You probably have heard of 4G LTE being the highlight in different carrier commercials. They talk of it as the widest, fastest and the next big thing, prompting you to ask yourself if it is now the best time to ditch your 3G-only capable handset in place of a more high-end, 4G LTE smartphone.
Sprint made the first move when they offered the first 4G smartphone, HTC Evo 4G, in 2010. AT&T and T-Mobile took a different step forward by luring consumers with a supercharged 3G network – the HSPA+, while Verizon brought about Long Term Evolution or LTE, which eventually become the winner of the connection speed battle. Adding 2014, it’s been 4 years since the 4G battle had started, and so it is normal for us to think that 4G LTE connections are everywhere nowadays. But, is it? Is it now the best time to finally grab a 4G LTE device to start enjoying a faster speed connection?
We like to assume that it is now the best time to switch from 3G to 4G LTE smartphones, but there are just these factors that we can’t help but consider.
While each carrier claims their network coverage expands through the horizon, thus guaranteeing you a speedy internet connection anywhere you go, it can be false advertising. Perhaps the truth behind this guarantee is that they are currently expanding and that their 4G LTE coverage will reach far off areas soon. So, if you are a travel junkie, that is you frequently move from one location to another, you might want to check first if the locations you frequent all have the average and above coverage of a 4G LTE connection by your preferred carrier.
Even the fastest 3G connection is no match to the exploding bandwidth caused by users consuming more data at the same time. If you happen to live in an area where people around are mostly heavy users themselves connected to the same carrier you are planning to grab a data contract from, think again. Most often than not, the network is already crowded causing for some users to fall back to the HSPA+ or 3G connection, which (while still reliable most of the time) may give the same old lagging internet connectivity experience – a scenario you don’t want to be in, especially having a 4G device in your hand.
Device Price Tag
Some of us ache about the price tags of the high-end smartphones we want to get our hands with, let alone the 4G LTE capable. The price of a 4G LTE smartphone might hurt your pocket if you are on a strict budget, especially when you aim for the ones with the best of specs, good reviews or by reputable phone makers. Thus, your financial capability decides whether or not it is the best time for you to switch.
Data Plan Affordability
Another area where your budget can come into play when deciding about ditching and switching is when you opt for a data plan by your preferred carrier. While limited plans can be best for basic users, unlimited plans are recommended for the heavy data connection users. The problem exists when you are not aware of what type of a user you are and that you have picked the wrong plan.
Recommended 4G LTE Smartphones
If you feel like you are getting left behind, and that regardless of the underlying circumstances you want to take a step forward and grab yourself a nice piece of 4G LTE-capable device, here are the most recommended ones.
Apple’s series of iPhones are great pieces of sturdy devices. Not only that; each handset they offer comes with an ecosystem full of high-quality apps, including the latest iPhone 5S. Now put that 4G LTE into the quality of iPhone 5S and you have a very capable, all-rounded smartphone. However, due to CDMA configurations, you might want to skip Verizon and Sprint as iPhone 5S from both carriers can’t use data and voice simultaneously.
Samsung Galaxy S4
One worthy competitor to Apple’s latest flagship handset is Samsung’s Galaxy S4. If you use a smartphone to watch high-quality videos all the time via internet, you will find satisfaction from this high-end handset. Connect it through a 4G LTE network and you are on your way to experiencing a non-buffering HD video watching.
Looking for a high-powered Android-based smartphone? Not a problem! In fact, if there’s another handset to challenge Samsung’s and Apple’s, it should be HTC’s One smartphone. Speed-wise, it matches that of Samsung’s flagship. It loads pages very fast on either over 4G or capable Wi-Fi connection. It doesn’t matter which carrier you get HTC One as it arrives the same from all of them.
Sony Xperia Z
Of course, who would forget a smartphone that you can take with your pool splash? Sony Xperia Z is exceptional enough to be recommended here. It’s one of the impressive Android phone models and definitely one of the 4G LTE sturdy handsets you can grab, not to mention it operates on all known 4G bands which mean you can switch carriers at any time.
LG Optimus G Pro
Preferred LG’s? They offer a beast of a phone named Optimus G Pro. Matching that of Samsung and HTC flagships’ expansive displays, in-your-face smartphone browsing is guaranteed, perfect for those who find Apple flagship’s screen limited. Put 4G LTE in play in the background and you have a true monster phone. However, Optimus G Pro is locked up tight to AT&T’s network, so there’s no free roaming with any old micro-SIM card for that matter.