What’s the best Android phone of 2013? You decided! [Readers’ Choice]


best android phone 2013

After a few long, hard days of voting at the polls, you guys weighed in on the top Android phones of 2013 and let your voice be heard. We tallied up the votes — over 8,400 of them — and it’s time to reveal what you all considered to be the best Android phones of 2013. We’ll first take a look at and talk about the top five phones, and then we’ll reveal the full breakdown once we’re doing yappin’. Let’s get to it!

5 –  LG G2

This was a personal favorite of our own Edgar Cervantes. The LG G2 was LG’s first phone following the Korean company’s new device strategy. They opted to streamline their portfolio and focus on just a few devices, and the G2 ended up being the one to lead the way. The device featured a 5.2-inch 1080p HD display, a Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, a 13 megapixel camera and more.

4 – Motorola Moto X

Motorola was another company that decided they had enough of their failing device strategy, and sought to do something about it with a major change. That’s what brought us the Moto X, a phone that breaks all the rules in all the right ways.

Motorola broke those rules by offering truly customizable phones, giving buyers tons of color combinations to make a phone that’s uniquely theirs. Of course, those options didn’t come to everyone immediately (AT&T had a timed exclusive and everyone had to wait quite some time on the wooden back plates), but it was better late than never.


They broke more rules by declaring that the specs war was irrelevant. That declaration was made by the Motorola X8 computing system, which was a custom dual-core SoC by Qualcomm outfitted with two other separate cores — one that enables the low-power always-listening voice commands, and one that “listened” for gestures for things like activating the camera and automatically enabling and disabling Active Notifications.

Let’s not forget the company’s breakneck speed in getting Android 4.4 KitKat rolled out, a pace that not even most of the Nexus devices out there can say they were able to match (although they weren’t very far behind). Simply put, we like the new Google-backed Motorola, and so did a great deal of you based on the reception the Moto X got in this poll.

3 – HTC One

HTC came into 2013 on a mission — to stop drowning the market with tons of smartphone releases. Like Motorola and LG, they wanted to streamline their portfolio and focus on just a few key devices to maximize marketing and development efforts. The result of that is the HTC One, a beautiful 4.7-inch device that still has folks in smartphone bliss today.

HTC One rocks

The device’s aluminum chassis, crisp 1080p display, and solid internals have kept it going this far. It had a Snapdragon 600 processor and 2GB of RAM, which is enough to do just about anything in this day and age. And while the HTC One got some flak for lack of removable battery and no expandable storage, that particular configuration has become a bit of an industry trend, so no harm no foul.

2 – Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Part of me wants to believe that the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 is favored because of the ridiculousness of it. A massive 5.7-inch 1080p display, a Snapdragon 800 processor, 3GB of RAM, USB 3.0 and more. We weren’t terribly surprised as the latest Note phones are always a bit ahead of their time, but Samsung pulled out all of the stops that literally no one else did.


In terms of everything else (software and overaal features), the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 didn’t really deliver anything that we haven’t already seen out of the Samsung Galaxy S4, but the South Korean company tightened everything up to bring us one solid, yet familiar experience.

1 – Nexus 5

While some may argue that the Nexus 5 has an unfair advantage, the facts can’t be ignored — it’s damned hard to find a better package than this for its cost. For as little as $350, you’re getting a 5-inch 1080p HD display with a Snapdragon 800 processor and 2GB of RAM.

You’re getting KitKat in its purest form, with a couple of exclusive bits (such as the new Google Experience Launcher) added in. You’re getting updates right from the horse’s mouth.

Nexus 5 games

The Nexus 5’s journey was interesting, with its fair share of problems well-documented among worrywarts everywhere. Not the least of those problems was the device’s camera, which suffered from slow shutter speeds, slow startup times and poor low-light performance. A great deal of those issues were later eradicated with a software upgrade.

The Nexus 5 has also been knocked for its weak speaker, questionable battery life and more. The sum of all those things might scare most folks off, but there’s little doubt Google will look to improve the experience with more upgrades over time.

Regardless, the fact that the Nexus 5 was able to snap up the #1 spot with that kind of uncertainty speaks volumes about the value of the Nexus brand around the Android community. Way to go, LG and Google.

The Rest

Want to see how everything else fared? Here’s the full breakdown of votes, sorted from most to least:

votes chart

The Nexus 5 took up a whopping 25% of the votes, which is pretty impressive considering we collected over 8,000 of them. The race was a bit tighter the further down the list we go, with the Note 3, HTC One, and Moto X all coming in with just over 100 votes ahead of the next guy.

Looking at some of the unsung heroes, you can see that the Samsung Galaxy S4 still took a respectable sixth place, beating out the likes of the DROID MAXX by more than 6%. Beyond that, votes were spread thin between the rest of the pack. It’s worth noting that quite a few of the votes in that “other” category were for the Moto G, which lends credence to the fact that the price/performance ratio that phone provides is just as satisfactory as Motorola advertised.

2014 and beyond

And that’s a wrap for 2013, folks. We’re riding high into 2014, with the first order of business being what should be a phone-filled, fun-filled CES in Las Vegas. We’ll be hitting that rodeo up to bring you all the latest that these companies and more will have to offer for what should be yet another great year in tech. In the meantime, let’s hear your thoughts about the way these results turned out in the comments below!

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. The Nexus 5 really did deserved it. It’s a spectacular device. I couldn’t be more happy with it.

    1. only the price is spectacular. If it were priced the same as the other 5 it would be rated #5. The phone excels at nothing but price

      1. Isn’t the camera on it pretty shotty? Can’t say my HTC One is any better but I would take a Samsung shooter any day.

        1. I would say the camera is okay, not good but not bad either. If you go onto xda, there is a thread of N5 pictures and there are a lot of good ones. I don’t really get that into taking pics myself though.

        2. My N5 Camera takes fantastic pictures. Like I said, I have zero complaints with mine.

        3. It was absolutely HORRIBLE before the update. Now my N5 is the best smartphone shooter I’ve ever used. Last night, a friend and I shot identical photos as the same time of the same subjects in the same lighting. She had an iPhone 5s – brand new. My N5 smoked her Apple phone so much that she said “it’s the position! It’s the position!” So she traded spots with me and did get a better result, but it was still inferior to my with the N5.

          The difference is the HDR+ mode.

      2. Well considering any product you have to take price into consideration.

      3. Wow, this type of hyperbole is usually only reserved for iSheep. Amazing how upset people get.

        1. What type of hyperbole?

      4. If it were priced the same as the other 5 it would be WAY better than the other 5. With the price different of other phones to the Nexus 5 the others invest more but you don’t get much more bang for your buck. I believe Google has the right idea for the Nexus line..

      5. The screen is spectacular. The speed is spectacular. The lack of lag is spectacular. The lack of bloat is spectacular. The dev community is spectacular. The price is phenomenal. The camera is shockingly good.

      6. It excels in having timely updates that work. After all these years, I’m done dealing with crappy OEM’s inventions and waiting on devs to cook up some unstable ROM for another great piece of hardware. No disrespect to devs, I’ve done my own share of that too, piece by piece assembling a CM for a rare hardware, but custom ROM WILL NEVER be as stable as Google’s, or even some OEMs like Motorola and Sony.
        Everyone’s use is different. I want a business tool that gets timely updates, is stable as hell, and is NOT an iPhone.

      7. It also excels at speedy updates and it’s buttery smooth. Do you have one of your own to base your opinions on…purely subjective.
        With that said, if the Note 3 cost 2 bills more, it would slide down the list as well.
        For obvious reasons, I can’t ever see myself using anything but a Nexus device. Nexus 5 is a great phone that I can afford outright without signing a contract.

    2. I’m surprised it ended up number one though, I thought it would be one of the top spots. I really do like the N5, there wasn’t any other phone that I had in mind considering the price and what you get.

  2. I think that list seems pretty fair. The G2 probably could have floated a place up, but it’s still fair.

    1. I think the G2 would have done a lot better if LG launched with Android 4.3, and was more proactive in being one of the first OEMs with KitKat.

      1. Korean variant already has a 4.4 release. Of course that does me no good being a US user.

      2. My G2 has 4.4.2 but only due to CM. Hoping LG gets its act together soon and updates officially.

  3. Validation and vindication for the HTC ONE. #1 in PhoneDog fan polls all year, now #3 on Phandroid. Just happy it beat out the M*** X.

    1. I love my HTC One and I’m glad it made it this far without being considered “out-of-date”. That dreaded 6 month lifespan of Android phones seems to have been pushed a little further and now is getting longer THANKS to the Moto X. The Moto X showed that spec wars mean jack squat. I haven’t been this satisfied with an HTC device since my Incredible :)

  4. Nexus 5 is the second Nexus phone with LTE. Verizon Galaxy Nexus was the first, unless the Verizon Nexus doesn’t count as a Nexus (and I’m sure a few would argue it wouldn’t)

    1. The Sprint variant of the Galaxy Nexus did as well.

      1. And that could have Google Wallet which made it more Nexus than my bastard Verizon edition. I remember when I rooted it, I had to change the build.prop to the Sprint variation to gain access to Google Wallet :P

  5. Go Nexus 5. I am happy using mine on T-Mobile. Hope they can 20X20 network to San Jose and nor cal soon. I am thinking about sticking to Nexus or Google play devices for now. I really want the LG G pad but $350 is a little steep since they are selling non Google play for $270

  6. With the Nexus 5, the speaker volume was improved along with the camera update. The battery is still so so, it lasts me a whole day but if you are the type to stare at your phone all day then you will probably need an extra charge. The battery charges really fast as well.

    1. I got over 48 hours on one charge with my usage. I’m extremely happy with it. I admit the camera shutter was slow before the update but it’s great now! The picture quality is really good and HDR mode is even better. If I could pick one thing, maybe the speaker could be better (but that also improved with the update), but other than that it’s “perfect”. I love it.

      1. Over the weekend I got 74 hours on a charge, and still had 23% battery left when I recharged. Granted, this was very light usage, only about 2 hours of screen on time, and mostly on WiFi. I never got more than 44 hours out of my Verizon GNex (with extended battery) even with similar usage. I’ve only had my N5 for a week now, but so far I’m not seeing the the battery life issues others have been reporting. It definately looks better than my old GNex at least.
        The speaker volume seems okay, but I think I have the newer model. I haven’t even used the camera yet, so I can’t comment on that.

        1. Yeah I have had a similar experience. I think a lot of people complain about things just because they can… lol… ¯_(ツ)_/¯

    2. I totally agree. The camera is awesome now! My battery life is much better than my Nexus 4 or my old Galaxy Nexus (although that’s not saying much) since it gets me through the day with one charge. The speaker volume is fixed and on the new models, the speaker and microphone grills were widened to improve sound quality even more. It sounds like the author couldn’t take the fact that the Nexus 5 is deemed best Android smartphone vs. whatever he is using and put in these non-issues as criticisms.

      Here are some VALID criticisms though:
      1. With KitKat 4.4.2, Google inserted some code into Android that blocks free wifi tethering on the Nexus 5 and 4. Free wifi tethering without rooting is worth the price of the phone itself, and with the Nexus 5 being LTE, it could have truly been the “cut the cord” cable-killer with T-Mobile’s true unlimited data.

      2. With KitKat 4.4.2 the privacy controls offered by Op Apps were stripped, making the Nexus phones (and all KitKat phones) impotent in terms of blocking apps from using your data in ways you don’t want. You are stuck with “Take it or leave it” app downloads. Op Apps was a wonderful gift to Nexus users and Google took it away with a weak sauce excuse that they “never meant to release it to end users in the first place.”

      3. The Nexus 5 still has an inferior distribution strategy in comparison to it’s peers. It costs $100 more at carrier stores if you want to touch it before buying, and you can’t buy the 32gb version in stores. The phone is also $100 more on Amazon. There still is little to no advertising of the phone on TV, radio, billboards, or the net versus other flagship phones, and it’s “launch party” was a non-event.

      No phone is perfect and the Nexus 5 could use some more battery life like the Droid Maxx, sexier build quality like the HTC One, a better camera like the Lumia 1020, or more intuitive notifications like the Moto X.

      But then we’d be paying $650 like everyone else.

      1. Wow. I had no idea Google went out of their way to block free wifi tethering in the latest update. That’s always been one of the perks of the Nexus line, but now I guess you have to root and/or ROM to be able to use up your data how you want.

        Thanks for the headsup.

        1. really? it happened? Damn Google, don’t become another evil fruity company.

      2. Amazon doesn’t sell the Nexux 5. Amazon Marketplace sellers re-sell the Nexus 5. so get your facts straight. That’s not Amazon corporation.

        I bought 2 from Google, so supply is plentiful and the price is great. FANTASTIC distribution strategy. As good as Amazon. It’s called FedEx.

        Root the phone and get your precious tethering back. It IS a developer phone, after all.

  7. I wonder where the Google play edition devices would have landed if they were on the poll.

  8. to be honest, i don’t see a point of having this kind of list. obviously the “best” phone will be the latest highest end/flagship phone from all the top manufacturers. why bother making a list of something so obvious.

    1. Wrong, the Nexus 5 isn’t as powerful as the note 3 but it still beat it out before people like its software better

      1. in a poll of the general public, the Nexus 5 wouldnt even register.

      2. that is not true either, nexus 5 beats the note 3 mainly because of it’s price and feature ratio, or in simpler way of saying, because the nexus 5 is the best bang for the buck. half the price of all the phones on the list yet at least as good them.

  9. At end of the day the poll makes no difference smartphones are a personal choice I went from a Samsung s3 to a sony xperia z1 best thing I did but that’s my choice and preference so all smartphones win in there own way

    1. If you don’t care about the results of the poll why are you here? The point of a poll is to see what other people think, if all that matters is your opinion why do you go to these articles?

      1. Agreed. I know boomsound takes some space but those are the biggest bezels this side of Blackberry.

      2. True.

  10. htc one hands down nexus 5 is just so ugly …………

    1. 68.2 x 137.4 x 9.3 mm. – HTC One

      69.2 x 137.8 x 8.6 mm – Nexus 5

      The HTC one is a bit big for having such a small screen. I’d call it downright ugly.

    2. I thought so too, until I played with it in person.

  11. Top 3 IMO are Nexus 5, Moto X, Note 3.

    1. Definitely but I’d put Moto X at #1 otherwise I agree.

  12. Yay… I dont even want to spoil it for myself… I scrolled down just to say I wanted to read this when I get home from work and I’m good and settled.

    1. Nexus 5 and Note 3 won, pretty much as I expected.

      (If you get disqus email updates, I just spoiled your surprise! hah… Also, Trinity dies)

      1. Trinity? Nooooooooooooo !!!.. you were too late i read this article over 40mins ago

      2. If you haven’t watched the Matrix trilogy yet

        You’re gonna have a bad time

  13. Nexus from here on out for me.

    1. I’ve had the S3 for almost 18 months now. Rooted it and put CM on about 5 months ago. Been happier with it than ever before since. May very well buy Nexus 5 or its successor some time in the new year.

  14. I’m sorry but I’ll never understand how the HTC One or the Moto X can be favored over the LG G2. I get the top two, the Note 3 and the Nexus 5, but the G2 strikes a perfect balance between those two. It’s got less guts than the Note 3, but more than the Nexus 5. Touchwiz and LG’s UI are so similar that it can’t be the software keeping it down. Is it the rear keys? The build quality? I’m at a loss because that’s seriously the only negatives there could possibly be. I hope someone can enlighten me.

    1. Its the brand I think. LG makes quality products, sure. But Samsung has the marketing power to keep them being an after thought. And the nexus would have been number one if was HTC hardware because this was voted on by enthusists not the average consumer. I could be wrong though.

      1. Two years ago, sure. But now that LG has made two stellar Nexus phones I think their credibility has improved.

        1. Many people would argue against the Nexus 4 being stellar.

          1. Other than some questionable glass and lack of LTE, it was undoutedly a pretty kick ass phone.

          2. Lack of storage, shitty camera…

          3. I’m one of the many.

    2. LG G2 is awesome. Only it and the Galaxy Note 3 can compete with the Nexus 5. The Nexus 5 was based on the LG G2, but (except for price) I have to admit the G2 is better. and I own 2 Nexus 5 (for me and my wife, because of the price).

    3. Rabid Samsung fanboys bring the Note up, bloat brings the G2 down.

      1. trying to get a fanboy to post without using the term “bloat” is like trying to get your teen daughter to stop taking selfies in the bathroom. the maturity level of both is about the same

    4. G2 is ugly. Skin is horrendous. Software design is laughably bad. Phone is not ergonomic and feels slimy. Design is inconsistent across carriers. Comes with tons of bloatware out the box.

  15. you want an unbiased opinion?
    Galaxy Note 3. Hands down

    1. Do you want an unbiased opinion?
      Nexus 5, all the way.

    2. I must say using Nova or an app to allow any swipe down to bring down notifications instead of swiping down from the very top may make big devices like the Note 3 godly to use one-handed.

    3. A rooted Note 3 would probably be blazingly fast.

  16. HTC One should have been number 1, G2 number 2, nexus 5 number 3 and the rest I don’t care for

    1. agreed.

      the htc one is a beast and altho phandroid kept it at the top for a long time, putting a niche phone like the note 3 above it is absurd. also it handily beats out the nexus 5 in every aspect.

      1. Exactly, but hey the “people” have spoken

        1. I just have to wonder how many people voted note 3 without owning one and just thinking that it is a giant phone with all these neato functions.

          Everyone wants something other than what they have because something better is out there (per advertising)
          Sadly all the great reviews the htc one received made little difference. samsung smashed them in sales.

          1. I have a Nexus 5 and voted Nexus 5 if it makes you feel any better.

          2. The 10 million people who bought the Note 3 speak for themselves. I doubt the Nexus 5 or Moto X has come close to that figure.

          3. Moto X is sold in 3 countries.

          4. Where did it say they don’t own it?

      2. In what significant ways does the HTC One “handily” beat the Nexus 5? Front speakers? Alright, but that’s not everyone’s cup of tea especially if it means giant bezels. IR blaster? That’s actually pretty nice, but hardly a deal breaker. Better build quality? Definitely.

        Otherwise, the Nexus 5 has a better screen, better processor, better battery life, better camera, and muuuuuch better software with a much larger developer support community.

        1. better screen? the htc one screen is better than the nexus 5 screen. reviewers of both phones agree. unless you meant to say bigger?

          1. I’ll redefine that. Bigger, yes. But with stock software the One has better color representation. PPI is virtually the same. Personally I’d still take the larger display of the Nexus and change the color with a custom kernel but I know that is far from ideal and certainly doesn’t represent the masses.

          2. “Change the color with a custom kernel,” so again, how exactly does it have the better screen? LOL.

          3. Because it’s not calibrated as well from the factory, but when customized the screen is better?

          4. Point being if you have to alter it, it’s clearly not better.

          5. Not sure I agree, I’d say whichever is capable of being better is better.

          6. No. In that case, it’s exactly what you just said, “capable of being better.” I have a shoebox of a bedroom. You have a large spacious bedroom. Your bedroom is better. I can knock down a wall, expand my bedroom and make it larger than yours and add a master bath. The fact that my wall is capable of being knocked down and alterations CAN be made doesn’t suddenly make my bedroom better. Almost anything is “capable of being better,” but the fact is, right here and now, your bedroom is better.

          7. 469 to 445 is not the same. The nexus 5 just doesn’t have it in the screen quality department as much as you want it to.

        2. 469 ppi vs. 443 with the one having better viewing angles. how does the 5 beat that?
          the processor yes is better and battery life is arguable. both of my ones last over a day. My nexus does not (why I don’t know this defies logic in several ways)

          1. The PPI difference is pretty small and that’s only due to the screen being smaller. I’ll take a larger screen if it means 26 less PPI.

          2. The backlight bleeds from the edges of the Nexus 5 screen.

        3. Better screen and camera? LoL good one. Sure the Nexus 5 has a bigger screen, but the One still has the best screen around. And camera? Only people that don’t tinker with settings and adjust things like white balance think the Nexus 5’s camera is better. HTC wins that, hands down.

          You can argue software all you want, but that’s subjective. Some people prefer Sense. It’s a nice and light skin with several useful features like Zoey and Blinkfeed.
          Once you have those front facing speakers, it’s hard to use a phone without them. Perfect for showing someone a Youtube clip or a home video and not having to worry about surrounding noise.
          Sure the Nexus 5 has the better processor, but after using newer phones, I’m not buying that there’s a huge difference between the Snapdragon 600 and 800.

          1. I’m glad you like the front speakers but the rest sounds like you’re making excuses for lower specs.

          2. You have a vivid imagination if that’s what you got out of my post.

          3. Isn’t that standard practice on Phandroid? Thats what the Moto X is all about. Making excuses for a phone with lower specs.

          4. At least the X doesn’t lag and actually brings something genuinely new to the table.

        4. whoaaaa nexus 5 better screen than the HTC One? I believe your due for a trip to the optometrist.

          1. Ha ha. I wouldn’t put either in the #1 position, and even I know that what you’re saying is 100% on point. The Nexus 5 screen is the worst “1080p” screen on the market and that camera, well…

        5. The Nexus 5 screen is NOT better. And the speakers are TREMENDOUSLY worse. And the build quality is worse. I don’t know what software voodoo they’ve recently done, but the camera and battery life on the Nexus 5 sucked eggs too.

        6. Sorry but the battery life thing isn’t true at all. Other sites have said the nexus 5 battery life is all over the place and the same goes for the camera. The screen is bigger, but that doesn’t make it better. I’m all for the nexus program, but get the facts right before trying to down play a great device like the HTC One.

      3. you do KNOW that they did NOT put it there. It is the user that put it there and apparently there are enough reader of Phandroid who like Note 3 more than HTC One.

        1. yes I do KNOW that THEY did not put it there. I was saying that phandroid gave it the respect it deserved however the PEOPLE did not.

      4. The Note 3 is hardly a “niche market.” Do a bit of googling and you’d see they sell extremely well.

  17. How the hell can something with TW be in the top 5. Samsung phone’s stink lately.

    1. Eh… I dislike TW as much as the next person but that’s a bit extreme. Software can be changed. Hardware is forever.

    2. because stock android is boring

    3. You really have no clue what you’re talking about, but please carry on.

      1. Well actually I do. The S2 was great and way ahead of the competition. But Samsung doesn’t innovate software wise, TW still looks like some shitty Android 2.3 skin. Galaxy S3 and S4 where bloated with features that are most useless or worked out badly. Have a Note 2, got Android 4.3 some days ago. What the hell has Samsung done to the menu’s? Everything is a mess. The Note 3 is good specs wise, it has a great screen and a good camera. But Samsung should re invent the software. TW is sluggish, the skin and software features that most of the time don’t make any sense cause lag on devices with processing power that should be more than enough and even effect battery life in a negative way. Stock Android is great nowadays(it’s been worse than TW and Sense) and Sense has evolved in a great way.

  18. Love the Nexus 5 as a power phone but the Moto X is a better daily phone. Nothing else matters.

    1. Yeah I have the N5 and love it but there is no way any of these phones are better than the Moto X.

      1. Moto X sucks eggs. If Motorola wold have been serious it would have had quad core CPU and 1080p. The HTC One got away with the 4.7″ display because it was 1080p, but would have sold better with a 5″ `1080p display. Moto X can’t get away with 4.7″ 720p display.

        1. I normally don’t reply to nonsense like this but this post is so dumb I had to.

          Moto X is the best phone on the list next to N5. Anyone that knows tech knows 1080p is a pointless waste of CPU, memory, and battery life not to mention dual core is not an issue, just look at the Apple A7 it’s the fastest SoC there is and it’s dual core.

          1. Also has one of the lowest resolution screens on the market as far as flagship phones go.

        2. They should have put a 4K screen with a 16core processor and 8GB RAM. Also should have shipped with Android 8.5 WTF MOTO!

        3. You have no idea what you’re actually talking about. You know the name of specs, yet NO idea what these specs actually do. full HD on a < 5" phone? Completely pointless and a waste of battery. Quad core? We are just now starting to optimize dual core (spoiler alert, there are plenty of dual cores faster than quad cores BECAUSE IT IS STILL NEW TECH) and technically the Moto X has 8 cores… so you're wrong on every possible level. Nice.

          1. Thank you, Matthew.

        4. absolutely agree

        5. Um. No.

        6. Another “my kingdom for more pixels even if they’re pentile, and more cores even if they accomplish little that’s useful” (except maybe for the games I don’t play anyway).

          I could say the rest all suck ‘cos they lack the X’s two handy power-sipping co-processors, but unless it improves your experience like it does mine, that spec means nada either.

  19. Htc one deserves #1 the nexus five for 2 and the rest are unimportant. samsungs touchwiz making it on this list is just a joke. Lg has come leaps and bounds. but samsung touchwiz? c’mon bro it’s like juggling dildos.

    1. What utter bullshit that HTC One deserve number 1 spot. It is a good phone but not THAT great, especially considering the combined price point and performance of Nexus 5. As for touchwiz .. have you even touched a Samsung S4 or Note 3 before? :P I am guess not, from the venom in your post.

      1. i work for att. I’ve touched a phone or two.

      2. Ya. Touchwiz is a bad joke and the GS4 didn’t make the list for a reason: it sucks. Note 3 is on this list because there’s really no competition in the “phablet” market.

        1. TW isn’t that bad geez it didn’t bother me when I had the note 2.

    2. Moto x man. Moto x

      1. I will admit it is hard for me to digest anything from them because I sold the atrix 1 atrix 2 and atrix hd lol they honestly were heading in the right direction with the atrix hd i actually liked that one!

        1. Yeah, but wasn’t the Atrix HD the only one that even sniffed at Google ownership? That makes a huge difference.

      2. which sucks because it only has 720p. I can’t get past that. My 2011 Android had 720p. All the top tier Androids in 2013 had full HD 1080p. Ergo, Moto X had crappy specs.

        1. It’s hard to tell 720 from 1080 at 4.7″, easy to tell the drain on the battery pushing over 2x as many pixels though. Are you going to say 1080 is bad when 4K screen start coming out? There is a thing called overkill, and that’s when phones are coming out with higher res screens than my TV.

          1. Time to change your tv, bro.

        2. It’s a phone. Not a flat screen tv.

        3. Lovin’ my rich, deep, brilliant Moto X even if it’s out of gamut and leans toward saturation. In fact reading your post, think I’ll find a photo of some “rich Corinthian leather” for my wallpaper. :)

          I say (like 90% of the many reviews I read before buying, as well as after side by side comparisons in stores), you can either trust your eyes or you can trust a spec sheet. You obviously fall in the latter camp.

        4. Most people won’t give 2 shits about 720p vs. 1080. I have both (An EVO 4G LTE and a Nexus 5) and it really doesn’t bother me a bit. Both screens look awesome. You can get hung up on a spec that’s better suited for 42″ TVs, but hey, that’s your hang up, not Moto’s.

    3. “Unimportant.” LOL. Hmm. Most “real people” I know don’t know what a HTC One or a Nexus 5 is. So, I’m not sure you know what “unimportant” means.

  20. This is the way I see it-
    Looking for the undisputed biggest and the baddest? Note 3 (non-phablet: LG G2)
    Looking for the best bang for buck? Nexus 5 (Verizon? Droid Maxx or LG G2 on-contract)
    Looking for the best for the average consumer? LG G2 or Galaxy S4
    Looking for the best for Android newbies/non-techy? Moto X or Nexus 5
    Looking for the best for tinkerers/enthusiast? LG G2 or Nexus 5 (GS4 is also popular)
    Looking for the best for business use? Note 3 (smaller: Droid Maxx/Moto X)
    Looking for the best performance/specs? LG G2 or Note 3
    Looking for the best future-proof choice? Nexus 5 (Verizon: LG G2 or Note 3)
    Looking for the best (out-of the-box) software? Any new Motorola (Nexus 5 for stock)
    Looking for the fastest (non-Nexus) software updates? Any new Motorola (kudos!)
    Looking for the best camera? LG G2 or Note 3
    Looking for the best screen? LG G2 or HTC One (oversized: Note 3)
    Looking for the best speakers/multimedia? HTC One
    Looking for the best battery life? LG G2, Note 3, or Droid Maxx
    Looking for the best ergonomics? Moto X
    Looking for the best build quality/design? HTC One
    Looking for an SD Card slot? Note 3 or GS4
    Looking for the best/most accessories? GS4 (Moto X closely behind)
    Looking for the best phablet/large screen: Note 3 (duh)
    Worst bang for buck: Moto X, Note 3 or GS4 (GS5 is right around the corner)
    Worst screen: Moto X and Droid Maxx/Ultra (720p at 4.7″+)
    Worst battery life (still 12+ hours though so should be fine for most): HTC One or Moto X
    Worst camera: HTC One (and pre-update Motorola/Nexus phones.)
    Worst (out-of-the-box) software: Anything Touchwiz or HTC Sense (LG not far behind)
    Worst for software updates: Ummm well anything other than a Nexus or Motorola
    Worst specs/future-proof (among flagships): Moto X and HTC One
    Worst build quality: LG G2 (controversial rear keys, greasy plastic, and larger size)
    Worst for newbies/non-techy: Note 3
    Worst universal availability on all carriers: Nexus 5 & LG G2 Verizon-only Qi charging

    Looking for the best jack-of-all-trades/all-around package/least compromises?
    LG G2 (Nexus 5 tied for first if not on Verizon)
    Honorable Mentions: Droid Maxx worth a look if on Verizon. Obviously Note 3 if you want a phablet. Galaxy S4 is still solid, but it’s worth waiting a couple more months if you can.

    My personal choices:
    LG G2>Nexus 5>Note 3>Galaxy S4>Droid Maxx/Moto X>HTC One>any GPE or Developer Edition (buy a Nexus or learn to ROM if you want stock)

    1. Most well thought out post in months!

      1. Thought out, yes. But gross generalizations doesn’t make for the “best post.” Much like this poll.

    2. Fantastic post. I hope Santa brought you everything you wanted. You obviously were a good boy.

    3. I actually love my Moto X way more than my GS4. I like the screen actually more too. I notice a slight performance drop however GS4 was just bloated. All stock btw. IMO the Moto X is great if you can’t get the Nexus 5 (i.e. Verizon…). Love my purchase!

    4. Post this as a decision tree matrix and then I’ll be impressed, Lolz…..:)

  21. Nexus 5 doesn’t even work on the carrier that serves over 100 million Americans where most of this blog’s audience is from…

    1. Blame Verizon for that, not Google. Verizon made it clear with the Galaxy Nexus and then the Nexus 10 tablet they do NOT want any more Nexus devices.

      Whereas the Nexus 5 works quite well on the HSPA+, CDMA, and LTE of AT&T, Sprint, T-mobile and all their affiliate companies (Straight Talk, Ting, Net 10, Simple Mobile, GoPhone, etc.)

      1. I think his point was that it can’t be considered “the best phone” when it’s not available on “the best carrier.” He was speaking more of fact, than blame. Ultimately, (like cameras) the best phone, is the one you can get your hands on.

        1. Is it really the “Best carrier” if it doesn’t even let you have a decent phone without all of it’s bloat-crap?

          1. Best coverage, rated best customer service, best resources, best reliability for the biggest amount of people = best carrier.

    2. Boo Hoo. They’re not on the carrier who’s marketing has convinced you the other 3 carriers are terrible and it’s worth paying more than your cable bill for cell service.

      1. Their marketing hasn’t convinced me. Everyone I know who uses those other carriers and complains about their service, has convinced me.

    3. You mean the carrier that decided they don’t like phone freedom? THAT carrier? Might as well go join the Communist party and buy an iPhone if you’re on THEM.

  22. Impossible. I voted over 800 times for the iPhone!

    1. Funny TechnoBuffalo did a readers choice device elimination contest and the iPhone was voted out in the first round to an LG phone.

    2. lol this guy

    3. Ahh… so YOU’RE that guy!

  23. 1) Moto X
    2) Nexus 5 then all else.

    Mainly because the Moto X reaches more customers, has better battery life and a non-pentile OLED display. Also the 4.7″ formfactor is far superior. Regardless the N5 is still a faster SoC and it’s a Nexus otherwise it wouldn’t even be looked at.

    1. Yup.

  24. i have been using my nexus 5 and its the best phone so far and i was using and i had a galaxy s4 before. My uncle who has a iphone even liked the nexus 5 better.

  25. moto x for the same price as nexus5….winner moto x…got one with the coupon codes on its way

    1. Slower processor, screen isn’t as good in quality or resolution. Build quality in my opinion is no where near as good as the Nexus 5’s matte finish. The whole “okay google” thing is cool but I can do that by turning the power button on and saying the same thing. Is that really worth the sacrifice just so I can say “set alarm” or “play music” without touching the thing? Absolutely not.

      Especially when most power users are going to buy Glass this year anyways.

      1. Lolll…that is all

  26. Since the DROID MAXX is really just a bigger screen/battery version of the Moto X you should merge them = 1413 votes. Putting the Motos in second place where they belong.

    1. Ah… no.

  27. Ok, I can live with that list and be a proud owner of the runner up device.

  28. Not sure how Nexus 5 and LG G2 are so far apart.

    1. The G2 is ugly.

      1. The UI? It’s not that hard to change. I would assume people that read this site are able to put new roms on their phone.

  29. troll poll. Galaxy Note as the best smart”phone” of the year??..please. you look like a complete moron with a phone the size of a clipboard at your ear (and I say the same for HTC One Max, Xperia Ultra, etc.). I can agree with the rest although I probably put Sony Xperia Z in place in the top 5 with the Note removed.

    Overall, all the phones are too big. I love Android but the size of the devices is not ergonomic. Apple has actually made a good call staying at the 4″ size. 4″-4.5″ is the sweet spot. A device should offer a decent screen size but have utility for portability and being able to use the device one-handed. I hear this complaint from a lot of Android converts. “I really like this phone better than my old iPhone but its just way too big.”

    1. Agree about the size trend. After using a Gnex for 2 years, I wanted something more compact; went w/ a Droid Mini, couldn’t be happier. I don’t want to hold a tablet to my head, nor use one in my truck.

    2. I’m the complete opposite – I could never go back to a smaller phone after the Galaxy Mega 6.3. For films, internet and gaming you just can’t beat it (screen-wise, obviously.)

      1. I don’t share that problem because I have a Nexus 7 for all of those things. I rather my phone (and my tablet) be ergonomic, compact, comfortable, light and unobtrusive.

        1. I thought my Nexus 7 became redundant after getting the Mega – other than the odd looks you get while calling, it bests the Nexus in every way (for me) ;)

    3. I agree with you…somewhat. I actually do think the Galaxy Note 3 is an excellent phone, but these polls are usually dumb, because the people voting, too often vote based on a “spec sheet” as opposed to real world usage and for many, including myself, the Galaxy Note 3 is just too big, and I also can’t stand the materials used in it’s casing. So for those reasons alone, the Galaxy Note 3 couldn’t be considered by me as one of the Best smartphones of 2013, with other options like the Moto X and HTC One in the running. The Moto X is the only phone in that listing that is wonderfully ergonomic.

    4. I’m guessing you’re unaware of Bluetooth and the fact that smartphones are much more than phones.

    5. Personal preference. Personal preference. Not everyone is alike.

    6. My hands are too big for that little ass iPhone. I tried to use my cousins 5s over the holidays and yes it was a horrible experience. Never

  30. So, why would you add the ONE Max in there?

  31. I’m just tickled that for the first time I have one of the top five voted phones ^__^

    Moto X

    1. I think it would have rated even higher if always priced – like mine – at the holiday cybersale $350 (equal to the Nexus 5 – which can’t have much if any net profit in it).

      Also, the metal body slab phones like the HTC One and the Apple 4-5s look elegant, but feel hard, angular and heavier than they actually are in the hand compared to how the X, with its clever centering “dimple” on the back (made from better chosen plastic than Samsung uses) feels warmer, just solid and more like it’s conforming to your hand rather than the other way round.

      1. I agree with your thoughts on construction however I bought mine for $299 off contract with Republic Wireless. This is their regular price!

    2. It’s not a viable option until it’s a worldwide release, the Moto G is, why isn’t the Moto X?

  32. Given that most or all of the bottom six phones weren’t carrier released in the US, it’s hardly surprising that they didn’t get many votes.

  33. Sorry guys, all your little whining won’t change the fact that note 3 is the fastest , does the most with the best screen. No spen, just another android. Just like the Note 2 was phone of the year 2012, same for Note3.

    1. Better phone on paper, but a lot of people don’t like a massive screen. And as good as it is, it still lags more than stock. No arguing that.

  34. What a joke the nexus 5 bests the galaxy s4 only in the authors fantasy world

    1. Beside the fact that the Nexus 5 is more superior in most ways then yeah, only thing is a better battery and an SD card.

    2. Sure, it’s a better phone, but is it $300 better? Absolutely not.

      1. Actually, it’s not even a better phone.

    3. The wasn’t the “author.” It was the readers of this site. Apparently, you can’t read.

    4. Yeah, who cares about a better screen, faster processor, better battery life, and the fastest OS updates available! Hell, even the build is better than the G4.

  35. In a world where all devices were free (or everyone was extremely wealthy) the Note 3 would be the first one by far…

  36. My Uncle Julian just got a
    great Infiniti JX SUV you can find out more B­i­g­2­9­.­ℂ­o­m

  37. Blah blah blah…. The nexus 5 is a mediocre phone. I wouldn’t get it not even for the price. Galaxy Note 3 or the GS4 all the way. Oh, and the LG G2 is just a gs4 replica! All the editors do is ban all the galaxy devices and the rest are the best. Now, why is it that they don’t sell as many? Lets just hate on the best selling company and cheer the others. Just like when the Galaxy S4 and HTC ONE came out. Thry just hyped up the HTC ONE just because of the stupid metallic body and the front speakers. At the end of the day Samsung outsold the HTC one without even struggling. Everyone is such a hater!

    1. You were dropped on ur head weren’t you?

      1. Numbers don’t lie. So suck it up dude!

        1. You’re right. Numbers don’t lie, and the Note III was beaten in a poll. The G4 came in 6th place. That’s the numbers that’re showing.

          In 1987, the Ford Escort was the #1 selling car in the US. (http://articles.latimes.com/1988-01-08/business/fi-23225_1_ford-escort). It was crap. Sheer crap. (I owned one, unfortunately. Worst car I ever owned, and I still haven’t bought another Ford) In the light of that little factoid, do you want to try and defend the sales numbers schtick some more?

          Note: I like the fact that the Samsung phones have physical buttons, removable batteries, and removable storage. But that doesn’t make them the best phones out there. They suck due to the skinning. That detracts from their good points. And who the hell wants to spend $650 for an unskinned version when the Nexus 5 is just about half that price? The G4 Dev edition definitely isn’t twice the phone the Nexus is. That’s for damn sure.

    2. The only “hater” here is you.
      Stop whining.

      1. Its my opinion and if you dont like it, then good for you!

    3. Whaa your bloat infested phone didn’t win a USER poll. So sad. Galaxy sells because of marketing.

  38. the moto maxx is the best phone i ever used in my life.

  39. The list looks fine. But the Galaxy S4 should definitely be there.

    1. It is. In 6th place.

      1. Yup, close fight with the LG G2. Nonetheless, it’s the readers’ votes that matter. :)

        1. Only in the context of this poll. It’s what you like that matters to you.

    2. The S4 is bad.

  40. Does it make sense to only rank phones if they are available on all 4 major carriers? Example… Nexus 5 wins… But not if Verizon is your online solid carrier in the area. Many cannot switch services just to have the winningest hardware.

  41. It would be interesting to see the results weighted by the number of each phone sold. Put the number of votes into perspective against the number of phones out there.

  42. Moto X was the only phone to bring new or innovating. Robbed.

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