As we approach the end of the year, Wireless and Mobile News continues with our data gathering mission of collecting all the reviews of the best top coolest hottest smartphones of the year and then review them all to name the top ten smartphones of the entire year in late December.
Let's see what Consumer Reports named the top smartphones. It has already been noted that this is the first year that Consumer Reports did not put the iPhone on the of the list. Which may predict the fist year that the iPhone does not come in the top of the Wireless Mobile News Top Smartphones of 2011 list.
Although Consumer Reports recommends the iPhone 4S they noted attactive new features such as an upgraded camera, faster processor and Siri but ""These pluses were not enough, however, to allow the iPhone 4S to outscore the best new Android-based phones in our ratings."
One way to find out how Consumer Reports ranked smartphones is to buy the newsstand version or subscribe. Paper magazines have a two to three month lag time. We bought the magazine while shopping Black Weekend sales and discovered the paper version of smartphone ratings and testing did not include the top smartphone new dual-core releases of the fall the Droid Bionic, Samsung Galaxy SII, Droid RAZR, HTC Rezound, HTC Vivid or Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrcoket.
The online version is updated more often and more up-to-date. If you like the way Consumer Reports rates smartphones you should subscribe to read the full reviews.
Consumer Reports rates smartphones differently than tech web sources. They focus on human usability more than speed and benchmark tests. Tech sources tend to compare with the other most recent models. Tech reviews are much more technical and have become very picky over time.
After the CR summary (you'll have to subscribe to read the full reviews) we link to our Review of Reviews which summarized all the top tech reviews and the best prices we can find at the time of this writing. Consumer Reports is much more forgiving of the little things that bother tech reviewers such as bloatware. Because there are more top-rated smartphones than any other year previously, we will cut up this "Review of Reviews" into parts.
AT&T Top-Rated Smartphones of 2011
Samsung Galaxy SII (80)- CR liked 4.3" touchscreen, ease of use, cameras, 4G data access, Android versatility. It could be considered too big for some lacks physical phone buttons, and preset text messages. CR has not rated the Skyrocket with a 4.5" touchscreen and LTE data access, yet which received an Editors' Choice Award. The best price for new customers today is Amazon Wireless at one-cent - renewing customers pay $149.99.
Samsung Infuse 4G (80) - CR liked the Super AMOLED 4.5' touchscreen, ease of use, camera, call quality, 4G Data and Android. Like the SII , it lacks preset text messages. They didn't like the virtual keypad makes dialing hard without looking and difficulty to reach to the microSD card. The screen could be too large for some. It received a 3.6 out of 5 in reviews. The Samsung Infuse 4G is one penny from Amazon Wireless and is part of the Cyber Monday deals from AT&T and priced at one-cent for all buyers on Cyber Monday.
LG Thrill 4G (75) - LG Thrill 4G tied with the iPhone 4S with 75 points. CR liked the high res touchscreen, decent 3D viewing, front facing camera, ease of use, 4G data and Android. They didn't like the size, fair voice listening, lack of physical phone buttons, lack of preset text messages and hard to access memory card. Wireless and Mobile News Review of Reviews rated 4 out of 5 some reviewers didn't like the 3D novelty. The LG Thrill 4G is priced at penny during Amazon Wireless' Penny Pincher sale and AT&T's Cyber Monday sale.
iPhone 4S (75) -CR liked its ease of use, email app, sharp screen, Siri, iOS, camera, music app and easy media buying. They didn't like the inability to edit Word documents, lack of preset text messages, fair voice quality, lack of physical buttons and battery has to be replaced by Apple. There are no discounts available.
We are currently working on other carriers Review of Reviews Top Ten Best Smartphones of 2011 for Consumer Reports. Please return to Wireless and Mobile News to read them.
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