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Smartphone releases to look forward to in 2014

Smartphone releases to look forward to in 2014

1/20/2014

As 2014 gets underway, mobile enthusiasts are likely to begin looking forward to the new smartphones they can expect to hit the market over the next 12 months. What kinds of features will the new devices boast? Will 2014's phones outclass last year's? What manufacturer will come out with the best smartphone? And will the mobile market see any significant shakeups in terms of the comparative popularity of iOS, Android and the other operating systems?

The world will have to wait for definitive answers to these questions, but whispers of some manufacturers' new product lines for the coming year have already reached the tech publications. Here are a few highlights of what has people excited for 2014's smartphone releases.

Nokia to spruce up Windows Phone
Microsoft's mobile platform doesn't get nearly the same share of the spotlight as Android and iOS do, but it remains the third most popular operating system, and new devices slated for release in 2014 might just give Windows Phone a leg up in its adoption rates.

Nokia, the premier manufacturer of devices for the Microsoft OS, is planning to release the new Lumia 929 later this year, according to Pocket-lint. The source noted that the phone's visual components are set to be its most compelling features. The newest generation of the Lumia is rumored to come with a generous 5-inch screen complete with HD, in addition to an astounding 20-megapixel camera. That said, it will be smaller than the Lumia 1520, so it might prove an attractive choice for first-time Windows Phone buyers.

Two new Androids from Sony
Of course, not everyone will be ready to switch from their operating system of choice this year. Android remains the top OS worldwide for a reason: Not only are the phones that run the Google platform generally less expensive than their Apple equivalents, but Android itself has become much more powerful over the past years. The hardware associated with these devices has also stepped up a notch, with the Snapdragon quad-core processor gives Apple's A7 chip a run for its money.

Two of the most anticipated Androids of 2014 come from music and electronics giant Sony. According to Pocket-lint, the company plans to release the Xperia Z2 and Z1S this year. The Z2 is likely to carry on the "slim monolithic looks" of the Z1.

"We'd also expect similar internals to the Z1, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, perhaps 3GB of RAM, a full HD display, with some suggesting it might grow to 5.2 inches to match the LG G2," the source wrote.

Meanwhile, the Z1S will be a sized-down version of the flagship Z1 handset, Pocket-lint reported, but it will retain the flashy features of the larger device, including its 20.1-megapixel camera.

Samsung and LG "round out" their offerings
In the fall of 2013, rumors began to circulate that Samsung was preparing to release a curved smartphone in the global market. Soon after, LG announced that it was set to launch a similar product with a flexible body. Samsung's Galaxy Round and LG's G Flex are expected to make their way onto shelves and into consumers' hands any time now, but only time will tell whether they're as functional as they are attractive.

Looking ahead to the iPhone 6
Apple had a banner year in 2013, with critics almost universally lauding the new iPhone 5S and the iPad Air meeting similar praise, with some even calling the latter the best tablet ever made. Laptop Mag contributor Lisa Eadiccio noted that while it's too early to tell, several sources have suggested that large displays of nearly 6 inches might grace the iPhone 6 in 2014.

When you're ready to pick up one of this year's hottest devices, ProtectCELL's smartphone plans can help protect your new gadget with phone buyback, data backup and identity protection.

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