Android Flagship laundry list 2015:

Am I missing anything?

4.7-5.5" screen
Bluetooth 4.1 LE
Quad core something something
32GB minimum storage
Quad band GSM LTE
5.8GHz dual band wireless AC
3000+ mAh removable battery
Notification light
Wireless charging
Quick charge
USB 3.0/3.1 Gen2 Type-C
Dual SIM
4K 60fps video recording
13 MP+ camera with laser focus, OIS
1080p-QHD resolution AMOLED screen
Removable back
Dustproof/resistant, waterproof/resistant
Fingerprint reader properly secured through software not half-assed like HTC and Samsung
Loud, stereo speakers

  • Ram Devouring Manufacturer Skin that prevents updates for 6-∞ months

I should point out that my list is the desired features list.


-unobtrusive, non-bloatware enhancements to vanilla Android OS with timely OS/security updates

ie) not TouchWiz or LG whatever it is.

It’s funny, the LG-G4 satisfies so much of the laundry list except for the laggy UI.

No fingerprint scanner? That’s not a must-have feature for me either, but I know people who swear by that thing.

The Moto X Pure (on pre-sale tomorrow 9/2) is tempting me. It hits a lot of those points although possibly too big at 5.7".

I don’t care about removable back/replaceable battery, and it does have MicroSD support. I’d like to see if the camera is improved, which is a must for me.

The fingerprint reader IS super nice on the Samsung GS6 and iPhone. I don’t care about it so much for unlocking, pattern unlock is just as fast, but it is convenient for Lastpass authentication.

Rei, have you tried the Google Now launcher on the G4? Any improvements? It could just be that the phone is pushing too many pixels.

Is NFC a necessary feature? My last phone had it and my OnePlus One has it, but I have no idea how or where to use it. I only paid attention to it because the OnePlus 2 is removing the NFC feature, which upset some people, but it just made me think: What is NFC for anyway?

There was a brief spur of interest in NFC-enabled “tags” and buttons. I kinda wanted to grab one to turn on/off wifi to stick on my car dash (when I leave home, I turn off wifi before streaming music in my car. When I get to work and exit the car, I need to turn it on since there’s 0 signal in my workplace. When I go back home, turn off when entering car, turn on again when I get home since signal inside is only good-ish. The NFC sticker could let me do that constant fiddling by just waving my phone near the dash).

Aside from that, Android, and some manufacturer skins, have a variety of “tap phones to share content” goofiness that has always seemed buggy and unreliable to me–by the time we’d both get it enabled and working correctly to tap and pass stuff over, I’d have been able to hit Share > Hangouts >their username and gotten it to them that way. . .

I believe it may be needed for the tap to pay stuff as well.

Well yeah, maybe, but that actually sounds useful.

NFC is how I pay for stuff at McDonald’s and Walgreens. Essentially, any place that supports Apple Pay also supports NFC for payments. Technically, there is some extra nuance, but I still believe Apple Pay = NFC support is a safe statement to generally make.

This is also sample size of just me, but I used NFC to check how much is left on my public transit pass by just tapping/scanning the card on my phone.

Hmm, I did forget to list fingerprint reader. It’s essential on my iPhone 6.

Yup, NFC is currently only useful for pay apps, and Google is supposed to be making a major push with their new Android Pay to compete w Apple later this year.

Samsung Pay is also getting close. I have the app on my phone now, it’s just not active yet.

A critical feature to me is a nice and loud speaker for playing podcasts. A bad example is the speaker on the Nexus 4 (and the first Nexus 7), which is rather not loud (7: outright quiet), and is placed on the BACK of the phone, forcing me to lay it touchscreen-down to listen.

I’m using the One+ One, which has speakers on the bottom edge, just like iPhones. Much better. I can point the speaker against a wall to help make it louder.

People actually use the speakers???

I do. Everyday in the shower, at least. Hang it on top of the shower stall using a Spiderpodium. Safe and sound.

hmm, i just have a pair of UE Mini Boom BT speakers I move around the house.

Android Pay works everywhere Apple Pay does, anywhere you see the image below on the creditcard scanner. Which is everywhere these days. You want NFC, it is incredibly useful.

Add waterproof, shockproof and dustproof to the checklist.

Sony can’t make up its mind if its newly-touted waterproof phones are actually that.

The new Android Pay app is much nicer looking than Wallet. It pretty much took all of Wallet’s features but made them less onerous to use, and prettier.

Of course Google decided to retain confusion by releasing an updated Wallet app that independent of Android Pay, but now Wallet is simply a payment app akin to Square Cash.