[Update Dec 1st: We've got a more up to date version of the Best Android Phones in Canada here!]
To show some love for our friends north of the border, we decided to compile a list of the best upcoming and available Android phones that Canadian carriers offer. Of course, many Canadians elect to buy unlocked Android phones via eBay and other online sites, and have them shipped to their igloos (JK, we love you Canada!). This is a common practice, especially amongst the anxious tech hungry Canucks who cant wait for their carrier to release the phones, which in the past has been months after the US release dates.
There’s some good news for Canadians though, in recent months we’ve been noticing a marketing trend emerge in which Canadian carriers are piggybacking off the US marketing and trying to release the Android phones at the same time as the US. Case in hand the Motorola Atrix which is set to release in Canada on March 17th, within 2 weeks of the US launch date set for March 6th.
We stumbled upon another very interesting tidbit of information: popular Canadian mobile site MobileSyrup recently conducted a poll in which they asked Canadians if their next phone purchase will be an Android. A whopping 70% of pollsters said that the next phone they buy will be Android phone, a staggering number which further displays the rapid growth of Android.
Without further adieu, let’s take a peak at the current Android phones offered by Canadian carriers.
Rogers, the leading wireless carrier in Canada, currently offers a selection of 8 different Android phones. The most expensive Android phone offered is the Dell Streak which can be purchased for $99 (3 year plan), while the cheapest, the LG Loop, is being given away for free on a 3 year stint. Don’t be fooled by price, however, as the Dell Streak isn’t the best Android phone at Rogers. In reality, the Samsung Galaxy S Captivate is Rogers’ best Android Phone, and is priced at $49 (3 year plan). The Captivate is loaded with a 1ghz Cortex A8 Hummingbird Processor, 16Gb of internal memory and packs an amazing 4″ inch Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen.
Samsung Galaxy S Captivate
Operating System: Android 2.1 with TouchWiz 3.0
Size/Weight: 122.4 x 64.2 x 9.9 mm / 118 g
Processor: Cortex A8 Hummingbird Processor speed 1000 MHz
Internal/External Memory: 16gb / microSD-SDHC up to 32 GB
Battery: Li-Ion 1500 mAh (13 Hours talk time on 2G)
Display/Size/Resolution: 480 x 800 pixels / 4.0 inches / Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen
Telus Mobility offers 9 different Android phones, with the best prices and deals to be had of the 3 major carriers. In our opinion, the most desirable Telus Android phone has to be the HTC Desire HD, which will set you back $99 on a 3 year plan. Telus also offers some splendid deals on older model Android phones, like the LG Optimus which can be purchased for $199 with no contract. Another great deal deal Telus offers is the $599 Motorola Milestone which can be purchased for FREE with a 2 year contract.
HTC Desire HD
Operating System: Android OS, v2.2 (Froyo)
Size/Weight: 123 x 68 x 11.8 mm / 164 g
Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon QSD8255 1 GHz processor
Internal/External Memory: 1.5 GB / microSD-SDHC up to 32 GB
Battery: Li-Ion 1230 mAh (9 Hours talk time)
Display/Size/Resolution: 480 x 800 pixels / 4.3 inches / TFT capacitive
Bell currently features 7 different Android phones, with the best being the Jaguar speed Motorla Atrix. If you prefer a QWERTY phone, than the HTC Desire Z is your phone. While it’s not nearly as fast as the Galaxy S, it still clocks in at a healthy 800MHZ but only comes with 1.5gb of internal memory. The Desire Z will save you few bucks though, priced at $49(3 year term) or $499 with no contract.
Operating System: Android 2.3
Size/Weight: 116.8 x 63.5 x 10.1 mm / 136 g
Processor: dual-core Tegra 2 1Ghz
Internal/External Memory: 16 GB / microSD-SDHC up to 32 GB
Battery: Li-Ion 1930 mAh (9 Hours talk time)
Display/Size/Resolution: 540 x 960 pixels / 4.0 inches / TFT capacitive
One of the newest carriers in Canada, Mobilicity offers some great deals on wireless packages, but they are currently lacking in the amount of Android phones they offer. Currently, they only offer 2 Android phones, of which both are considered pretty old. If you are in the market for a new phone, we would recommend staying away from buying a phone from Mobilicity. However, Mobilicity is a great carrier to use if you have already purchased an unlocked Android phone and signup for one of there discounted packages. Unlike the other big carriers Mobilicity doesn’t offer any contracts, so you’ll have to buy the phones straight up. The phones they currently offer are the Nexus One by Google with a price tag of $499 and the Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 for $399.
Rogers discount sister company Fido only offers one Android phone, the Acer Liquid E which costs $20 on a 3 year term. The Acer comes loaded with a 768MHZ QualComm Snapdragon processor and 2gb of internal memory. As with Mobilicity Fido offers some great wireless packages so if you are a Fido customer we recommend buying an unlocked Android phone and just plugging in your Fido SIM.
Wind is another discount Canadian carrier offering some great packages, however we’ve received many complaints of poor coverage outside any major Canadian city. Wind currently only offers 1 Android phone, the Alcatel Tribe, Alcatel? I mean seriously, this phone is just pure garbage and we don’t recommend paying the $170 price tag that it comes with. As with Mobilicity and Fido, go and buy an unlocked Android phone online and plug in your Wind SIM.
Koodo is a discount carrier owned by Telus, and we were pleasantly surprised to find that they offer a half decent Android phone for $200. The LG Optimus One comes loaded with Android 2.2 and a 600MHZ processor and an expandable memory slot. The good thing about the LG Optimus One is that is has a decent 1500 mAh Li-Ion battery that will give you about 8 hours of talk time. Koodo is also offering a pretty good deal as well, being a FREE $100 Visa gift card when you purchase online, pricing the Optimus at just $100 with the discount factored in.
Be sure to check back often at AndroidAuthority.com as we have some inside sources with the 2 big carriers which fill us in on some of the juicy leaks. As always we’d love to hear your your thoughts and comments on Android phones in Canada.
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Mobilicity and wind operate on different frequencies to the other carriers so would an unlocked phone from another carrier work with them?
Hi Tim – good point.
It all depends on the phone. Manufacturers tend to ‘regionalize’ their phones, so you always have to check the radio on a phone by phone basis. Are you thinking of any phone in particular?
Actually, I was wondering about something. I REALLY want the HTC Desire Z, but I would prefer to avoid Bell if possible, because I’ve been royally screwed by them in the past, what carriers can I get it to work on? I would love to go with Mobilicity if possible.
They can offer all the phones they want, I’m waiting till the Galaxy S II comes out. There’s no way any of these offerings are going to lure me into a 3 year contract since all of them except the Atrix are old technology, and the Atrix is no competetor to the GSII in my opinion. Any of the others sill just lead to buyer’s remorse in about a year.
You always tell it like it is Joe Blow. I stand with you in your opinion. The Samsung Galaxy S II looks like the phone to get. Do you think it’s likely we will see the Exynos release in Canada? How long do you think it will be until it arrives? Why don’t you go and sign a three year contract with Telus and get the Motorola Milestone for free? It’s a great deal (laughs).
Are there any good pay as you go plans from Rogers? I do not want the ones with 3 yr contract. Technology keeps changing and I am not looking to get stuck with one for so many yrs.
I use http://eonphone.com for unlimited Canadian Android calls. It has better sound quality that other voice apps. Only drawback is that it is not free, but it gets incoming calls.
May be it is time to redo this list at end of 2011
i like flip phones
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