Best Android Phones [November 2014]


best phones4

October is now in the rear view, and the crazy holiday shopping season is approaching quickly. As the holiday sales start popping up you’re going to want to know what Android phones are best. We’ve got you covered. Here are the best Android phones available for the month of November.

Previously: OctoberSeptemberAugust | July | June | May | April | March | February

5. LG G3


Moving down from the second place spot is the trusty LG G3. For the 5th spot it was a toss-up between the S5, HTC One M8, and LG G3. We gave the G3 the slight edge for its awesome display, slim bezels, and much improved Android interface. The G3 is starting to feel like old news, but you still can’t go wrong with this surprisingly good device.

4. Sony Xperia Z3

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

Coming in at fourth place is the very attractive Sony Xperia Z3. We love the Z3 for its premium metal design and very powerful hardware. The Z3 also sports a sneakily awesome feature: waterproof construction. It will allow you to take great photos all day with excellent battery life, and your photos will be safe if you drop it in the pool.

3. Samsung Galaxy Note 4


The brand spanking new Galaxy Note 4 became available last month, which makes it a great choice going into the holiday season. The Note 4 might be the best Note since the original. It has many of the same features that were introduced on the Galaxy S5, but with a better build quality, and updated S Pen input. The only thing holding this phablet back from second place is Touchwiz.

2. Nexus 6


Moving from the “Rumor Mill” to second place in our list is the long-rumored Nexus 6. If you were lucky enough you will be receiving your Nexus 6 in the next few weeks. This is arguably the best Nexus phone to ever be made, and it’s definitely the most powerful, but one thing held it back from the top spot: size. Not everyone will want a device this big (and it is really big).

1. Moto X (2nd Gen)

Moto X 2014 black DSC07129

For the second straight month the Motorola Moto X (2nd Gen) tops our list. With all the new devices coming out in the past month this phone has been forgotten, but we still love it. The software is nearly stock Android, you can get the hardware in any color or material you want, and it’s still one of the most nicely sized devices. Motorola made some really nice improvements over the original Moto X, which will keep this device on our list for a while.

Honorable Mentions

Motorola DROID Turbo Battery Life DSC07228

1. Motorola DROID Turbo – The newest device on our list didn’t make the Top 5 for one crucial reason: Verizon exclusivity. That’s a shame, because so far we really like the DROID Turbo.

2. Nexus 5 – Google’s last generation Nexus device is still high on our honorable mention list because it will be getting Android Lollipop very soon. If you don’t like the behemoth Nexus 6 this is still a great device.

3. HTC One M8 – Our beloved HTC One M8 finally dropped out of the Top 5 this month, but it’s still an excellent choice for anyone. The design and build are great, and the software is top-notch.

4. Sony Xperia Z3 Compact – A dark horse in the Android world right now is this small, but very powerful, variant of the Xperia Z3. If you’re looking for something that can easily fit in your skinny jeans this is the no-compromise small phone.

5. Samsung Galaxy S5 – Another phone that dropped out of the Top 5 is the trusty Galaxy S5. We’ve been hard on the GS5 in the past, but there is no denying it is a very capable Android phone. There are better options available, but you still can’t go wrong.

Upcoming Phones

HTC Desire EYE


Coming at us very soon will be the HTC Desire EYE. This device is named for the 13MP camera on the front of the device. It’s the ultimate phone for taking selfies. Other specs include a 5.2-inch 1080p display, Snapdragon 801, and 2400mAh battery. It’s a solid mid-range device with a nice pair of cameras. Later this month it will be available from AT&T for $149.99 with a new two-year contract.

Rumor Mill

The rumor mill has run dry this month, but there is one device that popped up in the news last month.

Samsung Galaxy S6


Samsung’s “next big thing” seems to always be on the horizon. Nevermind the great devices they have for sale right now. What’s next?! That device will, of course, be the GS6. A new report claims Samsung will be designing the S6 from scratch. Samsung has been dabbling with new designs with devices like the Galaxy Alpha. The Galaxy S line is in desperate need of a new look. We hope the Galaxy S6 changes the game again.

Amazon Best Sellers


We don’t have room for every Android device to be on our list, but Amazon sure does. They are constantly ranking the best phones based on what people are buying. Here are the best sellers that we haven’t already mentioned above.

  1. Amazon Fire Phone
  2. Samsung Galaxy S4
  3. Samsung Galaxy Note 3
  4. LG G2
  5. Samsung Galaxy Mega

What Say You?

Now is a very exciting time to be looking for a new Android phone. The new Nexus has been announced, the DROID is back, phablets have never been hotter, and Motorola is quietly making some of the best devices. How did we do with our rankings? How would you rank the best Android phones right now? Let us know in the comments below!

Joe Fedewa
Ever since I flipped open my first phone I've been obsessed with the devices. I've dabbled in other platforms, but Android is where I feel most at home.

Motorola Moto Maxx pictured in the wild, looks to be international version of the DROID Turbo

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  1. we are missing OnePlus

    1. So are most of the people that wanted to buy one

      1. Now that was funny.

  2. Haha moto X #1 GTFO.

  3. There is no way that the Amazon Fire Phone is a #1 best seller. Amazon propaganda…

  4. nexus 6 is placed 2nd but mentioned as 3rd in the article.

  5. LOL how is Amazon Fire Phone in top selling, even for Amazon

    1. I know, LOL

  6. How is the Nexus 6 in second place but in the blurb they say it “moved to third place” on the list. Can I please get hired as an outside editor for every tech site? The writing is abysmal these days.

  7. Best android phones available as of today (IMO):
    1. Note 4
    2. HTC One M8
    3. Galaxy S5
    4. Droid Turbo
    5. Moto X 2014

    I don’t understand how the G3 makes the list when it is one laggy piece of shizz, makes touchwiz look like the smoothest skin ever.

    1. Sony hater?

      1. Sony can get an honorable mention but not in the top 5

    2. The S5 is garbage and the M8 is not that good anymore compared to the newest phones.

      1. The S5 is a solid all around device the has a pretty good camera, pretty good battery life, lots of features and good performance. It won win any beauty contest but its a device that can do it all. The M8 is almost the perfect phone but the camera is below average. Otherwise it is an outstanding phone.

        1. Nah. The S5 is laggy as #$%6 bc of Touchwiz. Uninspired design and sub par build quality. Touchwiz is getting better, but it’s still not good. It has a lot of gimmicks and the camera is hit or miss. Battery life is fine though. The M8 has great build quality and a pretty good design, those bezels though. Horrible camera and sense is pretty good. Nothing else is interesting about it though.

          1. I Had both the S5 and M8 and them 2 are my favorite phones this year. The S5 does not lag out of the box like the G3, its clear but I don’t know why you think otherwise. The G3 is one laggy Sob man seriously

        2. Samsung defender, that explains a lot ;)

          1. Funny how I defended the M8 too but all u see is Samsung. A hater at is best u are.

          2. Sh*t stirrer would be more accurate. I noticed you defended both manufacturers but Samsung defender carries more meaning in the context I used it. Anything else you claim to be able to state for me. Perhaps all I see is idioteque commenters :p

          3. Now I want to listen to Radiohead :D

          4. Talk about a clown, that top 5 was my opinion as I stated it and u got butt hurt. There’s really nothing I can do about it :)

          5. You could have a better opinion. You could have had a less narrow list. Only 3 manufacturers included. You could have been less biased. There’s lots you can do about it. Just do it!

          6. That’s a dumb reply, an opinion is personal. If you say it should be better then you mean it should satisfy you. Our opinions here are not to satisfy you. If you disagree youre welcome to make your own list, mine is legit. Keep hating!

          7. Dude, do I need to hold up my sarcasm card??? After mentioning I’m a sh*t stirrer I really didn’t think that was necessary but perhaps your IQ is closer to what I initially thought it may be.

            P.S. that’s not very high!

          8. Yeah keep ur sarcasm up ur butt or something where it bothers no one :)

          9. If you want to get all judgemental you should learn to stop making homophobic comments like ‘butt hurt’. Something about stones and glass houses……

          10. “butt hurt” is homophobic now? Youre a complete idiot.

          11. Yes ‘butt hurt’ is homophobic, it always has been. Ask a g a y friend if you have any.

          12. Have a look at other lists, most if not all have more than 3 manufacturers.

    3. Cause you’re basing it on a minority of people reporting lag.

      The G3 with bloat removed, and different launcher runs circles around the S5 and M8. Without any further mods/hacks which would only create more distance between the devices.

      G3 >>> S5 > M8

      1. The G3 is definitely better than the M8 and S5. M8 is better than S5. S5 was a pathetic release by Samsung.

      2. Lol. So after you remove bloat, install a different launcher, change the cpu and gpu and change the brand now its the best uh? My girlfriend who don’t know nothing about android and phones returned the G3 cause she mentioned the lag as “the phone always skips” meaning it always lags. And u call that the best phone? The G3 could never run circles around the M8 no matter what bloat you remove, the M8 is just the best performer. And the S5 is automatically better than the G3 since Lg’s skin is a Xerox copy to touchwiz.

        1. LG ui is better than Touchwiz though. Touchwiz is getting better, but it’s still not good.

          1. Touchwiz on the note kills LG’s UI, u disagree?

          2. Better how when all it is is a copy?

        2. At least we know where your LG bias comes from. Take out the girlfriend factor and you may actually like the G3.

          What’s driving your anti Sony bias?

          1. Sony is not good with updates, no development either.

        3. I Own a Note 3 . a Nexus 5 . and an LG G3 , I switch them out during the month , and I must admit ,even changing launchers , to Nova Prime , and removing bloat via Titanium Backup , and using G3 Tweakbox, although I love the phone I must admit serious lag , at first I was thinking it was an app or something , or the fact that all my devices are rooted and running custom rom’s and custom Kernel’s , but it’s been about two mnths now no matter what I do it seem’s to really Lag , don’t start hatin remember said I loved the phone , but in my personal experience the phone Lag’s pretty bad , waiting for the development to pick up over on XDA ,one of my favorite developer’s from AICP just put together a very nice Rom over the weekend , but still no Bluetooth , I think the phone has allot of potential , unfortunately for me it’s day’s are numbered , I have jump on bothe phones the n3 and the lg g3 , and on the 17th i’ll be a proud new owner of a Note Edge , and if I have a good month , and sell my awesome nexus 5 , i’ll be getting the Nexus 6 shortly after…………cheers

  8. LG G3 is too high on the list. It’s top 3 (max 4)…

  9. Yet again compact phones fail to make the list. Phandroid DOES hate small phones! Atleast the Z3 compact made the honourable list this time.

    1. The Z3 Compact is an awesome phone.

      1. Better battery life than any other phone mentioned including the full size Z3. Better performance because it’s only powering a 720p screen. However, the Z3 makes the main list. There is something wrong with the logic of the phandroid contributor(s) who put this list together.

        1. Definitely.

        2. Probably because the z3 compact is only available unlocked from Sony in the U.S. this might skew things a bit.

  10. LOL at the Moto X being #1. Nothing is special about it all.
    1. Note 4
    2. Nexus 6
    3. Z3.
    4. DROID Turbo
    5. Z3 Compact

    1. This is more like it

      1. The DROID Turbo kicks the LG G3 out. Moto did a really good job with the Turbo. DROID Turbo and Z3 can interchange between 3 and 4.

    2. 100% agree
      i don’t know whats the moto X hype about.it is awesome yes but not the best,battery life is almost half of Z3

      1. TBH, I don’t think it’s awesome at all. Much weaker when compared to Moto’s other offerings.

    3. Best Android List Ever! This should have been your article ;)

      1. Thanks :)

    4. 1) DROID TURBO
      2) LG G3
      3) SGN4
      4) Nexus 5
      5) Nexus 6

      1. That is LOL.

      2. LG G3 has sub par battery life and performance so doesn’t belong in the top 5, Droid Turbo is US only so for the rest of the world it basically doesn’t exist so it can’t be in the top 5 either.

        Nexus 5 is last generation, so definitely not.

    5. Note 4 wouldn’t make it on my list. Your list as with this articles list, and everyone else’s list is purely subjective.

  11. Sony has really improved this year. Now can they actually try to sell in the USA.

  12. So basically any phone with vanilla android wins? “fucccouttaheah”

    My list:

    1. Droid Turbo
    2. Nexus 6
    3. Xperia Z3
    4. LG G3
    5. Note 4


    1. Iphone! :D

      1. Jk…xP

      2. This is the BEST list of November.

        Only way an iPhone would make the list is if it was the iPhone 7S but right now, and still, it would be in the honorable mentions category

    2. Not unbiased, just your own personal bias. Which we all have. Nothing wrong with that.

    3. That is far from non biased.

  13. Fire Phone number one seller?

    1. It’s a huge joke lol.

    2. Exact thought popped into my head. Last I heard, they hadn’t moved more than 30K Firephones since launch.

    3. Well it’s from Amazon so it’s all over their website.

  14. Note 4 should be number one hands down.

    1. Yes, it should be. But this site has a hard on for Moto.

      Sent from my naked white Note 4

      1. Yep, Phandroid seem to love everything from Motorola and to a lesser extent HTC.

  15. I’m still for the life of me trying to figure out how the X 2nd Gen got top spot. I’m using this device right now because my M8s screen broke and I feel so bored of it… I would kill to have my M8 back. Maybe once it gets L, I’ll change my tune.

    1. its inferior to the droid turbo in every way, and its inferior to most other flagships in a lot of ways.

      1. No it’s not.

        Overall performance will be about the same due to differences in the display resolution, build quality is definitely better on the HTC One M8 and so are the speakers, also comes with an sdcard slot.

        The Droids advantage is battery life (Based on specs, not actual use) and probably the camera, as almost anything is better than the M8’s camera.

  16. Who cares if the turbo is a Verizon exclusive? I thought you’re suppsed to review and rank phones based on their performance and specs. Not what carrier it’s available on

  17. The Droid Turbo should be at the top this list! End of story.

    1. How can it be on the top of the list when you cannot even use data and voice calls at the same time? This is 2014, not 2004 after all…..

      That combined with lackluster wifi strength, only average battery life even with a huge battery, and a poor performing camera doesn’t exactly warrant the phone being on the list IMHO.

  18. Amazon having a fire sale on their Fire Phone or are they trying to make it look like that these are selling like hot cakes?

  19. 1. Z3
    2. Z3
    3. Z3
    4. Z3
    5. Z3

    1. Z3 is a Z2 repackaged. Forget about an iPhone to iPhone s upgrade, this is identical Z2 = Z3.

      1. And the Z2 should make the list too.

  20. The LG g3 is so underrated its nuts! Maybe its just me but the skin is worlds above what it was and the added features to quickly access apps or on touch notication shade are things all android phones need imo. .but hey the moto x is great but the battery life is what made me choose the g3 because despite what people say I get all day fairly heavy use on mine which is what I wanted! But hey all he phones on there deserve to be there…well except the Sony one..since…well innovation died on their phones with the exception of the camera i can’t stand a company that rehashes a better version of the same shiz* cough* apple *cough*

  21. Since we’re all having a turn…..

    1. Droid Turbo
    2. LG G3
    3. GN4
    4. Nexus 5
    5. Moto X

    1. LOL Droid Turbo.

  22. 1, 2, & 3, in debatable order, are the Note 4, Nexus 6, and Droid Turbo/Moto Maxx (as it’ll be called when its released internationally).

    4 is Xperia z3

    5 is LG G3

    honorable mentions: Z3c (for the mini-phone fetishists) Desire Eye (for the selfie addicts, also a good phone all around), Galaxy S5 Active (for the milspec ruggedization)

    There is nothing special about the Moto X, and the Nexus 5 is a bit worse Moto X missing a lot of features but with sliiiiiightly faster updates. The only things unique about the One M8 are the body, which you’re an idiot if you don’t put in a case because its cheap soda can material, and the shitty camera. The only thing special about the S5 anymore is the unique combo of waterproofing, removable battery, and fingerprint scanner in a mid-sized phone, which make it a niche device at best.

    1. Actually there are plenty of useful features on the moto x that are special. If you had used one for a little bit, you would see how convenient the features of that phone really are. Twist to take a picture is great. The way motorola uses the phone’s sensors is unmatched. The nexus 6 is the only phone that has some of the features motorola has been offering since last year.

      The features motorola offers are not gimmicks like a heart rate monitor, for example. Generally when one is interested in monitoring their heart rate during some sort of exercise, they want to be able to maintain a specific rate, monitor it over a duration, and/or measure their max heart rate. You’re not going to be able to reliably do those with a Note 4 or S5. It’s a novelty. Not trying to bash Samsung, just using that as an example. There are features on their phones that are not gimmicks, but this one is.

      Motorola’s added software features really enhance the user experience and are well thought out. Moto voice, display, actions, and assist are features that are special. Try them, seriously.

  23. How does the G3 get the final spot and the OnePlus One doesn’t even get mentioned…..the shame!!!!!!

  24. How does a nexus class device that doesn’t even have a micro sd slot, or any specs that are better than the note 4 rate higher? wut?

    1. Nexus isn’t loaded with Touchwiz. That’s a huge plus for a lot of people. Plus, it’s cheaper.

  25. Where the hell is the OnePlus One? What a terrible list.

    1. They only list phones that can actually be obtained by the general public. The OPO is a cluster f*$# if there ever was one…..

      You might be able to argue for an honorable mention – just like the Droid Turbo.

      1. I am a part of the general public and I have obtained a OnePlus One.

        1. Same, I had no problems getting a OPO.

          Great device.

          1. Me as well. Best phone out there (especially for the price).

          2. It’s not the best phone out there, but it great value and punches above it’s weight.

  26. This is not making my decision easier when I upgrade in a couple of weeks. I think I’m still going to choose between the Note 4 and G3, leaning back towards the Note 4 now as opposed to last month when I was thinking G3. I wish the Z3 and Droid Turbo were in the discussion, but unfortunately they aren’t available on ATT.

    I honestly don’t see the appeal of the Moto X aside from the lack of custom UI. The external material really doesn’t make a difference to me at all.

  27. I know it’s November and new phones have come out, but the HTC One m8 still belongs on a list of the best Android phones. Even if you’re not crazy about the camera, HTC has made substantial software improvements for the camera. And the phone feels so solid, it feels like it’s built like a tank. It’s a gorgeous phone to look at. It’s wicked fast. The Dot View case and Blinkfeed are unique additions (whether you love them or hate them) . The phone has great battery life. Today, for example, my phone has been running off battery since 8a. It is now 1:30p and I still have 90% battery life left. And on top of all that, there is an actual microSD slot! Sense 6 adds other enhancements without being too overbearing. All in all, this is a great phone. Only HTC’s camera hardware keeps it from being perfect. I’ve read with interest all the announcements about new phones – from the iPhone to Samsung, LG and every phone in between. Still, nothing holds a candle to this beast of a phone.

    1. No it doesn’t, the camera sucks,

      You can’t expect to have a flagship device with a massive weakness in the top 5.

  28. It seems to me very accurate.

  29. Amazon Fire Phone is a joke right? lol

  30. Looks like Joe supports Motorola, no idea why.

    Sorry Joe but the Note 4 is the better device, better display, camera and performance in the Exynos version.

    1. It still has TouchWiz, which, while better now than ever, is still an awful UI skin. I would take a bad camera and display over not having to deal with TouchWiz any day. The Note 4 has better benchmarks or specs but it does not perform better.

      1. Touchwiz is just fine, great performance but the UI is not to everyones taste.

        Also yes it does perform better especially when comparing the Exynos version, Samsung devices usually don’t throttle quite as much as the competition so general performance is usually better when comparing the same SoC in an intensive application like gaming. :)

  31. 1. Galaxy Note 4
    2. Galaxy S5
    3. Xperia Z3
    4. Nexus 6
    5. Moto X

    Honorable Mentions

    OnePlus One
    LG G3
    HTC One M8
    Xperia Z3 Compact

  32. 1. OnePlus One – The privacy controls make it unbeatable.
    2. Moto X
    3. Galaxy Note 4
    4. Xperia Z3
    5. Nexus 6

    Honorable Mentions
    LG G3
    Xperia Z Compact
    Galaxy S5

  33. It’s sad that none of the phones on this list will fit comfortably into small-ish, skinny jeans pockets. These vendors have lost their minds.

  34. Since they did not include the Turbo because of it’s a Verizon exclusive, why did they include the Ze while it is a T-Mobile exclusive

    1. I had the same question. I assume because you can technically buy the Z3 unlocked directly from Sony, but I still think it should be excluded if availability is being held against the Droid Turbo.

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