Holiday Gift Guide – Mobile Phones

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The holidays. Oh, the holidays. That wonderfully festive time of year full of laughs, loved ones and best of all, beautiful decorations. I love everything about this season. Except, well … buying presents. And if you’re anything like me, you end up having to rush out at the very last minute to scoop up the best items you can find with what little time you have to find something for everyone on your list. Many times, you’ll have no idea what to get someone. And even if you do, you have no idea which one is best or where to start.

If you’ve decided to be ever-so-generous and get everyone a smartphone, we’ve put together this little list to help sort out which one will work for all of the individuals on your list.

The Gentle Giant: Note 3

Price: $299.99 at AT&T and Verizon; $199.99  at T-Mobile (with a 2-year contract)

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With its 5.7-inch 1080p massive and vibrant screen, this giant reigns supreme. Powered by a Snapdragon 800 2.3 GHz CPU with 32GB and 3GB RAM, it takes multi-tasking and note taking to a whole new level. It also features a 13 Megapixel camera with LED flash allowing you to capture amazing photos, has a long lasting battery and comes with lots of great apps that work with the stylus. Without signing a two-year contract, this big guy retails for $709.99. As with all of your expensive mobile devices you’ll definitely want to get an OtterBox to protect your new investment.

The Price is Right: Nexus 5

Price: $49.99 at Sprint; $449.99 at BestBuy

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Quite possibly the best value you can get for a phone on the market, the Nexus 5 is great for those who enjoy using the power of Android, while keeping things simple. This phone features a 5-inch HD display with a 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor and is the first to run on Android’s 4.4 KitKat. The only downside is that the camera and storage are average. But, for the price, still a great overall phone.

Waterproof Wonder: Sony Xperia Z1

Price: $649.99 at Sony

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One of the most powerful smartphones currently available, this waterproof wonder sits high on the totem pole. Boasting a 2.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor, this beast also sports a 3,000 mAh battery to support its Android power. Better yet, it has a 20.7 megapixel camera that’s great for taking pictures above — and below water. This phone is a tough one to beat.

The Beauty: HTC One

Price: $299.99 at AT&T; $99.99 at Sprint

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Made of aluminum and plastic, this curved phone is sleek and fits beautifully in your hand. It’s not only built excellently, but feels great too. This looker features a 4.7-inch 1080 x 1920 pixel display, a 1.7 GHz quad-core processor, a 4 megapixel camera and 2300 mAh of battery. An overall great phone at not too expensive of a price! As the protective case partner of the made for HTC devices, OtterBox has the HTC One case you’re looking for.

Battery Beast: Motorola Droid Maxx

Price: $199.99 at Verizon

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The main selling point of this beast is its impressive high-capacity 3,500 mAh battery. The HD OLED screen sits at a less-than-stellar 720 pixel and doesn’t quite have the power of a quad-core processor, running on the X8 dual-core 1.7 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon, but it’s still big and beautiful and is able to make crystal-clear calls. Make sure you pick up either a Defender Series or Commuter Series case to protect this top-notch device.

Just a Touch: iPhone 5S

Price: $199.99 at AT&T; or BestBuy


Although the newest iPhone version is not much different from the iPhone 5 aesthetically, it’s definitely faster and better than ever before.  Sporting a new 64-bit processor running on iOS 7 the 5S also has the latest secure technology featuring a Touch ID fingerprint sensor for added security. While the camera stayed at 8 megapixels, a true tone LED flash was added to allow the light to match the environment you’re in. Many improvements were also made to decrease the problem of shake and blurriness and allow for pictures to be taken in low light or with slow-motion. From waterproof cases to build your own color combinations, OtterBox has numerous options for protecting the iPhone 5s.

The Multi-tasker: Samsung Galaxy S 4

Price: $99.99 at T-Mobile; $199.99 at Verizon and AT&T

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The latest and greatest Android phone from Samsung is probably one of the best phones out there and comes fully stacked. The 4G LTE device with a 1.9 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor is one of the fastest machines available. It uses a 2,600 mAh battery and is available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB storage capacity. It comes stock with tons of apps to play with, eye-tracking software, TV remote and multi-window capabilities as well as a 13-megapixel camera that also allows for dual-shot mode. Make sure your gift stays protected through the new year with one of the options from OtterBox for the Galaxy S 4.

Artsy Photographer: Nokia Lumia 1020

Price: $199.99 at BestBuy


41 megapixel camera — need we say more? This beauty has a 4.5 inch 1280 x 768-pixel resolution display with a 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor and a smooth 1080p HD camera that allows it to record great videos. It supports all of this with a 2,000 mAh battery and 32GB of storage. Call quality is okay and it’s a bit steep on the price, but for anyone who is big on taking lots of pictures, this phone is definitely the way to go! We know how photographers protect their cameras, make sure you protect the Nokia Lumia 1020 with a case from OtterBox.

About the author

Jacquelyn Rickard

Jacquelyn Rickard

Wanderer. Animal lover. Foodie. Photographer. Amateur do-it-yourselfer and cook--it’s hard to say what I obsess over the most. I love challenges and learning new things. Born and raised in Colorado, other than the 2 years I spent getting in touch with my Filipino roots. I love good beer, adventures and doing anything outdoors. When I’m not obsessing on something, at work or off getting lost somewhere, you can probably find me barbecuing with friends or family, working in my garden or curled up on the couch with a movie and a glass of wine.

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