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What defines a 'high-end' phone/tablet

0. phoneArena 14 Sep 2012, 06:56 posted on

It looks like some users out there aren't really aware of the true meaning of "high-end". We're concerned about this, as voicing wrong opinions can easily mislead other people. We think that's not cool, and wanted to share our view on the matter...

This is a discussion for a news. To read the whole news, click here

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:06 3

76. Sniggly (Posts: 7305; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)

Okay, so next are you going to define whatever the hell "premium industrial design" is and why no other phone fits that category except for the iPhone and Lumia?

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:17 2

78. Aeires (unregistered)

Definition of a high end phone: it does everything I need it to do.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:34

84. shuaibhere (Posts: 1986; Member since: 07 Jul 2012)

Great and simple definition.......
i think u can write better articles than him......
And this is the area where ios fails and android scores.....
good try ray.s but actually u failed to impress......

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:19

79. Droid66 (Posts: 5; Member since: 05 Sep 2012)

lol..think about how iphone 5 will run with same spec of high-end andriod device?haha apple just invest more in law suit than development. only minor update from previous model they try to tell everybody that the iphone 5 is WOW!! can u see that?haha before this a fanboy show they arrogant that they didn't need a bigger screen size..but today? a bigger screen and thinner..haha only 1 thing i can say here..if ios run flawlessly on a device with lower specs why they need to upgrade from single core to dual core? from A5 to A6? why apple dont make a quad-core with A15 cpu? i believe with that spec the next iphone maybe 20x faster than other andriod high-end devices..epic fail!

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:19

80. messiah (Posts: 438; Member since: 19 Feb 2010)

Thisbarticle ends off with "stop picking on apple for its crummy specs ".... Jesus phone arena.... that was the whiniest thing you've ever written to defend apple.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:45 1

86. twens (Posts: 978; Member since: 25 Feb 2012)

Not all makes sense in this article. If a highe end. Smart phone is a combination of hardware and software and how well written the software is then lets not forget about the features of both the hardware and software of the said device. I refuse to see the full high endless of the iPhone because of the lack of some basic features. All the same this is my view.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 09:57 2

89. jibraihimi (Posts: 760; Member since: 29 Nov 2011)

So a phone priced higher belongs to high end category......... This explains why apple is selling 168$ device for 600$.............. :)

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:11 3

92. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

Ok, as someone that regularly dives head first into hardware/software battles, let me throw in my opinion.

What I call High end is a mix of:
Hardware, software, build QUALITY NOT MATERIAL, battery life, features, and drop resistance.
High end "must" have hardware in the top 20% of available hardware. Its software must be well made because bad software can bring down even the best hardware (looking at older SGS1's on original stock software for example).
People that talk about build materials as "premium" are idiots. There is no such thing unless its gold plated like those crazy Vertu phones. Premium BUILD quality is what is important. Glass, tin, plastic, its all cheap.. ya got to get past that. Build quality is part of what gives into drop resistance a long with materials used. Glass will never be "premium" because it cant take a hit. Who cares how pretty it is if you have to replace it every 3 months from break/crack damage.
High end phones are the first to release new features, just like high end cars. If it isnt pushing this envelope, then its not high end. Being "big" doesnt make it any more high end than using glass and tin.
And one of the most important factors, if not one of the most overlooked, is battery life. A high end phone will not be at the bottom of the battery life charts. Average is fine and of course class leading like the Razr Maxx is awesome. This is where HTC fails so often.

Another way to look at premium is total cost of materials and imbedded costs for the device. Of course, if you look at it this way, no iphone will ever be premium because they are among the cheapest to produce which is why Apple has a massive profit margin.

You could also look at it.. and should look at it as comparison between other models in its OS, not across all OS's because each OS runs very differently from the next. In this case, the newest iphone model will always be "high end" from the previous, regardless of where the latest Android set lies. iOS has zero need for the kind of horsepower that gets thrown in Android sets. iOS is "fluid" because its so basic. At any given time its doing 1/5th of what an android phone is doing by the way they are designed. Thus, Apple chooses to concentrate more on pushing GPU power than CPU (and they generally lead everyone in GPU) so their Apps and games can continue to evolve.

If the phone doesnt meet 5 of 6 of those requirements, I wont call it high end. If it fails in battery life or drop resistance I automatically disqualify it for my own personal uses. Hence why I decided not to get a US SGS3 which is the first fragile flagship Samsung has produced even though it leads in every other category. I also dont consider the US SGS3 to be "high end" because it fails in the chip power as well. So to me, it fails in 2 categories. However, that last part is just me and my obsurd tech snobbery.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:13

93. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

All that said, the new i5 is high end.
It meets the requirements for chips, improved hardware elsewhere like screen/microphones/ call radios, software, battery life is average, it gives new features to iOS, and I'm going to assume that because it lost some glass on its back that the drop quality is improved. Of course it had drop resistance of like 1 of 10 before, so it can only go up.
The A6, though I still think its basically a rebranded 4212 exynos (the dual core version of the chip found in the Note2) with probably an improved GPU, is still top end in every respect. If it is an A15 (not likely), then its top end above all android phones at the moment concerning hardware.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:37

99. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4833; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Well good design implies build quality. Without good design you can't have GREAT build quality. Everything is mass produced so materials does make a difference.

I would much rather have a high quality plastic that can take more stress, damage & is more scratch resistant than a cheap one that looks busted after 3 days of regular use.

Yeah gold is premium but Samsung nor any others mainstream manufacturer will ever use it. It's always some 3rd party that makes modifications like that.

I really don’t get your “build QUALITY NOT MATERIAL” statement. How can you have good build quality without some good plastics, good glass, & good metals that are not gold? Material is indeed needed to make a "high end" phone/tablet.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 11:32

111. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

build quality is how its put together. Are the seams straight? Does it have protections against vibration/impact damage? The SGS1 and 2 were so darn sturdy because they had extra bits inside to reduce vibrations at impact. Supposedly the SGS3 has them as well, but there is still a compromise somewhere.

My point about quality vs material is in my statement. Only fools think that premium build comes from things like glass, tin, or aluminum. "Feels premium" and "are premium" are not the same thing. We hear it all the time with iphone and HTC reviews.
Who cares what its made of, if it cant take life's normal beatings, then its not high quality. Besides, all phone materials are dirt cheap anyways. Glass or tin doesnt cost much more than plastic if at all.. your talkin a few cents per phone regardless.
You can use any material you want, but if its not built properly and in a fashion to reduce damage, its junk. That's my point.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 11:36 3

113. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

that said, I do agree. I would rather have a well built plastic phone that can take a beating and not need to be replaced. The material is much lighter and more durable at the same time.
Besides, half the idiots that scream that HTC's tin or Apple's glass is more "premium", cover the darn thing in a plastic case to protect them.. thus negating their entire argument.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:01 2

117. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4833; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)

Ok I get you. NOW that makes sense. I agree. I hate & think it's silly that people think something is premium based on just plain metal, or glass.

I also love your last statement. lol

"Besides, half the idiots that scream that HTC's tin or Apple's glass is more "premium", cover the darn thing in a plastic case to protect them.. thus negating their entire argument."



posted on 14 Sep 2012, 16:16

153. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

lol, im glad you enjoyed it :)

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 16:24

155. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

covering a plastic phone and placing a pastic cover sounds more idiotic to me..

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 16:28 2

156. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)

@gallitoking mate you are the definition of 'idiotic'

you believe everything apple feeds you

if apple was so premium and better then plastic phones there wouldnt be a market for iphone cases would there

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 21:57

163. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)

Written superply. You do have the time.

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 07:13

177. remixfa (Posts: 14255; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)

I also type absurdly fast. lol.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:15

94. xtremesv (Posts: 297; Member since: 21 Oct 2011)

Of course you focus your opinion on a software basis and that's the problem you kind of praise a mobile operative system whose sole utility is loading apps within a sandbox. It doesn't need that much RAM or a robust CPU cause iOS is simply toy software.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:24

95. Fantazma (Posts: 6; Member since: 27 May 2012)

Apple doesnt want to say it...but IPHONE and iOS seems to have reached its limit of EVOLUTION...it is very evident in the Iphone 5...no new IDEAS,nothing new..just some upgrades..unlike Android which continues to evolve and and revolutionize!!

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:36

98. breathlesstao (unregistered)

Oh, lol, I see now... this is what that certain half-eaten fruit does and the iSheep herd puts on repeat: explaining that the black is actually white and vice versa. I pity you for the sour grapes.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:55 2

102. Savage (unregistered)

Does this article mean to stat that iPhone is high-end? Sure it is, in the price area. One more thing that defines a true high end phone is the amount of features it offers and iPhone lacks on many (be it customization or NFC) It's software works on any device because it doesn't offer much besides apps. Hence simple to use. A true high end phone must also be worth its price tag. iPhone isn't

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 10:57 4

104. The_Innovation (Posts: 610; Member since: 18 Jul 2012)

Nice try Ray, but the people are finally starting to see, it's too late.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 11:07 3

108. li0nh3art (Posts: 28; Member since: 05 Aug 2012)

and i believe, google is doing the same now. They're improving on software... Look how beautiful Jelly Bean feels and operates... I think android must improve a bit on battery life as well! I am actually a bit disappointed on the battery backup on my galaxy nexus...apart from that it's one of the best phone ever even now on the market!

I'm about 6 feet with normal hands...and i can type with one hand on the Galaxy Nexus, wonder why apple touts about not having wider screen! If some people do face this problem, there is a phone for that as well "Razr M". Pretty sleek and solid device.

When motorola refreshes its Razr line, all the techies are like what the heck is this? nothing new..blah blah.. On the other hand, apple refreshes their product with nothing new just increasing the height of the screen.. iFans are like "innovation, wow, magical.." meh, hypocrites!

FYI, RAZR is 7.1mm thin and iPhone 5 is 7.6mm.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:08 1

118. quesoesgrande (Posts: 217; Member since: 03 Aug 2011)

Sorry, phonearena, but what makes a high end device is not factual piece of data. It's an opinion.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:09 3

120. ahhxd717 (Posts: 332; Member since: 08 Dec 2011)

Ray S., some of your articles are kind of ridiculous. I was interested when I read the title of this article but it seems to me that, although you addressed the topic at hand (kind of), you seriously made this about the iPhone and then even bashed Androids "poorly written code" (well I guess it's implied by saying that iOS, in contrast to android, has incredibly well written code). I've never had a crash and extremely rarely experience lag, so idk why you felt the need to point that out. And also, no mention of windows phone which would also exemplify your thoughts. It seems to me that you are honestly trying to defend iOS more than anything in this article. It's obvious to almost everyone that you have some sort of bias, which is why I don't read your reviews so much and, sadly, sometimes your articles.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:28

122. SriThanu (Posts: 1; Member since: 14 Sep 2012)

From all the post in Phone arena i was able to rule out one thing, that is phone arena is another bunch of apple fan boy. I have been regularly following posts from phone arena. Its pretty obvious. Being a reputed site u should not be biased towards a particular Maker. Shame of u.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:33

123. McLaren (unregistered)

So you mean we have to adjust ourselves to accept the iPhone 5 as a high-end and not the SIII,One X,Optimus G/Blaze,Lumia 920 or Nexus.Remember iPhone 5 was leaked months before its announcement and you call it high-end.If it was released last year,then it would have been called high-end,not now.Duhh!

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:38 1

125. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

lets analyze this for a moment.. lets say the iphone is amid range phone. it outsells any high end device out there, not good for a company that produces high end devices..Apple wins here.. now lets say is a high end device... well is clear Android still loses.. no matter how you put it..

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:44 3

129. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)

first wondered how long it would take you to comment with some complete pro apple crap.

anyways sales dont mean its a great phone, the best marketing and apples ability to make mediocre improvements sound revolutionary means they could stamp there logo on a paper bag call it the 'ibag' say it changes how we use bags put a high price tag on it and millions like you would go out and buy

you always fall back on sales and money becuase you have nothing in terms of innovation or specs that put the iphone ahead- the glorified app launcher

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 13:53 2

136. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

thanks to the high sales of the Note. we have a Note 2 so yes sales determines if the products is a success, the best product is determined by the consumer only which is tied to how many people buy the product and keep buying it. so yes the iphone is a success whether is a high end device or not.. it works well back up by a great company and customer service...that determines if a device works or not..

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:05 2

138. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)

mate you repeat yourself over and over, im starting to think your trying to convince yourself what you say is true.

sales arent everything, it doesnt determine a great product. look at the hula hoop sold millions was probably the greatest selling toy ever yet where is it now......sales arent proof of a great product like i said before marketing is.

''the best product is determined by the consumer only which is tied to how many people buy the product and keep buying it''

this is complete crap, the best product is determined by what it can do and how much ahead it is to competitors. people will buy loads of things over and over doesn mean there the best products just means the marketing of the product has been successful. apple can sell you average phones at high end prices because you are easy to convince and gullible to flashy marketing

''great company '' well depends what your definition of great is...is it a company that develops and innovates competting in the phone market through new tech etc or is it the apple way sue anyone who are a threat and patent anything and everything even if it isnt your own work.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 15:06 1

147. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 4833; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


I STILL have a hula hoop. WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY!!!! lol


posted on 14 Sep 2012, 21:54

162. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)

very well said +1 from me.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:50 3

131. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1717; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)

Seriously when are you going to get it through your pea-sized brain that high sales DO NOT equal the best products. If that were true McDonalds has the greatest hamburger in the entire world...smh

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 13:55 1

137. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

"lets analyze this for a moment.. lets say the iphone is amid range phone. it outsells any high end device out there, not good for a company that produces high end devices..Apple wins here.. now lets say is a high end device... well is clear Android still loses.. no matter how you put it.."

show me where I said that the iphone was the best.. ..

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:13 1

141. Savage (unregistered)

So you even admit iPhone isn't the best smartphone out there.


posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:33 1

144. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

well is hard to determine the best smarthphone simply because people have different needs, so my best is not your best and viceversa

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:36 1

145. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)

you will keep dodging the question but simple answer is yes you admit the iphone is the best you just cant seem to bring yourself to say it straight

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 18:51

158. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)

*isnt the best you admit it isnt the best

shame my typing aint great

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:07 2

139. Savage (unregistered)

After the iPhone 5's disappointment, that's the only reason you have of defending Apple isn't it? Huge sales?

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:40

126. lkjhgf (Posts: 9; Member since: 14 Sep 2012)

it reads like a paid article. well drafted good job. people dont care how smart the phone is, end of the day it all comes down to value for money.....

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 12:49 1

130. manzl (Posts: 24; Member since: 04 Oct 2011)

only thing bad abt ios is that its got more limitation...

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 13:22

134. lyndon420 (Posts: 4373; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)

Not a very interesting phone sorry.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 13:45

135. EspHack (Posts: 70; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)

unless you are limited to using your phone OS basic functions that are all that "good written" hardware specs will matter, dont tell me you can run higher quality games with lower specs because your OS is better written than mine, bulls**t, you are buying the HARDWARE not the software imo you can do whatever you want with the software(not applies for icraps) so stop defending them

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 14:55

146. krutikamin (Posts: 1; Member since: 15 Mar 2012)

For me, Iphone will be on the level of Nokia 1100 until I can share files through Bluetooth.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 15:23

149. The_Innovation (Posts: 610; Member since: 18 Jul 2012)

Today I remembered that ten years ago, AOL Instant Messenger introduced a feature that shows the recipient typing a message before they would send the message like in iMessage for the iPhone.

My question is, why haven't they sued Apple?


posted on 14 Sep 2012, 18:45

157. greywolf447 (Posts: 2; Member since: 11 Mar 2010)


posted on 14 Sep 2012, 19:59

159. Jyakotu (Posts: 844; Member since: 12 Dec 2008)

Even though I'm more partial to Android, one cannot deny that the iPhone 5 is a high end device. It's improved on the iPhone 4S and, as usual, has sold out in pre orders. Specs don't mean anything, honestly, and I think that a lot of Android geeks need to understand that. Each company who makes Android phones also make flagship devices. The Nexus is high end, even though it's only $350, due to the simple fact it's a flagship device and it's always guaranteed the latest updates.

posted on 14 Sep 2012, 21:28

161. Nikolas.Oliver (banned) (Posts: 1574; Member since: 01 Jul 2012)

the easiest and fastest way to determine whether it's high end or low end is --> $$$$$

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 01:25

165. MoonlitTear (Posts: 42; Member since: 09 Jun 2008)

Thank you so much for this article. My paltry spec phone has consistently held pace with some of the higher end phones simply because of the software and how it handles everything. Is my phone going to take on an iPhone 5 or Galaxy S3 and win anything? No. My phone was launched last Autumn. I am running a Single core, 1000 MHz, Scorpion, 512 MB Ram, 8 GB Built In Storage, and a 3.8" in screen. A lot of my real life friends laugh at those specs.. They bust out their iPhone 4 or Galaxy SIII or such and say your phone is not good as this. Then we run some boot up time comparisons.. then we load Phone Arena with CACHE cleared.. then we run angry birds.. And I swear each and everytime they are amazed (esp boot up time. OFF -> make a call). It's all about the software. Windows Phone 7.5 is really good at NOT bogging or lagging. No it's not perfect.. and NO I AM NOT A MICROSFT FANBOY so cut that crap out now. (Ideally I would love the 920, iPhone 5 and SII and switch out sims and use all three in Chico.) Just saying, my specs 'suck' yet my phone goes from off to calling mom in 19 seconds. (Just did it now), and it scrolls SOOO nice I have only seen a few handsets scroll like this.

So THANK YOU Ray for this article. Now some folks will not freak out over dual core v Quad Core v Single Core and simply ask: How does the OS run everything.

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 02:01

166. Cn_Se (Posts: 18; Member since: 27 Mar 2012)

"One very accurate way of telling which class does a certain device belong to, however, is the price."
"The high end is where you'll find the iPhone and the top-models of Android manufacturers."

lets see, then "Vertu" made the greatest high end phones ! :D

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 02:20

167. oldmandaddy (Posts: 64; Member since: 01 May 2010)

I think all Samsung phones especially S3 and Nexus , they try to sell like high end phones but they made of high end plastics , the ads only showed the S bean worked . But they did not show the battery sucks and they lag after short used.

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 04:01

170. naga.appani (Posts: 36; Member since: 26 Nov 2011)

So, iPhone is changing the definition of "High-End", you troll? Come on ya, do not change for a iCrap's sake...

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 05:23

172. asseek (Posts: 164; Member since: 12 Sep 2012)

actually this is the best article ive read, it shows exactly what defines a high end phone, the thing that racist android fans cant differentiate, and they already started making fun of the author and this unbiased article, first of all am not an apple fan, and their iphone 5 maybe was disapointing but its still categorized as a high end phone, because their OS is the most friendly and fastest OS,
One more thing is that phone aren't like cars the bigger engine the faster the car !!

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 05:50

173. rallyguy (Posts: 620; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)

The Iphone is a good phone, I would say it could be considered on the bottom of high end phones. But let's get serious, when a phone is released with tons of hype, yet doesn't even many of the capabilities of other high end devices, you can't consider an equal. You just can't. It's a good phone, even a great mid range phone, but it should not be considered among the top 5 phones. This means it doesn't live up to the hype. Let's welcome the Iphone to 2011.

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 06:34

176. rallyguy (Posts: 620; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)

Phone Arena article that explains the CDMA Iphone 5 can NOT handle LTE data and voice at the same time.


posted on 15 Sep 2012, 12:24

178. Daca01 (Posts: 10; Member since: 20 Apr 2012)

It's not just the high-end spec's but performance, I say it's more in Individual requests what you like,do and add in smartphone by yourself like rooting and so many persons this do with Android phones.

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 15:26 2

180. Dr.Android (Posts: 20; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)

the ram and the cores are one thing and the screen size and the camera is something totally different! screen size does not effect the software perfomance. i cant believe that the writer of this article calls himself "EDUCATED"!!! Listen you iPhone fan, we dont say that iPhone is not a high-end device because of its hardware performance, its because of its software too!!!!! you still have to convert every video to watch it on iPhone. you are always in need of itunes to sync it with computer. no bluetooth sharing out of the box. moreover a 4" screen only. that too has not been increased in width..some apps still need to be updated to fit to the screen. Unlike android iPhone is still so complicated to use. Whats your answer to this, huh?????

posted on 15 Sep 2012, 15:39

181. ogtomasx (Posts: 47; Member since: 25 Aug 2012)

PEOPLE are so blind apple was great before i agree it was the best...!!!!! (WAS) open your eyes there taking your money and they are not enovating anything diffrent OMG you guys are stupid for real NEXT month there will be phones that will destroy the iphone new specs in every category 13 Mp camera, QUAD-CORE cpu, 1368x780 resolution stupid being dum by the end of next month your friends will make FUN of you because they already have a better phone.....iM just honest, wait till next month then decide.

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