Who Makes the Most Reliable Android Phone?

January 12, 2011
12
29
23 5 1

Smartphones/Superphones are becoming more of a significant investment for everyday people. All around the world, people are signing up for two to three year contracts to get a nice chunk of change deducted off their new phone of choice.

Some of the new phones set to launch in 2011 feature the latest and greatest in everything mobile. At CES, the largest technology companies in the world peddled their wares to an eager and willing public, and it’s quite apparent that 2011 is going to be an amazing year for technology lovers everywhere.

Undoubtedly, some people are apprehensive to hop on this ever changing bandwagon. We have all experienced that fateful moment when our phone is suspended in midair; frantic, we desperately watch it fall to the ground in slow motion. Most likely, the phone doesn’t break, and the screen doesn’t crack. Unfortunately, the results aren’t always as pleasing.

It is a simple fact that some phones are made better than others. Some manufacturers go the extra mile, while others cut corners. Some feature “Gorilla Glass” while others feature less expensive and arguably inferior substitutes. The numbers game that manufacturers play in the pursuit of profit is a zero-sum game. While the company itself makes more money in the short term, they will potentially lose future customers once their manufacturing practices are brought to light. Additionally, once people who own the phone start to get public with their negative experiences, further distrust and dislike towards said company will be created.

Thankfully, we have the internet. Every day, it provides us with the information we need and crave. Reviews on every single conceivable product imaginable are out there for all to see. There is one company, SquareTrade, that specializes in selling people insurance on their expensive gadgets. It has kindly given us a heads up on what to expect moving forward in 2011.

In November, they publicly released a study detailing what company makes the most reliable Android smartphone. Some smartphones attract certain users, and those users are more prone to have accidents in their lives.

Regarding Android Smartphones, there are a few interesting things to note. Some smartphone manufacturers opt for higher quality manufacturing components and processes, while some outsource critical elements of the phone they are making to industry pioneers like Corning. Corning is the maker of the popular “Gorilla Glass.”

Some manufacturers prefer to hide behind the veil of secrecy, while others prefer to shine in the light of transparency. Corning has publicly stated that the following phones have their awesome Gorilla Glass on them.

What is Gorilla Glass you may ask? It is a high-strength sheet glass that is exceptionally tough and damage resistant. It’s one of the many things that Android Smartphone manufacturers can choose to put into their latest and greatest devices.

Phones with Gorilla Glass:

Dell: LG Motorola: Samsung: HTC
Aero Ally Backflip Behold II Incredible
Streak Bravo Captivate
Venue Pro Charm Continuum
Cliq Epic 4G
Cliq XT Fascinate
Defy Flight II
Devour Galaxy A
Dext Galaxy S
Droid Mesmerize
Droid 2 Transform
Droid 2 Global Vibrant
Droid Pro
Droid X
FlipOut
Motorola i1
Milestone

HTC:

We have contacted HTC and they have not responded to our queries. According to Corning, the makers of Gorilla Glass, HTC does not have any agreements or arrangement with them. Therefore, it is safe to assume that HTC is opting for cheaper materials, and as such, is a less reliable manufacturer moving forward. That being said, they are under increasing scrutiny and pressure, and there are mixed reports of certain products that do potentially have Gorilla Glass. We know for sure that the new HTC Desire does not have Gorilla Glass, and being that it is one of their newest models, we can arguably assume that most of their new models in the future will not contain this much needed technology.

We can deduce from the above information that the most reliable manufacturer of Android Smartphones in the world, as of January 2011, is going to be Motorola. We must consider that because Samsung is a huge and diverse company, and a relatively new entrant to the smartphone space, Motorola is going to be a safer bet in the future. HTC and LG will certainly be ones to watch in 2011, but I wouldn’t be betting the farm. As all are market leaders in some respects, we should give them some credit. HTC produced some incredible phones in 2010, like the HTC EVO and the HTC Desire HD. Nevertheless, they have a much shorter track record than Motorola, and track record and experience in any industry or business go a long way in our book.

The Most Reliable Android Phone:

The winner is Motorola. In 2010, they enjoyed an excellent and low failure rate of 2.3%. HTC followed behind at 3.7%. Other smartphones fell way behind the pack at 6.7%. These numbers correspond to failure rates after a 12 month period.

Breakage Due to Accidents:

Everyone drops their phone. I’ve dropped my Droid probably four dozen times, and left it in the rain overnight. It still chugs along like a champ. Today’s smart phones see more use and abuse than any other portable electronic device in history. One would be hard pressed to find a single owner who has never dropped their phone. This issue deserves plenty of attention, especially with the growing popularity of ever larger, full glass panels on Android Phones.

Other Points to Consider:

Anyone that has owned a smartphone knows that they are not invincible. As internal components grow more advanced, so too will the opportunity for hardware failure to occur. This is not necessarily true in all cases, as technological innovation towards tougher tech could potentially ensue. In reality, most of the Android Smartphones have relatively similar components, made by similar companies. Consulting with sites like IFixit and PhoneWreck, it becomes readily apparent that the costing and hardware of the latest and greatest Smartphones is all very similar. In reality, it all comes down to the design, choice of hardware, and the manufacturing firm that said company chooses is best for business. Of course, experience plays a large role and quite simply, the most experienced Android phone manufacturer is Motorola. Some will disagree and say that HTC Phones are better, or that Samsung are better. Regardless of this, none of the other major players have the breadth of experience of Motorola. Additionally, Motorola has also dabbled significantly in Military-Spec quality phones. For example, the Motorola Defy is one very tough phone. They have undoubtedly acquired specialized knowledge and experience there, the likes of which is likely to be employed in every phone they design and put out.

Samsung, LG, Motorola, and HTC are all seriously committed to the smartphone game. For HTC, it’s their lifeline. For Samsung, they have many other operations within their company, and are highly diversified in their approach. Although some of what you have read is grounded in research, some of it is also my personal opinion. I would be willing to say that the most reliable Android smartphone in 2011 will most likely be Motorola, followed closely by HTC, and then Samsung. Good luck with your Android smartphone, and let us know your opinion in the comments below. Which company do you think makes the most reliable Android Smartphone?

Comments