you think that the Sanyo Zio was the best that the industry had to offer in 2010, by all means, cast your vote in the comments and tell us why you made that pick. A few of the editors have given their choices below, following a quick recap of the rest of our year-end posts:

  • What Was the Biggest Smartphone Letdown of 2010?
  • Who / What Will Be the Biggest Smartphone Winners in 2011?
  • What Will Be the Most Promising 2011 Smartphone Technology?
  • Who / What Will Be the Biggest Smartphone Losers in 2011?


iPhone 4 — While the iPhone 4 is still very much a locked down device in terms of customizing the user experience (anyone else tired of a useless lock screen and no widgets on the homescreens?), its captivating Retina display, powerful hardware, excellent battery life, and slick form factor was a revolution in 2010, representing an all-around powerhouse of smartphone innovation. Finally, iPhone users can multitask, and it's done quite well on the iPhone 4.


iPhone 4 — This was the first iPhone that I consider fully baked: several hardware and software iterations have turned this device into a very polished handset with cutting-edge features and an unbeatable selection of applications.


HTC Desire — I have to skip Windows Phone 7 devices as they're out for only a month or so. Taking the whole year into consideration, the Desire seems the most stable, well-built and generally best all-around smartphone of 2010. Built upon the skeleton of the HD2, the Nexus One follow-up offers great build quality and HTC Sense really brings out the best of Android.


Dell Venue Pro — It was released in very limited quantities in 2010, and was plagued with production issues early on, but if you got one that worked correctly, it's got the most beautiful hardware design, great keyboard, and the gorgeous Windows Phone 7 operating system.


Nexus One — For proving that a non-carrier phone can stay up-to-date with even the most current carrier phones in both hardware and software.


Nexus One — There's nothing better than a totally open and untouched phone. Google released this phone and its aluminum backbone before Apple released the iPhone 4. The N1 is still a very capable and promising device and a majority of the Android modding community still uses this very phone.


iPhone 4 — With it's innovative design and unique style, the iPhone 4, along with the iOS 4 operating system, has put Apple on top of easy-to-use and attractive smartphones.


HTC EVO 4G — Big screen, fast, and 4G; what more can you ask for but a hardware keyboard? Well, more complete 4G coverage, but that's not the phone's fault.

Have a great new year, all!


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