Apple may still produce the world’s most popular smartphones, but plenty of other devices are gaining in popularity. Samsung, Sony and Huawei are also producing mobile devices in high demand. That’s why it’s important to look at the whole landscape of smartphones in order to see precisely where the technology is heading.
By taking a look at product comparisons from the International CES in Las Vegas this year, consumers can get an idea of the direction smartphones are headed as well as what mobile companies are doing to differentiate their products from the competition. For example, Sony’s Xperia Z utilizes High Dynamic Range for pictures and video while the Huawei’s ascend comes equipped with a 3000 mAh Battery.
Differences aside, here is what mobile users can expect from their smartphones this year.
With the potential for an increase in performance up to 75%, many companies are betting the farm on processors such as the Snapdragon S4 Pro. Certain companies, like Huawei, are developing their own high-speed processors in house. The Nexus 10 tablet already uses the Cortex A-15, so most mobile devices should be shipped with these higher-performance engines by the end of the year.
Full-HD 5-inch displays
The writing on the wall – at least as evidenced at CES — seems to be that smartphones will no longer be able to compete in the marketplace without full-HD 5-inch screens. Sony and Huawei have taken a page from HTC’s handbook and outfitted their newer models, like the Xperia Z and Ascend D2, with these 5-inch screens that offer 1920-by-1080 resolution.
Better battery life
There’s no getting around the fact that crisp images and high processing speeds are going to be murder on a smartphone’s battery life. But companies like Huawei and Sony have taken steps to offset the drain new features can put on a battery. Sony has come up with a Battery Stamina mode for their smartphones that automatically shuts down idle apps whenever the screen goes dark. And Huawei has added a feature to their line of handhelds that shuts off the transmitter whenever data transmission is not in use.
The days of shooting blurry stills on a flip-phone camera have long since passed. High resolution is now the name of the game, and this is only expected to continue this year. Phones are now outfitted with HDR, and 13-megapixel resolution is now considered standard. On top of one of these cameras on the rear of the phone, Sony’s Grand S and Xperia Z have an additional 2-megapixel camera in front that shoots video in 1080p.
Water resistance is an important factor in the minds of many smartphone consumers, and smartphone manufacturers have taken note. Sony and Huawei have implemented designs that allow their smartphones to be resistant to low-pressure jets of water as well as a resistance for 30 minutes in one meter of water – provided all ports on the device are firmly closed.
It’s safe to assume that the features outlined above will be standard on all smartphones in the near future. After that, consumers can only speculate what the next generation of mobiles will bring to the table.
Scott Johnson is a tech blogger and iPhone aficionado. He writes on behalf of Protect Your Bubble iPhone insurance brand.